"Cats, Cannolis and a Curious Kidnapping" is the first novel in the Anna Romano Mystery Series. It is a funny, whimsical, murder mystery series that appeals to 'mystery readers' of all ages. Anna Romano is a middle-aged, Italian woman who is also a successful published author, a lover of cats, and an excellent cook with a hankering for Italian cuisine. She lives by herself in her quaint house, in a quiet community, with a white picket fence in Central New Jersey. When she is not writing her next book or hosting book-signing events with her publicist, she is cleaning litter boxes and baking Cannolis…but never at the same time, of course! In this first installment, on a typical day in Anna's somewhat-perfect life, a book-signing event turns her world upside down. Is it a case of mistaken identity or was she just being paranoid? After being stalked for weeks, Anna quickly finds herself literally 'tied up', fighting for her life, and desperate to get back home to her cats; all while unwittingly falling in love with the detective who was trying to save her. How she finds her way out of this mess is anyone's guess! Find out more about Anna and the dangerous cases of murder and mayhem she 'haphazardly' gets herself into, in the new Anna Romano Mystery Series.
Cheryl Powell, (writing under pen name Cheryl Denise Bannerman), is a multi-genre author of five successful works of fiction, a motivational speaker, and CEO. She resides in Orlando, Florida, where she runs a virtual Training and Development company, GC Learning Services LLC dba Learn2Engage, which she founded in 1996.
Many quotes and memes involve "you know you're an author when...". In my case, the end of that phrase would "write stories in the shower" or "look like you're daydreaming, but really developing a character or flashback".
I feel like everything in my life and the world around me is a story, full of unique and interesting characters for me to pick from. In the grocery store, library, shopping mall, you name it. Many people think I am referring to a grocery list, but I am actually taking notes about my surroundings! So watch out if you see me in the store...I may be taking notes about you! lol
And, did you know that in my full-time job I incorporate those same characters and stories into the employee training courses I produce? It definitely keeps them entertained and engaged.
I share more tidbits about myself and my personal life on Instagram, as well video updates. Meanwhile, enjoy this excerpt of Anna doing some 'daydreaming' of her own. :-)
Cats, Cannolis and a Curious Kidnapping: An Anna Romano Mystery Series, Book One
I rushed out of the library with a new sense of purpose and pulled out of the parking lot headed for the police station.
While driving, I couldn’t help but wonder if that handsome older officer who gave me his card, would be working on my ‘break-in’ case. I think his name was Solace… John Solace. What a great name. Similar to Bond… James Bond. While imagining him saying his name in slow motion and slowly removing the handcuffs from his belt…
Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeepppppppp!!!! “Watch it lady!” a road-raged man screamed at me for drifting into his lane.
I waved apologetically and ditched my fantasy for another day. I had a stalker, possible murderer, to catch!
* * *
Traffic was a nightmare late in the evening. Everyone rushing home to either the loneliness of an empty apartment or a spouse and kids that made them crazy and miserable. To avoid the chaos, I decided to take the back roads to the police station.
I was singing along to my favorite Elton John song when I realized I was approaching a four-way stop intersection and prepared to brake. But the brakes were not working for some reason. I instantly began panicking because cars were crossing the intersection at a steady pace. I was left with only one option to avoid a catastrophe… stop the car myself.