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Carolyn L. Dean - official author site

USA Today Best-selling Author of Cozy Mysteries

Author: Carolyn Dean (page 2 of 2)

DUNE, DOCK and a DEAD MAN now live!

DUNE, DOCK and a DEAD MAN  is now available!  This is the second in the Ravenwood Cove Cozy Mystery series.

New cozy mystery titles for Carolyn L. Dean

New cozy mystery titles for Carolyn L. Dean

Amanda Graham should be happy with her newly-inherited historic inn, a fat cat named Oscar, and living in a small Oregon beach town, but a terrible discovery between the dunes on the coast and she’s right back in the soup, trying to solve a murder and save her friend!
Sure, maybe he was such a rotten person he deserved to die, but as secrets start to be revealed, Amanda is drawn deeper into danger and intrigue. With a harvest festival looming, and tourists starting to come back to visit, figuring out how and why he died is the best way to protect the town, and her sweet friend.

She’s turned her back on LA and life in a gray office cubicle, so her best bet is to dig in and fight for her new hometown.

Includes a free recipe for  delicious blueberry coffeecake. Second novel in the Ravenwood Cove ebook series. Paperback and audiobook (with Whispersync) versions coming soon. Mild PG rating (because hey, there’s a dead guy in it).



RC Bed Breakfas and BonesBed, Breakfast and Bones is now LIVE on Amazon!     I’m so excited! First reviews are good, and it’s  free on Kindle Unlimited .  I’m already working on the second Ravenwood Cove book, tenatively titled Dune, Dock, and a Dead Man.

Grappling with Instagram

I’ve been so busy writing lately that I haven’t had much time for other things, such as learning a new app.  Yesterday I buckled down and started exploring my new Instagram account, and I love it!  It was amazing how easy it was to find people who are interested in the same sort of books I am, and to chat with them.   I expect I’ll be very active there.


I love small towns with character and history, and based Ravenwood Cove on some of my favorites, including my hometown.  Don’t believe me?   Here’s a picture of the main street festival yesterday.


WHOO HOO! First cover for Bed, Breakfast and Bones

RC Bed Breakfas and Bones




I had to put this up here because it made me happy.  Thank you, Spencer Pierson!  The dark bands at the top and bottom will continue in the spine and back of the printed version.  Right now I can’t add custom artwork to the book, but it may be changed for something different down the road 🙂

Ready to send out free advance reader copies…..EEEEK!

fearOkay, this is the scariest thing I’ve done in a LONG time. My novel, a PG-rated cozy mystery titled BED, BREAKFAST, and BONES will be through final edits this weekend, and free advance digital copies will be available on Sunday. You may remember this is the first book where I’ve told people my pen name, so having you all read it is a huge step for me.

If you are interested in reading it to help catch errors and give opinions, or if you’d like a free copy to read and then give an honest review on Amazon, please let me know at Carolyn@CarolynDeanBooks.com. I can send a Word doc (best for revisions), PDF, .mobi or .epub. Directions on how to download it to your Kindle can be included but I’ve found it to be problematic sometimes. Please IM me your email, and which version you would like. If you’d rather download from Amazon, i am expecting it be available in about a week, for 99 cents.  





Did the description of Cuppa’s amazing cinnamon rolls make your mouth water?  Every time I described them in this book I thought about my family’s favorite recipe for cinnamon rolls, and I’ve included it here for you.  I think Tory and Meg would approve.  All measurements/temperatures are in US units.

Makes 12 wonderfully large rolls


  • 2 packages active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 cup warmed milk (I microwave this and then stir to be sure there are no hot spots)
  • 2/3 cup softened butter
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 7 to 8 cups all-purpose flour


Filling of Deliciousness:

  •  1 cup melted butter, divided (that’s 2 sticks)
  • 1-3/4 cups dark brown sugar, divided
  • 3 Tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg (fresh, if possible)
  • 1 to 2 cups chopped pecans (optional)
  • 1-1/2 cups dark raisins (optional)



  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 and a half teaspoons real vanilla
  • 5 to 8 Tablespoons hot water



To make dough combine yeast, warm water and 1 teaspoon sugar in a cup and stir.  Set aside.

In a large bowl mix warmed milk, remaining 2/3 cup sugar, butter, salt, and eggs.  Stir well and add yeast mixture.  Add half the flour and beat until smooth.  Stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a slightly stiff dough.  It’s okay for the dough to be sticky.

Turn out onto a well-floured board and knead for 5 to 10 minutes.

Place in a well-buttered glass bowl.  Cover loosely and let rise in a warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 to 1-1/2 hours.

When doubled, punch down dough and let it rest for 5 minutes.  Roll out onto floured surface into a 15 x 20 inch rectangle.


Filling: Spread dough with ½ cup melted butter.  Mix together 1/-1/2 cups brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Sprinkle over buttered dough.  Sprinkle with pecans and raisins, if you want.  Sometimes I go really crazy and add a cup of finely-chopped apples, too.

Roll up jellyroll-fashion and pinch the edges together to seal.  Cut into 12 slices.  Coat bottom of a 13”’x 9” and a square 8” pan with the last ½ cup of melted butter, and sprinkle remaining ¼ cup of sugar mixture on top.  Place slices close together in pans.  Let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in bulk (about 45 minutes).

Preheat oven  to 350 degrees.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until nicely browned.  Let cool slightly and spread with frosting.  Share with others, and be prepared to get marriage proposals  😉


Frosting:  Mix melted butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla.  Add hot water a tablespoon at a time, mixing after each, until frosting is of desired consistency.  Spread or drizzle over slightly-cooled rolls.


It was easy to find Mrs. Granger inside the general store, and Meg had been spot on when she described her as Yoda. She was a little cotton-haired lady of indeterminate age and shape, sitting on a padded wooden bench near an antique stove, her four-wheeled walker parked close by. She was quietly knitting fingerless gloves by the light of the large window next to her, and obviously eavesdropping on the lively conversation at the checkout register ten feet away.

“Mrs. Granger?” Kathy asked. She held the pink cinnamon roll box in her hands, waiting.

“Shhhhh! Just a minute…”

Kathy shifted foot to foot while the checker wrapped up her conversation with the chatty customer and thanked her as she headed out the door.

With a satisfied sigh, the old lady settled back on the bench. “Now, what can I do for you, dear?”

Kathy held out the box. “Robin said I should come talk to you, and she sent over some pastries.”

The toady little woman’s eyes lit up, and she made excited “ooo” sounds as she grabbed the box.

“Have a seat!” She gestured vaguely at the wooden bench next to her as she dug into the first roll.

“Sorry to shush you, but I was listening to Mary Anne Bates tell Myrna about her new Chrysler. You know, she’s not a bad person, except she forgets to vote and she does grow the marijuana down in her chicken shed.” Mrs. Granger pulled a huge piece of icing off the top of the roll and waved it at Kathy. “I don’t like that. It’s not healthy,” she said, as she expertly crammed the chunk of frosting into her mouth.

After a couple minutes of enthusiastic chewing, she came up for air and smiled at Kathy.

“You’re the lady with the problem buried under her scarecrow, or rather, the problem that WAS buried under your scarecrow.”

“You know about that?”

“Oh honey, I read the paper like a good taxpayer should. I’m figurin’ you probably came to ask me about why Emmett wound up in your garden, six feet under.”

“Um, it was more like four.”


About the author

10639598_10204461573957305_4701383322701100907_nSpam-free (I PROMISE) newsletter HERE.  I only send it out to let you know about NEW or FREE stuff J


I’ve been writing and making stories in my head as early as I can remember.   In third grade I came home, set my lunchbox down, and told my mother I wanted to be a writer.  Luckily, Mom was supportive.

I’ve been a published author for awhile now, under different names and genres, but the thought of writing about a small coastal town in Oregon, and about its loves and mysteries and holidays and people has been with me for years.   To be honest, I am a bit scared to dump those ideas onto the written page, but hope you’ll enjoy getting to meet the people who inhabit my imagination.

In real life, I’m married with kids, live on the West Coast of the US, and own a hobby farm just outside of my favorite small town.  I love to travel, and can often be found strolling down a windy Oregon beach, holding onto the string of a high-sailing dragon kite.

Thank you for stopping by!

Publishing Schedule!

So, here’s the scary part:  me putting my schedule out there for everyone to see.  Hold me to this, please, dear readers!

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