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Peanut Butter and Cat Burglars @CarinaPress #Romance

The Benefits of Peanut Butter by Shelley Munro

Most people think of peanut butter as a sandwich spread or maybe an ingredient in cookies. I like peanut butter on toast. My husband loathes the stuff and refuses to eat it. Peanut butter, according to him, is only fit as an ingredient for Bella’s dog biscuits. Our puppy Bella certainly doesn’t make any protests about the peanut butter.

Cat Burglar in TrainingWhile I was going through the editing stage of my contemporary mystery romance Cat Burglar in Training, I came upon a comment from my wonderful editor, Deborah Nemeth. She wrote, “Why didn’t anyone hear Eve (our cat burglar) break the window when she entered the building?”

“Heck,” I muttered. “How should I know?”

I continued with my edits, filing the problem away to mull over while I walked the dog. I returned from walking the dog none the wiser. Did Eve risk being heard and simply break the window, or did she open it with some handy-dandy tool from her cat burglar tool kit?

Eve is new to the job of cat burglar, taking over from her father who is unable to scale trees and walls because of his arthritis. She knows the basics but is definitely still finding her feet.

Yikes! How on earth is she going to enter the building? How am I going to fix this?

In the end I googled, and surprisingly, there was an answer.

Peanut butter! Who knew?

Here’s a brief excerpt from Cat Burglar in Training, showing how Eve managed to beat the problem without alerting the owners.

I scaled the wall in no time, stubbornly ignoring the pain in my arse. A ledge, a few inches wide, provided a place for me to collect myself. With a deep breath, I pulled a spoon and a jar of smooth peanut butter from my pack and plastered a thick layer on the window pane. Next, I retrieved a tube of cardboard cut to size—well, a fairly accurate guesstimate—and carefully pressed the cardboard to the peanut butter. A sharp tap with my hammer cracked the glass, but the sound was minimal. I replaced my tools in my pack, placed the glass-covered cardboard aside and reached through to open the lock. My entry via the nursery room window was clean and professional.

There you go. Problem solved. That’s how to enter a building without alerting the inhabitants.

What is your favorite use for peanut butter? Do you like it, or are you like my husband and avoid it at all costs?

Cat Burglar in Training is currently available for 99c at some retailers.

Purchase at: Carina Press| Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Nook| Koboicon| iBooks US|

Real Life Cat Burglars

A cat burglar is a thief who breaks into homes to steal personal property. They take their name from real life cats since cats are stealthy, quiet creatures that approach their prey without causing alarm.

The human variety of cat burglar slips inside unnoticed, taking what he wants and disappearing again before the victim notices a theft has occurred. Essentially, a cat burglar breaks and enters. It’s against the law yet cat burglars have appeared in some of my favorite romance stories and movies.

Today I thought I’d tell you about two real-life cat burglars.

Estate agent, Bill Mason plundered more than $70 million worth of jewels over three decades. According to him there was no thrill quite so big as hanging from a parapet 200 feet above the ground while a hoard of diamonds and gold was only a few feet away, his for the taking, if he could hold his nerve.

He was attractive, charismatic and debonair with old-age mystique and very good at his job, never once resorting to violence. He lived a double life for twenty-five years, married to his childhood sweetheart, Barbara. He drove his three kids to school and sports matches, invited the neighbors over for barbeques and worked in his legitimate property business. At night, he robbed the rich, sinking the funds from his heists into real estate and investments. His wife had no idea and assumed his money came from hard work and judicious borrowing. He always had a good excuse for his night time absences.

According to Mason, he had a good head for heights and worked to maintain strong hands because a thief needs to find one way to get inside that no one expects and that means climbing.

The FBI finally caught up with him and he did a stint in prison. You can read his story in Confessions of a Master Jewel Thief

The second cat burglar is of the feline variety. Frankie, a two-year-old cat has stolen 35 plush toys during the last year. He skulks into houses, steals their small stuffed animals and takes his ill-gotten gains home, sneaking them through his cat flap. His owner, Julie Bishop, says, “He doesn’t really play with them. He dumps them in the same spot at home and goes looking for more.”

Frankie has collected stuffed teddy bears, a giant squeaky hamburger but favors a small leopard toy. He has more than a dozen of the same spotted leopard toy. Here’s a link to the story plus a photo of Frankie with some of his stolen loot. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/us_world/2008/12/10/2008-12-10_reallife_cat_burglar_stealing_kitty_toys.html

Because I’ve enjoyed reading cat burglar romances in the past, I decided to write my own. Let me introduce Cat Burglar in Training.

Cat Burglar in Training

Here is the blurb:

Eve Fawkner had no intention of following in her father’s footsteps. But when the thugs harassing him to repay his gambling debts threaten her young daughter, Eve is forced to assume the role of London’s most notorious cat burglar, The Shadow. The plan is simple: pull off a couple of heists, pay back the goons and go into permanent retirement. But things get messy during her first job when Eve witnesses a murder, stumbles across a clue that sheds some light on her past and, worst of all, falls for a cop.

Inspector Kahu Williams would be the perfect man, if Eve were looking, and if there wasn’t the little matter of their career conflict. The man is seriously hot—and hot on the trail of a murderer. A trail that keeps leading him back to Eve…

Grab your copy at: Carina Press| Amazon | All Romance eBooks | Barnes & Noble| Koboicon|iBooks US| iBooks NZ

London: Haunt of a Cat Burglar in Training

London. It’s a place I dreamed of visiting after hearing the poem about Christopher Robin and Alice as a child. Do you know the one I mean? Here’s the first verse:

Buckingham Palace
by A.A. Milne

They’re changing guard at Buckingham Palace –
Christopher Robin went down with Alice.
Alice is marrying one of the guard.
"A soldier’s life is terribly hard,"
Says Alice.

Luckily I was able to persuade my husband that London was a good idea, and off we went on our overseas experience. Fast forward many years, and it was inevitable that some of my experience would find its way into my writing.

Today is the release date for Cat Burglar in Training, which is partially set in London. Eve Fawkner, my trainee cat burglar attends balls in various London locations and her receiver lives in Kensington, an area I’m familiar with since we lived there for several years.

Here are a few photos from the Kensington/Knightsbridge area. These are places Eve sees or drives past on a regular basis. (Scroll over the photos for info or click on them to enlarge.)

BTW – London was everything I dreamed it would be!

Harrods, Knightsbridge, London at night Kensington Gardens, London

Kensington Palace after a snow fall, London Albert Memorial, Kensington near Royal Albert Hall

The Goat Tavern, Kensington, London.  Horseguards, Rotten Row, London


CatBurglar_SM

Here’s the blurb:

Eve Fawkner had no intention of following in her father’s footsteps. But when the thugs harassing him to repay his gambling debts threaten her young daughter, Eve is forced to assume the role of London’s most notorious cat burglar, The Shadow. The plan is simple: pull off a couple of heists, pay back the goons and go into permanent retirement. But things get messy during her first job when Eve witnesses a murder, stumbles across a clue that sheds some light on her past and, worst of all, falls for a cop.

Inspector Kahu Williams would be the perfect man, if Eve were looking, and if there wasn’t the little matter of their career conflict. The man is seriously hot—and hot on the trail of a murderer. A trail that keeps leading him back to Eve…

Purchase today from Carina Press

Is there a place you dreamed of visiting as a child?

Interview with my character, Jonno Campbell

Would you like to meet Jonno Campbell from Cat Burglar? He’s visiting…maybe I should say flirting with Alyssa Brooks today.

Here are the links: MySpace and at Alyssa’s website.

Forgot to Mention…

I’m the guest blogger over at Erotic Muses today. I’m talking about cat burglars and mentioned my upcoming release, Cat Burglar in passing…

Here’s the link: Erotic Muses