Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles and #Giveaway

Banner for Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles Full Series Book Blog Tour November 27-December 8,2023.
Book Reviews & Giveaways. Wordage is superimposed over a graveyard with granite crosses along the bottom. On the right Is a larger cross with the logo Welcome to Magnolia Bluff on it.

Seasons 1 & 2
The Underground Authors

Scroll down for a giveaway!

Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles. All the book covers.

Each stand-alone book in this multi-author crime novel series is set in the fictitious, beautiful little Texas Hill Country town of Magnolia Bluff. Each author writes in their preferred sub-genre to allow readers to experience humor, dark dilemmas, suspense, romance, thrills, and spills — told through good storytelling that will keep readers awake past their bedtime, trying to find out whodunit.

Season three of The Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles begins in January 2024. Stay tuned.


Today I’m featuring one of the books in the series:
Who Killed Lilly Paine? by K.D. McNiven.
Murder / Murder Thrillers
May 20, 2023 — 351 pages

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Who Killed Lilly Paine? book cover. Woman in maroon jogging sweats walking down a trail between two stands of trees. To her left is what looks like a dead body.

Can Maddy solve the case, confront her past demons, and finally find peace?

Deputy Detective Madeline (Maddy) Dawson returns home to take a new job with Magnolia Bluff’s Sheriff’s Department. But when she discovers the body of a family friend in Miller Creek, Maddy finds her life turned upside down.

While navigating a tough case offering little evidence, Maddy becomes a target. As she and fellow detective Clay Monroe set out to investigate, she is confronted with dead ends, relationship issues, attempts on her life, and demons from her past. Can Maddy overcome the war raging inside as she desperately searches for answers in this challenging and dangerous case?

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I’ve read several books in the Magnolia Bluff series and it’s always nice to have a fresh story set in a place that is starting to feel like a place I’d like to visit some day. If for nothing else to stay at one of the charming B&Bs and dine in the special restaurants mentioned in the various stories; and maybe meet one of the characters that populate the town of Magnolia Bluff. They are all fun to hang around with, if only in fiction.

For me, the best part of Who Killed Lilly Paine? was the way the partnership between Maddy and Clay evolved throughout the story. Partnerships between police officers can be as close and emotionally intimate as a romantic relationship and this one was shown to be strong and supportive of each other without falling into a romantic entanglement. That was a refreshing change of pace from so many stories that have the two main detectives jump into a romance.

I enjoyed the relationship between Maddy and her mother as well. The delight that her mother has about Maddy’s return is so evident, and the ease they have with each other comes across so well in the way the characters are portrayed by the author.

One of the things that Maddy learns as the investigation heats up is that everyone in Magnolia Bluffs looks out for each other. She has been away from the small town for years, but the community welcomes her back as eagerly as her mother does. The way Maddy comes to understand, and accept, that is a nice character arc by the author.

The story could have been better with some editing for continuity, syntax, and simple typos. There were some very clever and fresh bits of narration such as: “Gossip in Magnolia Bluff would spin like a pinwheel in a backdraft within minutes.” But in other places the narrative suffered from some mistakes, a few too many clichés, and clauses in the wrong place. Even that quote that I liked so much could have been better if “within minutes” started the sentence.

Still, I did enjoy the mystery. The author did a good job concealing the true identity of the killer, thus making Maddy and the reader go down false trails. And there was plenty of tension and drama to hold one’s interest.

The bottom line for me with almost any book is, “Do I like the people?” And yes I did like the folks in this story and was happy to spend some time with them.

I aspired to become a writer since high school and entertained the idea of becoming an archaeologist or a marine biologist, but never followed through. It only made sense when I began writing novels to incorporate those latent desires into my writing, which you will see when you read my books, The Monkey Idol, a Decker and Callie Adventure book one, followed by Shark Eater, and Bermuda Conspiracy. Recently I published Sheba’s Treasure, A Sam Carter Adventure, and Bone Quarry, a horror novel, which is a step from my usual action-adventure genre, though I wrote one that is an urban fantasy, called India Dymond: Order of Nine. To add the diverse genre, I wrote two crime fiction books: Blood Alley and Blood Pool. A third book is set to be published sometime in 2023.

Each book reflects the dreams I’ve carried with me for years. I hope that as you read the pages of these books, you will experience the razor-edged excitement of walking alongside the Haydens and other characters through exotic locales, as well as engaging in many of their dangerous showdowns. First and foremost, in authoring these books it is my desire to entertain you, the reader.

SOCIAL MEDIA & AUTHOR PAGES: WEBSITE ***** Twitter: @kady54033

Graphic: Giveaway Three Winners. Amazon Gift Card. Kindle e-reader with: Welcome to Magnolia Bluff Logo and Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles. Beside it a stack of books with no titles.

1st: $25 Amazon gift card
2nd & 3rd: eBook bundles of first 18 books in the series
(US only; ends midnight, CST, 12/8/23)


Small Banner with Welcome to Magnolia Bluff logo on the left. To the right wordage: People are just dying to go to Magnolia Bluff, Texas.

or visit the blogs directly:

11/27/23Boys’ Mom Reads10 Million Ways to DieReview
11/27/23Reading by MoonlightDeath Wears a Crimson HatReview
11/27/23Hall WaysSeries Spotlight 
11/28/23The Plain-Spoken PenDeath in the Absence of RainReview
11/28/23StoreyBook ReviewsEulogy in Black and WhiteReview
11/28/23LSBBT BlogSeries Spotlight 
11/29/23Forgotten WindsThe Great Peanut Butter ConspiracyReview
11/29/23Carpe Diem ChroniclesOnly the Good Die YoungSpotlight
11/29/23It’s Not All GravyWhen Bad Things Happen to Good MiceReview
11/30/23Rox Burkey BlogYou Won’t Know How. . .or WhenReview
12/01/23StoreyBook ReviewsThe Flower EnigmaReview
12/01/23Writing and MusicThe Killer EnigmaReview
12/02/23Reading by MoonlightMen Lying Dead in a FieldSpotlight
12/02/23The Clueless GentThe Shine from a Girl in the LakeReview
12/03/23Jennie ReadsThe Dewey Decimal DilemmaReview
12/03/23Forgotten WindsThe Dog Gone Diamond DilemmaReview
12/04/23Chapter Break BlogJusticeSpotlight
12/04/23The Plain-Spoken PenBye Baby ByeReview
12/05/23Shelf Life BlogTexas Summers are MurderSneak Peek
12/05/23The Book’s DelightBorn and Bred TexanReview
12/06/23It’s Not All GravyWho Killed Lilly Paine?Review
12/07/23Hall Ways BlogSecond ChancesReview
12/08/23The Page UnboundA Chance of a GhostSneak Peek
Lone Star LitLife Logo: Star superimposed over an open book.
Lone Star Book Blog Tours Logo. Brown suitcase made to look like a book in front of the Texas Flag.

12 thoughts on “Magnolia Bluff Crime Chronicles and #Giveaway”

  1. It’s funny that a town with such murderous and nefarious goings-on is a place that over and over, I’ve read reviewers say they’d like to visit! Tells me the authors are doing a great job with setting, and this one does sound refreshing in that the relationships aren’t romantic. And I’m ALWAYS up for a mystery that doesn’t have an obvious resolution. Thanks for sharing your review!

    1. You’re right about the setting being so well done, Kristine. And some of the recurring minor characters, like the coffee-shop owner, add another element of interest for visiting this place that is charming, yet a little scary.

  2. I was pleased to discover KD McNiven had joined the Underground Authors, and therefore contributing to the #magnoliabluffcrimechronicles. She has written many fun and exciting books in different genres. Who Killed Lily Paine is another winner, with heart and tension baked in to well told story. Many good books are emerging from the lovely and murderous Magnolia Bluff. This is one you won’t want to miss.

    1. You are right about the many good stories readers can discover in this series. It has been fun discovering the variety of characters and crimes.

  3. Awesome review! I’ve been a fan of K.D. McNiven since I first discovered her Decker and Callie adventure series. She is a terrific writer who can easily bounce around between genres, always giving us a great story. Her journey into the world of Magnolia Bluff proves just that. A great whodunnit that will keep you guessing until the final reveal. A fabulous addition to the series!

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Joe and for the kind words about K.D.’s books. I’ve been amazed at the genres she dabs her pen into.

  4. Who Killed Lillie Paine? You won’t likely figure it out until K.D. tells you. Lillie’s family were good friends with Maddy (the lead detective) and her mother. So Maddy is more emotionally involved than her investigating partner, Clay. And K.D. manages to convey Maddy’s feelings very well, thus bringing the reader into the story. Lillie was a local high school student, and many of the high school crowd attended a beach party the night before Lillie’s body was found. So, there are suspects aplenty. It’s a good mystery, and K.D. does a good job of maintaining the tension. I can certainly recommend this Magnolia Bluff book to anyone who likes mysteries.

    1. You are right about the mystery being a tough one to figure out until the reveal, and the emotional challenges Maddy faced because of the family ties played an important role in showing her character as a real person. All those potential suspects make for a good who-dun-it.

  5. Maryann, thanks for joining in on this virtual book tour and helping to bring the lovely (even if dangerous) town of Magnolia Bluff to the attention of mystery readers. I know they will find many great stories in this series. All it needs is a Maryann Miller mystery.

  6. Thanks so much for stopping by, Jim, and for the kind invitation to come to Magnolia Bluff with a story. I’d be honored to do so. The virtual tour has been a lot of fun, and I’ve enjoyed all the reviews of books in the series, those I’ve read and those I haven’t yet. I plan to remedy that soon.

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