Wednesday, January 9, 2019

I don't know about you, but I adore it when friends come to visit! So, today I'm sharing a very sweet visitor with you.

Author Barbara Silkstone!

Barbara has stopped by to answer some questions, and give readers a chance to win one of her books! 

LKBR:  Thank you for being here today, Barbara!

BS: Thank you! I’m tickled pink to be here!

LKBR: Please tell us a bit about your book/series.

January 30 release - Pre-order now!
More information coming soon! 


Family therapist, Olive Peroni, recently inherited all her Nonna’s worldly possessions including the dear lady’s secret recipe for miracle cold cream—an amazing fountain of youth. After befriending Lizzy Kelly of Listing with Lizzy fame, Olive decides to relocate from Manhattan to Starfish Cove, Florida. Rather than sell it, she moves into her grandmother’s condo on the beach.

Olive and Lizzy set up a business together making and selling beauty products using her grandmother’s recipes that have been handed down through generations of Peroni women. Nonna’s Cold Cream Shop is an instant hit with the wrinkled beachies.

When a body is discovered in the trunk of Lizzy’s car, Olive leaps to the rescue. Her years in New York as therapist to Myron Meyers, a semi-senile, maybe-mobster has left her with a set of trouble-antennas that she can’t retract. Thus begins the COLD CREAM MURDERS—oddball crimes to be solved by Olive and Lizzy.
Each adventure will contain a recipe for a DIY beauty product.

LKBR: How did you come up with the concept?

BS: Having spent most of my grownup (hah!) life on the beaches of Florida, I know how desperate sun worshipers can be for a magical elixir to turn back the wrinkles. I thought this was the perfect way to share some of my own secret brews and throw in a murder or two.

LKBR: What are your future plans for this series? Any hints or spoilers you can give us about the next book?

BS: I plan at least six books in the COLD CREAM MURDER series. SMOKEY EYES will expose Olive’s phobia—fear of getting her face wet. J

LKBR: Is writing an energizing experience, or does it take a lot out of you?

BS: Writing is an energizing experience, although there are days when my spine aches from sitting at the computer too long. The best solution that I’ve found when that happens is using those five-inch air pillows that come in packaging. I can shape them around my achy bits and keep on writing. I usually write about ten hours a day.

LKBR: Once you knew you wanted to be a published writer, who was the first person you reached out to for help? (Such as a publisher, or author)

BS: I had an early start on my dream of publication. I grew up in a Polish-Italian neighborhood in New Jersey. My Babci (grandmother) was my hero. She built my kindergarten ego by telling me I could accomplish anything I set my heart on. I would concoct the most exaggerated stories and she would pretend to believe them.  “You should write that down!” She would tell me in Polish. We communicated in Polish as she never learned to speak English.

Our neighbor had a tree at the edge of his property—a rare thing in our cityscape. I would invent elaborate tales that involved my wrestling tigers from the tree. My grandmother would enthusiastically cheer my imaginary escapades telling me how brave I was.

Before I took part in writers’ workshops with Stephen King, PD James, Robert B. Parker, and James Michener, I reached up to the heavens to check with my Babci for final encouragement. She was the first person I contacted. She told me to go for it.

My early embarrassing start:
When I began to write I threw myself into horror writing with a passion. At the time I was a big fan of Stephen King.  

I was to attend my first horror writers’ conference and meet with writers who possessed the gift for taunting their fans with chilling tales. I read the roster of famous and infamous authors, dropped my registration form in the mail, and looked forward to the four-day event.

My wardrobe at the time was basic black as befit my goal—dress like what you wish to be. But some sissy-demon took possession of my mind and body as I set out to buy a new outfit for the conference.

Up until that date I had never owned a single pink garment. Somewhere between my house and the shops I began to channel someone else. She must have been some fru-fru lady with ringlets in her hair and blush on her cheeks. She probably wore five-inch heels and perfume. Whoever she was, she looked like me and used my credit cards. She returned home with a pink dress. It wasn’t just a pink dress; it had a huge lace collar—like a gaudy pilgrim.

When I entered the conference ballroom everyone else was dressed in black like escapees from Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas. I stood out like a wedding cake at a cemetery. 

To my surprise I was the most popular gal at the event. All the professional horror authors gravitated to me as if I was celebrity. At first I thought it was my natural charm as they pumped me for details about my home life. They peppered me with questions about how I spent my time. I was so flattered. On the second day of my new found popularity I discovered my allure was merely that I was an average person whose life might lend itself to their tales of the macabre. Popular in Pink—not!

After a humiliatingly pink entrance into the genre, I enrolled in a series of workshops with Stephen King, PD James, and James Michener. King was kind enough to read my works, which he deemed very good, but aimed me towards comedy. Mystery, Romance, and Suspense with a comedic touch were a much better fit. I couldn’t keep the laughter out of my writing.

LKBR: What sort of research do you do for your books? Is it more computer based or hands on?
BS: It’s a combination of both. Many of my series are taken from my wacky real life experiences. My heroines share my phobias: panic if water splashes in my face and a terror of holes in fabric. (I know it sounds odd but it’s so icky!)

For COLD CREAM MURDERS I researched do it yourself beauty treatments. When I turned thirty I began a once-a-week regimen of smearing egg on my face to tighten my pores. Yellow first. Let it dry completely and then smear the white on top. Let it dry. It worked. I had the tiniest pores and the eggiest face in town.

LKBR: What is your writing process? Place, time of day, by the hour or word count?

BS: At four a.m. my controlling kitty head-bumps me until I wake. She marches me to her food dish. Once she has her breakfast, she herds me into my little office where my writing day begins. I write for an hour and then make my coffee. I’m hooked on French Market with chicory. I write until my spine begins to really hurt—around noon. Then I eat something and start on the marketing and promotion of my books. I’ve written over forty novel and novellas in a mix of genres. They are always light comedies with just a touch of romance—more like bicker-romance.

LKBR: How do you come up with character names?
BS: I meet my characters during the course of the day. They introduce themselves to me. Their names seem fit them perfectly.

LKBR: Is it difficult to write characters of the opposite sex? Do you have someone you use for advice?
BS: Not at all difficult. Years ago I set out to interview men about women, love, marriage, and attraction. I intended to interview one thousand men in one year in one-on-one meetings. Six years later I was still listening to men and had only made it to five hundred inteviews. I had no idea they would open up like they did and talk so much. The men gave me enough insight to populate hundreds of novels.

LKBR: Do you read reviews of your books? If you do, and a review is bad, what effect does it have on you? (I know some reviews are mean as opposed to constructive.)

BS: I do read the nice ones but skip the mean-spirited ones. I could never write a negative review. If I don’t like a book that doesn’t mean someone else won’t love it. I follow Thumper’s rule: If you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all. If I find a glaring mistake in a book, I might privately message the author. It’s much kinder and gives them a chance to correct their error(s).

LKBR: What are 3 things readers may not know about you?

BS: I joined the Peace Corps at eighteen. Not having gone to college, the wonderful folks at the PC trained me to be a midwife. I chose Brazil as my assignment. I’ve never met a nicer group of people. Thank you, Peace Corps!

One of my favorite things is doing standup comedy. I haven’t performed in ages and miss it. There is no greater high than making people laugh.

At one time I was addicted to Burger King chicken sandwiches. I was eating them three times a day. I finally went to a hypnotist to break my craving.

LKBR: Where can readers go to learn more about you and your books?

BS: Amazon Author’s page

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LKBR: Thank you so much,Barbara, for letting us get to know you better!

SB: Thank you! It’s been lovely.

I’d best get back to my cold cream. I have a new batch brewing!
With love & laughter!
Barbara Silkstone



Three lucky readers will each win an eBook copy of


Use the Rafflecopter form below to enter


A big thank you to, Barbara, for stopping by today!
And a very big thank you to all of my readers!
I couldn't do this blog without you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Olive Peroni put out her family therapy shingle six years ago, never thinking her top client would be Myron Meyers, head of a New York crime family. When Olive’s grandmother dies and leaves her a condo in Florida and a secret recipe for miracle cold cream, she grabs the chance at a new life in Starfish Cove, Florida, making designer creams for ladies who spend far too much time at the beach. 

Business is brisk and life is good! Olive even makes a wild new best friend in Lizzy, the real estate agent who handles the transfer of Nonna’s condo. When a dead body is found in the trunk of Lizzy’s car, Olive despairs that life in Starfish Cove won’t be any different than the one she thought she’d escaped. But this time, instead of listening to confessions of murder, Olive’s going to have to solve one. Maybe two…

Contains a recipe for Olive & Lizzy’s super-creamy homemade lip gloss!


Olive Peroni put out her family therapy shingle six years ago—never thinking her top client would be Myron Meyers, head of a New York crime family. When Olive’s grandmother dies and leaves her a condo in Florida and a secret recipe for miracle cold cream, she grabs the chance at a new life in Starfish Cove, Florida, making designer creams for ladies who spend far too much time at the beach. Business is brisk at Nonna’s Cold Cream shop and life is good! Olive even makes a wild new best friend and business partner in Lizzy, the real estate agent who handles the transfer of Nonna’s condo. 

But when the quiet little community on the Gulf of Mexico soon begins to compete with a certain notorious coastal village in Maine, Olive finds herself solving odd-ball murders as often as she soothes wrinkles. Clean and wholesome! 

Each book contains a recipe for homemade cosmetics!


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  1. Great interview. This sounds like an awesome series!

  2. This sounds like a fun series! I will definitely be adding it to my TBR list.

  3. What an interesting interview!! Enjoyed it!

  4. Thanks, Lisa. Fun titles! Happy Wednesday!

  5. This sounds like an interesting series, I'm looking forward to reading Glossy Lips!

  6. Barbara is a new author to me. I really enjoyed the interview and synopsis of the book, sounds like a fun read.

  7. Susan is a new author to me. Sounds like a fun read.

  8. Loved the interview! Looks like a great series!

  9. Thankyou for the great interview. I enjoyed getting to know Barbara. I'm looking forward to reading this new series. minishoes(at)msn(dot)com