"Diggin' Up the Dirt" By Tonya Kappes: Review/Giveaway

by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of this book, and links to purchase it.

“In the South, it’s better when the food is fried and the secrets kept buried!”

Sheriff Kendrick “Kenni” Lowry investigates crimes and misdemeanors in Cottonwood, Kentucky. She is very good at her job surrounded by a supportive team of professionals: hunky deputy, now boyfriend, Finn Vincent, a Yankee who is still navigating the nuances of southern life; a new deputy Scott Lee; and Duke, bloodhound extraordinaire. What no one knows is she has a more secret, undercover member of her team...her grandfather, former sheriff, and mentor. Why a secret? He's a ghost, having died of a massive heart attack a bit back, and only appears when a murder occurs in Cottonwood. She loves and misses the more corporeal version of her Poppa, but his ghostly personae is extremely helpful in solving crimes. If he would just be more careful about striking up conversations when people are around.

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Diggin' Up the Dirt earns 5/5 Family Treasures...Engaging Fun!

A funeral brings out all the residents of Cottonwood, Kentucky, to pay their respects to the family, but there's also whispering, judging the size of the floral arrangements, and thinking about their own final send off. It was unexpected that Woody Moss had succumbed to an infection after knee replacement surgery, but as it goes, Kenni knew it wasn't suspicious. Poppa hadn't shown up to herald murder. But, not all runs smoothly, the mourners head over to the Moss home for the after-funeral repass and discover it's been ransacked and a family treasure is missing. It gets worse when Poppa makes his appearance; a body is found, then another, then...complicated. However, the worst of it all...Finn's parents are arriving in a big RV to meet Kenni and her family and their differences could derail the relationship.
Image Source Henery Press

This Tonya Kappes series focusing on Kenni Lowry and the residents of Cottonwood is always entertaining with just the right touch of southern charm, delightful southernisms, cultural insights, and some loving, but frustrating family dynamics. The murder mystery is clever with a true law enforcement perspective including all its official entanglements, suspects galore, misdirection, multiple crimes and connections, and a bit of peril. Tonya's writing style includes vivid descriptions to enrich the senses, dialogue with a southern twang one can hear in her writing, and characters that seem to illustrate well the richness of Kentucky. I enjoyed the first-person narrative sharing "Kenni Bug's" perspective, but although it's perfect for the storyline, conflicts and all, I get annoyed by Mama Viv.

Be a Big Tanya Kappes Fan! 
Tonya Kappes is one of my Top Ten favorite authors of some exciting ghostly, magical, and caffeinated themed series. I'm an eager fan! For ghosts she has the popular seven-book Ghostly Southern Mystery (A Ghostly Suspect #8 releases June 28) and seven-book Kenni Lowry series. Add some magic with the eleven-book Magical Cures Mystery (A Charming Misfortune #12 releases July 23) and three-book Spies and Spells series. Get a little caffeinated with her six-book Killer Coffee Mystery. She also highlights he southern heritage in her six-book Camper and Criminals Cozy Mystery (Hitches, Hideouts & Homicides #7 releases May 28).

Facebook – Author Tonya Kappes
Join the “Cozy Krew” 

Become a Member at the Website – Tonya Kappes

Check out other Henery Press mysteries on their website.

To enter to win a copy of Diggin' Up the Dirt, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "dirt,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen June 15, 2019. U.S. and Canadian residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address (so if you win we can get the book sent right out to you), and if via comment please include your email address. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors!

You can use this link to purchase the book. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. Would love to read this! Thanks for the chance! jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

  2. This book sounds fun.

  3. Thanks for the chance! JL_Minter (at) hotmail (dot) com

  4. Love this series. Thanks for the giveaway. doward1952(at)yahoo(dot)com

  5. Taylor R. WilliamsJune 1, 2019 at 7:31 PM

    Can't wait to read her books. Thanks for the chance to own a copy. tr Williams 69 at msn dot com

  6. Thank you for the chance. This book sounds really interesting. Donakutska7@gmail.com

  7. Would love to read this book

  8. Love Tonya's books! Can't wait to read.
    diannekc8(at)gmail( dot)com

  9. I would love to win this. Thanks for the chance!

  10. This book sounds so fun
    Love this author

  11. I love her books they are always an exciting read. Thanks for your generosity. lindamay4852@yahoo.com

  12. Would love to win this. Thank you.

  13. The book sounds fantastic, hope to read it. embam1969(at)comcast(dot)net

  14. I'd love to read this book! Thank you for the chance. I 've been wanting to read her books. I'm new. This one sounds interesting and fun to read.


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