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Gretchen Rue

Who is Gretchen Rue?

Gretchen is a secondary pen-name from author Sierra Dean. She is a cozy mystery author, whose works include The Witches' Brew and Lucky Pie series from Crooked Lane Books. 

Gretchen Rue Books

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Steeped to Death

Witches' Brew #1

For fans of Laura Childs and Amanda Flowers, it’s teatime in Raven Creek—but a murder at the The Earl’s Study sets the stage for an intoxicating brew of small-town chicanery with a hint of the supernatural.

Phoebe Winchester’s beloved aunt Eudora has a taste for adventure—and a knack for making magical tea. It’s even rumored that she just might be a witch. So when Eudora passes away and leaves everything to her niece—her Victorian mansion, her bookshop/tea store, The Earl’s Study, and one very chubby orange cat named Bob—Phoebe gets more than she bargained for. And she knows she’s in deep when a dead man is found on the shop’s back step, apparently killed while trying to break in.

Two suspects immediately emerge among the townspeople of Raven Creek, Washington. There’s village busybody Dierdre Miller, who seems desperate to buy Eudora’s house, and handsome PI Rich, one of Phoebe’s childhood friends—but how well does she really know him after all these years apart?

Phoebe knows she should leave it to the professionals, but as she starts to dig into the underbelly of Raven Creek, she begins to uncover the truth about Eudora. What’s more, her aunt might not have been the only witch in the family, as Phoebe soon discovers she has unique and unexpected gifts of her own.

Now, it’s just a matter of putting her newfound power to the test and cast a spell that could catch a killer.

Death by a Thousand Sips

Phoebe Winchester is back on the case in Raven Creek when a body is discovered at an estate sale in Gretchen Rue’s second book in the Witches’ Brew mystery series, perfect for fans of Laura Childs and Cleo Coyle.

Ever since she moved to Raven Creek, Washington, Phoebe Winchester knew she would have to grow accustomed to having a lot on her plate. She’s beginning to make the Victorian manor she inherited from her dear and adventurous Aunt Eudora feel more like home, successfully running the bookstore and tea shop, The Earl’s Study, and learning to harness her recently discovered magical powers. But when she discovers a dead body at an estate sale—even Phoebe wonders if this is simply too much.

Rumors of Phoebe’s involvement force her to take action; she needs to find the killer and clear her own name, once again. She enlists Rich Lofting, the handsome private detective and her childhood friend, in her investigation, all while she sorts out her unresolved feelings for him. Is there something more sinister lurking in the shadows of this small tight-knit town? And does Phoebe really want to find out?

With a dash of magic, a pinch of sleuthing skills, and a spoonful of friendly assistance, Phoebe needs to uncover the killer to keep Raven Creek safe once again. But if she doesn’t—will she find herself in even more hot water?

Witches' Brew #2

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Lucky Pie #1

For fans of Sofie Kelly and Joanne Fluke, it’s the end of the tourist season in Split Pine– but a murder at the Lucky Pie Diner stirs up trouble for the sleepy town in this series debut.

Este March runs the family-owned Lucky Pie Diner on Split Pine Island in Northern Michigan. The pies at Lucky Pie aren’t just good, they’re magical, with a family recipe that grants certain customers their greatest hopes and dreams when they eat the pie. The remote island is closed to outsiders over the winter months, but on the last day of the season, the unpopular new produce vendor, Jeff, turns up dead on his boat, and Split Pine Island’s peace goes up in smoke.

Tom Cunningham, the local sheriff, casts suspicion onto Este, who may have been the last person to see Jeff alive. Not to mention several people witnessed her getting into an argument with the rude vendor in some of his final hours. Este decides to clear her name and her diner’s reputation by launching her own investigation, which means she must turn suspicion on her friends and neighbors, because only a local could have murdered the victim.

As Este investigates, she uncovers a deeper web of secrets, finding that many of the locals had reason to either frame her, or kill the victim. The clock is ticking to figure out the killer, and the clues in the case are flakier than an apple pie. Este will have to uncover the killer before her future crumbles.

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