Winter Blogfest: Debra H. Goldstein

This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a print copy of Murder by the Glass (U.S. winners only) .

The Sweet Taste of a Chanukah Memory

My grandmother had a giant oak dining room table that easily seated fourteen to sixteen people when it was fully extended, but for holiday dinners, it wasn’t big enough. She’d leave my grandfather’s spot at the head of the table intact, but add folding tables and chairs until the last seat reached the end of her living room. Our places at the long table were dictated by our age. Consequently, the children were out of my grandfather’s sight.

Bottles of wine were always set out for the adults. The children were served grape juice. That is, until the year my cousin Larry managed to sneak a partially filled bottle of Manischewitz wine to our end of the table. For me, one taste of the super sweet wine was enough, but Larry and my younger sister had no qualms about downing the remaining wine. After dinner that Chanukah, I sat on the floor under the big table playing dreidel with some of my cousins when I heard Larry’s mother command him to come to her so she could feel his head.

I stuck my head out from under the table to get a better view. My cousin’s face was so flushed that it was no wonder his mother thought he had a fever.

As she reached for his head, Larry backed away. “I’m not sick.” He pointed his finger toward the bedroom where we’d all left our coats. “I’m simply hot from carrying Michelle.”

Leaving him where he stood, my aunt turned and said something quietly to my mother as she grabbed her away from the people mother was talking to. The two headed for the bedroom with me right behind them. Mother flung open the door. My sister, with a wine stain on her white blouse, was sound asleep on the mound of coats.

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While my mother tended to my sister, my aunt returned to Larry. For some reason, she no longer seemed concerned about his health and well-being.

From that Chanukah on, I’ve enjoyed stories dealing with wine, murder, and mayhem. That’s why the book I’m giving away is Murder by the Glass, an anthology of wine related stories published by Untreed Reads.

Whether the setting is a vineyard in Argentina or a small town in Virginia, these 17 mystery and suspense authors infuse this collection of deadly deeds with a variety of potent potables. The stories in Murder by the Glass: Cocktail Mysteries range from light-bodied puzzles to edgier tales with bitter consequences. No matter what your taste, these stories pair well with any beverage, each blending a baffling mystery, a glass and a murder.

This anthology includes works by Betsy Ashton, Frances Aylor, Mary Dutta, Diane Fanning, Debra H. Goldstein, Libby Hall, Maria Hudgins, Teresa Inge, Eleanor Cawood Jones, Maggie King, Kristin Kisska, Allie Marie, K.L. Murphy, Alan Orloff, Josh Pachter, Shawn Reilly Simmons and Heather Weidner.

Judge Debra H. Goldstein writes Kensington’s Sarah Blair mystery series. Her novels and short stories have been named Agatha, Anthony, Silver Falchion, and Derringer finalists and received an IPPY award. Debra is on MWA’s national board and president of SEMWA. She previously served on SinC’s national board and was Guppy Chapter president. Find out more about Debra at .

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Buy the book at Untreed Reads


  1. Debra Guyette says

    We all have memories like that. thanks for sharing.

  2. interesting book

  3. I probably wasn’t meant to giggle as I read your post, but I did. What fascinates me is how it made such an impression that it now flavors your writing. I think that’s pretty cool!!!

  4. I have more memories of that kind associated with Passover than Chanukah, but yeah.

  5. This anthology sounds great!

  6. The winner of the Murder by the Glass anthology is Michele.

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