Category Archives: Mystery

Murder in Chelsea

TitleMurder in Chelsea

By: Victoria Thompson

Genre: Gaslight Mystery/Historical Fiction

Excerpt:

Frank knew the Upper West Side well.  He’d visited too many of the fancy town houses with their marble steps and their velvet draperies and their dreary furniture.  He’d listened to too many rich people make the pettiest complaints and give the paltriest excuses for committing murder.  He did not expect today would be much different.

The maid who answered his knock at Mr. Wilbank’s house looked him up and down and stuck her nose in the air.  “Tradesmen use the rear,” she said and started to slam the door in his face.

Frank gave it a shove and sent her staggering back.  Before she could recover, he stepped inside and closed it behind him.

“I’ll scream,” she said her eyes wide.

“Don’t bother.  Just announce me to Mr. Wilbanks.  Tell him I have a message from Miss Anne Murphy.”

“I shouldn’t ‘ve let you in.  He’ll give me the devil.”

“Not if you tell him what I said.  He’ll want to hear news of the child.”

“What child?”

 

 

About the Author: (from Amazon.com)

Edgar® Nominated author Victoria Thompson writes the Gaslight Mystery Series, set in turn-of-the-century New York City and featuring midwife Sarah Brandt. Her latest is MURDER ON ST. NICHOLAS AVENUE. She also contributed to the award-winning writing textbook MANY GENRES/ONE CRAFT. A popular speaker, Victoria teaches in the Seton Hill University master’s program in writing popular fiction. She lives in the Chicago area with her husband and a very spoiled little dog.

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Spring Forward Book Attack

Do you like to read? Do you like free books? Of course, you do! This is Goodreads!
Support for Indie Authors is proud to announce our first Free & Bargain Book event of 2017!

Load up your Kindle with more than 125 free and 99¢ book deals in a wide variety of genres!

Details: For three days beginning Friday, March 31st and running through Sunday, April 2nd, visit our event website to nab a whack load of free and 99¢ Kindle ebooks by our indie author members.

That’s it! No RSVP, no obligation, and best of all, no need to put on pants!* Some books will be offered all three days, but there are many one day only freebies, so make sure to check the site each day!

*Pants are only optional if you are browsing our event from the comfort of your home. SIAFBB is not responsible for pantsless readers wandering aimlessly in public spaces.

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Murder Any Witch Way

Title: Murder Any Witch Way
By: N. M. Howell
Publisher:  Dungeon Media Corporation
Published Date: September 12, 2016
236 Pages, 492 KB
Genre: Cozy Paranormal Mystery

About the Book:

Being a witch is hard. It’s even harder when you live in a town that doesn’t believe in witches.

When young witch River Halloway moves to sleepy Brimstone Bay for her very first journalist job, she doesn’t expect to cover anything ground-breaking. That is, until a paranormal festival comes to town and a body is found on opening night. Now, with all evidence pointing towards a witch, River must find the true killer before she becomes the prime suspect, or worse, the next murder victim.

This is book 1 of the Brimstone Bay Mysteries series. If you’re a fan of Amanda M. Lee, Juliette Harper, and Amy Boyles, then be sure to get your fill of magic, mystery, and murder with this cozy new paranormal mystery series.

Book Excerpt:

Every day was a busy day at the office, given that the paper had only been around for a few weeks now and we were still trying to make a name for ourselves. JoAnn worked us extra hard, often expecting ten stories from each of us at a time, just to be sure that we didn’t run out of fresh material for the paper. It was a weekly publication, but by the number of hours that we worked every day, you would think that it was a daily report. I rolled my eyes with my back to her and took a big swig of the burning-hot coffee. God, it felt glorious.
When I turned back towards her, I noticed her eyeing the messy stack of papers I had on my desk and she raised her eyebrow quizzically like she so often liked to do.

“Oh, I just had an idea for a story. I wanted to get in early and prepare before you got here, but I’m not too sure I found what I was looking for.”

“Okay then, let’s hear it.” JoAnn picked up her cup, leaned back in her reclining chair with her feet up on the desk, and took a long sip of hot coffee. “What’ve you got?”

“Well, I was thinking. Nothing too exciting ever really seems to happen in this sleepy town. Why don’t we make something happen?”

“I’m listening.” She looked skeptical.

“Well.” I chose my words as cautiously as I could muster. “I heard the Shadow Festival is passing through Portland this week. Why don’t we ask them if they’ll come through Brimstone Bay on their tour?”

I sat in my chair and sipped my coffee, watching JoAnn as she stared at me wide-eyed.

She laughed suddenly. “You actually think a town like Brimstone Bay would allow the Shadow Festival to come through?” She laughed again.

“No, think about it. Summer is almost over and before we know it, fall will be here. The Shadow Festival will get people excited for the Halloween season. If anything, it will bring money into the town and help all the local businesses.

Besides, who doesn’t love a little spooky fun?”

She continued to laugh and shake her head. “It’s just not going to happen.”

“It would make for a great story,” I said. “There are only so many births, birthdays, and deaths that we can put in the paper before people start dying of boredom from what we’re writing.”

“I agree, it would make for a great story. It would certainly liven up this sleepy town. But there’s no way to get anyone here to agree to let the festival come through.” JoAnn sat her coffee on the desk and opened her laptop to begin her day’s work.

I chewed my lip, trying to think of ways that we could get past this hurdle. The Shadow Festival was a traveling fair that went from the West Coast to the East Coast and then back again each year, celebrating all things paranormal. Most people assumed it was just a show and took their kids there as a fun way to celebrate the beginning of the Halloween season. Sometimes, it was just a fun excuse to do something spooky in the off-season, depending on when they came through each town. They had all the typical treats like candied apples and caramel corn, but the real treat was seeing all the witches, werewolves, ghouls, and other paranormal creatures coming out in their full glory. They would be out and about and wouldn’t have to hide behind closed doors.

Of course, most people just thought that they were wearing costumes and were part of the show, but everyone from within the paranormal community knew otherwise. It was a fun way for us to get together, celebrate our heritage, and finally get to be ourselves in front of non-magical people. Not only was it fun and exciting, but it always drew a massive crowd and brought a lot of money into each city it traveled through. It was just the kind of thing that Brimstone Bay needed, both socially and economically.

“Well, if I can find a way to get approval from the mayor…” I eyed JoAnn, waiting to hear her response.

She glanced up at me from behind her laptop, raised her eyebrow again and made a mmhmm noise. “Well, you have my blessing, dear. Good luck with that.”

I grinned. What JoAnn didn’t know was that our young new mayor had a bit of a crush on me, and I had a feeling that I could persuade him to allow the festival to come to town. Not only did he like me, but he had spent the better part of 20 years in Los Angeles and was familiar with the paranormal community. Mayor Scott confided in me that he had a number of friends that were witches back in the city. While I never admitted to being one myself to him, I suspected he knew anyway.
I finished the rest of my first coffee, grabbed the second, picked up my sweater and backpack, and bounded out the front door before JoAnn could protest.

Author Bio:

N.M. Howell is an author, publisher, and all-around nerd from the West Coast of Canada. She has an obsession with coffee, spicy food, and the rain, and she absolutely hates sleeves! (Seriously, they’re like little fabric prisons.) When not working on her latest book – or latest ten books, more realistically – she spends her time working on her Master’s Thesis and fighting with her micro-wolf pup over who gets the best spot on the couch. Hint: the dog wins.

 

Author Contact Links: www.nmhowell.com/newsletter

Where to purchase the book: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01L0MEDYK

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Filed under Authors, Books, e-books, Genre, Murder Mystery, Mystery, Paranormal

A Roux of Revenge

A Roux of Revenge

By: Connie Archer

Genre: Mystery

A Roux of Revenge is set in Snowflake, Vermont and is the third Soup Lover’s mystery by Connie Archer.

Lucky Jamieson and her crew are busy preparing for Halloween and the Harvest Festival.  Ahh, Vermont in autumn…red and gold leaves and cool evenings that are perfect for a big bowl of pumpkin rice soup cooked up by soup chef, Sage.

While many of the town folks decide to have a booth at the Harvest Festival, Lucky and By the Spoonful staff decide to host a pumpkin carving contest at the restaurant.  Everyone gets into the spirit except for waitress, Janie, who is weary of the man watching her from across the street.  Who is he?  Is he one of the gypsy/carnival travelers or someone else?

Meanwhile, Sheriff Nate Edgerton has a mystery of his own to solve.  A suspicious vehicle accident occurred outside of town and the dead man driving the stolen van has no identification, so Nate decides to investigate the carnival workers to see if there is any connection.

Another mystery appears in the story when a retired insurance investigator tells about an armed robbery that took place years before that is still unsolved.

Is there any connection between the man watching Janie, the unidentified man in an accident and the unsolved robbery?

Join Lucky Jamieson as she works to solve the clues…one at a time.

 

About Connie Archer:

Connie Archer is the national bestselling author of the Soup Lover’s Mystery series set in Snowflake, Vermont — A Spoonful of Murder, A Broth of Betrayal, A Roux of Revenge, Ladle to the Grave and A Clue in the Stew. You can find excerpts from the Soup Lover’s Mystery series and Connie’s recipes in The Cozy Cookbook from Penguin Random House and The Mystery Writers of America Cookbook. Connie was born and raised in New England and loves writing about Vermont. Today she can be found on the other coast inventing soup recipes and designing plots.

You can visit her website and blog at http://www.conniearchermysteries.com

You can find her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ConnieArcherMysteries

Twitter @SnowflakeVT
Writing as Connie di Marco, she also writes the Zodiac Mysteries from Midnight Ink. The first book in the series, The Madness of Mercury was released on June 8, 2016.

You can visit her at www.conniedimarco.com,

Facebook.com/ZodiacMysteries

Twitter:  @askzodia.

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Murder on Edisto

Title of Book: Murder on Edisto
By: C. Hope Clark
Genre: Mystery

Book Excerpt: When her husband is murdered by the Russian mob, Boston detective Callie Jean Morgan suffers a mental break and relinquishes her badge to return to South Carolina. She has no idea how to proceed with her life, but her son deserves to move on with his, so she relocates them to the family vacation home.

But the day they arrive on Edisto Beach, Callie finds her childhood mentor and elderly neighbor murdered. Her fragile sanity is threatened when the murderer taunts her, and the home that was to be her sanctuary is repeatedly violated. Callie loses her fight to walk away from law enforcement as she becomes the only person able to pursue the culprit who’s turned the coastal paradise into a paranoid patch of sand where nobody’s safe. But what will it cost her?

EXCERPT:
An explosion shot flames out of the roof. She pulled against the officer. “John!”

Firemen labored to unravel more hoses. In the background, she heard Jeb screaming for his father above all the sirens and people hollering.

A deafening blast. The force hurled her and the cop backward across the lawn. Air whooshed from her lungs as her back slammed into the grass. She lay half-dazed, but pain still tore through her left forearm.

Two firemen lifted her and smothered her burning sleeve, careful not to hit the jagged piece of embedded shrapnel.

She stared numb at the burning wreckage of her home as someone fussed over her arm. No one could have survived.

Then, as if to confirm the terrible finality, she caught the reality of John’s death in the sorrow of a fireman’s eyes, the slow shake of his head to his partner. Their glance back at her.

Jeb beat his way through the throng and threw himself into her arms. At first she didn’t hear his sobs, then her son’s deep wrenching cries reverberated hard against her collarbone. She dug her fingers into his hair, her injured arm around his trembling body.

“Shhh,” she said against Jeb’s shoulder. She couldn’t bring herself to say everything would be all right. Nothing would ever be right again. As she stroked his head, she squeezed her eyes shut and her tears leaked into his shirt. She could pray John was kidnapped, but her heart told her it just wasn’t so.

 

Author Bio: C. Hope Clark holds a fascination with the mystery genre and is author of The Carolina Slade Mystery Series as well as the Edisto Beach Series, both set in her home state of South Carolina. In her previous federal life, she performed administrative investigations and married the agent she met on a bribery investigation. She enjoys nothing more than editing her books on the back porch with him, overlooking the lake with bourbons in hand. She can be found either on the banks of Lake Murray or Edisto Beach with one or two dachshunds in her lap. Hope is also editor of the award-winning FundsforWriters.com. Find out more about her at www.chopeclark.com

Author Contact Links: http://www.chopeclark.com
http://www.fundsforwriters.com
hope@chopeclark.com
Twitter – @hopeclark
http://www.facebook.com/chopeclark
https://www.amazon.com/C.-Hope-Clark/e/B007OVLE76/

Where to purchase the book: https://www.amazon.com/Murder-Edisto-Island-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B00NT5YVWG/ and anywhere books are sold. Autographed copies available at www.chopeclark.com

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The Lady in the Attic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Several years ago while browsing through an Annie’s craft magazine, I saw the advertisement for this book, The Lady in the Attic.  While I was captivated by the title and description, I never ordered it.

While at a yard sale recently, I came across a book case of “free” books and among them was The Lady in the Attic.  I could not pass up this book!  I added it to my shopping basket and took it home.

Now, I am reading another book, but since this one had been on my radar for several years, I took a few moments to start reading it.  Before too long, I was finished.

I was going to write a review here on my blog, however, I think you will get a better understanding for the book by viewing the book trailer here.

The Lady in the Attic was written by Tara Randel.

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3 Ways to Create Red Herrings in Mystery Novels

Red Herrings plays two important roles in a mystery novel.  One, they heighten the suspense and two, add challenges to solving the mystery by misleading the reader/sleuth.

A writer can create a red herring with characters, the setting, and with objects.

Characters.

In many classic mysteries, almost every character encountered benefited some way from the crime.  Therefore, give them all motives.

Provide a character with the means and opportunity.  If a person appears capable of committing a crime but has no motive, there are two possibilities created.  The person has a motive that has not been discovered or the person is working with someone who has a strong motive.

Setting.

Place – Where did the crime happen?  Did it happen in the city, country, a small village? During a New Years Eve party? During Mardi Gras?

Date –  Was the bank robbed on Friday before a national holiday?  If so, who had inside information?

Time – Did the crime happen around a holiday or while the characters were on vacation?

Weather – Was it rainy, snowing or hot outside?

Objects.

What object appear and what objects do not appear?

What does the detective see at the crime scene? What is not at the crime scene that one might expects to find?  Could someone have removed an item?  Do all the items belong?

Introduce objects with more than one explanation.  Various nuts may be a common item found in a victim’s apartment, unless it is revealed the victim is allergic to nuts.  Does the nuts implicate the killer or did the victim have a visitor who brought the nuts with them?

The more ways a reader can interpret an item, better the chance they will make the wrong assumption.

Caution.

Do not place “red herrings” in a story just to mislead readers.  Always have an explanation as to why the objects are in the story.  After all, the purpose is to make the mystery more challenging and exciting for the reader.

 

 

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What is a Red Herring in a Mystery Novel?

What is a Red Herring?

A red herring is something in a mystery novel or story that appears to be a clue but instead is a false clue that sends readers apprehending someone who is not the real villain.

An example of a “red herring” would be to choose an innocent character and give them a motive that makes them a strong suspect as the murderer.

 

To study “red herrings” read Agatha Christie who has been dubbed “the Queen of red herrings.”

 

 

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Death Pledges a Sorority

Title of Book: Death Pledges a Sorority51nm0hly3kl-_sy346_

By: M. K. Scott

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Book Excerpt:

Mark had asked her to find out who the victim and the murderer were in the game. She pulled out her phone and dialed her mother’s number.

“Hello, Mom.”

“What’s up, sweetie?”

“I need to know if you know who the murderer and the victim were in the game last night.”

“No. I made a point of not reading the cards. Did you read yours?”

Caught. Besides, when did she have time to do all this stuff? “I scanned it. About all I got from it was I had a disappointing romance with the chauffeur.”

“Well, that’s more than what I know.”

Her lips tightened as she considered what Mark’s response would be when she informed him no one had read the cards.

“Was this a program or something? Could we print the cards out?”

“We could. I’ll do that, but I don’t have a clue what order I gave the cards out. I made myself the housekeeper, you the cook, and Ten the man servant.”

“Jenna was some medium or something.”

“True.”

“We could ask the ladies if they remember what character they were.”

“We could. I’m sure some still have their cards. We’re doing this why?” Cecilia’s voice had taken on a wheedling tone.

Of course, her mother sniffed out a mystery. “Well, ah, there’s no reason to think Taylor’s death was anything but accidental, but you know Mark. The man’s always on the job.”

The silence on the end of the phone didn’t bode well. “Mom? Are you still there?

“Yes. I thought as much. It’s always odd when someone who is hated that much ends up dead.”

“Hated? Isn’t that a little strong? No one had to come to the girls’ weekend if they didn’t want to.” Donna would have put Jenna down as a hater, but she couldn’t say about the others. A few probably had even admired Taylor and wanted to be somewhat like her.

Her mother’s sigh carried across the line. “Donna, you are my strong-willed child. Probably came from being the first-born. You have no clue what it is like to be a follower.”

“You do?” Her mother had one gear, and that was full speed ahead. The woman never suffered any doubts or second thoughts.

“Well, I do watch several reality shows. Those people tend to be followers. Anyhow, the weak are always making alliances and buckling under to the strong. We know from Jenna’s tell all séance that Taylor had something on the women. That’s how she manipulated them. Could be someone was tired of dancing to her tune.”

Author Bio:b1obko0koos-_ux250_

M. K. Scott is the husband and wife writing team behind The Painted Lady Inn Mysteries. Morgan K Wyatt is the general wordsmith, while her husband, Scott, is the grammar hammer and physics specialist. He uses his engineering skills to explain how fast a body falls when pushed over a cliff and various other felonious activities.

The Internet and experts in the field provide forensic information, while the recipes and B and B details require a more hands on approach. Morgan’s daughter, who manages a hotel, provides guest horror stories to fuel the plot lines. The couple’s dog, Chance, is the inspiration behind Jasper, Donna’s dog. Murder Mansion is the first book in The Painted Lady Inn Mysteries.

Author Contact Links:

www.morgankwyatt.com

www.twitter.com/morgankwyatt

www.facebook.com/AuthorMorganKWyatt

www.Pinterest.com/morgankwyatt

https://www.amazon.com/M-K-Scott/e/B01M4JGK1A

 

Purchase book here.

 

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Whomever Has the Courage to Read Part II

This is a story I wrote in the late 1980s for a Children’s Literature Class.

You can read the first part here.

A loud crack of thunder brought Matt back to the present with a start.  He felt his heartbeats quicken as shadows danced around the room and the light swayed from the ceiling.  A bolt of lightning flashed across the black sky and the wind blew the tree limbs across the bare windows.  He felt his heartbeats quicken and the hair on the back of his neck quivered.

As a bolt of lightning flashed across the black sky and the wind blew tree limbs into the bare window pane, Matt took in large gasps of air and slowly let them out trying to stop his pounding heart.  He looked around the room and found a safe place in the corner where he snuggled down underneath a heavy quilt and continued to read:

September 13th;

You think it’s all imagination, don’t you? It’s not you know.  You have psychic powers to help me solve this so long ago mystery.  The drowning of Judge Smith and the slaying of Doc Baker.

Continue reading

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