Death by Dissertation (Cassandra Sato) by Kelly Brakenhoff
About the Book
Death by Dissertation (Cassandra Sato) Cozy Mystery 1st in Series Setting – Nebraska Emerald Prairie Press (April 17, 2019) Paperback: 355 pages ISBN-10: 1733742409 ISBN-13: 978-1733742405 Digital ASIN: B07PKRD658
Ambitious Cassandra Sato traded her life in Hawai’i for a dream position as Student Affairs VP at Morton College in tiny Carson, Nebraska. She expected the Midwestern church casseroles, land-locked cornfields, and face-freezing winters would be her biggest challenges, but it’s her job that’s rapidly becoming a nightmare.
A deaf student is dead and the investigation reveals a complicated trail of connections between campus food service, a local farmer’s beef, and the science lab’s cancer research. Together with her few allies, Cassandra must protect the students caught up in the entanglement.
Dealing with homesickness, vandalism, and a stalker, Cassandra is trapped in a public relations disaster that could cost her job, or more. No one said college was easy.
About the Author
Kelly Brakenhoff is an American Sign Language Interpreter whose motivation for learning ASL began in high school when she wanted to converse with her deaf friends. As an American Sign Language Interpreter with more than twenty years of experience, Kelly’s worked in college classrooms for fifteen different majors. From traipsing across muddy farm fields to stomach-churning medical procedures, and stage interpreting for famous figures, Kelly’s community interpreting interactions number in the thousands. Unfortunately, once she’s stepped away from the job, she usually forgets 90% of what happened. Which helps her keep confidential information safe, but also makes it really hard to grocery shop for more than 5 items without a written list.
Kelly wants to live in a world filled with peace, love, and joy, where people who can hear learn enough sign language to include deaf people in everyday conversations and work. Where every deaf child has early access to language and books with characters like them, and dark chocolate is cheap and plentiful. When she’s not interpreting or writing, you can find Kelly cheering for her favorite Husker teams or training for half-marathons because she really likes dessert. Her first mystery, Death by Dissertation, released April 22, 2019.
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My Review: 5 Stars
This is the first in the enjoyable Cassandra Sato academic mysteries. Newly Vice President of Student Affairs at Nebraska's tiny Morton College, Cassandra alteady has a plethora of management tasks on her platter. The departure of her scatterbrained superior for China during Homecoming Week doesn't help. Then a deaf student she knows vaguely is discovered dead at the Science Building, adding yet more tragedy, deceitfulness, and tribulations. It's not encouraging for Cassandra's first term, nor for her ultimate goal of acquiring a University presidency. It sure was never like this back home in Hawaii.
Find yourself caught up in this heartwarming academic cozy mystery featuring a strong and determined female sleuth.
A clever thief with a sinister calling card has invaded Braxton campus. A string of jewelry thefts continues to puzzle the sheriff, given they’re remarkably similar to an unsolved eight-year-old case, back when Gabriel vanished one stormy night.
When a missing ruby, and a body, are discovered at the campus, Kellan must investigate the killer’s motive to protect his brother. As if the latest murder isn’t enough to keep him busy, Kellan partners with April to end the Castigliano and Vargas crime family feud. What really happened to Francesca while all those postcards showed up in Braxton?
The mafia world is more calculating than Kellan realized. If he wants to move forward, he’ll have to make a few ruthless sacrifices. And as the summer heat begins to settle in Wharton County, a couple more surprises are also in store.
About the Author
James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College. I spent fifteen years building a technology career in the retail, sports, media, and entertainment industries. I enjoyed my job, but a passion for books and stories had been missing for far too long. I’m a voracious reader in my favorite genres (thriller, suspense, contemporary, mystery, and historical fiction), as books transport me to a different world where I can immerse myself in so many fantastic cultures and places. I’m an avid genealogist who hopes to visit all the German, Scottish, Irish, and British villages my ancestors emigrated from in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, my mind, and my body. I decided to pursue my passion by dusting off the creativity inside my head and drafting outlines for several novels. I quickly realized I was back in my element growing happier and more excited with life each day. My goal in writing is to connect with readers who want to be part of great stories and who enjoy interacting with authors. To get a strong picture of who I am, check out my author website or my blog. It’s full of humor and eccentricity, sharing connections with everyone I follow—all in the hope of building a network of friends across the world.
When I completed the first book, Watching Glass Shatter, I knew I’d stumbled upon my passion again, suddenly dreaming up characters, plots, and settings all day long. I chose my second novel, Father Figure, through a poll on my blog where I let everyone vote for their favorite plot and character summaries. It is with my third book, Academic Curveball, the first in the Braxton Campus Mysteries, where I immersed myself in a college campus full of so much activity, I could hardly stop thinking about new murder scenes or character relationships to finish writing the current story. Come join in the fun!
Both character evolution and character delineation well populate the Braxton Campus Mystery Series by James J. Cudney. In this installment, the atmosphere gains a strong twinge of Noir as feckless but well -intentioned.and likable protagonist Kellan Ayrwick and his adored daughter Emma are caught between a rock and a hard place, two vicious Mafia clans, one of whom are Kellan's in-laws. We know those guys don't play around, and never suffer fools gladly. So Kellan will need to be extra strong and capable, almost a superhero.