Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Rose Parade 2014 Thank a Million Teachers Float, Another Great Review for Coda to Murder

We attended the Rose Parade in Pasadena, California on New Year's Day. So many gorgeous floats to view. The theme of the 2014 parade was "Dreams Come True." I thought the Thank a Million Teachers float fit right into the theme because educators work with kids to help make their dreams come true. I bet you can think of one or several teachers in your life who influenced your decisions for your future. 

Schools and home schoolers are back to their studies after the holiday break. All fired up to get back to the books...and recess... (I know my grandsons were ready after an extended vacation due to snow days!) So this float filled with comical wise owls and blog post are
reminders to thank a teacher. They are so important in helping a child to fulfill his/her dreams.

The floats in the rose parade must be completely covered with natural materials, no paint! These colors are directly from nature. 

I'm not sure what materials were used to cover the owls,
but I imagine a lot of grasses, flowers, and seeds
were carefully applied to the zany wise birds.

I discovered this beautifully crafted review for Coda to Murder from Amazon reviewer Kia Heavey. She writes what I would consider a 5 star synopsis of the book and pronounces it a "gentle love story within this murder mystery."

Sweet and inspired romantic suspense storyDecember 27, 2013
Kia Heavey (Connecticut, USA) - See all my reviews

I generally read edgier thrillers but a friend recommended this book, so I gave it a try. It turned out to be a witty, pleasant, and cozy little romantic thriller. Christine Hobbs is the spirited and pretty pastor of the Dayspring Church, where she has become a capable leader and member of the church family. Unfortunately, the normally staid congregation is rocked by the murder of the church music director. An arrogant detective, Cole Stephens, is sent to investigate and he immediately rubs Pastor Hobbs the wrong way. Yet in spite of his abrupt and accusatory manner, Detective Stephens lingers in Christine's thoughts. But the young pastor has been burned before, so trusting this maddening man is a struggle. Cole is equally as attracted to her, but how can he trust someone who is on his short list of murder suspects?

Things get steadily stranger as Christine's good nature leads her to take in a homeless cat, then a pig and a kangaroo whose owners are temporarily unable to care for them. The menagerie lands Pastor Hobbs in an uptight church lady's crosshairs. Then Christine's friend, Lacey, aids her in her amateur sleuthing efforts to clear herself, leading to more than one harrowing situation. Other members of the congregation are introduced and presented as suspects and I can honestly say that I was completely surprised by the final unmasking of the killer, who had me fooled along with everyone else.

I enjoyed the gentle love story within this murder mystery. (Married to a cop myself, I can really appreciate the male love interest.) I also really liked Pastor Hobbs – she is strong, funny, generous, and spiritual. Coda to Murder gave me several pleasant evenings of reading in bed. Nicely done!

Coda to Murder is available at 
bn.com and major online booksellers.


  1. Congrats on that awesome review, JQ! I loved your book, too. And thank you for sharing the lovely pictures of the float. As my sister and her husband are both teachers, I know they appreciate all the support they can get.

  2. What a lovely review, JQ! And I loved your photos. A lot of creativity went into the teachers' float. Great idea!

  3. Thanks for sharing the pictures from the parade. So cool that you were able to be at there. : )

  4. Thanks, Heather B. I think the float resonated with me too because my grandmother, mother, and I were teachers. I only taught for five years, but that "teacher" is ingrained in me and I can't let it go! It's a tough job and you're right we need to show our appreciation.

  5. Helena, Thank you. Glad you liked the photos. More of the nearly 1000 pics will be up shortly...not ALL of them. Maybe only 999?

  6. Susanne, we had a wonderful, magical trip. Even the weather was great. So nice when dreaming about taking a trip, the time is even better than the dream!


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