Sunday, September 20, 2020


It's wonderful to be a stop on the book tour for
Book 6 in the Cajun Country Mysteries
by Ellen Byron

Maggie Crozat has the Halloween heebie-jeebies in USA Today bestselling and Agatha Award-winning author Ellen Byron's howlingly funny sixth Cajun Country mystery.

Maggie Crozat, proprietor of a historic Cajun Country B&B, prefers to let the good times roll. But hard times rock her hostelry when a new cell phone app makes it easy for locals to rent their spare rooms to tourists. With October--and Halloween--approaching, she conjures up a witch-crafty marketing scheme to draw visitors to Pelican, Louisiana.

Five local plantation B&Bs host "Pelican's Spooky Past" packages, featuring regional crafts, unique menus, and a pet costume parade. Topping it off, the derelict Dupois cemetery is the suitably sepulchral setting for the spine-chilling play Resurrection of a Spirit. But all the witchcraft has inevitably conjured something: her B&B guests are being terrified out of town by sightings of the legendary rougarou, a cross between a werewolf and vampire.

When, in the Dupois cemetery, someone costumed as a rougarou stumbles onstage during the play--and promptly gives up the ghost, the rougarou mask having been poisoned with strychnine, Maggie is on the case. But as more murders stack up, Maggie fears that Pelican's spooky past has nothing on its bloodcurdling present.



1 lucky reader will win a print copy of


Enter using the Rafflecopter form at the end of this post.

Winner will be chosen after September 27 at the end of the tour.

USA only

This giveaway is through Great Escape Book Tours, not Lisa Ks Book Reviews.

LKBR:  Thank you for joining us today, Ellen.

Ellen: My pleasure! Thanks so much for having me.


LKBR: Please tell us a bit about MURDER IN THE BAYOU BONEYARD.

Ellen: An AirBnB-type of app is stealing business from all the historic B&Bs in my protagonist Maggie Crozat’s hometown of Pelican, Louisiana. To capitalize on Halloween, Maggie comes up with the idea of a “Pelican’s Spooky Past” Package for the month of October that all the B&Bs can offer, with guests allowed to enjoy fun events at any of them if they’re staying at one of them. The Crozat family is also opening their brand-new spa, which will feature a masseuse who’s a long-lost cousin… and turns out to be a horror. The book is filled with unique Cajun and Creole mourning customs and spooky doings!


LKBR: Are you working on any new projects?

Ellen: Yes. I just turned in a draft of the seventh book in this series (The Cajun Country Mysteries). I’m also working on the third book in my Catering Hall Mystery series, which I write under the name Maria DiRico – which happens to be my late nonna’s maiden name. The series is set in Astoria, Queens, where most of my family lived while I was growing up. It’s very personal to me.


LKBR: When did you first know you wanted to be a writer?

Ellen: Honestly, I kind of fell into it, although given that my father was an advertising copywriter and both my brothers are writers, it seems predestined. I was pursuing an acting career and hit a dry spell. I wrote a play to kill time, and suddenly I was a playwright instead of an actress. I began freelance writing for national magazines to support myself, and eventually moved to Los Angeles to write for TV. I’ve been a writer-producer on comedy series like WINGS, JUST SHOOT ME, and FAIRLY ODD PARENTS.


LKBR: Was getting your first book published everything you thought it would be? The feelings? The process?

Ellen: It was so exciting! I’ll never forget getting that box of books. Wow, what a sight. Then I sent crazy buying swag to give out. I realize now it was tied to a big case of Imposter Syndrome. I doubted my own ability and felt like I had to give people gifts to make up for the guilt of them spending their hard-earned money on my books. I’ve come to be very proud of my series, I’m happy to say. I don’t give out as much swag, but that’s mostly because mailing costs have become so expensive.


LKBR: How did you handle it when changes were made to your first manuscript? I don’t have a thick skin, so I know how I would have felt.

Ellen: I have a VERY thick skin. You have to, if you want to earn your living as a writer. You may think it’s a solitary endeavor but it’s really very collaborative. As a playwright, I worked with actors and directors, constantly rewriting to make the play better. With freelance writing, my editor is the boss. I’m being paid to give them what they want. Same with television. Every script I wrote was rewritten in the writers’ room and then throughout the production week. If you can’t accept changes being made to your work, you stop working. This is not to say that I take every note without a question. Far from it. I evaluate each note to make sure I agree it will improve the script or manuscript. Sometimes you don’t take a suggestion directly. You analyze the core problem someone’s having and find your own way to address and fix it.


LKBR: What is your favorite part of being a writer?

 Ellen: I adore coming up with a great plot point or turn of phrase. And I love communicating with readers. They’re the most wonderful people in the world. I also love being part of the mystery community. It’s such a supportive tribe.


LKBR: Have you ever read a book that has stayed with you long after reading it?

Ellen: Wuthering Heights. It was my book bible for years, although I re-read it not long ago and in the eyes of today, Heathcliff is a horrible, abusive human being! Still, I’m obsessed with the Brontes, especially Emily. The passion in her writing is astounding. #1 on my bucket list is making a pilgrimage to the Bronte Parsonage in England.


LKBR: Why are reviews, good or bad, so important to authors?

Ellen: Good reviews – honest ones – are essential to our survival. They inspire other readers to check us out. They also make us feel better when we’re having a bad day, lol. Bad reviews… that’s trickier. All reviews are subjective. Some point out legitimate flaws in a story. Some are more personal. I make it a point not to write bad reviews. If I don’t like a book, I simply don’t review it.


LKBR: On what sites do you recommend readers leave their reviews?

Ellen: Amazon, Goodreads, and Bookbub.


LKBR: If you could spend one hour with a reader, what would you want to talk about?

Ellen: Them! Certainly not me, lol. I’d much rather share about their life, dreams, obstacles, triumphs. Who knows? I might find a future story. With their permission, of course. 😉

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

Never really ever wanting to visit Louisiana, I read my first book in the Cajun Country Mystery series on request. The others I have read have been because I enjoyed that one so much! Now I’m always ready for a trip to Pelican LA (be it in the pages) with author Ellen Byron.

MURDER IN THE BAYOU BONEYARD may be my favorite in the series so far. However, I feel that way after each one I read because author Byron just keeps upping her game with each new tale. I don’t know how she does it!

All I can say about, MURDER IN THE BAYOU BONEYARD is, oh my goodness! This was one spooky, fun mystery. Everything from witchcraft and unkempt, creepy cemeteries (just say no to going into these places folks) and an original and unique choice of murder weapon, I can’t mask just how much I enjoyed this book! Seriously, this would have been a one sitting read for me if real life didn’t keep pulling me away.

For returning fans of this series, you’re going to absolutely love, MURDER IN THE BAYOU BONEYARD. If you haven’t read any of this series, I don’t feel like you’d be lost starting with this one. And, once you have read it, I’m willing to bet you’ll go back and read the rest of the series.

About Ellen Byron

Ellen’s Cajun Country Mysteries have won the Agatha award for Best Contemporary Novel and multiple Lefty awards for Best Humorous Mystery. Her Catering Hall Mystery series, written as Maria DiRico, launched with Here Comes the Body and was inspired by her real life. She’s an award-winning playwright and non-award-winning TV writer of comedies like WINGS, JUST SHOOT ME, and FAIRLY ODD PARENTS, but she considers her most impressive credit working as a cater-waiter for Martha Stewart. A native New Yorker who attended New Orleans’ Tulane University, she lives in Los Angeles with her husband, daughter, and rescue furbaby. Sign up for her newsletter at

Author Links 




Purchase Links  
Penguin Random House    -    Amazon    -    B&N    -     Kobo    -    IndieBound 


September 14 – This Is My Truth Now – REVIEW
September 14 – I'm All About Books – SPOTLIGHT
September 15 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – GUEST POST
September 15 – Elizabeth McKenna - Author – SPOTLIGHT
September 16 – Island Confidential – REVIEW
September 16 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
September 17 – Author Elena Taylor's Blog – REVIEW
September 17 – eBook Addicts – SPOTLIGHT
September 18 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW
September 18 – Angel's Guilty Pleasures – SPOTLIGHT
September 19 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
September 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – REVIEW
September 20 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW
September 20 – I Read What You Write – SPOTLIGHT
September 21 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
September 21 – Christy's Cozy Corners – REVIEW, RECIPE
September 22 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
September 22 – Cozy Up With Kathy - CHARACTER GUEST POST
September 23 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW
September 23 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST
September 24 – Sneaky the Library Cat's Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
September 24 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
September 25 – Celticlady's Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
September 26 – fundinmental – SPOTLIGHT
September 26 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
September 26 – Baroness' Book Trove – REVIEW
September 27 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW

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  1. Thanks, Lisa. Perfect time of year for this book!
    Happy Sunday.
    Pat T.

  2. Thank you for being part of the book tour for "MURDER IN THE BAYOU BONEYARD" by Ellen Byron.

    Enjoy reading the chat with Ellen. Love her books! Can't wait for the opportunity to read this one which is most definitely on my TBR list.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  3. I love the cover especially thee dog. It sounds like a cute mystery. Thanks for the chance.

  4. Thanks for giveaway.
    Love books like this. Book cover is perfect. A murder in a boneyard how eerie but perfect. Would love to read and review the print version of this book.
    Hope I Win.

  5. Thanks Lisa and Ellen, so excited about this book!!! It is on my TBR list!..

  6. I enjoyed the interview and am looking forward to reading the book.

  7. I am SO sorry! I'm totally behind on comments. Thanks so much for a great interview and review. Good luck to everyone!