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Joyce and Jim Lavene

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Writing as Joyce and Jim Lavene

Christmas Tree Valley Mysteries

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cover for Murder Fir Christmas

Murder Fir Christmas


Down the mountain from Sweet Pepper, Tennessee is Christmas Tree Valley, a place filled with hundreds of Christmas tree farms where generations of growers have made people’s lives brighter. Yet even here in this quiet, postcard-perfect corner of the world, darkness and murder can still stalk the night.

Federal Wildlife Agent Bonnie Tuttle has always had a special gift with wild animals. It was one of the reasons she decided to train with the wildlife agency. She’s spent the last ten years in Alabama working, but her mother needs her home and she’s back despite all the bad parts of her life she hoped to leave behind.

Her first day home begins with a fire on the island in Sweet Pepper Lake and the death of Harvey Shelton, the wildlife agent she’s supposed to replace. Bonnie manages to rescue dozens of animals from the fire – including a wolf pup that was shot with the same bullet that killed Harvey.

Now she’s hot on the trail of Harvey’s killer and trying to reintegrate the wolf back into the wild even though he seems to want to stay with her. Yet old memories persist in the small community where she grew up, and the killer now seems to believe that she has what he killed Harvey for. All she has to do is figure out what that is before it’s too late.

Christmas Recipes included!

Book #1 Christmas Tree Valley Mysteries

Available October 4th   Amazon logo and link

Praise for Murder Fir Christmas:

"What can I say but Wow!! I Loved this book!

Federal Wildlife Agent Bonnie Tuttle has always had a way with wild animals. And even though she's spent the last 10 yrs in Alabama, when a job comes along that will bring her back home so that she can care for her mother, she takes it. Which means, back to Christmas Tree Valley. Her first day back home and there's already work for her to do. She and the wildlife agent that she's replacing are called to the island in Sweet Pepper to help rescue what wild animals they can from a fire. Bonnie is able to rescue a dozen or so but unfortunately, Harvey, the agent she is replacing, is murdered. As is the suspect she had in custody for starting the fire. So all Bonnie has to do is help find the killer, take care of her mother and their family Christmas tree farm and take care of the wolf pup that was shot when Harvey was. Piece of cake, right?

It was so great to see Bonnie in a story all her own. And it was neat to see Stella and Eric's relationship from an outside point of view. I really enjoyed this book and can't wait to see where the series goes from here! Highly recommend this new series!"
~ April Schilling

There was so much heart, in this book, it came alive, for me, and I would love to be able to visit Christmas Tree Valley in person. The setting and characters, the wolf pup, Cherokee legend and the mystery all made for a wonderful read.

Bonnie Tuttle, returning home, to TN, to replace retiring wildlife agent, Harvey Shelton, has her hands full. With her mother's health failing, Bonnie is needed to help with the family Christmas tree farm. As the new wildlife agent, she must protect the animals, enforce laws and investigate criminal activity.

Her first day, Bonnie and Harvey report to a fire, to rescue animals, where Harvey is shot and killed. Bonnie rescues a wolf pup, near Harvey's body, also shot. Bonnie now has a wolf pup to nurse back to health and Harvey's killer to find.

Bonnie enlists the help of Matthew Brown Elk, who owns a nearby tree farm, to help with the wolf pup and as a scout, during the investigation. Bonnie has a special way with animals, they seem to understand her. Bonnie, also, encounters an old man who believes she has returned, from Cherokee legend, to protect the animals.

When a motive, for the killing, is discovered, it will take Bonnie and Matthew (working with the Sweet Pepper authorities) to find the killer (and what the killer is looking for), before someone else dies.

The wolf pup was precious. I so enjoyed reading about his antics. I am so appreciative, to the Lavenes, for choosing the name I submitted for the wolf pup. I hold dear my small part, in this book, and the memory of Joyce Lavene, who passed away October 20, 2015.

~ Pat Tucker