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Fiction Women Sleuths

Cover Art

by (author) Vanessa Westermann

Cormorant Books
Initial publish date
May 2022
Women Sleuths, Amateur Sleuth, Cozy
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2022
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    May 2022
    List Price

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Charley Scott is thrilled to be running a summer pop-up gallery in cottage country. Returning to the lakeside village, not on vacation but as an artist, she’s determined to turn her hobby into a career. Joined by two other artists, including her childhood friend Kayla, the Cover Art Exhibit is a dream come true.

But, beneath the surface of this peaceful town, darkness lurks. There’s a history.

Local chocolatier, Matt Thorn, is struggling to come to terms with his father’s recent death and his legacy of deception. As Matt plans to expose his father’s secrets, Kayla’s husband is found dead, the result of eating Matt’s boutique chocolates.

The homicide investigation threatens to make Charley’s pop-up gallery a failure before it even begins. Luckily, art is all about perspective and she’s always had a keen eye. Can she see past the obvious and find the killer?

About the author

As an avid reader and writer of crime fiction, Vanessa Westermann’s ideal day would be spent plotting fictitious crimes. Vanessa is a former Arthur Ellis Awards judge, and has given a talk on the evolution of women’s crime writing, at the Toronto Chapter of Sisters in Crime.Vanessa’s book review column entitled “Vanessa’s Picks” was published in the monthly newsletter of a popular Toronto mystery-specialty bookstore from 2012 to 2016. The column was developed into a blog, featuring literary reviews and author interviews.While living in Germany, she attained an M.A. in English Literature and went on to teach creative writing.She currently lives in Canada and is working on her next novel, while drinking copious amounts of tea. Readers can find her blog at or follow her on Twitter @VanessasPicks.

Vanessa Westermann's profile page

Editorial Reviews

“All Charley wants to do is move back to her family’s vacation town and open a pop up art gallery, but she’s unwittingly drawn into a web of secrets that result in murder. A truly likeable main character who makes an intrepid sleuth, a great setting, and a carefully plotted mystery that will have you guessing right to the end. Cover Art is not too sweet, but perfectly cozy … All that, plus a dog named Cocoa, and a handsome man who owns a handmade chocolate store. I couldn’t ask for anything more.”

Vicki Delany, author of the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series

“Westermann deftly paints a tourist town that’s bright and quaint on the surface but harbors secrets that threaten to destroy two people and their attempts to find themselves and each other …”

Ginger Bolton, author of the Deputy Donut Mysteries

“An artfully crafted mystery full of charm, wit, and page-turning suspense, plus some of the most mouth-watering descriptions I’ve ever read.”

Daryl Wood Gerber, nationally bestselling author of the Fairy Garden Mysteries

Cover Art is a perfect cozy escape to cottage country. Westermann seamlessly weaves an artistic tale of a quintessential lakeside village brimming with delightful and quirky characters, ample suspects, and a plucky heroine, Charley Scott. … [F]abulous …”

Ellie Alexander, author of the Bakeshop Mystery Series

“I had a lot of fun reading Cover Art by Vanessa Westermann. It’s the first in a new series and will make the most perfect summer read. … The book reads like a charm and doesn’t miss a beat. The dialogue is snappy, the character descriptions and interactions are great, and the plot develops very nicely.”

Marian Misters, Sleuth of Baker Street

“A feast for the senses. … The writing is intelligent, the crime ingenious, and the location heaven.”

Coffee Books and Cake

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