Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Mystery Madness

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The Butterfly Forest (Mystery/Thriller)
He hid the old pencil-drawn map for 40 years.

The guards never found it.

After 40 years in San Quentin, Luke Palmer leaves with a state-issued suit, $100 dollars to buy a bus ticket, and a map that will lead to a promise and into the heart of a dark forest. 

Silver Flashing (A Jonie Waters Mystery)
Newspaper reporter Jonie Waters thinks the story she’s covering is bizarre. Even so, she’s not prepared for the shock of finding a corpse in a trunk beneath the floorboards of a house. She dashes from the grim discovery and calls the police. But by the time alluring detective Daniel Wyeth arrives on the scene and reenters the house, the trunk and its contents are missing!

With the police and her newspaper coworkers questioning her credibility, Jonie makes tracking down the body her mission. She won’t let anything get in her way, not even distractions that include covering a series of newspaper articles with her old flame, interacting with her dysfunctional family, intercepting a mugging, and surviving a round of mud wrestling. 

Silver Flashing is the second novel in the Jonie Waters Mystery series by Amazon bestselling mystery author Tamara Ward. Action and light romance combine with engaging characters and humor for a page-turning whodunit set in Wilmington, NC.

Daddy's Home (A Holly Jennings Thriller)
A calculating and deadly killer is in search for what he terms as his perfect family. Preying upon single mothers and their innocent children, the police have dubbed him "The Family Man."

He plays out his role as the perfect father. When things don't go so perfect in his insane fantasy world, the family man kills.

Crime Scene Investigator Holly Jennings of the San Diego Police Department is determined to track him down and see that justice is served. With Holly being a single mother herself, this man's crimes are deeply personal to her, and turn more so when a friend and her daughter become the latest victims of "The Family Man." 

Along with tracking an evil killer, Holly is dealing with her own internal demons. She is raising her daughter Chloe alone after the death of her husband--a death she feels guilty for. 

To complicate her life further, Holly is doing her best to avoid possibly falling in love again with charming veterinarian Brendan O'Neil. As Holly delves deeper into solving the murders, she finds herself being sucked into a game of cat and mouse by "The Family Man," that may lead her down a dark path too horrible to bear. One that may cost her gravely-her family, her new found love, and even her life.

A.K. Alexander is the international bestselling author of Daddy's Home, "Mommy, May I?, The Cartel, and The Michaela Bancroft Suspense Series.

The Procedure
Unmarried and unwilling to wait for Mr. Perfect, Melanie Allen decides it’s time to have a child and enters the infertility program at the Upstate Family Clinic in Syracuse, New York; a decision that will cost her dearly.

Melanie’s horrifying journey starts, as do all roads to Hell, with good intentions. In this case, it’s an act of kindness, as she offers to lend a much needed hand at the clinic, which is owned and run by the famous infertility specialist, Dr. Reed Neumann.

Almost immediately, Melanie senses that the clinic has dark secrets, and before long is unearthing evidence of Neumann’s terrifying research and medical procedures. Before she is through, Melanie discovers the worst secret of all – that Neumann’s evil deeds reach all the way back to her own home and her own family.

Follow this 28-year-old single mother as she attempts to wrestle herself from the clutches of the doctor she once idolized and save herself and her family from the terrifying future he had planned for them. Be there as Melanie shockingly comes into contact with long-dead victims of the doctor and learn how they are able to reach across the divide between spiritual and physical worlds to help, as Melanie faces evil in its truest form.

Mind Games (A Diana Racine Psychic Suspense)
During a New Orleans Mardi Gras Ball, psychic entertainer Diana Racine touches the hand of a masked Cyrano de Bergerac and is instantly transported into the icy-cold body of a dead woman submerged in water. As Diana crumples to the floor, water filling her lungs, she hears Cyrano whisper that the game has begun.

Diana has been called every epithet in the book: charlatan, cheat, publicity hound...and genius--all at least partially true. But convincing New Orleans police lieutenant Ernie Lucier that her vision of the dead woman is the real thing may be her hardest act yet. He becomes a believer when Diana leads him to the alligator-infested bayou and the woman's remains. When another vision leads to another body, it's clear that the two dead women are a prelude to the killer's ultimate victim--Diana.

The Murder of Susan Reed (The Val & Kit Mystery Series)
When Kit suspects Larry of having an affair with one of his employees, Susan Reed, she enlists Val’s help in uncovering the truth. The morning after a little stalking expedition by the lifelong friends, Val reads in the newspaper that Susan Reed was found shot to death in her apartment the night before, right around the time Kit was so certain Larry and Susan were together. Were they having an affair? And did Larry murder her? The police, in the form of dishy Detective Dennis Culotta, conduct the investigation into Susan’s murder, hampered at times by Val and Kit’s insistent attempts to discover whether Larry is guilty of infidelity and/or murder. As the investigation heats up, so does Val’s relationship with Detective Culotta.

Dead End
Dead End

They found Henry Gibson shot dead in his abandoned car on a dirt road. DEAD END.

Then George Horner…and Noah Hamberger. Wait a minute…who’s depleting the population of Northeastern Ohio? Are these random murders or a sicko with an agenda? DEAD END.

That was the problem facing homicide detective Al Maharos. He ran out of ideas. DEAD END.

Maharos had never worked with a woman partner until Karen Vandergrift. Attractive, brilliant Vandergrift. Together, they uncovered other bodies, and a pattern unique in the annals of crime. The problem: who was linked to the murders? DEAD END.

They knew their path would converge with that of the killer. They knew when…But where? DEAD END.

DEAD END. A rapid-paced police procedural that grabs and won’t let go.

Blood Forest
A young American couple are conducting an aerial survey of central Africa when they are shot down by hostile militia in a dense region of the Congo. Completely lost and with soldiers in pursuit, they are desperate to find civilization. But something is not right with the forest. The animals behave suspiciously -- aggressively -- while some unknown presence shadows them, entering their dreams and toying with their very thoughts. The pair soon discover that they aren’t the only ones trapped here. Another party is risking the dangers of the jungle, seeking a rare flower with vast medical potential.

All must work together to survive. But the Blood Forest holds its captives with a secret that is more complex and sinister than any of them realize.

Murder in a Good Neighborhood
A dead call girl, a missing madam, a retired astronaut under arrest...

After many years as a military wife, Roxanne Flowers has enough on her plate...enjoying time with her now-retired husband and supervising her six year-old granddaughter, not to mention fending off volunteer jobs thrust upon her by a nun who won't take "no" for an answer.

So when Roxanne finds the body of a beautiful young woman the week before Halloween, she is more than happy to leave the detecting to her son Marc, an Eastport, Virginia homicide detective. That is, until an old flame is arrested, and the abbess from a nearby monastery insists Roxanne must help clear his name. Only neither woman realizes that by unmasking a murderer, Roxanne is placing someone she loves dearly in mortal danger.

Grift Sense
Have you heard the one about the canny granny who won a pot of money by card-counting on her rosary beads? How about the mother-and-son team whose method of palming cards at the blackjack table was ''pure poetry''? And what about the sweet techniques of guys like Jake the Snake and Larry the Lightbulb? James Swain, who came to his expertise on gambling hustles by way of his skills as a sleight-of-hand magician, uses the crooked play of these inspired cheats to pull us into GRIFT SENSE, a flashy, funny novel about a cool scam to break the bank at a Las Vegas casino. 

When Nick Nicocropolis gets wind that someone is out to bring down his establishment, the grandly named but barely solvent Acropolis, he does the smart thing by calling in Tony Valentine, an ex-cop with a nose for a good grift. ''I can feel when a hustle's going down, even if I don't know exactly what it is,'' says Tony, who tests his instinct against his database of some 5,000 known hustlers and comes up with the profile of a dead man. (So much for science.) Although it's slightly maddening to watch Tony conducting off-the-premises research when he could be walking us through some of the other swindles going down on the casino floor, Swain knows how to misdirect the eye during the deal. 

Deadly Deception (Elia Christie/Luis Echevarria medical mysteries)
Murder by mistaken identity at Augusta National Golf Club during the Masters, and a single clue from a long ago soccer tragedy, lead Elia Christie and Dr. Luis Echevarria from Augusta, Georgia, to Lima, Peru.
From the tradition-rich environs of Peru, Elia and Luis are drawn into the dark, deadly depths of the international drug trade and archaeological looting.
In Deadly Deception, a vivid picture is painted of both southern and Peruvian cultures in this taut, twisting tale of power and greed. 

The Chef Who Died Sauteing (Ariel Quigley Mystery and Cookbook Series)
This edition of the novel includes the complete "Killer Cookbook #1, Recipes to Accompany The Chef Who Died Sautéing." (There is a link in the Kindle edition to a free PDF download of the cookbook.) (*If you had difficulty downloading the PDF, please try again!)

The Chef Who Died Sautéing takes place in Alexandria, Virginia. Our heroine—Ariel Quigley—is a young English instructor who talks to ghosts and has precognitive dreams. In the first book she finds herself embroiled in an abortive bombing, a suspicious death, a car accident that is no accident, and a hurricane. (Is nature a terrorist agent?) She does Tarot readings for fun, but learns a lot about the people around her from the cards. And in the course of unraveling the clues she also learns the truth about the death of a slave who died before the Civil War—from the ghost herself.

The Ragtime Kid: A Ragtime Mystery (Ragtime Mystery Trilogy)
Brun Campbell, a 15-year-old piano-playing fool, hears Scott Joplin’s “Maple Leaf Rag” played one 1898 afternoon in Oklahoma City. It’s destiny calling. Asking for ragtime lessons, he’s told, “No, Ragtime is colored music.” So Brun runs away from the family farm to Sedalia, Missouri, to persuade Joplin to take him on as a pupil. What Brun doesn’t expect is to trip over the body of a young woman. He thoughtlessly picks up a couple of items before he rushes away from the murder scene.

When Edward Fitzgerald, a man who befriended Brun his first night in town, is arrested for the woman’s murder, Brun is certain he’s innocent. But if the boy shows anyone the things he pocketed at the scene—things he now knows belonged to Scott Joplin—he’ll point the finger at the composer...and himself. 
Brun decides to get Fitzgerald, Joplin, and himself off the hook by finding the real killer, but for that he eventually needs some help from Dr. Overstreet, the alcoholic town mayor; and John Stark, a man pushing sixty, who’s been employing Brun at his music store.

Sedalia is rife with suspects, some of them opportunists bent on stealing Joplin’s music. And then there are the girls and women—mysteries to Brun—like a teenager seized with religious fever, a couple of mischievous prostitutes, and an attractive, ambitious young woman with a hint of scarlet in her past, who further complicate his pursuit of the killer.

Buried In Benidorm (Max Castillo Mystery Series #1)
Ex-priest and newly minted agnostic Max Castillo ekes out a living as a private investigator from his houseboat in Benidorm, Spain. He finally has a little free time ... until a big-shot turns up dead at a local golf course. Now, his former employer is calling in an old debt, and Max is neck-deep in gangsters, grifters and girls with grudges. A decades-old secret could hold the key to solving the case, but can Max figure it out before one of them leaves him ... Buried in Benidorm?

The Disappeared
On the morning of the 27th of September, the residents of Bishop, a small town in South Africa, awake into a nightmare.
Lindiwe, a recovering alcoholic from Johannesburg, discovers that her gogo has disappeared into thin air overnight. Joshua, a hitch hiker with a secret, awakes on the banks of the Elandsriver and realises that all the insect and bird life have mysteriously vanished. Inspector Jan Coetzee, station commander of the local police station, arrives for work and discovers all his police officers have disappeared, the only clue being disturbing inscriptions in the police log book. Duggan, the local computer geek and conspiracy theorist, finds that all communications to the outside world have been inexplicably severed. And Minki, a ten-year old girl, keeps on having violent visions of impending death.
But the mystery deepens. Except for a handful of survivors, the entire population of Bishop has completely vanished overnight. Without any signs of struggle. Without a trace.
What does the enigmatic Obsidian Corporation have to do with the strange events? And why is a top secret US black-ops team on its way to Bishop?
As the survivors band together, can they discover the fate of the disappeared? Before the same fate befalls them.

The Devil and Preston Black (Murder Ballads and Whiskey)

Jason Jack Miller has single-handedly cornered the market on Appalachian Noir fiction, and deservedly so. The Devil and Preston Black is a page-turner laced with an audiophile's longing for the days when music was genuine, and the storytelling reminded me of a strange array of similar stories -- High Fidelity, Crossroads, Justified... -- yet it stood out from the pack as fresh, thanks to Miller's authentic Appalachian voice. Any lover of guitar music or the history of the blues will instantly see themselves reflected in the story, filtered through a noir fuzz pedal, amped up with the electricity of dark fantasy.
-Michael A. Arnzen, winner of five Bram Stoker awards.

Keeping Murder in the Family

Elissa Ruster is dead, and it’s an open and shut case. That is, until detective Millard Whitney begins nosing around.
The essential facts were simple: Elissa was kidnapped by Armando Lopez, who raped and killed her. But when Millard looks more closely at these “facts,” it wasn’t rape and it wasn’t murder—at least not by Armando. The problem is Armando’s already been convicted of the crime, and Millard will have to come up with some pretty strong evidence to change anyone’s mind.
Millard has no reason to even be on the case. It was way out of his territory, in fact, as far out as Cincinnati is from Philadelphia. Millard was at a regional crime conference, where instead of discussing murder someone was actually doing it—three of them in that week. The last person to be killed was one of Millard’s police friends, which pushes Millard into the case.
Relocating to Cincinnati, Millard finds that all three people murdered at the crime conference were connected to the solved Elissa Ruster murder case. As Millard jumps in, feet first, he discovers that Elissa’s dysfunctional family may be death-functional—any one of them may be a killer. For instance, there’s the Shakespearean actor of a husband, who’s currently playing Brutus and maybe taking killing a little too seriously. Also sibling rivalry comes to the front, with the victim’s own sister courting jealousy, and their mother’s brother and sister each having a strangely reclusive existence.
It seemed also that Elissa was quite liberal with her sexual favors, inviting her boss and her psychiatrist to the party, among others. Millard has to unlearn some of the values he has always thought about families. Along the way, Millard runs into a shark, Iraqi insurgents, and a mountain blizzard. If that wasn’t enough he is thrown into the Ohio River and later stabbed on a Nashville riverboat. Should he just stay away from water?
Traumatic childhood events begin working their way into the case, and Millard gets a first-hand look at abuse. The case finally hinges on the word, “Pookie,” but what does it mean? In the end, Millard learns that there’s no freedom in Philadelphia’s Independence Hall, as he has to partake in a bizarre trial there, where the verdict is death. 

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