Cover Image: Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas

Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas

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Member Reviews

This is a fun Christmas cozy mystery novella, book 2.5 in the Kitchen Witch series.  I like this series a lot, and this novella is a good addition to the series.  Mia Malone is back, she’s having an open house to promote her meal delivery/cooking school business as part of the Winter Carnival. She lives in Magic Springs, ID, a town with a lot of witches. 

Mia is crazy busy, and it gets worse when a ghost named Dorothy appears and tells Mia she’ll disappear forever if she doesn’t find out the circumstances of her death. Dorothy was well known in Magic Springs, and everyone thought she died a natural death. She tells Mia to ask her Mary Alice, Mia’s grams. Mia can’t have Dorothy disrupting the open house, so she gets her boyfriend Trent, Grams, and her friend Christina to help her figure out what really happened to Dorothy.

The characters are personable and familiar, and the plot was as developed as one for a full length book would be.  I recommend this book, 4 stars.

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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Lynn Cahoon has done it again with a WINNER!

Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas was fun and easy to read with well-crafted characters. I highly recommend for anyone who loves to read a good cozy mystery.

Synopsis:

Mia Malone is planning a holiday party to promote her catering and cooking school business—but she’s got a Christmas spirit to deal with first, in this new Kitchen Witch Mystery from New York Times bestselling author Lynn Cahoon . . .
 
For all its merriment, Christmas can also bring melancholy—and in Magic Springs, Idaho, Mia finds that the season has brought her an unhappy ghost who’s pulling poltergeist-style pranks to get her attention. When she demands an explanation, the ghost just sends a message: Ask Mary Alice—that is, Mia’s beloved Grans, who’s been training her to develop her witchy talents. If anyone can figure this out, it’s Grans . . . even if she still hasn’t managed to free Mia’s cat from a previous spell that she cast.
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I received this book for free for an honest review from netgalley #netgalley

Lynn Cahoon is a wonderful writer and I have enjoyed reading all the books in my series.
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Through NetGalley, I received a free copy of HAVE A HOLLY HAUNTED CHRISTMAS (A Christmas Novella in the Kitchen Witch Mysteries), by Lynn Cahoon, in exchange for an honest review.  Mia Malone has brainstormed an idea to promote her home catering and takeout business.  Mia’s hosting a Christmas gala for the entire town of Mystic Springs where she plans to serve samples from her menu.  During the height of preparations, a poltergeist seems certain to sabotage the holiday spirit.  Eventually, Mia manages to gain the ghost’s cooperation in exchange for solving the ghost’s murder.  The only clue the spirit will provide is to ask Mary Alice, who is Mia’s grandmother.  Since Dorothy, the ghost, had seemingly died of natural causes and since Mary Alice refuses to provide any answers, Mia and her boyfriend Trent will have to work hard to satisfy Dorothy before she becomes the grinch in their Christmas plans.

#HaveaHollyHauntedChristmas #NetGalley
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A pleasant addition to the Kitchen Witch series finds Mia Malone trying to solve the mystery of who killed Dorothy long ago and why.  Dorothy will not rest until the mystery is solved and time is running out.
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I'm always so excited when a new Lynn Cahoon, cozy mystery comes out. This one didn't disappoint. The dynamic between Trent and Mia and the development of Mia's chef business make me wish the author could write these books faster. I also like how the character Christina has developed but I'm nervous something is going to happen to Mary Alice. Please keep these stories coming, they are so entertaining!
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This ARC was provided to me via Kindle by Kensington Books  and #NetGalley for my honest opinion. 

Lynn Cahoon has another hit in the Kitchen Witch series. A quick read, a delightful cozy, a delightful addition to any shelf of a mystery fan.
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Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas is the latest novella in the Kitchen Witch Mysteries written by Lynn Cahoon, a popular and charming cozy mystery author with many wonderful series. I've read most of her other work and all the books in this relatively new series. In this holiday special, Mia is preparing for a Christmas party in the school she's renovating (as her catering / food business) when the ghost of a former occupant shows up with demands. "Find my killer!"

Of course, Mia can't risk the party falling apart, even though most of Magical Springs has some idea of the magic deep within several of its residents. The victim turns out to be connected with the very first homicide in the series, and Mia's grandmother knows who might've killed the woman too. But she will protect her friend at all costs. What really happened all those years ago, and who is trying to collect an inheritance today? A fun way to get to know the characters with this light mystery... makes the series even more entertaining and alluring when you have these ~100 page tales to keep you connected in between the larger annual novels. I enjoy the food shenanigans and the light magic in the background.
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Mia, who hasn't got a handle on her powers, finds herself trying to help Dorothy, a ghost who believes she was murdered in her bed at the senior center even as she's prepping for. holiday parry.  This delightful novella about the goings on in Magic Springs is very much for fans of the series, who know about Trent and Mia's cat. and her grandmother.  Things are never straightforward in this town but know that the paranormal never gets too woo woo.  This is a quick read that advance the story a bit and rounds out the characters a bit more.  Thanks to netgalley for the ARC.  Fun.
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Have a Holly Haunted Christmas is a wonderful novella length addition to the Kitchen Witch Mysteries. Mia Malone is preparing for Christmas and a special party to advertise her business. A ghost asks for help in the midst of the preparations. 
The way the story plays out it feels like the definition of cozy. The party goes well. The ghost’s dilemma is resolved. And Mia and Trent are in for the lovely Christmas. It leaves the reader with warm and fuzzy feelings.
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I was looking for something quick and light to balance out my reading - this fit the bill perfectly! This short novella takes place right around Christmas in Magic Springs. Mia and crew have to deal with an apparition who claims there was something suspicious about her death... 20 years ago. This was a fun read that went in a direction I didn't expect.
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I won't detail the plot other than to say Mia Malone is being haunted by a ghost imploring her to find out who her murderer was. Of course, the first problem is that Mia has no clue who the ghost is. Even after the ghost is identified, the task ahead is difficult. Let's just say that there is every indication Dorothy, as the ghost turns out to named, appears to have died peacefully in her bed. This novella seeks to answer that mystery. 

Mia's search for answers, which includes digging into finances and birth records, trying to cram everything in-between running her business and  preparing for the holidays and parties. Ghost Dorothy, who uses a series of pranks to get Mia full attention, tells them there is a deadline for her to know the truth about her murder. Why? MIa and others don't recall any deadlines for the afterlife but Dorothy says it is because, basically, if it isn't solved by the upcoming anniversary of her death that she'll simply, well, go poof. That give an urgency to the search for answers although, ironically, for a Magic Kitchen Witch book, magic isn't really utilized . With the help of boyfriend Trent, who seems to come from a magical family, too, but has shunned magic to be, as he dubs it, "boring", and some investigation and sheer luck, Mia digs into the mystery. But what if the real mystery isn't what they think it is? Hmmm...

Although I understand pages are limited for a novella, I did wonder if readers unfamiliar with the series might be, well, confused by some of the events.  Heck, I'm sure I've read earlier books in this series and had no clue how or why certain things were happening. For instance, why Trent's mother seemed to have contacts with those who would know about the afterlife. I also had a few unanswered questions at the end, including who gave Dorothy that deadline in the first place and the back story on Mia's cat. I obviously missed that book in the series. Thus, even while going into this knowing it was a short novella, I felt new readers might be lost at times.

That said, it was a quick, fun read. The plot moved along nicely despite the holes it left behind for me. Yet, while not thoroughly satisfying, it got me in the mood for Christmas decorations and Christmas goodies and food, lots and lots of goodies. 

Thank you, NetGallery and Kensington Books for the ARC.
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Delightful. I really like the Kitchen Witch series. The perfect choice for being both spooky and festive. Looking forward to what else this series will bring!
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I love Lynn Cahoon’s books and am enjoying the Kitchen Witch series.  The characters are well developed and I love the various relationships among them.  This quick read mystery will have you looking forward to Christmas … the decorations and delicious food.  The mystery was intriguing and has you guessing until the very end.  I can’t wait for the next installment.

Thank you to Book Funnel and the author for my advanced review copy.  All opinions and thoughts are my own.
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Thank you to Net Galley for allowing me to read an advance copy of this feel-good, Christmas-themed novella. It was my first experience with this author.
Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas is part of a series, and although reading the other books might have helped me understand the characters, relationships, and backstory, I didn't get lost reading it as a stand-alone. Apparently, the protagonist, Mia Malone, is a witch, but witchcraft did not play much of a role in this story.
It's a quick, light-hearted read, with a bit of holiday atmosphere. Mia and her team are preparing for an open-house Christmas party to promote her catering business and cooking school. But preparations are disrupted by a troubled ghost haunting the facility. Dorothy supposedly died peacefully in her sleep in the local nursing home twenty years earlier, but now she believes she might have been murdered. She begs Mia and her grandmother to investigate the circumstances of her life and death so she can finally cross over in peace. There's a sense of urgency as Dorothy believes the clock will run out soon.
The characters are likable, and Magic Springs, Idaho, seems like a charming place.
Recipes are included.
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I received a copy of Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. 

Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas is a novella in Lynn Cahoon's Kitchen Witch Mystery series. In this short cozy mystery, Mia Malone finds herself helping a ghost find out what happened to her as she plans an open house Christmas party for her business.

This mystery is short and sweet and the perfect feel good Christmas story. I enjoy this series overall, the characters, the town and the Kitchen Witch premise and this installation was no different. I enjoyed following Mia as she made the ghost's Christmas as she figured out what was holding her back from passing on. This was a great read and the perfect way to get into the Christmas spirit.
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Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas is book 2.5 in Lynn Cahoon's Kitchen Witch series. It is a Christmas novella and is a fun quick read. Mia Malone owns Mia's Morsels, which does catering  meal delivery and cooking classes. Her assistant and friend Christina lives with her in the  upstairs apartment. Mia and her grandmother are both Kitchen Witches. A ghost is creating havoc and they need to help her before their big Open House. My favorite part of this series are the characters- Mia. Christina, Grams, and Trent. They give the books heart.  They work together to help the ghost. Very enjoyable! #NetGalley  #HaveAHollyHauntedChristmas #LynnCahoon #KensingtonBooks
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Until recently I mostly avoided novellas but Lynn Cahoon is one of several authors whose work has convinced me that shorter novels can be as good as a full length one.  Have a Holly, Haunted Christmas from the Kitchen Witch Mysteries series is a prime example of a complete and delightful tale presented in a novella. 
When a well known ghost wreaks havoc with Mia's preparations for a holiday open house to promote her catering, meal prep, and cooking lesson business, she has no choice but to help the spirit even though she has no time to spare. Much of what the ghost shares doesn't make sense, and the things she refuses to share complicate things even more, but the elderly spirit is absolutely convinced that she has limited time for a resolution and Mia agrees to try her best. With help from her assistant and her special guys, the new caterer is determined not to fail at either endeavor.
Thanks to Netgalley and  Kensington Books for accepting my request for an ARC to the delightful Have  a Holly, Haunted Christmas from the Kitchen Witch Mystery series. I have loved every book and story in the series.
#Netgalley #KensingtonBooks #LynnCahoon #HaveaHollyHauntedChristmas #KitchenWitchMysteries
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A short novella where Mia has to prep for a Christmas party at the old schoolhouse and solve a murder of a ghost so she can pass into the afterlife. Was Dorothy Purcell murdered? What happened to the son she had to give up? A quick enjoyable read and a great addition to the series.
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I was given a free e-copy of this novel by NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.

For all its merriment, Christmas can also bring melancholy—and in Magic Springs, Idaho, Mia finds that the season has brought her an unhappy ghost who’s pulling poltergeist-style pranks to get her attention. When she demands an explanation, the ghost just sends a message: Ask Mary Alice—that is, Mia’s beloved Grans, who’s been training her to develop her witchy talents. If anyone can figure this out, it’s Grans . . . even if she still hasn’t managed to free Mia’s cat from a previous spell that she cast.

The restless spirit turns out to be Magic Spring’s most well-known ghost, Dorothy, who supposedly died peacefully in her sleep. Now Dorothy claims she was murdered, and she wants her killer brought to justice. And she doesn’t have much patience about it, so the pressure is on Mia—with some help from her boyfriend, Trent, and a strangely secretive Grans. There aren’t many dicing-and-chopping days till Christmas—but this year, the most important gift Mia can give is to cheer up this troubled spirit. (Goodreads synopsis)

This was a super adorable, very quick novella. I enjoyed everything about this one. The haunting along with the Christmas vibes. But what I enjoyed the most was that it wasn't a typical Christmas haunting. There was no one re-evaluating their life, or making abrupt changes. Instead, it was a cozy mystery of whodunnit and why. I found that very unique. It also gave off "Good Witch" vibes with Catherine Bell.

I have not read anything by Lynn Cahoon before but I will certainly be backtracking to start this series from the beginning, and will add her to my list of auto-authors.

Overall rating is 5 out of 5 stars.
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