Photos courtesy of Cheryl Wilson
Cheryl Wilson, a Peoria-based author known for her unique blend of canine whimsy and mystery, has recently clinched top honors at the BookFest and Readers’ Favorite awards.
Her book “Doodled to Death,” part of a beloved seven-book series, fetched the first-place award in the “Cozy Fiction” category.
Set against the fictional backdrop of Barkview, California, touted as America’s most dog-friendly town, Wilson’s narratives weave intricate murder mysteries with a lighthearted touch. In Barkview, dog culture reigns supreme, from bakeries churning out dog treats like “caninolis” to “pupscream” shops dotting the boardwalk, and even KDOG, a local station dedicated to broadcasting flyball scores.
Wilson’s latest venture, “Dachshund to Death,” is a festive romp through the pet-centric holiday season in Barkview. Fans can also look forward to her upcoming release, “Labradored to Death,” which promises an intriguing twist with bat dogs in minor league baseball, slated for publication on opening day 2024.
The Cozy Pet Mysteries series, Wilson’s brainchild, features an array of dog breeds, from Jack Russell Terriers to Corgis and Australian Shepherds. The books’ central character, “Cat” Wright, stands out as the lone cat aficionado in a town obsessed with dogs. Wright, alongside her eccentric family, tackles complex murders shaking up the local community.
Wilson’s journey into this niche genre began with a familial anecdote. Her mother adopted a Jack Russell Terrier, and that experience highlighted the significance of finding the perfect dog for each person.
Her passion for writing was ignited by a childhood interaction with a Nancy Drew book, which led her to pen an alternative ending. This early creative spark blossomed into a career marked by literary acclaim and a deep appreciation for storytelling.
Beyond her novels, Wilson engages her readers with personal dog food recipes and a monthly newsletter. Her Bow Wow Boutique furthers her canine advocacy, offering a unique dog product each month, with proceeds aiding dog rescue organizations across the nation.
Wilson’s books, celebrated for their unique blend of humor and suspense, are available on Amazon, BookBub, and her website, cbwilsonauthor.com, connecting a growing community of mystery and dog lovers alike.