Killer Deadlline by Lauren Carr


"Lauren Carr's books are never boring, that's for sure. They entertain, give us a good mystery to dig into, keep the reader guessing, give us a few good laughs and make us eager for the next book. Warning: Lauren Carr's series are addictive, so be ready to read more than just one book!"
 - Laura Fabiani, Library of Clean Reads 

Book Details:

Book TitleKiller Deadline (A Nikki Bryant Cozy Mystery) by Lauren Carr
Category:  Adult Fiction (18 +),  232 pages
Genre:  Mystery/Cozy Mystery
Publisher:  Acorn Book Services
Release date:   April 23, 2020
Content Rating: G. This is a true cozy mystery. No sex. No on-stage violence. No swearing. Just good clean fun!

"Here we go! Carr is a master storyteller who always offers a plot full of twists and turns, a bit of humor to offset the dark, and a unique cast of characters. In Killer Deadline that cast includes - handsome Ryan, her first love (who is now her step-brother); a mysterious social media friend called Nerdy Guy; Elmo, a super smart dog, a boxer, she rescued who has become asocial media star and has a penchant for cleaning; a TV station full of suspicious employees; and more.

"This book is a wonderful read to pick up at the end of a long day. It truly is a "cozy murder mystery."  I promise, it'll draw you in right from page one and keep you turning the pages until you reach the very last page. I can't wait for the second book in this series." - Marilyn R. Wilson, Olio by Marilyn

Book Description:

Folks in Pine Grove, Pennsylvania, claim that where Nikki Bryant goes, trouble is not far behind. Her refusal to back down from a challenge has made Nikki Bryant a top investigative journalist.

When an online friend nudges her to join him in a pact to reconnect with their first loves, Nikki and her boxer dog Elmo leave the bright lights of Las Vegas for the charming town of Pine Grove. There, she must face the biggest challenges in her career and life—the first love she had left behind and her father’s unsolved murder.

But before she has time to unpack her car, Nikki stumbles upon the dead body of local news anchor, Ashleigh Addison, her childhood rival. Could Ashleigh’s death be connected to an explosive news story that she had teased about airing live? Did that explosive story have anything to do with the murder of Nikki’s father?

With the clues in her father’s cold case hot again, Nikki intends to chase down the story of her life until she catches his killer—no matter what it takes.
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Interview with Elmo of the Nikki Bryant Cozy Mysteries

Today, we are thrilled to sit down with Elmo, Nikki Bryant’s boxer dog sidekick, in Lauren Carr’s Killer Deadline, the first installment in the Nikki Bryant Cozy Mysteries.

 Thank you so much for joining me today, Elmo! Can you tell us a little about yourself and how you came to live with investigative journalist Nikki Bryant?

I’m a boxer. Not the fighter, but the canine. I have a short stubby nose. Someone recently said I looked like I had rear-ended a truck, which I don’t think was very nice.
Nikki says ugly is the new beautiful. She says I have beautiful brown eyes.
Anyway, Nikki and I first met at an animal shelter. I hated it there. They’d put me in a cage.
Me! In a cage, of all places!

My first human, Clara had picked me up in the park. My brothers and sister had all gotten adopted real fast. But me? 
Hey, I may have been the runt of the litter, but I have a lot to offer. Clara saw that.
She was kind of old and lived alone. She wasn’t looking to adopt anyone, especially a puppy, but she said that as soon as she got a look at my handsome face, she had to have me.

Now, like I said, Clara was kind of up there in years.
She kind of had a hard time moving around. So I’d help her out. Just because Clara was old didn’t mean she didn’t know how to use her mind. She looked online and found some articles and videos about teaching service dogs. So, she taught me how to get stuff for her, pick up things, open doors, run the vacuum cleaner, do laundry.

But, alas, our time was not for long. One night, someone broke in and locked me in the closet. It was dark, but I saw who killed my human. I swore right then and there that if I every caught up with him, I’d let him have it.

Of course, the police would not listen to me. They just hauled me off to the animal shelter.
For days, I sat alone in my cage—planning my revenge on Clara’s killer.
Then, she walked in. But she wasn’t just cruising for a pet. She was looking for me.  You see, Clara’s sister wasn’t happy about the progress the police were making. So she called Nikki Bryant, investigative journalist. She’d seen Nikki on the news and figured that if anyone could move things along, Nikki Bryant could. She was rrrright, too!

When Nikki found out that I was an actual witness to the crime, she came to bust me out of the shelter—just in time for Clara’s funeral.
Wouldn’t you know it? Clara’s killer was there, and I identified him. I put my mark right on the seat of his pants!
I took a bite out of crime and Nikki Bryant got a great story.
We’ve been partners ever since.

 What's a typical day like for you?

There is no typical day when you live with Nikki Bryant. But I’ll try.
I like to get up at the crack of dawn to go running with Ryan. He’s the human that lives in the apartment above the garage.
He and Nikki really like each other. I guess they should. They’ve known each other like forever. Except for the fifteen years that they didn’t speak to each other, but that’s another story.

Ryan is the head of the local crime scene unit with the state police.
I’ll tell you a secret. Nikki really came home to Pine Grove see Ryan again, thought she’ll never admit it. Hey, you didn’t hear it from me.
So, to get back to my average day.
After a good run, and grab some breakfast and then chase the squirrels in the garden.
Squirrels need their exercise, too!
Then, I jump in the back seat of Nikki’s car and we go to WKPG-TV where I can catch my morning nap in my bed in Nikki’s office.
At WKPG-TV, Nikki plays boss. Well, she doesn’t play the boss. She is the boss. Her family owns the station. In reality, she’s on the lookout for a new mystery to chase.  She can’t help herself. If we’re lucky, we get to go chase down a lead or a clue on a mystery.
If not, then we can go home, and I can do some chores.
Today, I’m helping Nikki get caught up on her laundry.

You do the laundry?

I have some trouble folding. Duclaws weren’t made for folding. But yeah. I can load the dishwasher, too. But Nikki won’t let me unload it.

Before dinner, I encourage the squirrels in the back yard to take a few more laps up and down the trees and across the roofs. That’s why our squirrels are so fit. I am a big advocate for keeping on the move.

Then, I’ll go hang out with Ryan for a bit. Nikki will have to come over to his apartment to “look for me.” Yeah, right. She knows right where I am. There’s no looking—unless you want to count that lovey-dovey look in her eyes while she’s batting them at him—until she spots a stray case file on his kitchen table.
Then, it’s off to the races again as Nikki goes chasing another mystery.

 How do you feel about cats? I understand you live with two.
(stunned disbelief)
 I do!
Lucy and Ethel.
They’re cats?
Yes. They’re hairless Sphynx cats.
Oh! So that’s what they are. With their triangular-shaped heads and big eyes, I thought they were small aliens from outer space. I guess I shouldn’t have reported them to the FBI.

 What's the biggest trouble you've ever gotten into?

Trolling Doug the Pug on Instagram. Nikki said that was so not cool. I can’t help it. I’m cuter than he is. Besides, I actually do stuff to deserve my popularity on social media. I do have over a hundred thousand followers. I’m what you call a “social influencer.” I go out with the journalists at WKPG-TV to interview people, and visit the seniors at the nursing homes, and I do charity work.
What does Doug do to deserve his following? It’s no fair! My eyes are prettier than his. Don’t you think? Tell me.
Don’t you think my eyes are prettier than Doug the Pug’s?

 Of course, they are, Elmo. Can you tell us about Killer Deadline?

In Killer Deadline, Nikki and I leave Las Vegas where she was working to return back to her hometown of Pine Grove. Her mother had decided to retire from running the family’s television station to travel with her husband, Nikki’s stepfather, who also happens to be Ryan’s father. That makes  Ryan her stepbrother. But don’t tell her that. For some odd reason that I don’t understand, she gets mad when anyone mentions it.

Well, before Nikki has time to unpack her car, she stumbles upon the dead body of local news anchor, Ashleigh Addison, her childhood rival. Could Ashleigh’s death be connected to an explosive news story that she had teased about airing live? 
Did that explosive story have anything to do with the murder of Nikki’s father? 

With the clues in her father’s cold case hot again, Nikki intends to chase down the story of her life until she catches his killer—no matter what it takes.

 Final thoughts for your adoring public?

Sure! Read all about me and Nikki Bryant and Ryan in Killer Deadline today.  

This is a book about second chances and murder. Secrets kept and revealed.
Told as only Lauren Carr can, with humor and an eye for detail. Sprinkled throughout with clues.
Elmo is a natural charmer and a delight to spend time with.
As he tries to make sense of life with Lucy and Ethyl, he also has to help Nikki's "one who got away" keep her safe.
Nikki takes on the challenge of keeping the family business afloat amidst extreme personnel challenges whle trying to find closure in the truth surrounding her father's murder.  She also deals with a huge change in her relationship with that same one-who-got-away.
Such a great escape from our own troubles during trying times.

Meet the Author:

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, Chris Matheson Cold Case, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty-five titles across three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!

Killer Deadline marks Lauren's first venture into mystery's purely cozy sub-genre with a female protagonist.

Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr’s seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, crime fiction, police procedurals, romance, and humor.

A popular speaker, Lauren is also the owner of Acorn Book Service, the umbrella under which falls iRead Book Tours. She lives with her husband and two spoiled rotten German Shepherds on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with the author: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Instagram ~ Pinterest



  1. Thank you so much for the wonderful review and the fun interview with Elmo! Here's wishing each follower luck in the giveaway for the Amazon Gift Card.


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