"Killing Time" By Suzanne Trauth: Review/Giveaway

by Kathleen Costa

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

Act I: Murder!
For four years Dodie O’Dell has been the manager of the Windjammer restaurant situated next to Etonville’s Little Theater. Over the years, she has become an integral member of the community joining in on a few committees and local events and to support the Little Theater she creates a restaurant menu connected to the theater’s current production. She’s fostered fun-loving friendships with restaurant owner/chef Henry, assistant manager and bartender Benny, sous chef Enrique, and waitress Gillian. She also has a friendly relationship with Pauli her go-to tech guy and photographer for the theater. She also has two very dear friends in BFFs Lola Tripper is the artistic director at Etonville’s Little Theater, and Carol Palmieri, owner of Snippets salon (gossip central), is in charge of hair and make-up at the ELT. But, most importantly, she’s moved from being a nuisance to dating to fiancée of Police Chief Bill Thompson, most handy when her “hair on the back of her neck” radar system heralds something isn’t right.

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Image Source Lyrical Press
Killing Time earns 5/5 Garlic Necklaces...an Engaging Treat!
It’s Halloween, and Etonville is festooned with decorations and ready to host a kids’ trick-or-treat parade and a costume dance for the adults. The Windjammer will have everyone in their own costume serving garlic-infused favorites to celebrate the newest production by the local Little Theater...Bram Stoker’s classic Dracula. However, Dodie’s friend Lola is frantic; hours before the final tech rehearsal, cue cards have been jumbled, props are missing, and glitches keep happening. Haunted? Well, some say the old theater has its stories, but if not, someone is messing with the production. Even casting the lead character was a mysterious venture. Lola had brought a “Welcome” basket to new residents Carlos and Bella Villarias, and there he was! Dark, handsome with a hint of a foreign dialect, deep-set eyes, and even a signature widow’s peak...Etonville’s Dracula! His uncanny persona has set the gossip mongers, conspiracy theorists, and vampire worriers on edge. Do you want a garlic necklace?

Carlos Villarias is the perfect Dracula, even the mysteries of who he is, why he moved into the abandoned Hanratty place, where he works, and why is he never seen during the day, seem to heighten his theatrical image. His wife Bella professes to be a psychic volunteering her talent to read palms at the costume party. But, the technical run through revealed some odd animosity. Dodie shows up to support Lola’s efforts and witnesses a confrontation between another new resident and actor Gabriel Quincy and Carlos, whose full Dracula costume was quite unnerving, and at the costume party she sees an uneasiness and more conflict with...the Grim Reaper. All this may serve as pertinent when teenage tricksters discover of the costumed Reaper, sprawled out in the cemetery, with a stake in his chest! Death is dead!

No Trick...All Treat! Don’t be misled by the cover with a witch flying across the full moon; this is not a paranormal hocus-pocus mystery. Well, there are vampires, but only on stage. However, Suzanne Trauth has provided an entertaining “time” in Etonville. It’s June, here, and enjoying a Halloween-themed mystery was a nice “treat.” I’m new to Suzanne’s Dodie O’Dell mysteries, but I comfortably joined in with this sixth book; enough references were made about background and character connections to keep me engaged. It seems murders have before plague openings at Etonville’s Little Theater, but that sure didn’t dampen the intrigue of finding “Death dead.” The mystery was compelling with links to the victim that go beyond Jersey uncovering complex and surprising connections. The Dracula worries, dynamic among Dodie and her friends, and all the wedding talk were entertaining side stories. I was completely taken by Suzanne’s ability to paint pictures and induce emotions with her descriptive language (ie. the dress rehearsal’s opening scene, her nightmare, the costumes.) which lended itself well with the intense nature of the Dracula lore. The characters are wonderfully realistic and quirky like the Bangor sisters and police dispatcher Edna’s reciting and defining police codes all the time. Dodie’s frequent “neck hair” alarm and her attempts to investigate without stepping on her fiancé’s toes makes her fun to follow. I’ve got to read the rest of the series...I’ve got “time to kill.”

Dodie O’Dell Mystery
Show Time (2016)
Time Out (2017)
Running out of Time (2017)
Just in Time (2018)
No More Time (2019)
Killing Time (2020)

Be a Suzanne Trauth Fan!
Suzanne Trauth is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and nonfiction writer. Her six-book Dodie O’Dell Mystery series is a fan favorite.

Facebook: Suzanne Trauth
Website: Suzanne Trauth

To enter to win a copy of Killing Time, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "time" or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen July 4, 2020 . U.S. residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. If entering via email please include your mailing address in case you win. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. We delete all emails after the contest is over.

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 speaking of podcasts, check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week.

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. Sounds interesting! Count me in!

  2. I love Halloween mysteries!

  3. The playfully captivating review was entertaining! And, while I'd only need that garlic necklace for cooking, Carlos has piqued my curiosity! Suzanne Trauth is a new mystery author for me and I'm looking forward to reading one of her books! betsypz[@]yahoo[dot]com

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

  5. Oooo...this book sounds so good. Thank you for the chance to win and read/review it! bentleyboy22(at)comcast(dot)net

  6. You sure find great books - thanks for that, and for all the contests.

  7. New author to me. Sounds like a great book.

  8. New author and series for me, sounds good! I enjoy reading stories that involve Halloween, this is my favorite holiday! tWarner419(at)aol(dot)com

  9. This novel sounds captivating and intriguing. Thanks for this great feature and giveaway. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  10. An intriguing mystery which would be unforgettable and the excellent review captured my interest. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com


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