Book Giveaway
Spetember 1st Giveaway

Courtneys WarCourtney’s War by Wilbur Smith & David Churchill
Torn apart by war, Saffron Courtney and Gerhard von Meerbach are thousands of miles apart, both struggling for their lives. Gerhard — despite his objections to the Nazi regime — is fighting for the Fatherland, hoping to one day have the opportunity to rid Germany of Hitler and his cronies. But as his unit is thrown into the hellish attrition of the Battle of Stalingrad, he knows his chances of survival are dwindling by the day. Meanwhile Saffron — recruited by the Special Operations Executive and sent to occupied Belgium to discover how the Nazis have infiltrated SOE’s network — soon finds herself being hunted by Germany's most ruthless spymaster. Confronted by evil beyond their worst imaginings, the lovers must each make the hardest choice of all: sacrifice themselves, or do whatever they can to survive, hoping that one day they will be reunited. Thanks to Gretchen Crary of FEBRUARY MEDIA, we have one copy to give away.

To enter, email with the subject line Win Smith. Please include your mailing address in your message. The deadline for entries is midnight September 8, 2018. Finnegan’s Ghost will select the winner using the Random Number Generator. Good luck!

Dying for a DealDying for a Deal by Cindy Sample (2018)
Laurel McKay Hunter is thrilled to partner with new husband, Tom, in their budding detective agency, Gold Country Investigations. With her past experience solving crimes, even Tom admits she’s a natural. And Laurel’s first case is perfect for her financial skills, extricating a friend of her zany grandmother from a Lake Tahoe timeshare scam. When the timeshare salesman is found dead, with Gran’s fingerprints on the murder weapon, Laurel’s case jumps from money to mayhem to murder. A second murder takes Laurel to the snow-capped summit of Heavenly Ski Resort, a boat race across Lake Tahoe, and a close encounter with a black bear. Soon the only thing certain is that someone is dead set on making Laurel’s first case her last. Thanks to the author we have one paperback copy of this seventh in the series. (Giveaway ended 8/22/18. Our lucky winner was Ruth B. from New Hampshire.)

The Port Elspeth Jewelry Making ClubThe Port Elspeth Jewelry Making Club (2018) by Holly Tierney-Bedord
It’s been five years since the idyllic oceanside community of Port Elspeth was rocked by tragedy. Shortly after their high school graduation, Evangeline Maddingly, daughter of one of the town’s wealthiest old-money families, and Oliver Prescott, son of one of the town’s wealthiest new-money families, were found dead in an isolated cabin in the woods outside of town. The circumstances surrounding their untimely deaths are murky at best, thanks in large part to a coroner with connections to Port Elspeth’s founding families and a sweeping effort from those in power to shut down any negative publicity that could harm the reputation of their pristine community. Five years later, a small group of strangers gathers to create jewelry for one of Port Elspeth’s many fundraisers. Before long, friendships are forming and old secrets are being revealed. Along with discovering how to make a perfect pair of chandelier earrings or cabochon necklace, this unlikely team of sleuths finds themselves at the heart of solving the murders that took place half a decade earlier. Thanks to the author we have six copies to give away: a paperback copy for one lucky winner in the US or Canada and five Kindle copies for five lucky winners anywhere in the world. (Giveaway ended 8/8/18. Our lucky winners were Amy B. from California, David W. from Texas, Heidi Z. from Ontario, Jan O. from Pennsylvania, Maria D. from Louisiana, and Vicki S. from Australia.)

WidowsWidows by Lynda La Plante (Zaffre 2018)
Dolly Rawlins, Linda Pirelli and Shirley Miller are left devastated when their husbands are killed in a security van heist that goes disastrously wrong. When Dolly discovers her husband Harry's bank deposit box, containing a gun, money — and detailed plans for the hijack — she realises that she only has three options: 1. Give up and forget she ever found them; 2. Hand over Harry's ledgers to the police, or to the thugs that have been hassling her for information they think she has; 3. She and the other widows could carry out the robbery themselves Novices in the craft of crime, the three women make their preparations. Along the way they discover that Harry's plan required four people, not three. But only three bodies were discovered in the carnage of the original hijack — so who was the fourth man, and where is he now? Recruiting hooker Bella O’Reilly as their fourth, the widows are determined to execute their plan. Facing mounting pressure from DI Resnick, and local thugs Arnie and Tony Fisher, can they stick together and finish the job their husbands started? Thanks to Gretchen Crary of FEBRUARY MEDIA, we have one copy of this series opener, reissued in conjunction with an upcoming movie, to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/18. Our lucky winner was Ruth O. from Florida.)

Final Resting PlaceFinal Resting Place by Jonathan F. Putnam (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
Twenty-nine-year-old Abraham Lincoln has spent his entire adult life running from his past — from the poverty of the dirt-floor log cabin where he was raised, from the dominion of his uneducated father, and from a failed early courtship. But now, Lincoln’s past is racing back to haunt him. It is the summer of 1838, and Springfield is embroiled in a tumultuous, violent political season. All of Springfield’s elite have gathered at a grand party to celebrate the Fourth of July. Spirits are high — until a prominent local politician is assassinated in the midst of fireworks. When his political rival is arrested, young lawyer Lincoln and his best friend Joshua Speed are back on the case to investigate. It’s no ordinary trial, however, as Lincoln and Speed soon face unwelcome complications. Lincoln’s ne’er-do-well father and stepbrother appear in town and threaten Lincoln’s good name and political future. And before long, anonymous letters start appearing in the local newspapers, with ominous threats that make Lincoln fear for himself and his loved ones. As the day of reckoning arrives, the threats against Lincoln continue to escalate. Lincoln and Speed must identify the culprit and fast, before Lincoln loses the race to outrun his past. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this third in the series to give away.

Bum DealBum Deal by Paul Levine (Thomas & Mercer 2018)
Second-string linebacker turned disillusioned defense attorney Jake Lassiter finally switches teams. Appointed special prosecutor in a high-profile murder case, he vows to take down a prominent surgeon accused of killing his wife. There’s just one problem… or maybe three: no evidence, no witness, and no body. But Lassiter’s used to fighting impossible battles on the gridiron and in court. After all, he’s not totally burned-out — just a little scorched. Standing in Lassiter’s way are the defense lawyers: slick-talking Steve Solomon and blueblood Victoria Lord, who have their own complicated history with the defendant. Not to mention the specter of CTE, the lethal brain disease Lassiter may have contracted banging heads in the NFL. Drained of his mental edge just when he needs it most, Lassiter must do whatever it takes to win this case — even if it costs him his life. Because law is a contact sport, and you don’t get trophies for trying. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this 12th in the series to give away.

The Spook in the StacksThe Spook in the Stacks by Eva Gates (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
Wealthy businessman Jay Ruddle is considering donating his extensive collection of North Carolina historical documents to the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library, but the competition for the collection is fierce. Unfortunately, while the library is hosting a lecture on ghostly legends, Jay becomes one of the dearly departed in the rare books section. Now, it’s up to Lucy Richardson and her fellow librarians to bone up on their detective skills and discover who is responsible for this wicked Halloween homicide. Meanwhile, very strange things are happening at the library — haunted horses are materializing in the marsh, the lights seem to have an eerie life of their own, and the tiny crew of a model ship appears to move around when no one is watching. Is Lucy at her wit’s end? Or can it be that the Bodie Island Lighthouse really is haunted? With The Legend of Sleepy Hollow on everyone’s minds and ghoulish gossip on everyone’s lips, Lucy will need to separate the clues from the boos if she wants to crack this case without losing her head. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this fourth in the Lighthouse Library series to give away.

Velvet on a Tuesday AfternoonVelvet on a Tuesday Afternoon by Clive Rosengren (Coffeetown Press 2017)
For PI Eddie Collins, the moment Carla Rizzoli sashays into his office casts him deliciously into a scene from a classic noir. Only this femme fatale is a sweet ghost from his past, a time when he made his living exclusively as an actor. Then she was a full-time actress too, and they’d dated briefly before an old flame came back into her life. Now she’s known as Velvet La Rose and making a steady living as an exotic dancer at the Feline Follies. She needs Eddie’s services to find her missing brother Frankie Rizzoli, who sent her a cryptic message warning her to watch her back. Eddie falls hard for Carla, who hasn’t given up on acting. In fact, she’s about to start work on a B-movie, Festival of Death. Now motivated by more than a paycheck, Eddie searches for Frankie, last seen hiding out among the homeless. Frankie was once a member of the military police, and an old photo identifies an old Army buddy, James Curran, who starts to cross paths with both Eddie and Carla with increasing frequency. Thanks to the author we have one copy in the third in this Shamus Award nominated series to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/18. Our lucky winner was Robert S. from Arizona.)

Flowers and Foul PlayFlowers and Foul Play by Amanda Flower (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
Florist Fiona Knox’s life isn’t smelling so sweet these days. Her fiancé left her for their cake decorator. Then her flower shop wilted after a chain florist opened next door. So when her godfather, Ian MacCallister, leaves her a cottage in Scotland, Fiona jumps on the next plane to Edinburgh. Ian, after all, is the one who taught her to love flowers. But when Ian’s elderly caretaker Hamish MacGregor shows her to the cottage upon her arrival, she finds the once resplendent grounds of Duncreigan in a dreadful shambles — with a dead body in the garden. Minutes into her arrival, Fiona is being questioned by the handsome Chief Inspector Neil Craig and getting her passport seized. But it’s Craig’s fixation on Uncle Ian’s loyal caretaker, Hamish, as a prime suspect, that really makes her worried. As Fiona strolls the town, she quickly realizes there are a whole bouquet of suspects much more likely to have killed Alastair Croft, the dead lawyer who seems to have had more enemies than friends. Now it’s up to Fiona to clear Hamish’s name before it’s too late. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this series opener to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/18. Our lucky winners were Amanda B. from Virginia, Amy P. from New York, Gene B. from Georgia, Jill G. from New York, and Paula A. from Florida.)

Second Story ManSecond Story Man by Charles Salzberg (Down & Out Books 2018)
Francis Hoyt, arrogant, athletic, brilliant, manipulative, and ruthless, is a master burglar. He specializes in stealing high-end silver, breaking into homes that seem impenetrable. He’s never been caught in the act, although he has spent some time in prison on a related charge, time he used to hone his craft and make valuable connections. (Hoyt is based on two real-life master burglars: the so-called Dinnertime Bandit, who only stole when his victims were home, and The Silver Thief, who was only interested in high-end silver). Hoyt follows the money. In the winter, he works down south, primarily in southern Florida and Georgia, around the Atlanta area. Summers, he moves back up north, where he plies his trade in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Massachusetts. One day, Charlie Floyd, a brilliant, stubborn, experienced investigator who has recently retired from his job with the attorney general’s department for the state of Connecticut, receives a phone call from Manny Perez, a Cuban-American Miami police detective. Perez, who’s worked with Floyd previously, wants to enlist the former investigator in his efforts to put an end to Francis Hoyt’s criminal career. Floyd accepts the offer and they team up to bring Hoyt to justice. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this non-series thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/22/18. Our lucky winner was Steve D. from Minnesota.)

The Shadow of DeathThe Shadow of Death by Jane Willan (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
The sisters of Gwenafwy Abbey in Wales have cherished their contemplative life — days spent in prayer, reflection, tending the Convent’s vegetable gardens and making their award-winning organic cheese, Heavenly Gouda. Life seems perfect, except for Sister Agatha, a die-hard mystery fan who despairs of ever finding any real life inspiration for her own novel. That is, until the Abbey’s sexton is found dead under an avalanche of gouda. Despite the reservations of the local constable, Sister Agatha is convinced it’s murder and the game is afoot. Armed only with the notes she’s scribbled during her favorite podcast, “How to Write a Mystery Novel,” as well as a lessons learned from crime heroes ranging from Hercule Poirot to Stephanie Plum, Sister Agatha leads the nuns of Gwenafwy Abbey (and her unwitting sidekick, Father Selwyn) as they begin a race against time to resolve the death of Jacob, save the Abbey, exonerate a beloved postulant, and restore the good name of their cheese. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this first in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/8/18. Our lucky winners were Ann W. from New Jersey, Brett B. from New York, Charlotte B. from New Mexico, Dorothea B. from Colorado, and Pat S. from Florida.)

Illegal HoldingsIllegal Holdings by Michael Niemann (Coffeetown Press 2018)
UN fraud investigator Valentin Vermeulen is on assignment in Maputo, Mozambique. His humdrum task is to see if Global Alternatives is spending UN money the way they promised. The nonprofit was set up by hedge fund mogul Vincent Portallis to revolutionize development aid. The only upside for Vermeulen is the prospect of seeing his lover Tessa Bishonga, who is reporting on foreign land acquisitions in Africa. When Vermeulen notices that a five-million-dollar transfer has gone missing, he is given the run-around. First he is told the files have been mislaid, then stolen, then he is assured that the money was never transferred to begin with. But the money was transferred, so where is it now? Vermeulen’s dogged pursuit of the missing transfer makes him the target of some ruthless operators. And once he meets up with Tessa, she is inevitably sucked in to the story as well, which turns out to be far more nefarious than either of them imagined. Now they are both in deadly danger. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/22/18. Our lucky winner was Lenny B. from Nevada.)

Blackchurch FurnaceBlackchurch Furnace by Nathan Singer (Down & Out Books 2018)
Blackchurch is not the sort of place where folks are inclined to be up in each other’s business, and strange house guests at a neighbor’s pad are not likely to be noticed, let alone remarked upon. So on a day in early October, when two beat-up-looking crackers, a pregnant teenage whore, and a small, androgynous Japanese woman in a large-brimmed sombrero, sunglasses, and wrapped in a patchwork down comforter came to call on D’antre Philips with heads full of prophetic visions and tales of the apocalypse already in progress, nary an eye was blinked. When the end times do come to Blackchurch, it’ll be a day like any other day. And the next day will be too. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/18. Our lucky winner was Dan F. from Texas.)

The Devil at Your DoorThe Devil at Your Door by Eric Beetner (Down & Out Books 2018)
Lars and Shaine have returned to a quiet life on the islands, but for Lars there is unfinished business. When he gets information that will lead him to exact revenge on behalf of his young protégé, the young woman he’s grown to think of as a daughter, he decides to take action in secret. When he lands in a hospital Shaine is called in from a thousand miles away and she must take the lead in the last job of Lars’ storied career of death for hire. Facing his own aging body, Lars struggles to take a back seat to the youngster he has trained in his image. They’ll face a local drug boss along with an old enemy as they work to fire the last bullet they’ll ever need to — before one finds them first. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this third in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/22/18. Our lucky winner was Jody S. from Arkansas.)

The Cat of the BaskervillesThe Cat of the Baskervilles by Vicki Delany (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
When Jayne Wilson’s mother is accused of murder, Jayne and Gemma have to eliminate the impossible to reveal the true killer. Legendary stage and movie star Sir Nigel Bellingham arrives on Cape Cod to star in a stage production of The Hound of the Baskervilles put on by the West London Theater Festival. When Sir Nigel, some of the cast, and the director visit the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop at 222 Baker Street, Gemma Doyle realizes that Sir Nigel is not at all suited to the role. He is long past his prime and an old drunk to boot. The cast, in particular the much younger actor who previously had the role, are not happy, but the show must go on. Before the play opens, Leslie Wilson, mother of Gemma’s best friend Jayne, arranges a fundraising afternoon tea to be catered by Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room. The tea is a huge success, but when it’s time to leave, Sir Nigel has gone missing — only to be found at the bottom of the rocky cliff, dead. Along with the dead body, Gemma finds evidence incriminating Leslie Wilson. When the police, in the presence of handsome detective Ryan Ashburton and suspicious detective Louise Estrada, focus their attention on Leslie despite the numerous other suspects, the game is once again afoot and it’s again up to the highly perceptive Gemma and the ever-confused but loyal Jayne to clear Jayne’s mother’s name. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this third in the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/18. Our lucky winners were Beverly H. from Ohio, Jennifer Y. from Missouri, John M. from Virginia, Missy S. from Iowa, and Taryn L. from Georgia.)

MayMay by Marietta Mile (Down & Out Books 2018)
May, a lonely caretaker and small-time weed dealer, has spent years trying to hunker down and hide from her damaged past. As a destructive nor’easter takes aim at her sleepy island home of Folly, May tries to hunker down once more after the island is evacuated. But death is in the air – not just from the storm, but from others on the island driven by darker demons – and May finds that this time, there’s nowhere to hide. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this noir thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/22/18. Our lucky winner was Beatie O. from Tennessee.)

A Mortal LikenessA Mortal Likeness by Laura Joh Rowland (Crooked Lane Books 2018)
A photographer in 1889 London, Miss Sarah Bain runs a private detective agency with her friends, Lord Hugh Staunton and former street urchin Mick O’Reilly. Their sole credential is that they solved the Jack the Ripper case, a secret they can never tell because they did it outside the boundaries of the law. Their new big case arises when a wealthy banker, Sir Gerald Mariner, posts a handsome reward for finding his missing infant. All of London joins in the search. But Sarah has an advantage — a photograph she took during a routine surveillance job, which unexpectedly reveals a clue about the kidnapping. After Sir Gerald hires Sarah, Hugh, and Mick to find his son, they move into his opulent mansion and discover a photograph of baby Robin. It eerily resembles postmortem photographs taken of deceased children posed to look as if they’re alive. Was the kidnapping real, or a cover-up for a murder? Is the perpetrator a stranger, or someone inside the troubled Mariner family? The case hits close to home for Sarah as it intertwines with her search for her father, who disappeared after he became the prime suspect in a murder twenty-three years ago. She finds herself on the wrong side of the law, which threatens her budding romance with Police Constable Barrett. But Sarah must uncover the truth about Robin’s kidnapping, and her own family, before her past catches up to her. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/18. Our lucky winners were Carl S. from Arizona, Carol K. from Oregon, Janice W. from Massachusetts, Loretta H. from Virginia, and Michael P. from Ohio.)

ShakedownShakedown by Martin Bodenham (Down & Out Books 2017)
Damon Traynor leaves a glittering career on Wall Street to set up his own private equity business. When it is the winning bidder in the multi-billion dollar auction for a government-owned defense company, his fir’'s future success looks certain. But soon after the deal closes, Damon makes an alarming discovery — something that makes the recent acquisition worthless. Then he learns he was duped by the financially-strapped federal administration and that there are many others in the same position. Facing financial ruin, he investigates the US treasury officials behind the transaction. What Damon uncovers is a terrifying web of organized crime — extending all the way to the White House itself — involving blackmail and assassination on an industrial scale. When those around him begin to die, Damon finds himself locked in a deadly battle with the leader of the free world. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/22/17. Our lucky winner was Jim P. from Seattle, Washington.)

Splntered SilenceSplintered Silence by Susan Furlong (Kensington 2017)
After an IED explosion abruptly ends her tour of duty, Brynn arrives stateside with PTSD and her canine partner, Wilco — both of them bearing the scars of battle. With a mix of affection, curiosity, and misgivings, she goes back to Bone Gap, Tennessee, and the insular culture she’d hoped to escape by enlisting in the Marine Corps. Marginalized and wary of outsiders, the Irish Travellers keep to themselves in a secluded mountain community, maintaining an uneasy coexistence with the “settled” townspeople of McCreary. When Wilco’s training as a cadaver dog leads Brynn to discover a body in the woods, the two worlds collide. Soon it’s clear that Brynn and Wilco are in danger — and they’re not the only ones. After the police identify the dead woman, Brynn is shocked to learn she has a personal connection — and everything she’s been told about her past is called into question. Forming a reluctant alliance with local sheriff Frank Pusser, Brynn must dig up secrets that not only will rattle her close-knit clan to its core, but may forever change her perception of who she is, and put her back in the line of fire. Thanks to the author we have five Advance Readers Copies of this first in the Bone Gap Travellers series to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/17. Our lucky winners were Becky B. from Delaware, Joanne M, from Texas, Janet M from Ontario, John K. from British Columbia, and Owene L. from Tennessee.)

A Conspiracy of RavensA Conspiracy of Ravens by Terrence McCauley (Polis Books 2017)
James Hicks has spent his entire life and career fighting on the front lines of terrorism for the clandestine intelligence organization known as The University. Hicks has learned that enemies can appear and disappear in the blink of an eye, and allegiances shift like the wind. But now, Hicks has finally discovered his true enemy: the criminal organization known as The Vanguard. This shadowy group has operated as a deadly organization comprised weapons dealers, drug runners, and money launderers for decades, but has now decided to add regime change to their catastrophic agenda. But knowing the enemy is one thing. Being able to defeat it is another matter entirely. When Hicks uncovers a solid lead on his new adversaries, his world explodes. His home base is attacked, his operatives in the field are wiped out, and, for the first time, The University finds itself in open combat against an unknown enemy. In a battle that rages from the streets of Manhattan to the halls of power in Washington, D.C., to the dark alleys of Berlin, Hicks will have to use every resource at his disposal to defeat A Conspiracy of Ravens. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this third in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/22/17. Our lucky winner was Charles B. from Texas.)

Dead of winterDead of Winter by Wendy Corsi Staub (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Just as a murderer dumps his corpse into the lake across Valley View in Lily Dale, Bella Jordan happens to be at her window, not quite realizing what she’s seeing. Unbeknownst to her, the killer spots her silhouette and prowls straight to her door. That is, until he’s interrupted by a black cat. A superstitious gambler, he takes off, but Bella’s seen too much, and he vows to return. Jiffy Arden, a neighborhood kid looking for the black cat and stumbling across the killer, begins to have premonitions of being kidnapped during the season’s first snowstorm. Sure enough, when it strikes, he vanishes, never arriving home from the bus stop. While her son, Max, believes Jiffy has been kidnapped, Bella is convinced he’s just wandered off as he typically does… until a body shows up in the lake. Now everyone is pulling out all the stops to find the missing child, identify the victim, and collar the killer. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this third in the Lily Dale series to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/17. Our lucky winners were Adrianne B. from Illinois, Dick M. from Missouri, Donna H. from Tennessee, Lori H. from South Carolina, and Mark H. from North Carolina.)

Lights Out SummerLights Out Summer by Rich Zahradnik (Camel Press 2017)
In March 1977, ballistics link murders going back six months to the same Charter Arms Bulldog .44. A serial killer, Son of Sam, is on the loose. But Coleridge Taylor can’t compete with the armies of reporters fighting New York's tabloid war — only rewrite what they get. Constantly on the lookout for victims who need their stories told, he uncovers other killings being ignored because of the media circus. He goes after one, the story of a young Black woman gunned down in her apartment building the same night Son of Sam struck elsewhere in Queens. The story entangles Taylor with a wealthy Park Avenue family at war with itself. Just as he’s closing in on the killer and his scoop, the July 13-14 blackout sends New York into a 24-hour orgy of looting and destruction. Taylor and his PI girlfriend Samantha Callahan head out into the darkness, where a steamy night of mob violence awaits them. In the midst of the chaos, a suspect in Taylor's story goes missing. Desperate, he races to a confrontation that will either break the story — or Taylor. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of this 4th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/22/17. Our lucky winner was Kent B. from Washington.)

A Cajun Christmas KillingA Cajun Christmas Killing by Ellen Byron (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Maggie Crozat is back home in bayou country during the most magical time of the year. In Pelican, Louisiana, Christmastime is a season of giant bonfires on the levee, zydeco carols, and pots of gumbo. Except, this year, the Grinch has come to stay at the family-run Crozat Plantation B&B. When he floods travel websites with vicious reviews, Maggie thinks she’s identified him as rival businessman Donald Baxter. That is, until he’s found stabbed to death at Maggie’s workplace. And Maggie and her loved ones become top suspects. The Crozats quickly establish alibis, but Maggie’s boyfriend, Detective Bo Durand, remains under suspicion. With Bo sidelined during the investigation, Maggie finds herself forced to work with an unlikely ally: longtime family enemy Rufus Durand. Her sleuthing uncovers more suspects than drummers drumming, and lands her in the crosshairs of the murderer. The sleigh bells are jingling, and the clock is ticking for Maggie and Rufus, who must catch the killer or it will be the opposite of a Joyeux Noël. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this recipe-stuffed third in the Cajun Country series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/8/17. Our lucky winners were Andrew B. from Connecticut, Kevin M. from Georgia, Michele P. from North Carolina, Renee W. from Georgia, and Sandy G. from New Jersey.)

Sapphire PavilionSapphire Pavilion by David E. Grogan (Camel Press 2017)
Steve Stilwell’s former Navy JAG Corps buddy Ric Stokes has been jailed for possession of heroin in Vietnam. He was found in the same room with his traveling companion Ryan Eversall, who died of an overdose in the company of a prostitute. Steve knows his friend is a straight arrow. Was he set up? If so, for what reason? Steve travels to Ho Chi Minh City in search of the truth. In no time Steve is targeted by the people who framed his friend. A beautiful young American businesswoman insinuates her way into the case. Can she really help, or is she just a dangerous distraction? Ric and Ryan came to Vietnam in search of an Air Force transport plane that disappeared in 1968. The pilot was Ryan’s father. Before the heroin bust, they had located the wreckage. Ryan’s notebook, which Steve manages to obtain, spells out the exact location. Ryan’s widow has given Steve’s associate Casey another piece of valuable evidence, a file labeled “Sapphire Pavilion.” Someone is willing to go to any lengths to steal both the notebook and the file. From Virginia and Texas to DC and Vietnam, powerful, all-seeing forces with unlimited resources are determined to bury the truth about Sapphire Pavilion. But they have grossly underestimated Steve Stilwell and his associate Casey, a former Army pilot who lost her leg in a helo accident. And the ability to inspire loyalty wherever you go can come in handy when danger lurks behind every corner. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy of the second in the Steve Stilwell series to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/22/17. Our lucky winner was Larry D. from Minnesota.)

Lies She ToldLies She Told by Cate Holahan (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Liza Cole has thirty days to write the thriller that could put her back on the bestseller list. In the meantime, she’s struggling to start a family with her husband, who is distracted by the disappearance of his best friend, Nick. With stresses weighing her down in both her professional and her personal lives, Liza escapes into writing her latest heroine, Beth. Beth is a new mother who suspects her husband is cheating on her while she’s home alone caring for their newborn. Angry and betrayed, she sets out to catch him in the act and make him pay for shattering the illusion of their perfect life. But before she realizes it, she’s tossing the body of her husband’s mistress into the East River. Then the lines between fiction and reality begin to blur. Nick’s body is dragged from the same river and Liza’s husband is arrested for his murder. Before her deadline is up, Liza will have to face up to the truths about the people around her, including herself. If she doesn’t, the end of her heroine’s story could be the end of her own. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies of this psychologial thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/8/17. Our lucky winners were Deborah T. from Kansas, Martin L. from New York, Pat L. from Ohio, Ron B. from North Carolina, and Sherry L. from Caifornia.)

The Black KachinaThe Black Kachina by Jack Getze (Down & Out Books 2017)
When a top-secret weapon goes missing on Colonel Maggie Black’s watch, her honor and her career are on the line. There were airmen who said the Air Force’s best female combat pilot would never be the same after losing her arm in Iraq, but stateof-the-art prosthetics have made Maggie better than new, and she’s not about to lose what she battled so hard to regain. But finding her experimental missile won’t be easy — thanks to the revenge-fueled ambitions of Asdrubal Torres, whose hallucinatory encounter with the Great Spirit challenges him to refill Lake Cahuilla, the ancient inland sea that once covered much of southern California. To fulfill his blessed mission, Torres needs wizardry and weaponry, and the Great Spirit provides both: Magic, in the form of a celebrated shaman’s basket returned to the tribal museum by San Diego reporter Jordan Scott; Might, in the form of Maggie Black’s top-secret weapon that falls from the sky. From that moment, it’s a race against time for Maggie and Jordan, who together must stop Torres from destroying Hoover Dam — and turning the Colorado River into a tsunami that would kill hundreds of thousands and wipe out the Southwest’s water supply. In the final showdown, it’s Maggie who must disarm the stolen missile’s trigger — one-handed or not — and save the day. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/22/17. Our lucky winner was Steve H. from Virginia.)

Hunting HourHunting Hour by Margaret Mizushima (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Deputy Mattie Cobb is in a dark place and has withdrawn from Cole Walker and his family to work on issues from her past. When she and her K-9 partner Robo get called to track a missing junior high student, they find the girl dead on Smoker’s Hill behind the high school, and Mattie must head to the Walker home to break the bad news. But that’s only the start of trouble in Timber Creek, because soon another girl goes missing — and this time it’s one of Cole’s daughters. Knowing that each hour a child remains missing lessens the probability of finding her alive, Mattie and Robo lead the hunt while Cole and community volunteers join in to search everywhere. But it seems that someone has snatched all trace of the Walker girl from their midst. Grasping at straws, Mattie and Robo follow a phoned-in tip into the dense forest, where they hope to find a trace of the girl’s scent and to rescue her alive. But when Robo does catch her scent, it leads them to information that challenges everything they thought they knew about the case. Mattie and Robo must rush to hunt down the kidnapper before they’re too late. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five hardcover copies of the third in this exhilarating series to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/8/17. Our lucky winners were Cindy B. from Wisconsin, Dixie W. from Virginia, Joetta D. from Kentucky, John R. from Illinois, and Kyle C. from California.)

Ten Dead ComediansTen Dead Comedians by Fred Van Lente (Quirk Books 2017)
As the story opens, nine comedians of various acclaim are summoned to the island retreat of legendary Hollywood funnyman Dustin Walker. The group includes a former late-night TV host, a washed-up improv instructor, a ridiculously wealthy “blue collar” comic, and a past-her-prime Vegas icon. All nine arrive via boat to find that every building on the island is completely deserted. Marooned without cell phone service or wifi signals, they soon find themselves being murdered one by one. But who is doing the killing, and why? A darkly clever take on Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None and other classics of the genre, Ten Dead Comedians is a marvel of literary ventriloquism, with hilarious comic monologues in the voice of every suspect. It’s also an ingeniously plotted puzzler with a twist you’ll never see coming! Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/17. Our lucky winner was Dennis E. from North Carolina.)

Perish from the EarthPerish from the Earth by Jonathan Putnam (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Newly minted trial lawyer Abraham Lincoln is riding the circuit, traveling by carriage with other lawyers and a judge to bring justice to the remote parts of Illinois. Meanwhile, Lincoln’s close friend Joshua Speed steams up the Mississippi River aboard a steamboat owned by Speed’s father when suddenly, his journey is interrupted when a rigged card game aboard the ship turns to violence — and then murder. When a young traveling artist is accused of the crime, Speed enlists Lincoln to defend him. Together, Lincoln and Speed work to find evidence of the artist’s innocence. But soon they come to discover that more than just the card games are crooked aboard the Speed family’s ship. As the day of judgment hurtles towards them, Lincoln and Speed must fight to save not only the life of Lincoln’s client but also the merit of Speed’s good name. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five copies in this second in the Lincoln and Speed historical mystery series to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/17. Our lucky winners were Dianne C. from Illinois, Jerry F. from Arizona, Pat G. from Texas, Paul H. from Texas, and Randy H. from Arizona.)

American StaticAmerican Static by Tom Pitts (Down & Out Books 2017)
Beaten and left for dead, young Steven finds himself stranded in a small Northern California town. When a mysterious stranger named Quinn offers a ride, Steven gets in the car and begins a journey from which there is no return. Quinn has an agenda all his own and he’s unleashing vengeance at each stop along his path. With a coked-up sadist ex-cop chasing Quinn, and two mismatched small town cops chasing the ex-cop, Steven is oblivious of the violent tempest brewing. Bottom-feeding criminals, corrupt cops, and death-dealing gangsters navigate a dangerous maze to get to the one thing they’re all after: Teresa, the girl holding the secret that will rip open a decades-old scandal and scorch San Francisco’s City Hall. Hand in hand Steven and Teresa lead the mad parade of desperate men to edge of the void. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/22/17. Our lucky winner was Jim C. from Illinois.)

No turning BackNo Turning Back by Tracy Buchanan (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Anna Graves’s whole life has recently been turned upside down. A new mother, she’s just gone back to her job as a radio presenter and is busy navigating a new schedule of late night feeding and early morning wake ups while also dealing with her newly separated husband. Then the worst happens. While Anna is walking on the beach with her daughter, she’s attacked by a crazed teenager. Terrified, Anna reacts instinctively to protect her baby. But her life falls apart when the schoolboy dies from his injuries. The police believe Anna’s story, until the autopsy results reveal something more sinister. A frenzied media attack sends Anna into a spiral of self-doubt. Her precarious mental state is further threatened when she receives a chilling message from someone claiming to be the “Ophelia Killer,” a serial killer who preyed on the town twenty years ago — and who abruptly stopped when Anna’s father committed suicide. Is Anna as innocent as she claims? Is murder forgivable, if committed to save your child’s life? Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five copies of this US debut by a bestselling UK suspense author. (Giveaway ended 6/8/17. Our lucky winners were Geoff S. from Minnesota, George H. from Michigan, Jan S. from North Carolina, Patrick M. from Maine, and Wayne O. from Wisconsin.)

Killing BloodKilling Blood by Robert McKee (Five Star Publishing 2016)
What sort of men rob a train, and after they have their loot and can make a clean getaway, start shooting everyone on board? Billy Young doesn’t know the answer to that question. But one of the passengers they kill is his brother, and Billy intends to do whatever it takes to find out. Once he does, he’ll exact his vengeance. He’ll do it with pleasure. And he’ll exact it in blood. Wyoming is now a state and the legislature down in Cheyenne is making plenty of brand new laws, but not much has changed out on the range. The big outfits still make the rules, and if the little operators and the lawyers and the politicians don’t like it there are ways to convince them otherwise. That is a lesson they plan to teach everyone who needs to learn it. They try to teach it to nineteen-year-old Billy Young, but Billy is stubborn. And a slow learner. There’s only one rule Billy cares about — the most basic rule of all: Blood for Blood. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this Western thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/17. Our lucky winners were Bob C. from North Carolina, Marie E. from Texas, Maureen N. from Arizona, Mike D. from Virginia, and Steve K. from New Jersey.)

Edited OutEdited Out by E.J. Copperman (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Mystery author Rachel Goldman is getting used to the idea that her fictional creation Duffy Madison has somehow taken flesh-and-blood form and is investigating missing person cases not far from where Rachel lives. Wait. No. She’s not getting used to it at all, and the presence of this real-life Duffy is making her current manuscript — what’s the word? — lousy. So she doesn’t want to see Duffy — the living one — at all. To make matters worse, when he shows up at her door and insists on talking to her, it’s about the one thing she doesn’t want to do: Find a missing person. But the man Duffy seeks this time around might be able to solve Rachel’s problem. He might just be the man Duffy was before he became Duffy five years ago. The only problem is she could be letting Duffy lead her into danger yet again. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies of this second in the Mysterious Detective cozy series to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/17. Our lucky winners were Anne S. from Wisconsin, Carol V. from Washington, Donnis B. from Florida, Jane R. from Texas, and Joel K. from Illinois.)

Echoes of TerrorEchoes of Terror by Maris Soule (Five Star 2017)
A teenager is missing, and Officer Katherine Ward is assigned the case, never expecting it to parallel her own kidnapping experience seventeen years before. In Skagway, Alaska, the usual crimes faced by the police department’s small force are DUIs and missing bikes. With the chief in the hospital and one officer missing, they’re not prepared for the kidnapping of a billionaire’s daughter. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this stand alone thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/17. Our lucky winners were Barbara L. from California, Bertie R. from Illinois, Kenn P. from Pennsylvania, Matt W. from South Carolina, and Peggy C. from Arizona.)

Kale to the QueenKale to the Queen by Nell Hampton
Chef Carrie Ann Cole is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime — an assignment as the new Personal Chef to the Royal Family at Kensington Palace. But no sooner has Carrie Ann touched down across the pond and donned her apron than a dead body crops up beneath the royal kale beds. With one assistant dead and the other soon under suspicion for his murder, Carrie Ann is scrambling to keep her kitchen up and running. Not to mention she gets off to an immediate bad start with the tempestuous Royal Chef Butterbottom, who has a bitter taste in his mouth since the prestigious position in the Royal Family’s kitchen was given to an “over-privileged, under-educated American chef.” But the Royal Family’s appetites wait for no one, and Carrie Ann must solve the murder and still get supper on the table on time — even with the annoyingly handsome Head of Security Ian Gordon tracking her every move like an MI6 agent. Suspects abound as an American chef adds a bit of spice to the traditional royal household. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five copies of this first in the Kensington Palace Chef Mystery series to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/17. Our lucky winners were Christine K. from Connecticut, Elain N. from Kansas, Fred S. from South Carolina, Jane B. from Minnesota, and Katherine B. from Louisiana.)

Facials Can Be FatalFacials Can Be Fatal by Nancy J. Cohen (Five Star Publishing 2017)
During the frenzy of the December holidays, the last thing salon owner Marla Vail needs is a dead body slathered in a green facial mask at her new day spa. The victim, Valerie Weston, had been a major donor for Friends of Old Florida, a nonprofit historic preservation society. Marla’s stylists are scheduled to work backstage at their upcoming gala fashion show, but Val’s demise might put a crimp in their plans. Hoping to salvage her reputation, Marla determines to track down the suspects. Although Val had been well liked by most people, she may have stumbled onto secrets that others would kill to keep. What are the connections between a greedy land developer, a dress designer whose husband may have links to the Asian mob, a mortician who might be involved in the human hair trade, and members of the nonprofit group’s board of directors? Are the latter as dedicated to their cause as they’d like Marla to believe, or do they have their own self-interests at heart? Sparks are sure to fly when this smart stylist joins forces with her sexy detective husband to solve a decades-old mystery that includes a secret journal, pirate tales, and shipwrecks along the Florida coast. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this 13th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/22/17. Our lucky winners were Debbi C. from Alaska, Dotti A. from Massachusetts, Ingrid K. from California, Mary M. from Maryland, and Stephanie S. from Iowa.)

Cruel WinterCruel Winter by Sheila Connolly (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Snow is a rarity in Maura Donovan’s small village in County Cork, Ireland, so she wasn’t sure what to expect when a major snowstorm rolled in around Sullivan's pub. But now she’s stranded in a bar full of patrons — and a suspected killer in a long-ago murder. Maura’s been in Ireland less than a year and hasn't heard about the decades-old unsolved crime that took place nearby, let alone the infamous suspect, Diane Caldwell. But the locals have, and they’re not happy to be trapped with her. Diane, meanwhile, seeks to set the record straight, asserting her innocence after all this time. And since no one is going anywhere in the storm, Maura encourages Diane to share her side of the story, which she’d never had a chance to do in court. Over the next few hours, the informal court in Sullivan’s reviews the facts and theories about the case — and comes to some surprising conclusions. But is it enough to convince the police to take a new look at an old case? This clever spin on the classic locked room mystery is the fifth in the County Cork series. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/17. Our lucky winners were Fred S. frm Ohio, Kit S. from Rhode Island, Marla B. from Nevada, Mary G. from Florida, and Sherrie W. from Washington.)

Elementary, She ReadElementary, She Read by Vicki Delany (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
Gemma Doyle, a transplanted Englishwoman, has returned to the quaint town of West London on Cape Cod to manage her Great Uncle Arthur’s Sherlock Holmes Bookshop and Emporium. The shop — located at 222 Baker Street — specializes in the Holmes canon and pastiche, and is also the home of Moriarty the cat. When Gemma finds a rare and potentially valuable magazine containing the first Sherlock Homes story hidden in the bookshop, she and her friend Jayne (who runs the adjoining Mrs. Hudson’s Tea Room) set off to find the owner, only to stumble upon a dead body. The highly perceptive Gemma is the police’s first suspect, so she puts her consummate powers of deduction to work to clear her name, investigating a handsome rare books expert, the dead woman’s suspiciously unmoved son, and a whole family of greedy characters desperate to cash in on their inheritance. But when Gemma and Jayne accidentally place themselves at a second murder scene, it’s a race to uncover the truth before the detectives lock them up for good. This cozy mystery is the first in the Sherlock Holmes Bookshop series. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/17. Our lucky winners were Catherine H. from Texas, Judy R. from Texas, Kara S. from Pennsylvania, Susie A. from Louisiana, and Trude V. from Washington.)

The GermanThe German by James Patrick Hunt (Five Star Publishing 2017)
In England, Kurt Miller is released from prison after serving a thirteen-month sentence for trafficking in narcotics. Prior to his arrest, Miller had been an intelligence agent and analyst for the BND, Germany’s federal intelligence agency. Upon his release, Miller returns to Hamburg and finds that all he has treasured is gone. His wife, his career, and his pension. All he has left is his vintage Mercedes, which he has to sell in order to fund his hunt for the people who framed him for a crime he didn’t commit. Using his old contacts at BND and his brother’s contacts in the criminal network, Miller eventually tracks down the man who turned him into Scotland Yard for drug trafficking. Miller is told that he was set up by a former CIA agent named Carl Tanner. And this is where it all falls into place. He was framed for the crime in order to discredit an intelligence report he authored. Miller’s quest for vengeance takes him into the seedy corridors of Washington power and political games where human life has little value. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five books to give away.

Where the Lost Girls GoWhere the Lost Girls Go by R.J. Noonan (Crooked Lane Books, 2017)
Rookie cop Laura Mori catches her first investigation when the fiery crash of a sports car lights up the night sky. The fire burns the body beyond recognition, but the police are able to identify the car as that of Kent Jameson, celebrity author and benefactor of Sunrise Lake. Jameson fears that the unidentified body is his seventeen-year-old daughter Lucy, who stormed out of the house that night after an argument. When lab reports reveal that the body was not Lucy, but a teen runaway named Kyra whose disappearance has been linked with other missing persons — more than half a dozen “lost girls” who disappeared while living on the streets of Portland — the investigation takes a drastic turn. How did Kyra come to land at the Jameson estate in rural Oregon, and what was she doing driving their car? And who cut the brake lines on the vehicle? Just when Laura is making progress in the case, she comes across a suspicious lane in the forest that reveals new evidence that will once again alter the course of the investigation and rock Sunrise Lake to its core. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies of this mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/17. Our lucky winners were Brad B. from California, Brenda G. from Pennsylvania, Daniel M. from Massachusetts, Lauren K. from Massachusetts, and Tiffany E. from Florida.)

The Ripper's ShadowThe Ripper’s Shadow by Laura Joh Rowland (Crooked Lane Books 2017)
The year is 1888 and Jack the Ripper begins his reign of terror. Miss Sarah Bain, a photographer in Whitechapel, is an independent woman with dark secrets. In the privacy of her studio, she supplements her meager income by taking illicit “boudoir photographs” of the town’s local ladies of the night. But when two of her models are found gruesomely murdered within weeks of one another, Sarah begins to suspect it’s more than mere coincidence. Teamed with a motley crew of friends — including a street urchin, a gay aristocrat, a Jewish butcher and his wife, and a beautiful young actress — Sarah delves into the crime of the century. But just as she starts unlocking the Ripper’s secrets, she catches the attention of the local police, who believe she knows more than she’s revealing, as well as from the Ripper himself, now bent on silencing her and her friends for good. Caught in the crosshairs of a ruthless killer, Sarah races through Whitechapel’s darkest alleys to find the truth until she makes a shocking discovery that challenges everything she thought she knew about the case. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we have five hadcover copies of this historical mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/25/17. Our lucky winners were Frederick G. from New Jersey, Jennifer K. from Minnesota, Natalie D. from Utah, Rosalin Y. from Arizona, and William B. from Illinois.)

Dandelion DeadDandelion Dead by Chrystle Fiedler (Pocket Books 2016)
Business is blooming at Nature’s Way Market & Café, and shop owner, holistic doctor, and amateur sleuth, Willow McQuade has never been happier. Her new medicinal herb garden is a hit, and so is her new book, she’s in love with ex-cop and animal sanctuary founder Jackson Spade, and enjoying teaching seminars about edible plants and natural remedies. But everything changes when Willow’s old boyfriend and TV producer, Simon Lewis, winemaker David Farmer, and his wife Ivy, ask her to cater a party at Pure, their new organic vineyard, to kick off North Fork’s Uncorked! week and the competition for Wine Lovers magazine’s $200,000 prize. Pure’s entry, Falling Leaves, is the favorite to win, and the wine flows freely until after Simon’s toast when smiles give way to looks of horror. Ivy’s twin sister, Amy has been murdered! Turns out, the poison that killed her was actually meant for David. But who wants him dead? A rival vintner? Or someone closer to home? This time the truth may be a bitter vintage to swallow. Thanks to the author we have four paperback copies of this fourth in the Natural Remedies series to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/17. Our lucky winners were Colette M. from New Jersey, Karen K. from Kansas, Pat C. from Michigan, and Victoria F. from North Carolina.)

East of the SunEast of the Sun by Trey R. Barker (Five Star Publishing 2016)
Christmas is in the air but the wounds from her first big case, both physical and psychological, are still blisteringly fresh. Zachary County Sheriff’s Office jailer Jace Salome is suffering nightmares as well as backlash from some deputies who are nurturing vehement and sometimes violent anger against her because her whistle-blowing brought down a ring of dirty cops. Just before Christmas, an assistant doctor is murdered in the jail amid rumors of drugs and inmates, and the jail medical provider cutting corners to save money. Jace gets yanked into the investigation by a manipulative and hostile detective bent on making her look bad. Meanwhile, Jace’s partner Rory Bogan, moonlighting as a part-time road officer for another county, takes Jace on patrol. Together they stop a truck bound for Zachary County. The truck is full of illegal drugs, destined not only for the Zachary County Jail, but also for a family friend of Jace’s, a doctor doing everything he can to keep his destitute patients healthy. As Jace is drawn deeper into the investigation, an inmate is killed and Jace realizes the drugs, the medical company, and her family friend might well be the point upon which the entire case turns. Lurking at the edges is a danger to Jace and her grandmother far greater than anyone at the sheriff’s office realizes, until that danger has Jace and Gramma in its sights. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this noir police procedural to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/22/16. Our lucky winners were David F. from Pennsylvania, Debbie G. from Maryland, Maggie N, from Arizona, Marlene E. from South Carolina, and Pat A. from Georgia.)

time of DeathTime of Death by Lucy Kerr (Crooked Lane Books 2016)
It’s been twelve years since ER nurse Frankie Stapleton fled the quiet banks of Stillwater, but with her sister’s pregnancy taking a dangerous turn and a string of failed relationships in Chicago hanging over her, Frankie is back — and hoping to put the past behind her. Within minutes of arriving at Stillwater General Hospital however, she ends up saving a man’s life, only to have him turn up dead hours later — and the hospital blames Frankie. Her instincts say Clem Jensen didn’t die of natural causes, but the more she digs, the more she discovers too many suspects, a few surprising allies, and some hard truths about the first man she ever loved — and left. Now the boy she once knew is a skeptical sheriff’s deputy, her family’s hardware store is in jeopardy, and the rift between Frankie and her loved ones is deeper than ever. With her career — and future — on life support, Frankie must catch a killer, clear her name, and heal the wounds of the past. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books, we have five hadcover copies of this debut mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/16. Our lucky winners were John S. from Iowa, Michele L. from Kansas, Linda R. from Minnesota, Maria B. from Nevada, and Rpse Mary B. from Wisconsin.)

Sunshine NoirSunshine Noir (2016) edited by Annamaria Alfieri & Michael Stanley
Seventeen writers from around the globe tell of dark doings in sunny places. Join them in the Dominican Republic, the Sonoran Desert of Arizona, chic Mykonos, Seville at midnight, and on the morning beachfront of Ghana where a man has revenge on his mind. Follow an NGO worker kidnapped in Yemen, an engineer repairing a dam in turmoil-torn Ethiopia, a foolish young Englishman hitchhiking across the Sahara. You will visit historic Istanbul and Mombasa and learn the secrets of family conflicts in Singapore, in Puerto Rico, in New Orleans. The authors of these tales will convince you that evil under the sun makes for the most compelling, most entertaining crime fiction anywhere on earth. The authors and their settings are: Leye Adenle (Nigeria), Annamaria Alfieri (British East Africa), Colin Cotterill (Thailand), Susan Froetschel (Yemen), Jason Goodwin (Istanbul), Paul Hardisty (Ethiopia), Greg Herren (New Orleans), Tamar Myers (Arizona), Barbara Nadel (Istanbul), Richie Narvaez (Puerto Rico), Kwei Quartey (Ghana), Jeffrey Siger (Mykonos), Michael Stanley (Botswana), Nick Sweet (Spain), Timothy Williams (Guadaloupe), Robert Wilson (the Sahara), and Ovidia Yu (Singapore). Thanks to Stan Trollip we have a copy signed by the editors (plus a Sunshine Noir button and a Bouchercon t-shirt) to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/22/16. Our lucky winner was Vicki P. from Texas.)

Death of a Toy SoldierDeath of a Toy Soldier by Barbara Early (Crooked Lane Books 2016)
Liz McCall grew up in a playful winter wonderland, but it was never her dream to manage her father’s vintage toyshop. However, after he sank his entire police pension into the business, someone needed to help him turn his dreams into reality — and keep him from sneaking off to patrol the not-so-mean streets of East Aurora, New York. The mood goes from nice to naughty when a nervous man, who was trying to have his antique toys appraised, is found in the shop with a lawn dart through his chest. Suddenly, Liz’s business plan is plunged into deep freeze, while she and her father find themselves toying with a cold-blooded killer who’s playing for keeps. Now, it looks like Christmas might be cancelled for the neighborhood kids if Liz can’t wrap up the case. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books, we have five hadcover copies of this series opener to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/16. Our lucky winners were Alan R. from New Jersey, Carolynne M. from Washington, Jan B. from New York, Judy G. from New Jersey, and Karen L. from Massachusetts.)

With Six You Get WallyWith 6 You Get Wally by Al Lamanda (Five Star Publishing 2016)
Wally Sample is a degenerate gambler who owes money to every major casino and loan sharks everywhere. He is also the youngest heir to the Sample Iced Tea Corporation and upon his fortieth birthday, if he can prove to the courts that he is cured of his gambling addiction, will take his place as the sixth controlling member of the iced-tea giant. Problem is, a month short of turning forty, Wally’s gambling habit is worse than ever. In desperation, he turns to Frank Kagan, the family attorney who decades ago prepared the will for Wally’s deceased father and founder of Sample Iced Tea. Kagan calls on his old friend John Bekker for help, asking Bekker to babysit Wally and prevent him from gambling for thirty days in order to meet the court’s requirements. The assignment proves tougher than anyone imagined, but Bekker is determined to clean Wally up at all costs — even if it means facing down a killer. Racing the clock until Wally’s court appearance, Bekker finds himself in the middle of corporate greed and scandal and a deadly murder investigation, while trying to stay one step ahead of a crazed would-be killer who will definitely try again. And everything rests upon the very narrow shoulders of Wally Sample, who wants nothing more out of life than to find a winning scratch ticket and beat the odds. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this fifth in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/22/16. Our lucky winners were David N. from Tennessee, Dennis S. from Texas, Gene B. from Georgia, Laura S. from Minnesota, and Nancy F. from Pennsylvania.)

Something Buried, Something BlueSomething Buried, Something Blue by Wendy Corsi Staub (Crooked Lane Books 2016)
After agreeing to stay in Lily Dale through the winter as caretakers of the Valley View Guesthouse and its feline residents, widowed mom Bella Jordan and her son Max are looking forward to the peaceful off-season after a hectic summer. That is until the medium next door, Odelia Lauder, recruits Bella to host a destination wedding for the world’s most petulant bride, Johneen Maynard, a friend of Odelia’s granddaughter. Things take an even more stressful turn as the wedding day looms amidst an October blizzard, when suddenly the Spirits start giving Odelia a major heads up that the bride might be fated for death. And if there’s any truth to her premonitions, the wedding is off — and that’s the least of their problems. It's a race to figure out who would want to kill Johneen before her attacker has a chance to strike. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books we have 5 copies of this second in the cozy series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/8/16. Our lucky winners were Annis C. from Georgia, Jan K. from Michigan, Natalie T. from Ohio, Teresa W. from New Jersey, and William C. from Maine.)

Dying for a DonutDying for a Donut (Cindy Sample Books 2015) by Cindy Sample
To Laurel McKay, there is nothing better than spending an autumn afternoon in the Apple Hill area, munching on caramel apples and cinnamon donuts. It’s a good thing her daughter Jenna has landed a seasonal job at Apple Tree Farm and Bakery.Then Laurel stumbles over the bakery owner’s corpse coated in powdered sugar. Axel Thorson was a well-respected member of the community. Who might benefit from his death? When the police arrest the heartthrob grandson of the bakery manager, Jenna decides to help him by solving the case herself, a move that lands her in jail. With Laurel’s detective boyfriend in another state, and her octogenarian grandmother threatening to chase down the culprit, what’s a soccer mom with a sweet tooth to do but go undercover. Detecting among donuts should be a piece of cake, but not if Laurel discovers first-hand that sugar can kill you. Thanks to the author, we have two copies of this funny 5th in the series, a finalist for the 2016 Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery, to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/22/16. Our lucky winners were Joanna C. from Illinois and Paula A. from Massachusetts.)

Body on the BayouBody on the Bayou by Ellen Byron (Crooked Lane Books 2016)
The Crozats feared that past murders at Crozat Plantation B&B might spell the death of their beloved estate, but they’ve managed to survive the scandal. Now there’s a très bigger story in Pelican, Louisiana: the upcoming nuptials between Maggie Crozat’s nemesis, Police Chief Rufus Durand, and her co-worker, Vanessa Fleer. When everyone else refuses the job of being Vanessa’s Maid of Honor, Maggie reluctantly takes up the title and finds herself tasked with a long list of duties — the most important of which is entertaining Vanessa’s cousin, Ginger Fleer-Starke. But just days before the wedding, Ginger’s lifeless body is found on the bayou and the Pelican PD, as well as the Crozats, have another murder mystery on their hands. There’s a gumbo-potful of suspects, including an ex-Marine with PTSD, an annoying local newspaper reporter, and Vanessa’s own sparkplug of a mother. But when it looks like the investigation is zeroing in on Vanessa as the prime suspect, Maggie reluctantly adds keeping the bride-to-be out of jail to her list of Maid of Honor responsibilities. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books, we have five hardcover copies of this second in the funny series to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/8/16. Our lucky winners were Betsy B. from Maryland, Bonnie M. from Ohio, Karen W. from California, Marilyn F. from Texas, and Mary P. from California.)

Basque MoonBasque Moon by Julie Weston (Five Star Publishing 2016)
Nellie Burns, photographer, and her Labrador dog, Moonshine, travel with sheep rancher Gwynn Campbell and his Basque sheepherder to the Stanley Basin of central Idaho. Nellie plans to photograph scenes for a railroad’s brochures to lure tourists to the West. When they arrive at the sheep camp, they discover the current herder is dead. Nellie’s curiosity and photography lead her to a moonshine still and then a dash up a forested mountain. Nellie and Moonshine confront the greatest challenges yet to their courage and ingenuity when they face a range war and a ruthless killer. Set in the 1920s. Nellie must dig deep to restore her faith in herself and her chosen profession. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Senior Editor at Five Star Publishing, we have five copies of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/22/16. Our lucky winners were Carol Y. from Virginia, Jerry C. from Kentucky, Kathy K. from North Carolina, Leroy S. from Oregon, and Roxane B. from Oregon.)

Stalking GroundStalking Ground by Margaret Mizushima (Crooked Lane Books 2016)
When Deputy Ken Brody’s sweetheart goes missing in the mountains outside Timber Creek, police officer Mattie Cobb and her K-9 police dog Robo are called to search. But it’s mid-October, a dark snow storm is brewing over the high country, and they’re already too late. By the time they find her body, the storm has broken and the snow is coming down hard. While Brody hikes down to bring back the forensics team and veterinarian Cole Walker gathers supplies to protect them from the storm, Mattie and Robo find themselves alone, guarding the gravesite overnight in the dead of the early winter. And that’s only the first long, dark night in a series of them, because as their investigation develops, Mattie, Robo, Brody, and Cole find themselves in the middle of the killer’s stalking ground — with no way out unless they can catch a predator more deadly than any natural threat. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books, we have five hardcover copies of this second in the Timber Creek K-9 series to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/8/16. Our lucky winners were Bobby M. from Iowa, Karyn R. from Massachusetts, Lenora C. from Oregon, Margaret F. from North Carolina, and Mary F. from California.)

Coastal CorpseCoastal Corpse by Marty Ambrose (Five Star Publishing 2016)
It’s “tween time” before the holiday season on Coral Island, Florida, and Mallie Monroe’s life has taken a bizarre turn: she is engaged to her erstwhile boyfriend, Cole; her co-worker at the Observer is on her honeymoon; and her crusty editor, Anita, has just eloped with the newspaper’s el cheapo boss. Love and marriage are in the autumn air. But Mallie is fighting off her insecurities about settling down, and she’s dealing with being in charge of the Observer as the temporary editor. Sadly, front-page stories prove to be as scarce as a hermit crab on the beach. Even worse, the only reporters to help out are Madame Geri, the island’s freelance psychic; Bernice, Anita’s cranky sister; Pop Pop Welch, an aging handyman; and Joe Earl, whose claim to fame is his haunted violin. In a desperate attempt to get some news, Mallie covers the town council election debate, which erupts into a melee. Afterward, one of the candidates — landscaper Bucky McGuire — turns up dead in a fish tank. Mallie has her headline. The only catch is that her landlady and best friend, Wanda Sue, becomes the prime suspect. To save her friend, Mallie has to swing into investigative mode to solve the crime before she winds up as yesterday’s news. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Senior Editor at Five Star Publishing, we have five copies of this fifth in the Mango Bay series to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/16. Our lucky winners were Annie H. from Maryland, Christine L. from Missouri, George M. from Florida, James B. from Wisconsin, and Pamela Z. from Connecticut.)

Between Black and WhiteBetween Black and White by Robert Bailey (Thomas & Mercer 2016)
In 1966 Pulaski, Tennessee, Bocephus Haynes watched in horror as his father was brutally murdered by ten local members of the Ku Klux Klan. As an African American lawyer practicing in the birthplace of the Klan years later, Bo has spent his life pursuing justice in his father’s name. But when Andy Walton, the man believed to have led the lynch mob forty-five years earlier, ends up murdered in the same spot as Bo’s father, Bo becomes the prime suspect. Retired law professor Tom McMurtrie, Bo’s former teacher and friend, is a year removed from returning to the courtroom. Now McMurtrie and his headstrong partner, Rick Drake, must defend Bo on charges of capital murder while hunting for Andy Walton’s true killer. In a courtroom clash that will put their reputations and lives at stake, can McMurtrie and Drake release Bo from a lifetime of despair? Or will justice remain hidden somewhere between black and white? Thanks to publicist Angelle Barbazon, we have one copy of this legal thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/16. Our lucky winner was Ben O. from Texas.)

A Most Curious MurderA Most Curious Murder (Crooked Lane Books 2015), by Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli, introduces Jenny Weston, who moves home to Bear Falls, Michigan to nurse her bruised ego back to health after a bitter divorce. But the idyllic vision of her charming hometown crumbles when her mother’s little library is destroyed. The next door neighbor, Zoe Zola, a little person and Lewis Carroll enthusiast, suspects local curmudgeon Adam Cane, but when he’s suddenly found dead in Zoe’s fairy garden, all roads lead back to her. Jenny, however, believes Zoe innocent, so the two women team up to find the true culprit, investigating the richest family in Bear Falls, interrogating a few odd townspeople and delving into old, hidden transgressions — until another body turns up. Thanks to Heather Boak from Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies to give away of this cozy series debut, inspired by Alice in Wonderland. (Giveaway ended 6/22/16. Our lucky winners were Cindi L. from Illinois, Deborah B. from Ohio, Gwen B. from California, Mike T. from California, and Sheryl J. from Texas.)

White SharkWhite Shark by Ross Gresham (Five Star Publishing 2016)
Every summer, the vacation island of Nausset hires a temporary cop for the rush of tourists. This time they draw a wild card. Jim Hawkins, the “Parking Warden,” stumbles upon the bizarre Viking suicide of a local property developer. The incident makes no ripple in the summer insanity of Nausset, the most fashionable beach property in the world. Fading aristocrats sit up all night at the windows of their wooden castles, while endless, drunken tourists stream by below. The ferries run day and night. Land prices creep higher — like the thermometer — and the drinks are always served by blank-faced foreigners counting the days on their work permits. One of these workers has disappeared. The local police know how the island works. They know who matters and who doesn’t, and let it all pass with a wink and a free ice cream. But not Jim Hawkins. Hawkins may be the worst cop ever to put on a uniform, and he may not care about drunks or land deals, but after his tour in the Army, he is done letting people be hurt. There’s a dead man on fire, a local beauty dead from what seems to be a vicious shark attack, and a Ukrainian girl who has come to the island to find her wild sister. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Publishing Senior Editor, we have five copies of this darkly funny thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/8/16. Our lucky winners were Ed F. from North Caroina, Faye S. from Florida, Mary P. from Tennessee, Robert H. from California, and Tom G. from Texas.)

Death on the SapphireDeath on the Sapphire (Crooked Lane Books 2015), by R.J. Koreto, introduces Lady Frances Ffolkes, an Edwardian-era suffragette who has an uncanny ability to attract danger and romance. When Major Colcombe, a family friend and war veteran, dies under mysterious circumstances, the good Lady discovers that he was working on a manuscript about South Africa’s bloody Boer War, which reportedly revealed a scandalous mistake that cost many innocent lives. Now, it’s up to Frances and her loyal lady’s maid, June Mallow, to track down the missing manuscript and bring the killer to justice. Despite kerfuffles with Scotland Yard and the British Secret Service, Frances never backs down and finds herself in several very unfortunate positions — and one very fortunate love triangle. This debut mystery features an extraordinary woman living in extraordinary times. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books we have five copies of this series opener to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/16. Our lucky winners were Athena P. from Massachusetts, Deb O. from Wisconsin, Ed F. from Florida, Ellen M. from New Jersey, and Virginia B. from Pennsylvania.)

Bone CrackBone Crack by Bette Golden Lamb & J.J. Lamb (Two Black Sheep 2016)
Registered nurse Gina and fiancé Harry Lucké are on the brink of getting married when a childhood friend of Gina’s relocates from The Bronx to San Francisco. Within days, Gina’s nurse friend is relating difficult-to-believe horror stories about her new employer, a cardiologist whom she suspects is involved in illicit and deadly medical practices. Gina soon discovers the stories are true—the doctor is not only acting in an unethical manner, he may also be complicit in two or three hideous murders. That knowledge quickly makes her the new target of the desperate doctor… and a vicious hit man, who is determined to hunt her down and kill her no matter what. Thanks to the authors we have two copies of the sixth in this medical thriller series to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/16. Our lucky winners were Bev J. from California and Gene M. from Ohio.)

Reckoning and RuinReckoning and Ruin by Tina Whittle (Poisoned Pen Press 2016)
Tai Randolph has gladly rebooted her life in Atlanta and is celebrating several landmarks. A year running the Confederate-themed gun shop she inherited with its busy schedule of reenactments. A year with her sexy, ex-SWAT-team lover Trey, now working a corporate security gig. A year of confronting a checkered list of ruffians and outright villains, mostly now put behind bars. One of those convicted criminals is her cousin Jasper, whose disreputable family was a big part of Tai’s childhood in Savannah. Tai is determined to keep her amateur sleuthing in the past, not just for her sake, but for Trey’s. But here comes Jasper again, complete with a fancy, high-priced new lawyer and a scheme that will surely ruin Tai and Trey financially. But is there more? Jasper, the leader of a white militia splinter group too violent for even the Klan, must be up to something worse than wrecking Tai’s life. When other witnesses against Jasper start turning up dead, she decides she has to take him down once and for all. Soon she’s back in Savannah and deep in familiar troubles — a missing ex-boyfriend, a creepily poetic stalker, a passel of stolen money. Worst of all, her relationship with Trey starts to fray, and she realizes that chasing the truth might cost her the man she loves. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McComb we have one copy of this fifth in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/16. Our lucky winner was Roberta K. from Kansas.)

Red FlagsRed Flags (Poisoned Pen Press 2016), by Tammy Kaehler, begins when Kate Reilly arrives in Long Beach, California, a week ahead of the Grand Prix. Her cousin Billy is found dead, with Kate’s card in his pocket. The cops want to know why, and sponsors and race organizers — anxious to keep racing’s image clean — want Kate to investigate. Doubting she can solve another murder, especially that of a relative she despised, Kate reluctantly agrees. At the same time, coaching a gorgeous and talented actress for a celebrity race brings Kate into the orbit of Hollywood’s hottest bachelor. And then a local FBI agent takes notice of more than her driving and sleuthing skills. Kate must stay on her toes as the Long Beach race weekend begins. She’s negotiating the next steps in her career, driving two racecars and coaching a third, discovering more about the disreputable members of her father’s family than she wanted to know, and juggling questions and suspects. On track, red flags fly to warn her of danger. Off track, Kate struggles to interpret warning signs and stay out of a killer’s grasp. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have a copy of this 4th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/22/16. Our lucky winner was Melanie B. from South Dakota.)

The Last GirlThe Last Girl (Thomas & Mercer 2016), by Joe Hart, is set in dystopian future where a mysterious worldwide epidemic has reduced the birthrate of female infants from 50 percent to less than 1 percent. Medical science and governments around the world scramble in an effort to solve the problem, but after twenty-five years there is no cure, and an entire generation grows up with a population of fewer than a thousand women. Zoey and some of the surviving young women are housed in a scientific research compound dedicated to determining the cause. For two decades, she’s been isolated from her family, treated as a test subject, and locked away — told only that the virus has wiped out the rest of the world’s population. Captivity is the only life Zoey has ever known, and escaping her heavily armed captors is no easy task, but she’s determined to leave before she is subjected to the next round of tests, a program that no other woman has ever returned from. Even if she’s successful, Zoey has no idea what she’ll encounter in the strange new world beyond the facility’s walls. Winning her freedom will take brutality she never imagined she possessed, as well as all her strength and cunning — but Zoey is ready for war. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have a copy of this first in the Dominion Thriller trilogy to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/22/16. Our lucky winner was Steve K. from New Jersey.)

Beijing RedBeijing Red (Crooked Lane Books 2015), by Alex Ryan, begins when ex-Navy SEAL Nick Foley travels to China to find purpose and escape the demons of his past. Instead he stumbles into a conspiracy his Special Forces training never prepared him for. A mysterious and deadly outbreak ravages a remote area of western China, and Nick finds himself the lead suspect in a bio-terrorism investigation being conducted by China’s elite Snow Leopard counter-terrorism unit. To clear his name and avoid prosecution, he must team up with beautiful Chinese CDC microbiologist Dr. Dazhong “Dash” Chen to find who is really behind the attack. As their investigation proceeds, their budding friendship is tested by nationalistic loyalties and suspicion. In a race against time, Nick and Dash must risk everything to stop a mad man before he unleashes the world’s next super-weapon in Beijing. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books we have five paperback copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/8/16. Our lucky winners were Arnold L. from Pennsylvania, Bill L. from Texas, Charles H. from Wisconsin, Elisabeth C. from California, and Kathleen L. from Tennessee.)

Dying for a TasteDying for a Taste (Crooked Lane Books 2015), by Leslie Karst, introduces Sally Solari, who quits her job as an attorney after losing her mother to cancer to help her dad run his old-style Italian eatery in Santa Cruz, California. But managing the front of the house is far from her dream job. Then in a sudden twist her Aunt Letta is found murdered in her own restaurant, and Sally is the only one who can keep the place running. But when her sous chef is accused of the crime, and she finds herself suddenly short-staffed, Sally must delve into the world of sustainable farming — not to mention a few family secrets — to help him clear his name and catch the true culprit before her timer runs out. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books we have five hardcover copies of this debut cozy food mystery. (Giveaway ended 3/22/16. Our lucky winners were Bill B. from Ilinois, Elaine R. from North Carolina, Holly M. from Wisconsin, Marianne G. from Washington, and Mary B. from Florida.)

Cold MorningCold Morning by Ed Ifkovic (Poisoned Pen Press 2016)
On the night of March 1,1932, Charles Lindbergh, America’s hero, discovers that his twenty-month-old son has been snatched from his crib. A ransom is arranged. Yet two months later, Little Lindy is found in a ditch near his Hopewell home, several weeks dead from a blow to the head. It takes over two years to arrest a suspect. Bruno Richard Hauptmann is caught passing one of the marked ransom bills. Press from across the world swarm to his trial. Bestselling novelist Edna Ferber and raconteur Aleck Woollcott, both hired by the New York Times to cover it, are part of the media frenzy, bickering like the literary lions they are. Did this immigrant carpenter really commit the crime? Alone? Observant sometime-sleuth Edna is not so sure. Local citizens, whipped into a frenzy by the yellow press, march through the streets demanding Hauptmann burn. Walter Winchell takes the lynch mob sentiment national. A British waitress at Edna’s hotel, who’d hinted she had priceless information that could blow the trial wide open, is murdered. Edna begins to suspect a miscarriage of justice is underway, fueled in part by anti-German sentiment, in part by class privilege. Edna doesn’t find Colonel Lindbergh the golden boy of legend. But there he is, entering the courthouse flanked by a quartet of New Jersey troopers. There’s Hauptmann, handsome and calm despite his date with the electric chair — unless Edna can alter the course of justice. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have a copy of the seventh in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/16. Our lucky winner was Judy T. from Iowa.)

When Bunnies Go BadWhen Bunnies Go Bad by Clea Simon (Poisoned Pen Press 2016)
Winter is hard in Beauville, where the melting snow can reveal much more than last season’s dead leaves. So when a wealthy, obnoxious tourist and his ski bunny girlfriend surface in Pru Marlowe’s little Berkshire town, she knows she should stay out of their way. The bad-girl animal psychic has to focus on more immediate concerns, including a wild rabbit named Henry, supposedly tamed and illegally living with an eighty-four-year-old lady in her home. Henry, who seems to be acting out and hiding, avoids responding to Pru. Yet when Pru discovers the tourist murdered and his girlfriend’s high-maintenance spaniel falls to her care, she gets dragged into a complicated case of crime and punishment that involves some new friends, an old nemesis, and her own shadowed past. A recent museum art heist draws the feds into the investigation along with a courtly gentleman radiating menace, who represents secretive business interests in New York and shows a surprising awareness of Pru. Her on-again, off-again romance with police Detective Creighton doesn’t stop him from warning her to steer clear of the inquiry. The spaniel, however, lures her in. Pru lives in a world where only her crotchety tabby Wallis knows the whole truth about her past, her flight from Manhattan, and her unique gift that surfaced abruptly one day. Fearing the worst, Pru now comes dangerously close to being exposed. With everything in motion, Pru, Wallis, and everyone they hold dear will be lucky to escape… by a hare. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have a copy of the sixth in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/22/16. Our lucky winner was Kelly P. from Ohio.)

Funeral HotdishFuneral Hotdish by Jana Bommersbach (Poisoned Pen Press 2016)
Sensational crime, intrepid reporter, deaths too close to home… Seeing Sammy the Bull Gravano strut through a Phoenix restaurant shocks investigative reporter Joya Bonner. The notorious Mafia hitman — nineteen murders — and FBI snitch — testimony sent Godfather John Gotti to prison — is hidden in the federal Witness Protection Program, yet he’s now a successful drug lord. His products travel national highways with tragic results for Joya’s Midwest hometown, where grief turns to revenge, violence, and murder. By chasing the biggest scoop of her career, Joya risks her job, her love, and her life to see if Sammy can be stopped. Can she spur her family and neighbors at home to do more than let sleeping dogs lie? Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have a copy of this series opener to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/16. Our lucky winner was Barb L. from Colorado.)

The 8th CircleThe 8th Circle (Crooked Lane Books 2015), by Sarah Cain, is the story of Danny Ryan, who lost his wife and son in a car accident a year ago. He’s still reeling from the tragedy when Michael Cohen, his friend and fellow journalist, drives into the pond in front of his house with a bullet through his gut. With Michael’s death ruled a murder, Danny must work to get his name crossed off the list of suspects, and that means digging into Michael’s last article, an exposé of the twisted side of Philadelphia politics. But powerful people are ready to kill to protect what Michael was about to uncover, and if Danny’s not careful, he’ll be next. Thanks to Heather Boak of Crooked Lane Books we have three copies of this debut thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/22/16. Our lucky winners were Diane D. from Ohio, Kay F. from Wisconsin, and Robbie R. from Georgia.)

Karma's a KillerKarma’s a Killer by Tracy Weber (Midnight Ink 2016)
Yoga instructor Kate Davidson is about to discover that when it comes to murder, there’s no place like om. When she agrees to teach doga (yoga for dogs) at a fundraiser for Dogma, a local animal rescue, Kate believes the only real damage will be to her reputation. But when an animal rights protest at the event leads to a suspicious fire and a drowning, a few downward-facing dogs will be the least of Kate’s problem. The police arrest Dharma, a woman claiming to be Kate’s estranged mother, and charge her with murder. To prove Dharma’s innocence, Kate, her boyfriend Michael, and her German shepherd sidekick Bella dive deeply into the worlds of animal activism, organizational politics, and the dangerous obsessions that drive them. And if solving a murder weren’t complicated enough, Kate will also have to decide whether or not to reconcile with the estranged mother who abandoned her over thirty years ago. Not to mention having to contend with an almost-bankrupt animal rescue, a cantankerous crow, an unwanted pigeon houseguest, and a rabbit in a doga class. What could possibly go wrong? Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have two copies of this third in the Downward Dog series to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/16. Our lucky winners were Alice B. from Connecticut and Elena S. from Texas.)

Brooklyn SecretsTriss Stein
Brooklyn Secrets (Poisoned Pen Press 2015) finds Erica Donato, Brooklyn girl, urban history grad student and single mom, researching the 1930s when Brownsville was the home of the notorious organized criminals the newspapers called Murder Inc. She quickly learns that even in rapidly changing Brooklyn, Brownsville remains much as it was. It is still poor, it is still tough, and it still breeds fighters and gangs. Doing field research, Erica stops in at the landmark local library and meets Savanna, a young woman who is the pride of her mother and her bosses, and headed for an elite college and a future. A few days later, Savanna is found beaten and left for dead. Her anguished mother is everywhere, insisting someone knows something. After a massive, angry demonstration, a young girlfriend of Savanna’s is found dead, too. Is there a connection? Did perfect Savanna have a few secrets? Erica’s curious, but she’s focused on the 1930s and has located a few women who are happy to share memories. Two are childhood friends who disagree on much but also guard secrets — ones kept for a lifetime. Never one to resist looking deeper than her research requires, Erica keeps encountering an apparent derelict white man, a vengeful rejected girlfriend, the role of boxing as a way out of poverty, and fading evidence of long-ago crimes. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs we have an Advance Readers Copy of this third in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/21/15. Our lucky winner was Cheryl S. from Missouri.)

Bone DustBette Golden Lamb & J.J. Lamb
Bone Dust
A flu epidemic slams San Francisco, pushing medical facilities for beyond normal limits. The chaos masks deadly patient blood-letting by a sociopathic phlebotomist. RN Gina Mazzio, distracted by a breakup with her fiancé, and into a possible new romance, misreads a stalking that results in the murder of a nurse friend. Hot on the trail of the killer, and seeking a reason for unanticipated patient deaths, she becomes the prime target of the phlebotomist stalker. Thanks to the authors we have a copy of this fifth in the medical thriller series to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/15. Our lucky winner was Julane C. from Missouri.)

Untimely DeathElizabeth J. Duncan
Untimely Death (Crooked Lane Books 2015) features a Catskills resort’s production of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet that takes a wickedly ironic turn when the leading lady, Lauren Richmond, is first poisoned and then stabbed. Who would extinguish the life of such a beautiful young thespian? Who wouldn’t? Seems like just about everyone had a motive to pull the ropes on her final curtain call. At the center of this Shakespearean tragedy is Charlotte Fairfax, formerly the costume mistress of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Upstate New York is a long way from the royal stage, but Charlotte is always the queen of her domain. As this small production’s costume designer, she has stitched her way into everyone’s lives, learning more than anyone could possible imagine about the rise and fall of Lauren Richmond. But curiosity killed the cat. And it might well kill the costume designer. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books, we are giving away three copies of this first in a new cozy series. (Giveaway ended 11/22/15. Our lucky winners were Judy C. from Minnesota, Peggy P. from Oregon, and Trina T. from Texas.)

The Killing VoteBette Golden Lamb & J.J. Lamb
The Killing Vote
Seven days! The deadline to stop a political-corporate scheme from legally murdering vulnerable patients. But an in-your-face, advocacy group for seniors hires an aggressive, semi-retired investigative journalist to expose the government-corporate scheme to enact legislation that will legalize selective euthanasia — gutting Medicare for the poor and powerless — all for money. Ted Yost barely starts his investigation when his client’s office is blown up, his California home is vandalized, and there is an attempt on his life. And what he doesn’t know: the conspirators include the nation’s largest for-profit healthcare corporation, a powerful D.C. lobbyist, and the White House. Can Ted stop the killing vote? Thanks to the authors we have a copy of this non-series thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/15. Our lucky winner was Rob L. from Connecticut.)

Return to DustAndrew Lanh
Return to Dust (Poisoned Pen Press 2015) begins when Marta Kowalski is discovered beneath the Farmington River Bridge. Marta had become depressed since the death of an old friend, tand he police write off her death as an unfortunate suicide. Marta was a simple woman who cleaned houses, mostly for elderly professors, and faithfully attended Mass. Sometimes she went gambling in Atlantic City or at the Indian casinos. She had no enemies, let alone friends. Murder? There’s no evidence of a crime. Yet her niece Karen is convinced of foul play. She hires Amerasian Rick Van Lam, the only investigator she knows in this bedroom community. He had never really cared for Marta. Yes, she’d dusted his apartment a couple of times, but she was a little too nosy. And she’d fought with a local gardener, a full-blooded Vietnamese man. Jimmy, his mentor and partner at nearby Hartford, Connecticut’s Gaddy Associates, aces at insurance fraud, frowns on Rick taking another murder case. But aided by his sidekick Hank Nguyen and Hank’s wise Buddhist grandmother, Rick begins asking questions and finds himself mired in affluent Farmington’s parochial pettiness and scandal. Digging deeper, he unearths rivalries, jealousies, and viciousness to shame a Miss Marple village — and realizes to his amazement that Marta was no mere unassuming housekeeper. Any number of townsfolk had reason to shove her off that bridge — one of them mind-blowing. Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs, we have one Advance Readers Copy of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/22/15. Our lucky winner was Mary F. from California.)

Tears of Dark WaterCorban Addison
The Tears of Dark Water (Thomas Nelson 2015) features Daniel and Vanessa Parker, an apparent American success story. He is a Washington, DC, power broker, and she is a physician with a thriving practice. But behind the gilded façade, their marriage is a shambles, and their teenage son, Quentin, is self-destructing. In desperation, Daniel dusts off a long-delayed dream of theirs—a sailing trip around the world. Little does he know, the voyage he hopes will save them may destroy them instead. Half a world away, on the lawless coast of Somalia, Ismail Adan Ibrahim is living a life of crime in violation of everything he was raised to believe—except this: the love and loyalty driving him to hijack ships for ransom and to plot the rescue of his sister, Yasmin, from the man who murdered their father. There is nothing he will not do to save her, even if it means taking innocent life. Paul Derrick is the FBI’s top hostage negotiator. His twin sister, Megan, is a celebrated defense attorney. They have reached the summit of their careers by savvy, grit, and a secret determination to escape the memory of the day their family died. When Paul is dispatched to handle a hostage crisis at sea, he has no idea how far it will take Megan and him into the past—or the chance it will give them to redeem the future. Across continents and oceans, through storms and civil wars, their paths converge in a single, explosive moment. It is a moment that will test them, and break them, but that will also leave behind an unexpected glimmer of hope—that out of the ashes of tragedy and misfortune the seeds of justice and reconciliation can grow. Thanks to Samantha Jacobs & Jessica Fitzpatrick of February Media, we have two copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/8/15. Our lucky winners were Daniel M. from Massachusetts and Patty R. from Illinois.)

Valentines DayApril Kelly
Valentine’s Day (Flight Risk Books 2015) introduces Rick Valentine: “Trust me, I’m almost a detective.” The ink is barely dry on Rick’s private investigator’s license before his very first client frames him for a homicide, forcing Rick to accept help from ex-boss and top LA sleuth Dako Farona to get himself out of trouble. Rick has no love for Farona, who paid him only slave wages during three years of legwork, but he gets caught up in one of Dako’s cases after learning it links back to his own father, a police officer killed in the line of duty while Rick was still in kindergarten. When someone sabotages the case by shooting Farona, Rick steps in to take over. With a little help from the women in his life—including his octogenarian landladies, the duplicitous receptionist at Rick’s old job and Dako’s beautiful daughter—the neophyte detective morphs into a semi-seasoned P.I. while unraveling the heartbreaking truth about his father’s murder. Thanks to the author, we have ten copies of this series debut to giveaway. (Giveaway ended 9/22/15. Our lucky winners were Bayneeta F. from Illinois, Betty J. from Iowa, Deb O. from Wisconsin, Ed F. from Florida, Fred P. from Montana, Jeff G. from Florida, Linda G. from Maryland, Mary E. from Delaware, Rita R. from Wisconsin, and Theresa L. from New Jersey.)

Bum RapPaul Levine
Bum Rap (Thomas & Mercer 2015) finds NFL linebacker-turned-lawyer Jake Lassiter fed up with shifty clients, dirty prosecutors, and a legal system out of whack. It’s enough to make a man want to leave Miami and never look back—until he gets a call from Victoria Lord, the better half of hot local legal team Solomon & Lord. Her partner in life and law has been arrested for murder. What’s worse: the only person who can clear him has fled the city. Now it’s up to Jake and Victoria to track down the witness—a stunning “bar girl”—before she’s roped in by the feds, or eliminated by the Russian mob. Jake knows that if he doesn’t get to the witness first, his client’s case is lost. Luckily, he’s got some good advice from his college football coach: “Buckle your chin strap and hit somebody.” And sometimes, the only way to win a tough case is to do just that. Thanks to Marketing & Publicity Consultant Wiley Saichek we have two copies of this thriller featuring characters from Levine’s two popular series. (Giveaway ended 9/8/15. Our lucky winners were David S. from Kentucky and Eileen M. from New York.)

Never Look DownNever Look Down by Warren C. Easley finds Oregon lawyer Cal Claxton coming to the aid of a tagger calling himself Picasso, a Banksy-like figure in Portland. Dividing his time between a wine-country town and the city, the ex-L.A. prosecutor now encounters another urban teen at risk, Kelly Spence, also a tagger. Using climbing skills learned from her much-loved deceased father, a mountaineer, Kelly places angry tags in visible, hard- to-reach places. A runaway from an abusive foster home and alternative high school student, she lives with her father’s former girl friend. Kelly is four stories up at 3:00 one morning when she looks down and witnesses the brutal murder of a woman in the parking lot below. Unluckily the killer spies her but Kelly escapes. The police soon seek her as a witness. Desperate to stay anonymous, she seeks help from someone on the street she trusts. Too soon she finds his mutilated body and becomes even more afraid. Cal is drawn into the case by his volatile Cuban friend and landlord who is devastated by the murder: the dead woman had just become his fiancée. Her ex is the obvious suspect, but Cal’s instincts lead him in a different direction where he will run into Kelly. Can he get her to talk, or will the killer find her first?

Dark PlacesDark Places by Reavis Z. Wortham is the fifth in the Red River series. At the tail end of 1967, the Parker family once again finds it impossible to hide from a world spinning out of control. Fourteen-year-old Top still can’t fit in with their Center Springs, Texas, community or forget recent, vicious crimes. His near-twin cousin Pepper, desperate to escape her own demons, rashly joins the Flower Children flocking to California—just as two businessmen are kidnapped and murdered in the Red River bottoms on the same night a deadly hit and run kills a farmer. Constable Ned Parker wonders if these crimes are connected, but he goes after Pepper, leaving the investigation in the hands of Sheriff Cody Parker. Parker hires Deputy Anna Sloan, an investigator with an eye toward detail as everyone is eyeing her. Yet it is instinct that propels her after killers through a world nearly forgotten, the hunt’s backdrop one of continuous rain, gloomy skies, and floods. When she’s ambushed, the investigation accelerates into gunfire, chases, and hair-raising suspense. What of Pepper? Out on Route 66, the Mother Road to California, a man named Crow isn’t what he seems. Lies, deceptions, and a band of outlaw motorcyclists proves to the Parkers that no matter where you turn, no matter what you do, the world is full of such darkness that even grandmothers are capable of unspeakable deeds.

Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs, we are giving away a set of Advanced Reader Copies of these two new Poisoned Pen books. (Giveaway ended 8/22/15. Our lucky winner was Gary C. from Washington.)

The ConfessorMark Allen Smith
The Confessor (Simon & Schuster 2015) brings back Geiger, the best in the field of Information Retrieval until he was asked to break his only rule and torture a child. Though Geiger is now presumed dead, no body has ever been found, and there are a number of people invested in finding out the truth. One of those people is Harry Boddicker, Geiger's old handler and friend. Another is his bitter rival, Dalton, who is determined to find Geiger and extract a final confession from him, before carrying out his deadly revenge. But no one has reckoned on Zanni Soames — a woman more dangerous than any of them could imagine, and hell-bent on winning the race to find Geiger first. Thanks to Wiley Saichek, Marketing & Publicity Consultant, we have two copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/8/15. Our lucky winners were Bruce M. from Arizona and Roy R. from Arkansas.)

UnleashedUnleashed (Poisoned Pen Press August 2015), by Eileen Brady, finds Dr. Kate Turner happy with her new life in Oak Falls, upstate New York. Working as a relief veterinarian at a small house-call practice, she truly enjoys helping her patients. All that changes when client Claire Birnham is found dead, an apparent suicide. A talented artist, Claire had everything to live for: new job, Manhattan apartment, her Cairn terrier Toto. As feisty as the Wizard of Oz Toto, he and Claire were devoted. Kate can’t imagine Claire simply abandoning her pet. Was her death murder? Questions end in the police arresting young kennel helper Eugene. The fragile friendship between Kate and police officer Luke Gianetti frays as she ignores his advice and keeps asking questions. House calls provide gossip and clues, some helpful, some not so much, as she treats her animal patients. Did Claire’s recent insurance windfall prove too tempting for her hard working and hard drinking mother? What does trouble in the art gallery where Claire worked signal? How huge a grudge did heavy metal rocker A.J. hold against high-school sweetheart Claire after she dumped him? Was Claire a threat to AJ’s rich new girl? Dr. Kate mixes real medicine with murder as she risks her life over Claire’s death, aided by insights from a former fire investigator, aka her Gramps. (2nd in the series)

IsolationIsolation (Poisoned Pen Press August 2015), by Mary Anna Evans, rejoins archaeologist Faye Longchamp-Mantooth as she struggles to recover from a shattering personal loss, she sees that everyone she loves is trying to reach out to her. If only she could reach back. Instead she’s out digging holes all over her home, the Florida island of Joyeuse. In their old plantation home, Joe Wolf Mantooth is surrounded by family—Faye, the wife he loves; their toddler son he adores; and his father, who hasn't gotten around to telling him how long he's been out of prison or how he got there—yet Joe has never felt so helpless or alone. Then a close friend at the local marina is brutally murdered, the first in a string of crimes against women that rocks Micco County. Joe, desperate to help Faye, realizes she is in danger from both her inner demons and someone who has breached the island’s isolation. Local law and environmental officials say they want to help, but to Faye and Joe they feel more like invaders. A struggling Faye reaches back over a century into her family’s history for clues. And all the while, danger snakes further into their lives, threatening the people they love, their cherished home, even the very ground—some of it poisoned—beneath their feet. (9th in the series)

Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs, we are giving away a set of Advanced Reader Copies of these two new Poisoned Pen books. (Giveaway ended 7/22/15. Our lucky winner was Diane H. from Georgia.)

Money, Family, MurderTimothy Patten
Money, Family, Murder (2015) takes place in the picture-perfect community of Newport Beach, where violent crime is virtually non-existent—until the beautiful bookkeeper of Newport’s wealthiest family is found strangled in her bed. Johnny Barnes—loyal husband, dad, and philanthropist—is arrested for a murder he didn’t commit. He is released on $20 million bail, but the tide of public feeling turns rapidly against him: from the power-hungry DA to a perspicacious police detective to his own influential and unscrupulous in-laws. With his luck and resources running out, Barnes must battle a corrupt system to conduct his own investigation. His journey takes him from Montecito to North Dakota to Key—and draws him into a dazzling and dangerous web of intrigue, self-dealing, exhortation, and murder. Racing against the odds and the clock, Barnes will be sent to prison—unless he is able to identify the true murderer and clear his name in time. Thanks to Angelle Barbazon of JKSCommunications we have two Advance Readers Copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/15. Our lucky winners were Dee S. from Tennessee and George B. from West Virginia.)

Hair of the DogHair of the Dog (Poisoned Pen 2015) by Susan Slater
It sounds like some work and mostly play when United Life and Casualty sends its investigator Dan Mahoney to Florida. Five greyhounds — all heavily insured — were lost in a fire at the Daytona dog track. So simple. Five dogs dead by smoke inhalation, bagged, tagged, and cremated. Papers all in order. Ashes in specialty urns on the desk of Dixie Halifax, track and casino co-owner. In jail, a young employee charged with arson to cover a murder he's blamed for committing. Then the body of kennel owner Jackson Sanchez is found face down in a pool of blood, a knife stuck in his back. But Sanchez didn’t die from a knife wound. Someone has carved “thief” on his forehead. The blood pooled underneath his body isn’t his. Should Dan be looking for a second corpse? And the one man who can answer questions, the track vet, dies in a motorcycle accident. Working this case is not as complicated for Dan as having his mother Maggie move into the FBI’s favorite mob slob haven in nearby Palm Coast, while his fiancée Elaine Linden, on sabbatical, works on a PI license. Perfect — the FBI can set Maggie up to spy on her boyfriend who may be laundering cash in a geriatric mafia scheme.

The Hog's Back MysteryThe Hog’s Back Mystery by Freeman Wills Crofts
Dr James Earle and his wife live in comfortable seclusion near the Hog’s Back, a ridge in the North Downs in the beautiful Surrey countryside. When Dr Earle disappears from his cottage, Inspector French is called in to investigate. At first he suspects a simple domestic intrigue – and begins to uncover a web of romantic entanglements beneath the couple’s peaceful rural life. The case soon takes a more complex turn. Other people vanish mysteriously, one of Dr Earle’s house guests among them. What is the explanation for the disappearances? If the missing people have been murdered, what can be the motive? This fiendishly complicated puzzle is one that only Inspector French can solve. Freeman Wills Crofts was a master of the intricately and ingeniously plotted detective novel, and The Hog’s Back Mystery shows him at the height of his powers. This new edition of the 1933 classic mystery includes an introduction by the award-winning novelist and crime fiction expert Martin Edwards.

Antidote to MurderAntidote to Venom by Freeman Wills Crofts
George Surridge, director of the Birmington Zoo, is a man with many worries: his marriage is collapsing; his finances are insecure; and an outbreak of disease threatens the animals in his care. As Surridge’s debts mount and the pressure on him increases, he begins to dream of miracle solutions. But is he cunning enough to turn his dreams into reality – and could he commit the most devious murder in pursuit of his goals? This ingenious crime novel, with its unusual inverted structure and sympathetic portrait of a man on the edge, is one of the greatest works by this highly respected author. The elaborate means of murder devised by Crofts’s characters is perhaps unsurpassed in English crime fiction for its ostentatious intricacy. This new edition of the 1938 classic mystery is introduced by the crime fiction expert Martin Edwards.

Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs, we are giving away a set of Advanced Reader Copies of these three new Poisoned Pen books. (Giveaway ended 6/22/15. Our lucky winner was Jeremy T. from Washington.)

Murder on Sagebrush LanePatricia Smith Wood
Murder on Sagebrush Lane (Aakenbaaken & Kent 2015) begins when Harrie McKinsey goes out to retrieve her morning newspaper and discovers a small child sitting next to her flower beds in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The little girl’s pajamas and teddy bear are smeared with blood, and Harrie’s journey to find the child’s parents soon involves her in a grisly murder investigation. Before the week is over, there’s another murder, an attempted kidnapping, a race to uncover a plot to steal top-secret data, and an encounter with a desperate killer who intends to make Harrie his final victim. Thanks to the author, we have a copy of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/8/15. Our lucky winner was Barbara A. from Illinois.)

The Sussex Downs MurderJohn Bude
The Sussex Downs Murder (Poisoned Pen 2015; original 1936) features two brothers, John and William Rother, who live together at Chalklands Farm in the beautiful Sussex Downs. Their peaceful rural life is shattered when John Rother disappears and his abandoned car is found. Has he been kidnapped? Or is his disappearance more sinister – connected, perhaps, to his growing rather too friendly with his brother’s wife? Superintendent Meredith is called to investigate – and begins to suspect the worst when human bones are discovered on Chalklands farmland. His patient, careful detective method begins slowly to untangle the clues as suspicion shifts from one character to the next. This classic detective novel from the 1930s is now republished for the first time, with an introduction by the award-winning crime writer Martin Edwards.
Murder in PiccadillyCharles Kingston
Murder in Piccadilly (Poisoned Pen 2015; original 1936) features Bobbie Cheldon, who falls in love with a pretty young dancer at the Frozen Fang night club in Soho. Bobby has every hope of an idyllic marriage, but Nancy has more worldly ideas about her future: she is attracted not so much to Bobbie as to the fortune he expects to inherit. Bobbie’s miserly uncle Massy stands between him and happiness: he will not relinquish the ten thousand a year on which Nancy’s hopes rest. When Bobbie falls under the sway of the roguish Nosey Ruslin, the stage is set for murder in the heart of Piccadilly — and for Nancy’s dreams to be realised. When Chief Inspector Wake of Scotland Yard enters the scene, he uncovers a tangled web of love affairs, a cynical Soho underworld, and a motive for murder.
Thanks to publicist Maryglenn McCombs, we are giving away the first two releases in the Crime Classics series, featuring historical mysteries rediscovered by the British Library. Focused on the Golden Age of British crime writing, the series includes works by both recognized and lesser-known writers. (Giveaway ended 5/22/15. Our lucky winner was Judy S. from Michigan.)

MWA CookbookThe Mystery Writers of America Cookbook: Wickedly Good Meals and Desserts to Die For (Quirk Book 2015) is edited by Kate White. Hard-boiled breakfasts, thrilling entrees, cozy desserts, and more—this illustrated cookbook features more than 100 recipes from legendary mystery authors. Whether you’re planning a sinister dinner party or whipping up some comfort food perfect for a day of writing, you’ll find plenty to savor in this cunning collection. Full-color photography is featured throughout, along with mischievous sidebars revealing the links between food and foul play. Contributors include Lee Child, Mary Higgins Clark, Harlan Coben, Nelson DeMille, Gillian Flynn, Sue Grafton, Charlaine Harris, James Patterson, Louise Penny, Scott Turow, and other acclaimed plot stirrers. Thanks to Marketing & Publicity Consultant Wiley Saichek we have two copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/15. Our lucky winners were Eleanor E. from Texas, and Paulette L. from California.)

Lowcountry BoneyardSusan M. Boyer
Lowcountry Boneyard (Henery Press 2015) is the third in the series featuring Liz Talbot, a private investigator with a ghostly sidekick, in fictional Stella Maris, South Carolina. The twenty-three-year-old heiress from one of Charleston’s oldest families vanished a month ago. When her father hires Liz, she suspects the most difficult part of her job will be convincing the patriarch his daughter tired of his overbearing nature and left town. That’s what the Charleston Police Department believes. But behind the garden walls South of Broad, family secrets pop up like weeds in the azaleas. The neighbors recollect violent arguments between Kent and her parents. Eccentric twin uncles and a gaggle of cousins covet the family fortune. And the lingering spirit of a Civil-War-era debutante may know something if Colleen, Liz’s dead best friend, can get her to talk. Liz juggles her case, the partner she’s in love with, and the family she adores. But the closer she gets to what has become of Kent, the closer Liz dances to her own grave. Thanks to Rowena Carenen Copeland, The Book Concierge, we have three trade paperbacks to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/22/15. Our lucky winners were Kimberly C. from Georgia, Sheila C. from Vermont, and Tricia J. from California.)

You Will Never Find MeRobert Wilson
You Will Never Find Me (Europa Editions 2015, UK 2014) begins when Amy Boxer, the precocious daughter of London kidnap consultant Charles Boxer and Detective Inspector Mercy Danquah, decides to leave home. Amy goads the talents of her parents with a note of challenge: YOU WILL NEVER FIND ME. Amy’s destination: Madrid. Here, in the strobe-lights of bars and crowded dance clubs, she’s anonymous and untraceable. Except to a volatile, unpredictable leader in the Madrid drug trade, the man known only as El Osito. Charles Boxer will use his very specific set of skills to retrace Amy’s quickly vanishing steps, while DI Danquah takes on her own case in London: a young boy, Sasha Bobkov, has gone missing. Is the disappearance connected to Sasha’s father, a retired agent of the Russian secret service, who is working to discover who poisoned his former fellow agent, Alexander Tereshchenko? As Danquah begins her search for Sasha, a body is found in Madrid. Amy’s father may be the next target. Thanks to Gretchen Crary of February Media we have 10 copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/8/15. Our lucky winners were Ed H. from California, Elaine S. from Ontario, Joseph W. from Washington, Louise O. from Ontario, Margot E. from Virginia, Martin L. from New York, Michael C. from British Columbia, Patrick M. from Maine, Rick O. from New Hampshire, and Sally B. from New Jersey.)

The WordHubert Crouch
The Word (Serpentine Books 2015) is the second in the Jace Forman series. Ezekiel Shaw and his fanatical followers preach a gospel of hate, picketing the funerals of fallen soldiers, and praising God for sending America’s soldiers back in body bags. But when they disrupt the funeral of Second Lieutenant Lauren Hanson, a West Point graduate killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan, hard-charging Fort Worth trial attorney Jace Forman becomes determined to put an end to their crazed crusade no matter the cost. As Jace and reporter Leah Rosen battle the odds and the clock in pursuit of justice and truth in the courts, they draw closer to uncovering a shocking conspiracy—and facing sinister forces that will stop at nothing to keep them from revealing the truth. Thanks to Marissa Curnutte of JKSCommunications, we have two advance readers copies of this legal thriller to giveaway. (Giveaway ended 3/22/15. Our lucky winners were Bruce W. from New York and Joel K. from Illinois.)

Dying for a DudeCindy Sample
Dying for a Dude (Cindy Sample Books 2014) begins when Laurel McKay agrees to perform with the Sassy Saloon Gals during Hangtown’s annual Wagon Train parade. Laurel’s greatest fear is a wardrobe malfunction, but before she can lace up her corset, a 150-year-old skeleton turns up on her grandmother's property. Did Laurel’s great-great-grandfather murder his mining partner? Gran insists not and wants Laurel to prove it. Then the body of a prominent citizen is discovered shortly after Laurel’s ex-husband decked him. When her detective boyfriend throws her ex in jail for murder, Laurel, with the help of her zany friends and family, must find the real killer. Juggling two kids, a new boss, a wilting romance, and two murder investigations would be enough to turn any woman into a chocolate addict. Extra pounds are the least of Laurel’s worries as she and her Mustang-driving octogenarian grandmother try to unearth some long-buried secrets before the killer adds their names to Hangtown’s bloody history. Thanks to the author we have a copy of this fourth in the humorous series, a finalist for the 2015 Lefty Award, to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/15. Our lucky winner was Ellen M. from New Jersey.)

TeaserBurt Weissbourd
Teaser (Rare Bird Books 2015) takes Corey Logan and Dr. Abe Stern into the interconnected worlds of private school kids and the runaways who roam Seattle's streets. Corey's son Billy attends the Olympic Academy, where two friends, Maisie and Aaron, are experimenting with sex and drugs. They've become close to Star, a streetwise seductress who leads them down a treacherous path. Despite the best efforts of Abe and Corey, Maisie is abducted by the diabolical “Teaser,” a man determined to take revenge on her father, his former cellmate. Teaser is a mystery to everyone except Abe and Corey, who alone realize what they must do to rescue Maisie. They contrive a plan that shocks even them. Thanks to Samantha Lien, JSK Communications Publicist, we have three copies of this sequel to Inside Passage to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/22/15. Our lucky winners were Bill P. from New York, David A. from Pennsylvania, and Michelle B. from Minnesota.)

Long Way DownMichael Sears
Long Way Down
Two years in a federal prison has changed Jason Stafford, is still changing him, but one thing it has taught him as a financial investigator is how to detect a lie. He doesn’t think Philip Haley is lying. An engineer on the verge of a biofuel breakthrough, Haley has been indicted for insider trading on his own company, and Stafford believes him when he says he’s been set up. Haley does indeed have enemies. He is not a nice man. Doesn’t make him a criminal. It does make him dangerous to be around, though. The deeper Stafford investigates, the more secrets he starts to uncover, secrets people would kill for. And that’s exactly what happens. Soon, it is Stafford himself who is under attack and, worse, his family — both his fiancée and his young son — and he is a fugitive, desperately trying to stay one step ahead of both the killers and the law. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek, we have two copies of this third in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/15. Our lucky winners were Ed H. from Maine and Helen D. from Florida.)

Bred To KillFranck Thilliez
Bred to Kill (Viking 2015, France 2011) reunites Detective Lucie Henebelle and Inspector Franck Sharko, investigating the case of the brutal murder of Eva Louts, a promising graduate student who was killed while working at a primate research center outside Paris. But what first appears to be a vicious animal attack soon proves to be something more sinister. What was Eva secretly researching? Was she tracking three fanatical scientists who control a thirty-thousand-year-old virus with plans to unleash it into the world? This mix of genetics, paleontology, and the dark side of human nature moves from the rain-slicked streets of Paris to the heart of the Alps to the remote Amazon jungle as Lucie and Sharko work to solve the murder—before whoever killed Eva comes for them. Thanks to Annie Harris, Viking/Penguin Publicity, we have a hardcover copy of this edgy thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/22/15. Our lucky winner was Michael C. from British Columbia.)

A Study in DetailMichael Guillebeau
A Study in Detail (Five Star 2015) is the story of Paul, an outdoorsman living a simple life with his a volatile artist wife until Marta disappears and her body is never found. Paul finds a message in her last painting telling him that she faked her death to draw attention to her paintings. An insurance investigator questions a $5M policy Marta took out shortly before her death and an enforcer shows up demanding that Paul pay him the $5M Marta stole from his casino. A gallery in Arizona claims to have new Marta paintings. Paul goes to investigate, followed by the insurance investigator, the enforcer, and a young new-age girl determined to help Paul forget his dead wife. Thanks to the author, we have four advance readers copies of this non-series mystery, due for release March 11th, to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/15. Our lucky winners were Edwin S. from California, Mary S. from Michigan, Nick K. from Texas, and Peter P. from Ohio.)

The Easter Egg MurderPatricia Smith Wood
The Easter Egg Murder (Aakenbaaken & Kent 2013) is the story of Harrie McKinsey and her best friend and business partner Ginger Vaughn, who discover that some secrets are best left buried when retired Senator Philip Lawrence hires their editing firm to assist him with a book about the famous unsolved 1950 murder of a cocktail waitress that led to the end of illegal casinos in New Mexico. When the Albuquerque newspaper announces that Senator Lawrence is writing the book, one person with a connection to the case is murdered and another narrowly escapes death. Despite the best efforts of Ginger's husband and an FBI agent Harrie finds infuriatingly attractive, the energetic pair cannot resist trying to discover who is so anxious to destroy the book, the senator and his big secret. But will their proficiency and pluck be up to the challenge when they land in a dark house with a cold, calculating killer who has nothing else to lose? Thanks to the author, we have one paperback copy of this debut mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/22/14. Our lucky winner was Carol B. from California.)

Glenn CooperThree thrillers by Glenn Cooper have just been released for the first time in the US. The Resurrection Maker follows Arthur Malory, a seemingly ordinary Englishman, has a burning interest in the Holy Grail, a passion inherited from his father. Thrust into a life-or-death quest to find the precious artifact, he will discover not only his own amazing heritage but the power that the Grail possesses, a power that informs the resurrection of Christ and explosively merges spiritual and scientific thought. The Devil Will Come is the story of Elisabetta Celestino, a brilliant young archaeologist at work in Rome’s ancient catacombs, who discovers a unique pattern of astrological symbols on an underground wall. She feels sure that evidence of a previously unknown pre-Christian sect lies in an adjacent chamber, and is devastated when the Vatican refuses to support her excavation project. Ten years later, a cave-in damages the vault, and Elizabetta unexpectedly finds herself in a race to solve the secret of the catacomb and prevent an apocalyptic event that threatens not only the Vatican but the future of mankind. In Near Death a brilliant neuroscientist, obsessed with death since his own childhood near death experience, resorts to drastic measures to prove the existence of the afterlife. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have one set of all three books to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/14. Our lucky winner was Dennis F. from Michigan.)

VeraVera, Set 4 (Acorn Media 2014)
Brenda Blethyn returns as Detective Chief Inspector Vera Stanhope, whose offbeat manner and frumpy appearance belie a knack for catching killers. Stanhope is ably assisted by Detective Sergeant Joe Ashworth, her colleague, confidante, and surrogate son. Ashworth tries to balance his family responsibilities with the demands of working for a boss who seems to have little else in her life but the job. In this series, Stanhope and Ashworth take on four new cases on their Northumberland beat-the stabbing of a senior citizen aboard a rush-hour train, the brutal murder of a young professional at a beach resort, the shooting of a loner out on the moors, and the drowning of a respected businessman. Based on the bestselling novels of Ann Cleeves, this atmospheric drama delivers compelling characters, superb performances, and suspenseful mysteries. Thanks to Acorn Media, we have a DVD containing four episodes to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/22/14. Our lucky winner was Ann M. from Wisconsin.)

Tenth ChamberGlenn Cooper
The Tenth Chamber (2014) is set in the Abbey of Ruac, in rural France, where a medieval script is discovered hidden behind an antique bookcase. Badly damaged, it is sent to Paris for restoration, and there literary historian Hugo Pineau begins to read the startling fourteenth-century text. Within its pages lies a fanciful tale of a painted cave and the secrets it contains – and a rudimentary map showing its position close to the abbey. Intrigued, Hugo enlists the help of archaeologist Luc Simard and the two men go exploring. When they discover a vast network of prehistoric caves, buried deep within the cliffs, they realize that they’ve stumbled across something extraordinary. And at the very core of the labyrinth lies the most astonishing chamber of all, just as the manuscript chronicled. But as they begin to unlock the ancient secrets the cavern holds, they find themselves at the center of a dangerous game. One ‘accidental’ death leads to another. And it seems that someone will stop at nothing to protect the enigma of the tenth chamber. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have two paperback copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/14. Our lucky winners were Mary C. from Wisconsin and Stephen H. from Texas.)

Murder in One TakeApril Kelly & Marsha Lyons
Murder in One Take (Flight Risk Books 2012) opens when Detective Blake Ervansky is first on the scene when an Oscar-winning star is shot by his ex-lover. As lead cop on the case, Ervansky has everything he needs to put away Ali Garland: motive, weapon, videos of the murder and a dozen eyewitnesses, one of whom is his partner of less than 24 hours, Sgt. Maureen O’Brien. This is LA, the beating heart of show biz, though, so nothing is as it seems, even Ervansky’s new partner. Ali Garland appears to have been justified in defending herself with lethal force, but could this wide-eyed ingénue be the architect of an airtight double fake? Has she really pulled off the perfect murder? Ervansky and O’Brien will only unravel her skein of deceit when they turn to the same Hollywood magic that convinces audiences aliens can phone home, talking clown fish do search and rescue, and every hooker is just a nice girl waiting for the right millionaire. Thanks to Flight Risk Books, we have ten copies of this first in a humorous series set smack in the middle of the Hollywood film industry. (Giveaway ended 10/22/14. Our lucky winners were Barbara M. from North Carolina, Barbara S. from New Jersey, Carol V. from Connecticut, Chris D. from Wisconsin, Darlene P. from Minnesota, Gary A. from Illinois, Helen T. from Minnesota, Pattie M. from Ohio, Susan A. from Kentucky, and Trude V. from Washington.)

Wendy TysonWendy Tyson
Killer Image (Henery Press 2013) introduces Allison Campbell, Philadelphia’s premier image consultant who helps others reinvent themselves. Allison’s most successful transformation was her own after a scandal nearly ruined her. Now she moves in a world of powerful executives, wealthy, eccentric ex-wives and twisted ethics. When Allison’s latest client, the fifteen-year-old Goth daughter of a White House hopeful, is accused of the ritualistic murder of a local divorce attorney, Allison fights to prove her client’s innocence, but unraveling the truth brings specters from her own past. And in a place where image is everything, Allison’s ability to distinguish what’s real from the facade may be the only thing that keeps her alive. Alison returns in Deadly Assets (Henery Press 2014) when two clients — an eccentric Italian heiress from the Finger Lakes and an eighteen-year-old pop star from Scranton, Pennsylvania — disappear on the same day. Allison’s search for a connection uncovers an intricate web of family secrets, corporate transgressions and an age-old rivalry that crosses continents. The closer Allison gets to the truth, the deadlier her quest becomes. All paths lead back to a sinister Finger Lakes estate and the suicide of a woman thirty years earlier. Allison soon realizes the lives of her clients and the safety of those closest to her aren’t the only things at stake. Thanks to the author, we are giving away both Allison Campbell books to one lucky winner. (Giveaway ended 10/8/14. Our lucky winner was Bertie R. from Illinois.)

The Pale HouseLuke McCallin
The Pale House (Berkley 2014) finds German intelligence officer Captain Gregor Reinhardt recently reassigned to the Feldjaegerkorps—a new branch of the military police with far-reaching powers. His position separates him from the friends and allies he has made in the last two years, including a circle of fellow dissenting Germans who formed a rough resistance cell against the Nazis. While retreating through Yugoslavia with the rest of the army, Reinhardt witnesses a massacre of civilians by the dreaded Ustaše — only to discover there is more to the incident than anyone believes. When five mutilated bodies turn up, Reinhardt knows the stakes are growing more important — and more dangerous. As his investigation begins to draw the attention of those in power, Reinhardt’s friends and associates are made to suffer. But as he desperately tries to uncover the truth, his own past with the Ustaše threatens his efforts. Because when it comes to death and betrayal, some people have long memories —and they remember Reinhardt all too well. Thanks to author Luke McCallin and June Clark of Get There Media, Inc., we have five copies of this historical thriller, the second in the series, to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/22/14. Our lucky winners were Lenny B. from Nevada, Martin S. from Washington DC, Paddy M. from Massachusetts, Tom B. from Mississippi, and Zakiyyah B. from New York.)

The Cottoncrest CurseMichael H. Rubin
The Cottoncrest Curse (Louisiana State University Press 2014) begins in 1893 when the bodies of an elderly colonel and his young wife are discovered on the staircase of their stately plantation home, blood still dripping down the wooden balustrades. Within the sheltered walls of Cottoncrest, Augustine and Rebecca Chastaine have met their deaths under the same shroud of mystery that befell the former owner, who had committed suicide at the end of the Civil War. Locals whisper about the curse of Cottoncrest Plantation, an otherworldly force that has now taken three lives. But Sheriff Raifer Jackson knows that even a specter needs a mortal accomplice, and after investigating the crime scene, he concludes that the apparent murder/suicide is a double homicide, with local peddler Jake Gold as the prime suspect. Assisted by his overzealous deputy, a grizzled Civil War physician, and the racist Knights of the White Camellia, the Sheriff directs a manhunt for Jake through a village of former slaves, the swamps of Cajun country, and the bordellos of New Orleans. But Jake’s chameleon-like abilities enable him to elude his pursuers. As a peddler who has built relationships by trading fabric, needles, dry goods, and especially razor-sharp knives in exchange for fur, Jake knows the back roads of the small towns that dot the Mississippi River Delta. Additionally, his uncanny talent for languages allows him to pose as just another local, hiding his true identity as an immigrant Jew who fled Czarist-Russia. Thanks to Angelle Barbazon of JKSCommunications, we have one copy of this debut thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/8/14. Our lucky winner was Arthur M. from New York.)

Getting Mama Out of HellLaurie Moore
Getting Mama Out of Hell (Five Star 2014) begins when British visitors Elle Winthrop and her daughter Elizabeth die near DFW Airport. They learn there is life after death, and that Elle’s mother is doomed to live in eternal damnation. In order to redeem a Get Out of Hell Free card, they must return to Fort Worth and convince five people to do an extraordinarily good deed in Mama’s name within thirty days. To complicate matters, Elle returns as Sylvester “Sly” Gooch, a twelve-year-old African-American juvenile delinquent with a colorful police history, while Elizabeth reappears as Adelaide Hollingsworth, a wealthy white octogenarian and mugging victim — and Sly’s the prime robbery suspect. When Sly discards his ankle monitor, and Addie discovers her family’s scheme to take her money, the two must work together while dodging the police in a race against time. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Senior Editor, we have five copies of this paranormal thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/22/14. Our lucky winners were Betty J. from Iowa, Karen K. from Florida, Lisa B. from Virginia, Mary P. from Ohio, and Theresa S. from Michigan.)

Herbie's GameTimothy Hallinan
Herbie’s Game (Soho 2014) is the fourth in the series featuring Junior Bender, the clown prince of crime fiction. It’s everyday business when Wattles, the San Fernando Valley’s top “executive crook,” sets up a hit. He establishes a chain of criminals to pass along the instructions and the money, thereby ensuring that the hitter doesn’t know who hired him. Then one day Wattles finds his office safe open and a single item missing: the piece of paper on which he has written the names of the crooks in the chain. When people associated with the chain begin to pop up dead, the only person Wattles can turn to to solve his problem is Junior Bender, professional burglar and begrudging private eye for crooks. But Junior already knows exactly who took Wattles’s list: the signature is too obvious. It was Herbie Mott, Junior’s burglar mentor and second father—and when Junior seeks him out to discuss the missing list, he finds Herbie very unpleasantly murdered. Junior follows the links in the chain back toward the killer, and as he does, he learns disturbing things about Herbie’s hidden past. He has to ask himself how much of the life he’s lived for the past twenty years has been of his own making, and how much of it was actually Herbie’s game. Thanks to author Timothy Hallinan, we have five copies of this humorous caper mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/8/14. Our lucky winners were Bob T. from South Carolina, Donna G. from California, Jim J. from Michigan, Kathleen H. from Nevada, and Mitch K. from New York.)

Eyes on YouKate White
Eyes on You (Harper 2014) is the story of Robin Trainer, who seems to have everything going for her. After losing her TV hosting job two years ago, she’s back on the air in a hot new show with a co-host she can’t help but feel attracted to. She’s also penned a book that’s climbing the charts. But one night at a party in her honor, she discovers a nasty, threatening note in her evening bag. Maybe, she tells herself, it’s just from a jealous party guest. But the threats and harassment soon escalate and Robin realizes that she has an adversary with a dark agenda. What’s even worse is that the person is clearly someone in her life. While she frantically tries to put the pieces together and unmask this hidden foe, it becomes terrifyingly clear that the person responsible isn’t going to stop until Robin loses everything that matters to her… including her life. Thanks to Marketing & Publicity Consultant Wiley Saichek, we have two copies of this stand-alone psychological suspense novel to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/14. Our lucky winners were Jim F. from Ohio and Michele L. from Kansas.)

The Quiet WomanTerence Faherty
The Quiet Woman (Five Star 2014) is the story of American romance novelist Danielle Furey, who always dreamed of returning to Ireland — but not like this. Not in the company of her ne’er-do-well brother. Certainly not with her ex-husband in tow. Not even with the charming Irish barman Danny hired as their driver, not after she learned of the vengeful bookmaker on his trail. A woman of nice resources, Danny has the situation well in hand, until her party meets an Irish tour guide who claims to know the details of a terrible crime committed during the filming of The Quiet Man in 1951. Then Danny finds herself cast in the role of investigator, an investigator with an unusual client: the murder victim herself. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Senior Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this non-series mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/14. Our lucky winners were Dennis M. from New York, Edward M. from Nebraska, Jacki R. from Texas, Kathleen R. from New York, and Susan C. from Colorado.)

All Things MurderJeanne Quigley
All Things Murder (Five Star 2014) features Emmy-winning actress Veronica Walsh. Over her thirty-two-year career on the soap opera Days and Nights, her character has been a businesswoman, wife (multiple times), mother, prison inmate and fugitive. None of that prepared her for the role of a real-life sleuth. When Veronica cannot land a new part after the soap’s cancellation, she returns to her Adirondack hometown for what she hopes is a temporary visit. No sooner does she arrive than Veronica finds herself in a swirl of turmoil, with her neighbor at the center. In the span of a few hours, powerful businesswoman Anna Langdon extends an invitation to Veronica to discuss a business proposal, ends a short romance with Veronica’s high school beau, threatens to evict one of her retail tenants and thwarts a deal to build a mall on local farmland. Veronica receives an unexpected welcome-home present when she finds Anna’s body the next morning, the cast-iron skillet used to kill her lying at her feet. Soon Veronica is chasing leads with the help of friend Mark Burke and her former co-star Alex Shelby. Twists straight from a soap script, including two leading men vying for her attention, entangle Veronica as she gathers clues. Will Veronica solve the case, or will the killer be as elusive as an acting job? And will she play the heroine or the damsel in distress? Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Senior Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this debut cozy mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/22/14. Our lucky winners were Hattie N. from Tennesee, Maureen M. from North Carolina, Norma C. from Iowa, Virginia N. from Minnesota, and Vivian O. from Georgia.)

The Buddy SystemBrandon Hebert
The Buddy System (Five Star 2014) features New Orleans detectives Jack Hardy and Early Moore, who desperately need a bust. Assigned to a surveillance unit, they see an opportunity and recruit drug dealer Lamont Brown. Unfortunately, Lamont sees opportunity in them, too. Lamont feeds them information, letting the detectives claim high-profile drug busts while getting rid of his competition. Then he demands they bury a dead body and find work for his no-good cousin Jello. In their efforts to satisfy Lamont, Hardy and Early stumble on a scheme to bilk post-Katrina reconstruction efforts while dodging dirty cops, street thugs, crooked contractors, and white supremacist hit men. When Lamont’s main rival finds out he’s been ratting, Lamont calls in Hardy and Early to help him. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Senior Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/8/14. Our lucky winners were Donna L. from Louisiana, Francine T. from Virginia, Jill L. from Illinois, Keith M. from Michigan, and Susie R. from Washington.)

EntropyRobert Raker
Entropy (Wattle Publishing 2013) is a dark look at the effect of crime upon a small rural town. When a series of child abductions and murders disrupt the life of an economically blighted community, the consequences have far-reaching implications. The brutal crimes take a different toll on a disparate group of individuals; the scuba diver who retrieves the children’s bodies; the disfigured cellist who thinks he knows who’s responsible; the undercover federal agent; and the mother of one of the victims. United in a situation not of their choosing, they are forced to take a deep, introspective look into their intersected, yet isolated lives. Thanks to Emma Taylor of Wattle Publishing we have five paperback copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/14. Our lucky winners were Don F. from Virginia, Sally S. from Oregon, Steve D. from Minnesota, Suzanne E. from British Columbia, and Mark T. from Australia.)

The Garden of Burning SandsCorban Addison
The Garden of Burning Sand (Quercus 2014) features Zoe Fleming, a young human rights lawyer who has made a life for herself in Zambia, far from her estranged father, a business mogul with presidential aspiration, away from the devastating betrayals of her past. When a girl with Down syndrome is sexually assaulted in a Lusaka slum, Zoe demands justice. Determined to see the case through, she joins Zambian police officer Joseph Zabuta in investigating the rape. Piecing together clues from the victim’s past, they discover a violent connection between the girl, Kuyeya, and a powerful Zambian family that will stop at nothing to bury the truth. As Zoe and Joseph are drawn deeper into the complex web of characters behind this sinister crime, they forge a bond of friendship that slowly transforms into love. Thwarted at every turn, they find themselves caught in a great clash between the forces of justice and power. To vindicate Kuyeya and build a future with Joseph, Zoe must risk her life and her heart, and confront the past she thought she left behind. Thanks to Jessica Bromberg, Quercus Publishing Associate Director of Publicity, we have five hardcover copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/14. Our lucky winners were Dorrit S. from Pennslyvania, Jeff S. from Ontario, Jo Ann H. from Texas, Julie S. from Missouri, and Linda K. from British Columbia.)

The Cold NowhereBrian Freeman
The Cold Nowhere (Quercus 2014) begins when 16-year-old Catalina Mateo shows up unannounced one night in Detective Jonathan Stride’s home, dripping wet from a desperate plunge into the icy waters of Lake Superior. Her sodden clothes stained with blood, Cat spins a tale of a narrow escape from a shadowy pursuer. Stride decides to trust this girl, but his judgment may be clouded by memories of Cat’s mother. Ten years earlier, Cat hid under the porch of her family home while her mother was brutally butchered by her ex-con father. Stride still blames himself for not preventing the slaughter. But is Cat telling the truth? Stride’s police partner, Maggie Bei, doubts the homeless girl, who has been living rough on the streets of Duluth since her mother’s death—and now sleeps with a knife hidden under her pillow. As Stride investigates Cat’s story, more violence trails in the teenager’s wake—and Maggie’s suspicions about her deepen. Now a single question haunts the void between them: Should Stride be afraid for — or of — this terribly damaged girl? Thanks to Jessica Bromberg, Quercus Publishing Associate Director of Publicity, we have five hardcover copies of this 6th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/22/14. Our lucky winners were Glenn B. from North Carolina, Ken P. from Texas, Randi N. from Massachusetts, Sandra C. from Ontario, and Tom M. from Illinois.)

Calamari CrimeCalamari Crime Book Bag + a Mystery Book
In celebration of surviving co-chairing Left Coast Crime 2014: Calamari Crime, two lucky winners will receive a Calamari Crime Book Bag containing a mystery book. We promise not to include any squid! (Giveaway ended 4/8/14. Our lucky winners were Denise W. from Indiana and Ted L. from Illinois.)

Sudden ImpactWilliam P. Wood
Sudden Impact (Turner 2014)
Officer Tommy Ensor is no ordinary cop. He’s a hero, winner of the Medal of Valor, devoted family man and coach, helping at-risk kids. But the driver who struck him down and didn’t stop isn’t ordinary either. He’s Judge Frank Stevenson, up-and-coming member of the bench, also devoted to his wife and daughter, involved in charities and good works. Terry Nye is a couple of weeks from retirement as a detective, head of Major Crimes. He’s trying to pack thirty years of bloody experiences and hard lessons into those two weeks for his new partner, Rose Tafoya. Rose is a young detective, smart, more than a little ambitious, but also insecure. Together she and Nye are a powerhouse team. He’s determined to find Ensor’s assailant and he’s going to make sure Rose doesn’t make the same mistakes he did, especially the unforgivable one that has come back to darkly haunt him after Ensor’s accident. The city is in turmoil when Ensor dies and the hunt for a cop killer rushes ahead relentlessly, moving from Nye and Tafoya to Stevenson and his wife. The guilty and innocent are sucked randomly into the intense, high-powered investigation. Thanks to the author and June Clark of Get There Media, Inc., we have five copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/22/14. Our lucky winners were Bekke H. from California, Bill L. from Texas, David F. from Pennsylvania, Jon G. From Arizona, and Kenny T. from New York.)

A Measure of BloodKathleen George
A Measure of Blood is the seventh in the Richard Christie series. Nadal watches for weeks before he first approaches the boy. No matter what Maggie Brown says, he’s sure Matt is his son, and a boy should know his father. After their first confrontation, Maggie should have run. She should have hidden her child. But she underestimated the man who was once her lover. With self-righteous determination, Nadal goes to her house. He demands to spend time with the boy. When she refuses, he reaches for a knife. By the time Pittsburgh homicide detective Richard Christie arrives on the scene, all that remains of Maggie Brown is a bloodstain on the floor. The killer has vanished, and Matt is too scared to remember anything but his mother’s fear. As Christie looks for the killer and Maggie’s friends fight to keep Matt out of the hands of Child Services, Nadal watches the news and waits. A boy should be with his father. He’s going to get his son. Thanks to Grace Wright of JKSCommunications, we have two trade paperback copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 3/8/14. Our lucky winners were Carole S. from North Carolina and Gloria D. from Illinois.)

The ProfessorRobert Bailey
The Professor (2014) introduces Thomas Jackson McMurtrie, a longtime law professor at the University of Alabama. Forty years after giving up a promising career as a trial lawyer to teach law students at the request of his mentor, Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant, McMurtrie retires to his farm an angry and bitter man, betrayed by both a Board member he mistook for a friend and his own failing health. Meanwhile, the young family of one of Tom’s oldest friends is killed in a tragic collision with an 18-wheeler. Believing his career is over, Tom refers his friend to a brilliant, yet beleaguered, former student, Rick Drake, who begins to uncover that the truth behind the tragedy is buried in a tangled web of arson, bribery, and greed. When a key witness is murdered on the eve of trial, the young attorney, in over his head and at the end of his rope, knows he needs help — and there’s only one man who can help him. Thanks to Grace Wright of JKSCommunications, we have two trade paperback copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/22/14. Our lucky winners were Anders O. from Minnesota and Rita R. from Wisconsin.)

RunnerPatrick Lee
Runner (Minotaur 2013) introduces Sam Dryden, a retired special forces agent who lives a quiet life in a small town on the coast of Southern California. While out on a run in the middle of the night, a young girl crashes into him on the seaside boardwalk. Barefoot and terrified, she’s fleeing from a group of heavily armed men with one clear goal—to kill the escaping child. After Dryden helps her evade her pursuers, he learns that the eleven-year-old has been kept in a secret prison by forces within the government or as long as she can remember But she doesn’t know much beyond her own name: Rachel. She only recalls the past two months of her life—and that she has a skill that makes her very dangerous. Dryden, who lost his wife and young daughter in an accident five years ago, agrees to help her try to unravel her own past and make sense of it, and to protect her from the people who are moving heaven and earth to find them both. Although Dryden is only one man, he’s a man with the extraordinary skills and experience—as a Ranger and a Delta with five years doing off-the-book black ops with an elite team. But, as he slowly begins to discover, the highly trained paramilitary forces on their heels is the only part of the danger they must face. Will Rachel’s own unremembered past be the most deadly of them all? Thanks to Cassandra Galante, Minotaur Books Marketing, we have 10 copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/14. Our lucky winners were Bill G. from New York, Charles B. from Massachusetts, Craig C. from Maryland, Denise D. from Ontario, Dick M. from Missouri, Frederick G. from New York, Lisa B. from Alberta, Marsha C. from New York, Michelle S. from Alberta, and Wally C. from Illinois.)

Inside PassageBurt Weissbourd
Inside Passage (Rare Bird Books 2014) is the first in a thriller trilogy featuring Corey Logan. Corey Logan was set up, and she knows Nick Season’s terrible secret. Coming home from prison, all Corey wants is to be with her son. To get him back, she needs to make a good impression on the psychiatrist evaluating her. But Dr. Abe Stein doesn’t believe she was framed until his well-heeled mother falls for the charming state attorney general candidate, Nick Season. As the dogs of war are unleashed, Corey and her son run for their lives, taking her boat up the Pacific Northwest’s remote Inside Passage. Thanks to publicist Samantha Lien, we have one copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/22/14. Our lucky winner was David M. from Massachusetts.)

JP KinkaidDeborah Grabien
The JP Kinkaid Chronicles are mystery novels that chronicle the coming of age of guitarist and MS patient John Peter “JP” Kinkaid in the rarified world of rock and roll. Beginning in the summer of 2005 (Rock and Roll Never Forgets) with the murder of a muckracking biographer writing a sleazy tell-all of JP’s band Blacklight, the Chronicles follow JP, his longtime love Bree, and job-jumping homicide detective Patrick Ormand as the money, fame and high stakes of rock superstardom attract the inevitable parasites, hangers-on and profiteers. From an arson fire in a Marin County club to the slashing death of a royal equerry in Arabia, perennial sideman JP, who narrates the series, finds himself forced to take center stage. There are now eight Chronicles in print; thanks to the Publicity Department at Plus One Press, we have a set of Chronicles 5, 6, 7, & 8 (Book of Days, Uncle John’s Band, Dead Flowers, Comfortably Numb) to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/14. Our lucky winner was Thomas U. from Illinois.)

In RetrospectEllen Larson
In Retrospect (Five Star 2013) is an old-fashioned whodunit set in a compelling post-apocalyptic future. Former elite operative Merit Rafi suffered during her imprisonment at the end of a devastating war, but the ultimate torment is being forced to investigate a murder she would gladly have committed herself. In the year 3324 the Rasakans have attacked the technologically superior Oku. The war is a stalemate until the Oku commander, General Zane, abruptly surrenders. Merit, a staunch member of the Oku resistance, fights on, but she and her comrades are soon captured. An uneasy peace ensues, but the Rasakans conspire to gain control of the prized Oku time-travel technology. When Zane is murdered, the Rasakans exert control over Merit, the last person on Earth capable of Forensic Retrospection. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Acquisitions Editor at Five Star, we have five hardcover copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/22/13. Our lucky winners were Betty B. from New York, Carol S. from South Carolina, Claudia G. from Arizona, Joy D. from Florida, and Steve K. from New Jersey.)

Lying with StrangersJonnie Jacobs
Lying with Strangers (Five Star 2013) is the story of two very different women and the tragic event that brings them together, opening the door to second chances. Against her better judgment, Chloe Henderson becomes the unwitting accomplice to a murder committed by her boyfriend. The victim’s grief-stricken wife is shocked to discover the lies and secrets her husband has kept from her. When her young son plows into Chloe with his bike, the women’s lives become entwined in ways neither of them could have imagined. Joel Richards, an enthusiastic young journalist covering recent developments in an old murder, has his own reasons for being interested in the victim, and in Chloe. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Acquisitions Editor at Five Star, we have five hardcover copies of this stand-alone thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/13. Our lucky winners were Audrey B. from California, Bekke H. from California, Gayla J. from Arizona, Marianne D. from New York, and Nancy K. from Colorado.)

JapantownBarry Lancet
Japantown (Simon & Schuster 2013) follows American antique dealer-turned-P.I. Jim Brodie on a trail from California to Tokyo as he struggles to unravel a major murder in San Francisco. Late one night Brodie receives a call from a friend in SFPD’s homicide division: an entire family has been senselessly gunned down in San Francisco’s Japantown. With the assistance of a shadow powerbroker, a renegade Japanese detective, and the elusive telecommunications tycoon at the center of the murders, Brodie moves from the crime scene to Tokyo to a remote Japanese village. He soon finds himself at the center of a deadly secret that not only threatens to take his life, but also the lives of his entire circle of family and friends — including his six-year-old daughter. In Japantown, Lancet depicts a rich mixture of art and violence, the past and the present, east and west, while bringing San Francisco to life in all its layers. Thanks to Andrea DeWerd, Simon & Schuster Marketing Manager, we have three copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/22/13. Our lucky winners were Diana R. from Ohio, Jean S. from Colorado, and Jim J. from Ontario.)

Never Laugh as a Hearse Goes ByElizabeth J. Duncan
Never Laugh as a Hearse Goes By (Minotaur 2013) finds spa owner and habitual amateur sleuth Penny Brannigan at a clerical conference at Gladstone’s Library in North Wales. Also attending as a guest speaker is her boyfriend, DCI Gareth Davies, there to give a talk on theft prevention. But behind the ornate red sandstone façade of this most respectable of Victorian buildings, Penny encounters deception, marital and financial infidelity, a sham marriage scam, blackmail for beginners, and someone bent on murder. When the bishop’s secretary dies of a suspicious case of food poisoning, Davies leads the investigation. At Penny’s suggestion, Florence Semble, a friend from Penny’s adopted hometown, is invited to the Library to decode the secretary’s shorthand notebook in the search for clues. As the conference continues, another body is found in the beautiful library itself, and Penny must once again search for a killer. Thanks to the author and St. Martin’s Press, we have a hardcover copy of this fifth in the series for a Canadian and an American winner. (Giveaway ended 11/8/13. Our lucky winners were Luigina L. from Ontario and Melinda D. from Idaho.)

Circle of ThirteenWilliam Petrocelli
The Circle of Thirteen (Turner 2013) is set in 2082, when a catastrophic explosion rocks the dedication ceremony of the new United Nations in New York City. Security Director Julia Moro is on the job, chasing after the misogynistic leader of Patria, a long-disbanded international terrorist organization now being whispered about again on the streets. This dangerous, shadowy figure has been linked to several bombing attempts and vicious attacks on women, including the Women of Peace—an organization headed by thirteen bold women who have risked their lives to restore worldwide peace. As Julia’s investigation unfolds, a deep secret from her past threatens to strip her of everything she cherishes and plunge her into unrecoverable darkness. Thanks to publicist Wiley Saichek we have two hardcover copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/22/13. Our lucky winners were Linda P. from New Brunswick and Ron C. from Minnesota.)

Sutton PlaceLouise Gaylord
Sutton Place (Little Moose Press 2013) is the story of Julia Fairchild. The Fairchilds were a happy family of wealthy New York stock, with two loving daughters until the secrets started to surface. The first secret was revealed when Julia was told the truth about her father. Her reaction to the revelation sent her spinning out of control. The second secret concerned the parentage of Julia’s sister, Ariel. How Ariel responded to the revelation astounded the rest of the family. Now Julia is building a reputation as a clinical psychologist at one of New York’s finest hospitals. The future looks bright until a romantic weekend turns into a disaster. Fleeing home and family, she moves to New Mexico and starts to pull her life together. Just when it looks like things are heading toward happily-ever-after, events in New York draw Julia back to Sutton Place, where she learns of Ariel’s secret life and finds herself facing her worst nightmare. Thanks to publicist Grace Wright, we have three copies of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/8/13. Our lucky winners were Dodie S. from Arizona, Jan C. from Mississippi, and Theresa H. from California.)

Plum DeadlyEllie Grant
Plum Deadly (Gallery Books 2013) introduces Maggie Grady, who returns to North Carolina after being accused of stealing from her workplace. Her former boss Louis unexpectedly appears at her aunt’s pie shop and tells Maggie that he knows the truth. Someone framed her and Louis helped. But before Louis can set things straight in a press conference, he turns up dead on the doorstep of Pie in the Sky. Not only is Maggie’s secret about why she left the big city out, but now she and her aunt are suspects in Louis’s murder. With the help of Ryan, a hunky journalist, Maggie tries to figure out who set her up and killed Louis. But just as she and Ryan get closer to the truth, the killer steps up his game. Thanks to author Ellie Grant (Joyce & Jim Lavene pseudonym), we have a paperback copy of this first in the Pie in the Sky series to give away to five lucky winners. (Giveaway ended 9/22/13. Our lucky winners were Betsy D. from New York, Katherine I. from North Carolina, Lorene L. from Washington, Marcia G. from Arkansas, and Sherrie W. from Washington.)

Middle ManDavid Rich
Middle Man (Dutton 2013) features Lt. Rollie Water, whose expertise is going undercover to solve complex crimes involving powerful military officials and unknown enemies who are prepared to kill for stolen fortunes. Recruited into SHADE, an elite, covert group formed by the U.S. military, Rollie Waters must locate and retrieve the millions taken from Saddam’s cache during the Iraq War and shipped home in the coffins of dead soldiers. When a sniper attacks the team, Rollie is forced to go undercover to solve the riddle of the graves and to apprehend the puppet master behind the whole plot. Rollie’s own father, inveterate liar and charming con artist Dan Waters, was killed attempting to steal the first $25 million after stumbling across the conspiracy involving powerful military officers, including the general who nearly destroyed Rollie during his last tour in Afghanistan. Rollie’s undercover quest takes him from Houston and the self-proclaimed king of Kurdistan, to the treacherous streets of Erbil, Iraq, and into the arms of a stunning, enigmatic woman whose motives he can’t discern. As a confirmed citizen of the fog, now more spy than soldier, Waters must uncover the man pulling the strings behind a backdrop of murder, deceit, and stolen fortune — before he disappears forever into the mist. Thanks to publicist Cassandre Mandel we have one hardcover copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/8/13. Our lucky winner was Mary C. from Wisconsin.)

NephilimÅsa Schwarz
Nephilim (Stockholm Text 2013) is the American debut of Swedish author Åsa Schwarz. When young and driven “Eco Warrior” Nova decides to take action against environmentally dangerous corporations, little does she know that a shadowy organization shares in her goal. Soon Nova finds herself framed for a string of unusual and gruesome murders and is on the run from Swedish authorities. Left to her own device, Nova is forced to explore crawling biblical clues in order to unravel the mysteries of past and present and to figure out how she got herself in the middle of it. This fast-paced suspense novel blends biblical mythology with global conspiracies to create a convincing and effective story. In-depth characters and quickly unravelling plot, full of dramatic twists and turns, has made it a major success throughout Europe. Thanks to publicist Tricia van Dockum, we have one paperback copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/22/13. Our lucky winner was Joyce F. from Illinois.)

RestrikeReba White Williams
Restrike (Delos 2013) introduces cousins Coleman and Dinah Greene who moved from North Carolina to New York after college to make their mark on the art world. Coleman is now the editor of an influential arts magazine and Dinah is the owner of a print gallery in Greenwich Village. But their challenges are mounting as one of Coleman’s writers is discovered selling story ideas to a competitor and The Greene Gallery is in the red because sales are down. When billionaire Heyward Bain arrives with a glamorous assistant, announcing plans to fund a fine print museum, Coleman is intrigued and plans to get to know Bain and publish an article about him. Dinah hopes to sell him enough prints to save her gallery. At the same time, swindlers, attracted by Bain’s lavish spending, invade the print world to grab some of his money. When a print dealer dies in peculiar circumstances, Coleman is suspicious, but she can’t persuade the NYPD crime investigator of a connection between the dealer’s death and Bain’s buying spree. After one of Coleman’s editors is killed and Coleman is attacked, the police must acknowledge the connection, and Coleman becomes even more determined to discover the truth about Bain. Thanks to publicist Marissa Curnutte of JKSCommunications we have three paperback copies of this debut mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/8/13. Our lucky winners were Barbara S. from New Jersey, Jane N. from Washington, and Pam W. from Missouri.)

Lucky BastardDeborah Coonts
Lucky Bastard (Forge 2013) finds Lucky O’Toole enjoying her job as the newly promoted vice president of Customer Relations for the Babylon, Las Vegas’s primo Strip property. But when a young woman is found dead, sprawled across the hood of a new, bright red Ferrari California in the Babylon’s on-site dealership, a Jimmy Choo stiletto stuck in her carotid, Lucky’s skills are maxed out. But then Lucky’s life is already on overload. Her mother, Mona, is pregnant, hormonal, and bored. A song that Teddie, Lucky’s former lover, wrote for her is getting national airplay as he hits the talk shows, pleading for her forgiveness. Lucky is less than amused by the high-powered “infotainment” spotlight on her personal life. She’s having enough trouble fending off Chef Jean-Charles Bouclet, the Babylon’s tasty new dish. The Smack-Down Poker tournament, the second-largest poker tournament in the world, is holding its final round at the Babylon. Hookers, thieves, players, cheaters, media, and hangers-on descend, looking to win or to score. When one of the players turns up dead, Lucky starts to make connections between the two murders, putting her in the crosshairs of the killer. Thanks to publicist Grace Wright of JKSCommunications, we have three hardcover copies of this 4th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/13. Our lucky winners were Debi L. from Texas, Kathie M. from Ohio, and Susan H. from Minnesota.)

ColdwaterDiana Gould
Coldwater (Gibraltar Road 2013) is the story of Brett Tanager, the writer/producer of a hit TV detective show until the mistakes of one dreadful night send her life skidding out of control into a downward spiral that takes her job, family, savings and self-respect. At her lowest ebb she is approached by Julia, her sixteen-year-old former stepdaughter whose best friend Caleigh has disappeared. Seems Julia’s classmates, young daughters of Hollywood’s elite, were “partying” with high rollers for a thousand bucks a night, and now Caleigh is missing, her parents are lying, and Julia is terrified. But not as terrified as Brett when Caleigh’s naked corpse turns up and Julia goes missing. Brett’s attempt to find Julia plunges her into a dark, disturbing journey through moneyed Hollywood and its sinister undersides. Now she must find resources other than drink to overcome her fears, as she is pitted against cunning of a ruthless killer, and a web of deceit in which the darkest secrets may be her own. Thanks to Julia Callahan of Rare Bird Lit we have five paperback copies of this debut thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/13. Our lucky winners were Bruce B. from North Carolina, Diana F. from New Jersey, Hannah H. from Rhode Island, Mary L. from Georgia, and Shirley C. from British Columbia.)

Hiding GladysHiding Gladys (Midnight Ink 2013), by Lee Mims, introduces geologist Cleo Cooper. Discovering a granite deposit of epic proportions is geologist Cleo Cooper’s dream come true. Not only will she be famous for discovering the easternmost deposit in the United States, she’ll also be rich. And so will Gladys Walton, the owner of the rural North Carolina property that sits atop the bounty of valuable rock. When Gladys goes missing and a murder victim turns up in the well, Cleo works extra hard to keep her test drilling above board and on schedule. But a near-fatal accident convinces Cleo that someone is dead set on killing her, too. With support from a hot fellow geologist, Cleo races against the clock before another body is found and her dreams of fame and fortune are crushed. Thanks to publicist Grace Wright of JKSCommunications, we have three paperback copies of this debut mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/22/13. Our lucky winners were Ellen M. from New Jersey, Georgia B. from Wyoming, and Lenora C. from Oregon.)

Marseilles TrilogyJean-Claude Izzo
The Marseilles Trilogy (Total Chaos, Chourmo, and Solea), featuring Fabio Montale — a cop who goes out on his own in Marseilles, France — is a classic of European crime fiction. Its publication was the catalyst for the foundation of an entire literary movement, Mediterranean noir, and made its author an overnight celebrity in the late 1990s. The trilogy has just been reissued in new trade paperback editions with an introduction by Massimo Carlotto. Thanks to Michael Reynolds and Drew Schnoebelen of Europa, we have one set to give away. (Giveaway ended 6/8/13. Our lucky winner was JoAnn O. from Colorado.)

The Killer’s ArtMari Jungstedt
The Killer’s Art (Stockholm Text 2013; Sweden 2010) is the fourth in the series featuring Anders Knutas, a police inspector on Gotland Island, Sweden. On a cold Sunday morning a man is found murdered and hanged on the old city wall that surrounds Visby, capital of Gotland. The victim is art gallery owner Egon Wallin. When the famous painting “The Dying Dandy” is stolen in Stockholm, disturbing links to the murder of Egon Wallin slowly start to surface, taking Knutas into the exquisite Swedish art world and underworld of prostitution and drugs. In this hair-raising story, superintendent Anders Knutas is facing one of the toughest investigations in his career. Thanks to Tricia van Dockum, Stockholm Text publicist, we have one paperback copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/22/13. Our lucky winner was Gloria K. from Wisconsin.)

SunriseAl Lamanda
Sunrise (Five Star due August 7, 2013)
John Bekker, the downtrodden hero of Sunset, returns to face his greatest challenge yet. When Bekker’s old friend and state prosecutor Carly Simms wakes up next to murdered young man in a motel room after a night of drinking, she doesn’t remember a thing, especially stabbing the young man in the heart. Although all the evidence points to her guilt, Simms hires Bekker to prove her innocence. Bekker soon finds himself ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse. The murder victim was raised in an orphanage in Utah, and Bekker makes the startling discovery that other young men from the same orphanage are being murdered around the country. As he closes in on a suspect, Bekker and his family become targets as well. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Acquisitions Editor, we have five paperback Advance Readers Copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 5/8/13. Our lucky winners were Dave H. from North Carolina, Jeanette L. from Oregon, Jim P. from Missouri, Patrice G. from New York, and William M. from Rhode Island.)

that Old Flame of MineJ.J. Cook
That Old Flame of Mine (Berkley 2013) is the first in a new cozy series. After knocking the lights out of her boyfriend when she catches him cheating on her, Chicago fire fighter Stella Griffin hops on her Harley and heads for Sweet Pepper, Tennessee, where she ends up becoming the small town’s new fire chief. When her dear friend Tory Lambert dies after her gingerbread-style house is set ablaze, Stella suspects arson. As Stella investigates, she gets help from a most unlikely source — the ghost of Eric Gamlyn, Sweet Pepper’s old fire chief. And if that isn’t enough to rattle her, attractive police officer John Trump seems to have taken an interest in her. But Stella’s got to stay focused if she hopes to smoke out a killer before her own life is extinguished. Thanks to author J.J. Cook (Joyce and Jim Lavene), we have a paperback copy of this first in the Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade series to give away to five lucky winners. (Giveaway ended 4/22/13. Our lucky winners were Elaine N. from Kansas, Fran W. from Virginia, Helen T. from Minnesota, Pam N. from Pennsylvania, and Winota I. from California.)

No Safe GroundJulia Pomeroy
No Safe Ground (Five Star 2013) is the story of Reynolds Packard, a limo driver who lives in a run down house in the back woods of upstate New York, with no family or ties other than his cousin, Millie. Into his dreary and uneventful life barrels a girl he had never expected to see again — the daughter he gave up fifteen years before. Vida, now a twenty-one year old veteran, is AWOL and running for her life. Recently wounded in Iraq, she has no where else to go and has come to her father for help. She believes someone from her old unit is trying to kill her. Instead of helping her, Packard ignores the pleas of the girl he barely knows. After second thoughts, and with the help of his ex-state trooper cousin Millie, Packard decides he must find Vida before a brutal killer tracks her down first. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Acquisitions Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this stand-alone thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 4/8/13. Our lucky winners were Barbara S. from Illinois, Gary A. from Illinois, Nanette W. from Massachusetts, Thomas D. from California, and Tony G. from Indiana.)

Cat Trick MysterySofie Kelly
Cat Trick (Signet 2013) finds Kathleen Paulson enjoying her life as a small-town librarian with her two extraordinary cats, Owen and Hercules. The local businesses of Mayville Heights hope to convince Chicago-based company Legacy Tours to sell a vacation package for their town. Legacy Tours partner Mike Glazer grew up in Mayville Heights, but he’s no longer the small-town boy people once knew. Even the local bootlegger has an issue with the bossy loudmouth Mike has become—until someone shuts him up for good. When Kathleen discovers Mike’s body on the boardwalk, she can’t help but get involved in the investigation—even if her beau, Detective Marcus Gordon, would rather she didn’t. Now, with a little help from Owen and Hercules, it’s up to Kathleen to make sure the killer is booked for an extended stay in prison before someone else takes a permanent vacation. Thanks to the author, we have paperback copies of this 4th in the Magical Cats series to give away to four lucky winners. (Giveaway ended 3/22/13. Our lucky winners were Betty J. from Iowa, Katherine G. from Massachusetts, Marie K. from New Hampshire, and Patricia H. from Kansas.)

SunsetAl Lamanda
Sunset (Five Star 2012) is the story of Police Detective John Bekker. Becker had it all: a beautiful wife‚ a five-year old daughter and a job he loved… but all of that changed in the blink of an eye. Assigned to a special task force investigating organized crime‚ Bekker got a little too close to mob boss Eddie Crist. As a message to back off‚ Bekker’s home is invaded‚ his wife murdered and all this witnessed by his five-year-old daughter. A decade later Bekker‚ a drunk with an institutionalized daughter‚ comes face to face with Eddie Crist‚ now near death from cancer with a final wish — to go to his grave with a clear conscience. In an ironic twist of fate‚ the man Bekker believed responsible for his wife’s death hires him to solve the decade-old murder. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Acquisitions Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this Edgar nominated first in a series. (Giveaway ended 3/8/13. Our lucky winners were Ed H. from California, Evelyn G. from Washington, Lynn D. from Michigan, Mike M. from Michigan, and Nancy A. from Virginia.)

A Friendly Game of MurderJ.J. Murphy
A Friendly Game of Murder (Signet 2012) finds Dorothy Parker wondering why her friends are the only ones making “enviable names” in “science, art, and parlor games”? Dorothy can play with the best of them—as she sets out to prove at a New Year’s Eve party at the Algonquin Hotel. Since the swanky soiree is happening in the penthouse suite of swashbuckling star Douglas Fairbanks, some derring-do is called for. How about a little game of “Murder”? Each partygoer draws a card to be detective, murderer, or victim. But young Broadway starlet Bibi Bibelot trumps them all when her dead body is found in the bathtub. No one knows who the killer is, but one thing is for sure—they won’t be making gin in that bathtub. When more partiers are put in peril, it becomes clear the game is indeed on, and it’s up to Dorothy, surprise guest Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and the members of the Round Table to stay alive—and relatively sober—long enough to find the killer. Thanks to the author we have a paperback copy of this witty third in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/22/13. Our lucky winner was Sue H. from Illinois.)

Cover of SnowJenny Milchman
Cover of Snow (Ballantine 2013) is the story of Nora Hamilton, who wakes up one wintry morning in her old farmhouse nestled in the Adirondack Mountains of New York, sure that something is wrong. When her fog of sleep clears, she finds her world is suddenly, irretrievably shattered: Her husband, Brendan, has committed suicide. The first few hours following Nora’s devastating discovery pass for her in a blur of numbness and disbelief. Then, a disturbing awareness slowly settles in: Brendan left no note and gave no indication that he was contemplating taking his own life. Why would a rock-solid police officer with unwavering affection for his wife, job, and quaint hometown suddenly choose to end it all? Having spent a lifetime avoiding hard truths, Nora must now start facing them. Unraveling her late husband’s final days, Nora searches for an explanation—but finds a bewildering resistance from Brendan’s best friend and partner, his fellow police officers, and his brittle mother. It quickly becomes clear to Nora that she is asking questions no one wants to answer. For beneath the soft cover of snow lies a powerful conspiracy that will stop at nothing to keep its presence unknown… and its darkest secrets hidden. Thanks to Grace Wright of JKSCommunications, we have one hardcover copy of this debut thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/8/13. Our lucky winner was Shelia M. from Texas.)

The Pot Thief who Studied Billy the KidJ. Michael Orenduff
The Pot Thief Who Studied Billy the Kid (Aakenbaaken & Kent 2013) finds Hubert Schuze, owner of a shop selling Native American pottery in Albuquerque, New Mexico, illegally digging for Anasazi pots in a cliff dwelling. Hubie is startled when he grasps a human hand. He was hoping for an artifact, not a handshake and is puzzled by his discovery since the Anasazi did not bury their dead in their living quarters. A more pressing problem confronts him when he hears his truck drive away from the plain above the cliff. The rope he was planning to use to return to the surface was attached to the truck’s winch. After a bizarre escape from the cliff dwelling, he is convinced to return by his sidekick Susannah, who suspects the body was not a mummy but a contemporary person. But when Hubie descends a second time with her help, what he discovers defies all logic. It takes Hubie, Susannah, a coyote, and Billy the Kid to finally figure out who was dead and why. Thanks to the author, we have five trade paperback copies of the sixth in this funny series to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/22/13. Our lucky winners were Anne E. from North Carolina, Chris A. from Alabama, Helen F. from California, Jenni O. from Kentucky, and Leeta M. from Missouri.)

Sign of the Weeping VirginAlana White
Sign of the Weeping Virgin (Five Star 2013) takes place in 1480, when celebrated Florentine lawyer Guid’Antonio Vespucci and his nephew Amerigo return home to Italy from a government mission to find their dreams of peace shattered. Marauding Turks have abducted a beautiful young girl and sold her into slavery. Equally disturbing, a revered painting of the Virgin Mary is weeping in Guid’Antonio’s family church. Angry and fearful Florentines interpret these stunning events as signs of God’s wrath for their support of the city’s leader, Lorenzo de’ Medici, and Lorenzo’s refusal to end his war with the Pope. Faced with losing control of the city, Lorenzo enlists Guid’Antonio, his friend and staunch political ally, to investigate the tears. Following a seemingly unrelated trail of clues — a name whispered in the marketplace by a hooded monk, a secret message painted by Sandro Botticelli on the wall of the Vespucci family church — Guid’Antonio and Amerigo chase across Florence to the workshops of Leonardo da Vinci and Sandro Botticelli, to churches where frescoes seem to fly off the walls, from Florence to the village where the girl disappeared, and, finally, to the hilltop of Vinci itself. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Acquisitions Editor at Five Star, we have five hardcover copies of this debut historical mystery to give away. (Giveaway ended 1/8/13. Our lucky winners were Cecile L. from Virginia, Cheryl G. from Florida, David D. from Texas, Julie T. from Pennsylvania, and Nancy T. from Missouri.)

Night BlindMichael W. Sherer
Night Blind (Thomas & Mercer 2012) is the story of Blake Sanders, who lost his job, his only son to suicide, and his marriage in the space of a few months. A year later, it’s gotten so bad that he can only face the world at night, working menial jobs washing dishes and delivering newspapers, lost in depression and grief. Blake’s world is turned upside down again on a cold November night, when an elderly woman on his newspaper route is brutally stabbed to death and Blake is charged with her murder. Faced with life in prison, his only hope is to find the real killer. In a desperate attempt to unravel the mystery, Blake learns that his friend stumbled onto secrets that have been buried beneath Capitol Hill for 150 years. Secrets that are now being disturbed by the construction of the new light rail tunnel. Secrets that will shake the government of Seattle. Secrets that foreign agents will kill for. On the run from the police and murderers, Blake finds a chance to heal his grief and reclaim his life—if he can stay alive long enough to unearth the truth. (Giveaway ended 12/22/12. Our lucky winner was Lesley P. from Washington. Our thanks to Thomas & Mercer for providing the book.)

Stalking SeasonMaryann Miller
Stalking Season (Five Star 2012) finds Dallas Homicide Detective Sarah Kingsly and her partner, Angel Johnson, pitted against an uncanny killer while still struggling to feel like real partners. Neither wanted the pairing in the first place, and it isn’t getting any better. A young girl is killed in a cheap motel, and when her identity is discovered, an influential businessman brings the heat down on the department. It isn’t easy to work under the thumb of the mayor and the police commissioner, and it doesn’t help that Lieutenant McGregor has his own issues with the brass. The investigation takes the detectives inside an exclusive gentlemen’s club, a prestigious private school, and leads to a killer that surprises them all. Thanks to Tiffany Schofield, Five Star Acquisitions Editor, we have five hardcover copies of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/12. Our lucky winners were Evelyn L. from Michigan, Jane L. from Mississippi, Ruth D. from Ohio, Sheldon P. from California, and Suzanne VN from Ohio.)

The Prodigal SonColleen McCullough
The Prodigal Son (Simon & Schuster 2012) begins when a lethal toxin, extracted from a blowfish, is stolen from a laboratory at Chubb University in 1969. The toxin kills within minutes and leaves no trace behind, so worried biochemist Dr. Millie Hunter reports the theft at once to her father, Medical Examiner Dr. Patrick O’Donnell. Patrick’s cousin, Captain Carmine Delmonico, is forewarned and quick off the mark when the bodies start to mount up. A sudden death at a dinner party followed by another at a gala black-tie event seem at first to be linked only by the poison and the presence of Dr. Jim Hunter, a scientist on the brink of greatness and husband to Millie. A black man married to a white woman, Dr. Jim has faced scandal and prejudice for most of his life, so what would cause him to risk it all now? Is he being framed for murder—and if so, by whom? Carmine and his detectives must follow the trail through the university town’s crowd of eccentrics, no matter how close to home it may lead. Thanks to Alicia Samuel of Simon & Schuster, we have a hardcover copy of this fourth in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/22/12. Our lucky winner was Janet M. from Ontario.)

Swann Dives InCharles Salzberg
Swann Dives In (Five Star 2012) finds retired Henry Swann drawn back into the detective game by a millionaire, a missing heiress, evasive college professors, rare book dealers, and ten thousand dollars a week. Swann thought he was done with skip tracing — finding missing deadbeats and losers for a few bucks — but working as a cable service guy was a bit on the dull side, though not risking life and limb is a welcome relief. Millionaire lawyer Carlton Phillips has lost track of his daughter Marcy. Her last known whereabouts were at her school, Syracuse University. While trying to track down Marcy and/or her geeky boyfriend Sean Loomis on a quick trip upstate, Swann follows the clues to a sorority house, a pizza joint, and the office of a literature professor who is clearly hiding something. Armed with more questions than leads, Swann flies up to Boston where he narrowly avoids the arms of a seductive and secretive librarian. Finally back in New York City, Swann tries to sort out the details of the case. Is Marcy Phillips a victim? What is the nature of her relationship to the sexy and cagey Elizabeth Lawson? Is Carlton Phillips somehow involved in this story? How are all of these people connected to the rare book world, and who is really trying to get away with something? Thanks to the author and publicist June Clark, we have a hardcover copy of this second in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 11/8/12. Our lucky winner was Chris J. from Maine.)

Invisible MurderLene Kaaberbøl & Agnete Friis
Invisible Murder (Soho 2012, Denmark 2010) finds Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse in Copenhagen, Denmark, struggling to stick to her bargain with her husband Morten — no secret work for the Network, providing health care for undocumented immigrants. But she is unable to resist the plight of desperately ill Roma children living with an impoverished group in an old mechanics’ workshop in Valby. Nina assumes the children have picked up a stomach bug, or perhaps were exposed to a chemical in the workshop, and treats them for dehydration. But the sickest child grows weaker, and Nina herself develops a pounding headache. A second storyline follows Sándor, a half-Roma student in Budapest who receives a surprise visit from his step-brother Tamás, who uses his Internet connection and then disappears along with Sándor’s passport. Sure that Tamás is up to no good, Sándor returns home and discovers that Tamás has taken off for Denmark to sell something he found in the ruins of a Russian military hospital in Szikla. Tamás has also left behind a huge dept to Alexisz Bolgár, a powerful Roma leader. To protect his family from Bolgár, Sándor follows Tamás and the money to Valby. A third storyline tracks the progress of a Security and Intelligence Service (PET) investigation, led by Søren Kirkegaard, into possible terrorist activity targeting Copenhagen. To the horror of Nina’s husband, these separate events converge upon Nina and their daughter, endangering their lives and the safety of everyone around them. This compelling thriller is a followup to The Boy in the Suitcase. Thanks to Michelle Cullen, Soho Press Marketing Assistant, we have a hardcover copy to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/22/12. Our lucky winner was Jackie S. from Arizona.)

Whiskey IslandLes Roberts
Whiskey Island (Gray & Company 2012) finds Cleveland private investigator Milan Jacovich working for councilman Bert Loftus. An oversized appetite for fine dining, flashy suits, and Las Vegas call girls has made Loftus the target of media scrutiny and an FBI investigation that may end his career. Now he says someone is trying to kill him. Eager to identify his attacker but not so eager to work with the cops, Loftus turns to Milan for help. Milan takes the job even though he’s not inclined to take Loftus’s story seriously. At least it will be an opportunity to break in his new employee, young powder-keg Kevin “K.O.” O’Bannion. Milan and K.O. quickly notice that something smells fishy—and it isn’t just the Whiskey Island Marina, where local power brokers down pricey drinks in front of Lake Erie sunsets. Loftus and several Cleveland landlords appear to be involved in something much darker than a typical cash-for-favors trade. After a kinky call girl is found dead near the Cleveland Zoo and secret sex tapes are discovered in her downtown high-rise, Milan and K.O. must follow a trail of bribes, bullet casings, and debauchery to find the killer and uncover the true menace amid the muck of local government corruption. Luckily they have the help of Cleveland police detective Tobe Blaine, a tough-as-nails officer recently relocated from Cincinnati. She and Milan team up in their search for clues and discover they have much more in common than crime. Thanks to Jane Lassar of Gray & Company, we have two hardcover copies of this 16th in the series to give away. (Giveaway ended 10/8/12. Our lucky winners were Colleen R. from Ohio and Helen V. from Pennsylvania.)

The Other WomanHank Phillippi Ryan
The Other Woman (Forge 2012) introduces Jane Ryland, recently fired by a Boston TV station when her refusal to reveal a source resulted in a suit against the station and Jane herself. Now the award-winning investigative journalist finds herself working in the uncomfortable role of newspaper reporter for a boss who has no reason to trust her instincts on stories that aren’t nearly as exciting. Jane keeps hoping that her missing source will finally come forward and tell the truth so she can get her real job back. Assigned to write the usual puff piece about the wife of senate candidate Owen Lassiter, Jane notices that the same woman’s face appears in campaign photos taken all over the state, and suspects that she may have stumbled across Lassiter’s “other woman.” Meanwhile, Jane’s friend Detective Jake Brogan is investigating the death of two unidentified young women found near bridges. Jake is feeling the pressure of the media stories of a “Bridge Killer” stalking Boston women, and both Jake and Jane know that their budding relationship is a career-killer. Jane can’t cover the crime beat if she is dating a cop, and Jake would never be trusted not to leak case details to the press. As they pursue their separate investigations, Jane and Jake both begin to suspect that their seemingly distinct inquiries connect with a ruthless killer who will do just about anything to cover up a scandal with political repercussions. Ryan, an much-awarded investigative reporter for Boston’s NBC affiliate, uses her insider experience to create a believable series protagonist whose reporter instincts won’t let her abandon an investigation despite the dangers to herself, her love life, or her career. Thanks to the author, we have two hardcover books to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/21/12. Our lucky winners were Barbara C. from Maryland and Linda L. from Colorado.)

SimpleKathleen George
Simple (Minotaur 2012) finds Cassie Price thrilled when she’s hired to work at one of Pittsburgh’s most prestigious law firms. Young, pretty, and from a sheltered background, Cassie’s new life as an adult now includes meeting rich and powerful people, and she may even be having a mysterious affair. But when her lifeless body is discovered, the police are stumped. Suspicion falls on a neighborhood handyman, but Detective Colleen Greer and her boss, Commander Richard Christie, are not sure. The detectives discover that what seem like the easiest cases are actually the most complicated. We are giving away a hardback copy of this 6th in the series. (Giveaway ended 9/8/12. Our lucky winner was Lois G. from California.)

Broken HarborTana French
Broken Harbor (Viking 2012)
Mick “Scorcher” Kennedy plays by the book and plays hard. That’s what’s made him the Dublin Murder squad’s top detective—and that’s what puts the biggest case of the year into his hands. On one of the half-built, half-abandoned “luxury” developments that litter Ireland, Patrick Spain and his two young children are dead. His wife, Jenny, is in intensive care. At first, Scorcher and his rookie partner, Richie, think it’s going to be an easy solve. But too many small things can’t be explained. The half dozen baby monitors, their cameras pointing at holes smashed in the Spains’ walls. The files erased from the Spains’ computer. The story Jenny told her sister about a shadowy intruder who was slipping past all the locks. And Broken Harbor holds memories for Scorcher. Seeing the case on the news sends his sister Dina off the rails again, and she’s resurrecting something that Scorcher thought he had tightly under control: what happened to their family one summer at Broken Harbor, back when they were children. Thanks to Angela Messina of Viking, we have hardback copies of this new thriller for two lucky winners. (Giveaway ended 8/21/12. Our lucky winners were Joseph L. from Washington and Michele L. from Kansas.)

CriminalKarin Slaughter
Criminal (Delacorte Press 2012) finds Will Trent, a brilliant agent with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, newly in love and beginning to put a difficult past behind him. Then a local college student goes missing, and Will is inexplicably kept off the case by his supervisor and mentor, deputy director Amanda Wagner. Will cannot fathom Amanda’s motivation until the two of them literally collide in an abandoned orphanage they have both been drawn to for different reasons. Decades before—when Will’s father was imprisoned for murder—this was his home. Flash back nearly forty years. In the summer Will Trent was born, Amanda Wagner is going to college, making Sunday dinners for her father, taking her first steps in the boys’ club that is the Atlanta Police Department. One of her first cases is to investigate a brutal crime in one of the city’s worst neighborhoods. Amanda and her partner, Evelyn, are the only ones who seem to care if an arrest is ever made. Now the case that launched Amanda’s career has suddenly come back to life, intertwined with the long-held mystery of Will’s birth and parentage. And these two dauntless investigators will each need to face down demons from the past if they are to prevent an even greater terror from being unleashed. Thanks to Marketing Director Wiley Saichek, we have hardback copies of this July release for two lucky winners. (Giveaway ended 8/7/12. Our lucky winners were Pat A. from Georgia and Bob B. from British Columbia.)

Not My BloodBarbara Cleverly
Not My Blood finds Scotland Yard Detective Joe Sandilands caught off guard one night in 1933 by a phone call from a distressed boy named Jackie Drummond, who just might be the illegitimate son Joe never knew he had. Jackie is in trouble at his Sussex boarding school, where a teacher has been murdered. When Joe gets himself assigned to the investigation, he learns the boarding school case is more complicated than it appears. A frightening number of boys, all from wealthy families, have gone missing over the school’s history, and by some coincidence none of the families have followed up on their sons’ whereabouts. (Giveaway ended 7/22/12. Our lucky winner was Sheryl J. from Texas.)

The Joy BrigadeMartin Limón
The Joy Brigade (Soho 2012) finds US Army Sergeant George Sueño on a mission of extreme importance to the South Korean government, as well as the US Army. Kim Il-Sung has vowed to reunite North and South Korea into one country before he hands control of the government over to his son, which means North Korea is planning to cross the DMZ and overpower the American-allied South Korean government. Sueño’s mission is to prevent this by sneaking into North Korea and obtaining an ancient map detailing the network of secret tunnels that run underneath the DMZ. To do so, he will have to go undercover and infiltrate the North Korean Communist inner sanctum. Aware of the often dubious nature of the US Military’s tactics, Sueño is skeptical about his assignment. But he has other things on his mind. The keeper of the map is Doc Yong, a former lover of Sueño’s who was forced to flee South Korea the year before — and she has a son. Before they can be happily reunited, the plan falls to pieces, and Sueño is captured. Can he rely on the enigmatic Hero Kang, his sole contact in the hostile country? Will the lovely Rhee Mi-Sook, the leader of the North Korean secret police, be too much to handle? And who are the mysterious group of women known as the Joy Brigade? (Giveaway ended 7/8/12. Our lucky winner was Richard M. from Wisconsin.)

The Fear ArtistTimothy Hallinan
The Fear Artist (Soho 2012) finds Poke Rafferty emerging from a paint store in Bangkok, Thailand, with two cans of paint to spruce up the apartment while Rose and Miaow are away in the country visiting Rose’s family. Poke collides with a large middle-aged American man who collapses on top of Poke, gasping three words before dying from gunshot wounds. The police insist that the man wasn’t shot, close off the street, and confiscate the camera of a reporter. After a hard night of drinking, Poke is taken in for questioning by Major Shen, who demands to know what the man told him. The hungover Poke can only remember one of the words, and is finally released under a cloud of suspicion. Poke gets in touch with a group of semi-retired spies, and discovers that his interrogators have something to do with the Phoenix Project, a Vietnam-era program resurrected by the Pentagon after 9-11, now being used to wipe out suspected Muslim terrorists in southern Thailand. Poke narrowly escapes arrest, goes into hiding, and discovers that the dead man had proof of gruesome atrocities committed by Murphy, the Phoenix Project leader known as the Fear Artist in Vietnam. With the help of a charming but untrustworthy Russian spy, and Ming Li, Poke’s half-sister raised as an expert in duplicity by their father, Poke desperately tries to track down Murphy before Murphy finds him. The deadly impact of Murphy’s power to induce fear is poignantly demonstrated with his family: the nearly comatose wife who lives in a daze of codeine and alcohol and the virtually feral daughter who hides behind curtains and blackens her teeth so she can’t be seen in the dark. The chilling portrayal of the soul-killing effect on those waging the war on terrorism make this 5th in the series hauntingly effective. (Giveaway ended 6/22/12. Our lucky winner was Cameron B. from Alaska.)

The Gingerbread HouseCarin Gerhardsen
The Gingerbread House (Stockholm Text 2012) is the first in the Hammarby series, five crime novels that take place in the southern parts of Stockholm. The novel deals with the issue of schoolyard bullying among young children and the effect it has on them when people look the other way, which is based on some of Gerhardsen’s own childhood experiences. In a short space of time, several beastly murders occur in central Sweden. Criminal investigator Conny Sjöberg and the Hammarby police discover that there’s a link between the murders. There is a killer out there whose motives appear to be very personal, and who will not be deterred by anyone. Thanks to publicist Tricia van Dockum, we are offering a paperback copy of this thrilling first in the series. (Giveaway ended 6/8/12. Our lucky winner was Carol S. from North Carolina.)

Cop to CorpsePeter Lovesey
Cop to Corpse
PC Harry Trasker is the third policeman in the Bath area to be shot dead in less than twelve weeks. The assassinations are the work of a sniper no one has been able to pin down. The younger detectives are no match for this murderer and his merciless agenda. This is a job for Chief Superintendent Peter Diamond, and it might be the most dangerous investigation of his life. (Giveaway ended 5/22/12. Our lucky winner was Julie F. from Indiana.)

Curse of the Jade LilyDavid Housewright
Curse of the Jade Lily (Minotaur 2012) is the story of a stolen gem with a tragic history, a curse, and a million dollar ransom. Several years ago, Rushmore McKenzie became an unexpected millionaire and set about doing not much of anything. Now, showing up at his doorstep is the insurance company that paid the settlement that made him rich — and they want a favor. Someone has stolen a very expensive gem from a local art museum and is willing to ransom it back. The only condition is that McKenzie has to be the go between. And this is no ordinary gem — it is a jade with a history going back to the Qing Dynasty and a reputed curse that has ruined or killed everyone who has ever owned it. McKenzie agrees to help but what starts out as a simple ransom quickly becomes complicated. Suddenly other parties — including the State Department and a mysterious woman named Heavenly — start showing up, wanting McKenzie to turn over the gem to them. When the murdered body of one of the thieves turns up in a snow drift, it looks like the cursed Jade Lily has claimed its latest victim. (Giveaway ended 5/8/12. Our lucky winner was Wayne D. from Georgia.)

GetawayLisa Brackmann
Getaway (Soho 2012) is the story of Michelle Mason, who takes a brief vacation to the Mexican resort town of Puerto Vallarta while trying to figure out her next move after the unexpected death of her banker husband, who’s left behind a scandal and a pile of debt. The trip was already paid for, and it beats crashing in her sister’s spare room. When a good-looking man named Daniel approaches her on the beach, the margaritas have kicked in and she decides: why not? But the date doesn’t go as either of them planned. An assault on Daniel in her hotel room, switched cell phones, and an encounter with a “friend” of Daniel’s named Gary enmesh Michelle in a covert operation involving drug runners, goons, and venture capitalists. Michelle already knows she’s caught in a dangerous trap. But she quickly finds that running is not an option. If she’s not careful, she’ll end up buried in the town dump with the rest of the trash. Now she needs to fight smart if she wants to survive her vacation. (Giveaway ended 4/22/12. Our lucky winner was Cynthia B. from Massachusetts.)

ViralJames Lilliefors
Viral (Soho 2012) is the story of a deadly virus that is quietly sweeping through impoverished Third World farming villages and shanty towns with frightening speed and potency. Meanwhile, in Washington DC, a three-word message left in a safe-deposit box may be the key to stopping the crisis—if Charles Mallory, a private intelligence contractor and former CIA operative, can decipher the puzzle before time runs out. Mallory discovers the traces of a secret war, with a bold objective—to create a new, technologically advanced society. With the help of his brother Jon, an investigative reporter, Mallory works to break the story to the world before it is too late—before a planned “humane depopulation” takes place. As the stakes and strategies of this secret war become more evident, the Mallory brothers find themselves in a complex game of wits with an enemy they can’t see: a new sort of superpower led by a brilliant, elusive tactician who believes that ends justify means. (Giveaway ended 4/8/12. Our lucky winner was Carl S. from Arizona.)

The FallenJassy Mackenzie
The Fallen (Soho 2012) begins with when private investigator Jade de Jong invites Superintendent David Patel on a scuba diving holiday in St. Lucia, she hopes the time away will rebuild their conflicted relationship. Jade’s dreams are soon shattered when David calls off their affair, pushing her into the arms of environmentalist Craig Niewoudt. But the next morning, romantic issues are put aside when a scuba diving instructor, Amanda Bolton, is found brutally stabbed to death. Amanda is a most unlikely candidate for murder—a quiet and intelligent woman who until a few months ago pursued a high-powered career as an air traffic controller. She had few acquaintances and no lovers. The only loose end is a postcard in her room from Jo’burg-based Themba Msamaya, asking how she is doing “after 813 and The Fallen.” Jade and David put their differences aside and start the deadly hunt. (Giveaway ended 3/31/12. Our lucky winner was Joyce P. from Colorado.)

ClawbackMike Cooper
Clawback (Viking 2012) is the story of black ops vet Silas Cade, who becomes an “accountant” — the go-to for financiers who need things done quickly, quietly, and by any means necessary. Silas is hired by a major player to pay a visit to a hedge fund manager to demand clawback: the mandatory return of compensation paid on a deal that goes bad. But before Cade can tell his client that he got his ten million back, the guy turns up dead. And he’s not the first. Someone’s killing investment bankers whose funds have gone south. Silas’s scrubbed identity, and his insider’s perspective, makes him the ideal shadow man to track down whoever’s murdering some of the most hated managers on Wall Street. With the aid of a beautiful financial blogger looking to break her first big story, Silas tracks a violent security crew who may be the key to the executions. But as paranoia and panic spread, he begins to wonder: is the threat coming from inside the game — or out? (Giveaway ended 3/7/12. Our thanks to Langan Kingsley of Viking for providing the book for our lucky winner, Bob H. from British Columbia.)

Restless in the GraveDana Stabenow
Restless in the Grave (Minotaur 2012) teams up Aleut private investigator Kate Shugak and Alaska state trooper Liam Campbell for the first time. Alaska aviation entrepreneur Finn Grant died in the fiery crash of his Piper Super Cub. Someone sabotaged his engine, and virtually everyone in southwestern Alaska has a motive, including his betrayed wife, his bullied children, and Liam’s wife, bush pilot Wyanet Chouinard. With few places to turn, Liam asks his former mentor Niniltna post commander Sergeant Jim Chopin, for help, and Jim quickly brings Kate into the case. Working undercover as a waitress at Bill’s Bar and Grill, Kate learns over beer and burgers that Grant’s business had greatly expanded over the last two years. After buying the closed Air Force base south of town from the federal government at a bargain-basement price, Grant became a fixed-base operator running his fishing, hunting, and flight-seeing business, servicing planes flying through the area, and most interestingly and lucratively, getting into the air freight business. But what kind of freight was he moving, and where? (Giveaway ended 2/21/12. Thanks to Laura Clark of Minotaur, we had ten lucky winners: Anderew L. from Wisconsin, B.D. G. from British Columbia, Don H. from Washington, Jan J. from Ontario, Joan R. from Washington, Josette N. from Nebraska, Loretta H. from Virginia, Norm O. from California, Roxane F. from California, and Steven S.C. from Québec.)

No Mark Upon HerDeborah Crombie
No Mark Upon Her (William Morrow 2012) finds Scotland Yard superintendent Duncan Kincaid heading an investigation that begins when a K9 search-and-rescue team discovers a woman’s body tangled up with debris in the river. The victim, Rebecca Meredith, was a talented but difficult woman with many admirers, and just as many enemies. An Olympic contender on the verge of a controversial comeback, she was also a high-ranking detective with the Met, a fact that raises a host of political and ethical issues in an already sensitive case. To further complicate the situation, a separate investigation, led by Detective Inspector Gemma James, Kincaid’s wife, soon reveals a disturbing—and possibly related—series of crimes, widening the field of suspects. But when someone tries to kill the search-and-rescue team member who found Rebecca’s body, the case becomes even more complex and dangerous, involving powerful interests with tentacles that reach deep into the heart of the Met itself. Surrounded by enemies with friendly faces, pressured to find answers quickly while protecting the Yard at all costs, his career and reputation on the line, Kincaid must race to catch the killer before more innocent lives are lost—including his own. (Giveaway ended 2/7/12. Our lucky winner was Tricia J. from California.)

Erin KellyErin Kelly
The Dark Rose (Pamela Dorman Books/Viking 2012) is a story of secrets and guilt set among the ruins of a sixteenth-century English garden. Paul was led into a life of crime by his boyhood protector, a bully named Daniel. Now, at nineteen, Paul must bear witness against his friend to avoid prison. Louisa’s own dark secrets led her to flee a desperate infatuation gone wrong many years before. Now she spends her days steeped in history, renovating the grounds of a crumbling Elizabethan garden. But her fragile peace is shattered when she meets Paul; he’s the spitting image of the one person she never thought she’d see again. These two, scarred and solitary, begin a secret affair, and Louisa starts to believe she can again find the happiness she had given up on. The Poison Tree (Penguin reissue 2012) begins when Karen and her nine-year-old daughter, Alice, pick up Rex from a ten-year stint in prison for murder. A flash back takes us to the sultry summer in 1990s London when Karen, an excellent student on the verge of college graduation, first meets the exotic, flamboyant Biba and joins her casual life in a crumbling mansion in Highgate. Karen begins a relationship with Biba’s enigmatic and protective older brother, Rex, and falls into a blissful rhythm of sex, alcohol, and endless summer nights. Naïvely, Karen assumes her newfound happiness will last forever. But Biba and Rex have a complicated family history—one of abandonment, suicide, and crippling guilt—and Karen’s summer of freedom ends badly. (Giveaway ended 1/22/12. Thanks to Sonya Cheuse, Publicity Manager at Viking/Penguin, we had three lucky winners: Cecilia H. from Kansas, Patty D. from Ohio, and Sylvie N. from Minnesota.)

A Trick of the LightLouise Penny
A Trick of the Light (Macmillan Audio 2011), finds Armand Gamache, Chief Inspector of the Sûreté du Québec, attending the opening of Clara Morrow’s solo show at the Museé d’Art Contemporain in Montréal. Gamache falls into a conversation with François Marois, a powerful art dealer, who wonders if one of Clara’s portraits, Still Life, is truly great art, or if it’s just a trick of the light. Still feeling awkward about arresting Three Pines bistro owner Olivier for a murder he didn’t commit, Gamache doesn’t attend the party afterwards at Clara and Peter’s home in Three Pines. The next morning Clara finds the body of a murdered woman in her garden, and Gamache and his team move back into their usual headquarters in the old train station. The woman is identified as Lillian Dyson, a childhood friend of Clara’s who cruelly betrayed her when they attended art college. Lillian went on to become an art critic, known for her keen eye and occasional devastatingly brutal reviews: “He’s a natural, producing art like it’s a bodily function.” And since most of the art world attended Clara’s party, Gamache has plenty of motives, like envy and revenge, and plenty of suspects, with Clara and Peter at the top of the list. Penny’s books just keep getting better, as she continues to explore threads from earlier books: the residents of Three Pines struggle to forgive Olivier for his greed and dishonesty, Jean-Guy Beauvoir and Gamache try to cope with the after effects of their wounds and the deaths in the abandoned factory, Ruth waits for Rosa to return, and Clara and Peter finally face the reality of their disintegrating marriage. We are giving away the unabridged audio edition of this engrossing 7th in the series, beautifully narrated by Ralph Cosham, whose use of accented English and flawless French bring Penny’s characters and setting to life. (Giveaway ended 1/8/12. Our lucky winner was Pat J. from Oklahoma.)

Miss DimpleMignon F. Ballard
Miss Dimple Disappears (Minotaur 2010) introduces Miss Dimple Kilpatrick, a beloved first-grade teacher for almost 40 years in Elderberry, Georgia. For young teacher Charlie Carr, life and love aren’t going exactly as planned—her head dictates loyalty to the handsome corpsman, Hugh, but whenever she thinks of her best friend’s beau, Will, her heart does the Jersey Bounce. When Miss Dimple disappears one frosty November morning in 1942, Charlie is doubly troubled. She is positive Miss Dimple would never just skip town in the middle of the school year, and determines to find the truth. Miss Dimple Rallies to the Cause (Minotaur 2011) finds Miss Dimple Kilpatrick and the town of Elderberry planning for the Bond Rally to support the troops fighting the war abroad. Miss Dimple’s friend, Virginia Balliew, has agreed to chair the big event, with the help of Buddy Oglesby. But when children discover a skeleton at the edge of a field, and Buddy disappears along with the war bond money, it’s clear that something is amiss in the little town. Miss Dimple, with the help of her fellow teachers, is soon on the case. (Giveaway ended 12/22/11. Thanks to publicist Tooraj Kavoussi and Bridget Hartzler from Minotaur we had three lucky winners: Cathi S. from Maryland, Carol H. from British Columbia, Nonie H. from Nevada.)

Slash and BurnColin Cotterill
Slash and Burn (Soho 2011) finds Dr. Siri hoping to finally be allowed to retire (again). Although he loves his two morgue assistants, he’s tired of being Laos’s national coroner, a job he never wanted in the first place. Plus, he’s pushing eighty, and wants to spend some time with his wife before his untimely death (which has been predicted by the local transvestite fortune teller). But retirement is not in the cards for Dr. Siri after all. He’s dragged into one last job for the Lao government: supervising an excavation for the remains of U.S. fighter pilot who went down in the remote northern Lao jungle ten years earlier. The presence of American soldiers in Laos is a hot-button issue for both the Americans and the Lao involved, and the search party includes high-level politicians and scientists. But one member of the party is found dead, setting off a chain of accidents Dr. Siri suspects are not completely accidental. Everyone is trapped in a cabin in the jungle, and the bodies are starting to pile up. Can Dr. Siri get to the bottom of the MIA pilot’s mysterious story before the fortune teller’s prediction comes true? Thanks to Michelle Rafferty of Soho Press, we have a hardcover copy of the 8th in this quirky series to give away. (Giveaway ended 12/8/11. Our lucky winner was Sally B. from New Jersey.)

Damage ControlDenise Hamilton
Damage Control (Scribner 2011), by critically acclaimed author Denise Hamilton, weaves an engrossing story of teenage friendship and adult betrayal, featuring a high-powered crisis consultant who gets swept up in murder and scandal involving a wealthy political family. Maggie Silver is solidly middle class, with a mortgage to pay and an ill mother to support. She is doing her best to scramble up the ladder at an elite PR firm in Southern California whose clients include movie stars and famous athletes. Now, Maggie tackles her toughest client yet: Senator Henry Paxton, a distinguished statesman who also happens to be the father of Anabelle, Maggie’s estranged best friend from high school. Senator Paxton’s young female aide has been found murdered, and Maggie must run damage control to prevent the scandal from growing. Thrown back into the Paxtons’ glamorous world, Maggie is unexpectedly flooded with memories from the stormy years in high school when her friendship with Anabelle was dramatically severed after a tragedy that neither of them has been able to forget. As Maggie gets further embroiled in the lives of the Paxtons, she realizes that the ties of her old friendship are stronger than she thinks. Riveting and suspense-filled, Damage Control examines our craving for celebrity and spectacle, and how far the bonds of friendship can stretch before they break forever. (Giveaway ended 11/22/11. Thanks to Darlene Chan we had three lucky winners: Ellen B. from New Jersey, Jan G. from Texas, and Judy F. from South Carolina.)

When Elves AttackTim Dorsey
When Elves Attack: A Joyous Christmas Greeting from the Criminal Nutbars of the Sunshine State
Just imagine Santa’s big belly protruding over a neon Speedo and you’re already picturing Christmas in Florida — Tim Dorsey-style! Yes, for this year’s holiday season, that lovable psycho-killer Serge Storms, and his doped-up side kick Coleman, are bringing their trademark mayhem to your local shopping mall in this short, hilarious novel that takes everything about Christmas in Florida for a wild ride. If Serge has his way, the office Christmas party will never be the same and there has to be some reward for sitting on Santa’s lap. So grab a six-pack, spike the egg nog, and hit the dunes of South Beach on a sleigh ride with Serge and Coleman. Even the reindeer are getting out of the way! (Giveaway ended 11/8/11. Thanks to Chelsey Emmelhainz of William Morrow we had 10 lucky winners: Barbara G. from North Carolina, Claudia W. from California, Christopher W. from California, Gale M. from Texas, James M. from Alabama, Jim E. from California, Leanna C. from Arizona, Mike G. from Colorado, Nancy S. from Ohio, and William H. from Hawaii.)

V is for VengenceSue Grafton
V Is for Vengeance (Putnam 2011) finds private detective Kinsey Millhone shopping for underwear when she spots an older woman dropping some expensive lingerie into an oversized handbag. Kinsey reports the shoplifter to store security, and watches as the woman is detained. Later, Kinsey runs into the security guard later, and learns that the woman, who was identified as Audrey Vance, broke down in tears when she was taken away by the police. When a death notice appears in the paper a few days later, Kinsey is startled to see that Audrey’s body was found under a bridge, an apparent suicide. Coerced by a funeral-addict friend into attending the service, Kinsey meets Marvin Striker, Audrey’s fiancé, who hires her to find Audrey’s family and maybe even figure out why Audrey would want to commit suicide. Unfortunately Kinsey discovers that Audrey was a professional shoplifter, perhaps connected with a ring responsible for millions of dollars of stolen goods, not what Marvin was hoping to learn. But by the time he fires Kinsey, she is too immersed in the investigation to let go, despite the dangerous connection with organized crime. All of which results in Kinsey celebrating her 38th birthday with two black eyes and a broken nose. We are giving away a paperback advance uncorrected proof of this 22nd in the series. (Giveaway ended 10/22/11. Our lucky winner was Nerissa H. from Texas.)

The Boy in the SuitcaseLene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis
The Boy in the Suitcase
Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse, wife, and mother of two, is a compulsive do-gooder who can’t say no when someone asks for help, even when she knows better. When her estranged friend Karin leaves her a key to a public locker in the Copenhagen train station, Nina gets suckered into her most dangerous project yet. Inside the locker is a suitcase, and inside the suitcase is a three-year-old boy: naked and drugged, but alive. Is the boy a victim of child trafficking? Can he be turned over to authorities, or will they only return him to whoever sold him? When Karin is discovered brutally murdered, Nina realizes that her life and the boy’s are in jeopardy, too. In an increasingly desperate trek across Denmark, Nina tries to figure out who the boy is, where he belongs, and who exactly is trying to hunt him down. We are giving away a paperback advance uncopyedited edition, signed by the authors at Bouchercon in St. Louis; this thriller is due for US release on November 8th. (Giveaway ended 10/8/11. Our lucky winner was Robert C. from California.)

McCoyJudi McCoy
Hounding the Pavement (Obsidian 2009) introduces Ellie Engleman, who wants a fresh start after her divorce. She adopts a Yorkie mix named Rudy and discovers she can communicate telepathically with dogs, the perfect qualification for her new dog-walking business on Manhattan’s posh Upper East Side. When Ellie arrives to walk Buddy, a prize-winning Bichon, she discovers his owner murdered in the entryway. Buddy is missing, but no one except Ellie seems to care about a mere dog. NYPD detective Sam Ryder at first views Ellie as the prime suspect, but she continues her search for the dog, hoping the trail will also lead her to the real murderer. The author donates all royalties earned on sales of this book to Best Friends Animal Society. Heir of the Dog (Obsidian 2009) finds Ellie walking Rudy in Central Park. After finding the body of a troubled but harmless park dweller, Ellie again finds herself the prime suspect in a murder, since Rudy is the sole beneficiary of the murder victim’s inheritance. With Detective Sam Ryder’s help, Ellie follows a trail of clues to a safety deposit box that might point to the real killer. Thanks to author Judi McCoy we have a signed copy of each book to give away this week. (Giveaway ended 9/22/11. Our lucky winners were Jean F. from Ohio, and Monica C. from Florida.)

A Bitter TruthCharles Todd
A Bitter Truth (William Morrow 2011)
Already deservedly lauded for the superb historical crime novels featuring shell-shocked Scotland Yard inspector Ian Rutledge (A Lonely Death, A Pale Horse, etc.), acclaimed author Charles Todd upped the ante by introducing readers to a wonderful new series protagonist, World War One battlefield nurse Bess Crawford. Featured for a third time in A Bitter Truth, Bess reaches out to help an abused and frightened young woman, only to discover that no good deed ever goes unpunished when the good Samaritan nurse finds herself falsely accused of murder. (Giveaway ended 9/8/11. Thanks to Chelsey Emmelhainz of William Morrow we had 10 lucky winners: Becky T. from Delaware, Brenda M. from Georgia, Diana B. from Georgia, Elizabeth K. from Oregon, Janice G. from Wisconsin, Joyce N. from New Jersey, Kay R. from Illinois, Nancy C. from Massachusetts, Randi D. from Wisconsin, and Toni G. from Connecticut.)

In Search of the Rose Notes Emily Arsenault
In Search of the Rose Notes (William Morrow 2011) is the story of Nora and Charlotte, two 11-year old girls who are best friends until their baby sitter Rose disappears under mysterious circumstances. They decide to investigate, but their lack of success leaves the girls frustrated and angry with each other. When Rose’s bones are found nearly 20 years later, Nora and Charlotte are drawn back together by their need to figure out what really happened. It seems that Rose was probably murdered, and Nora, the last known person to see Rose alive, is forced to reexamine her memories of that fateful day. (Giveaway ended 8/22/11. Our lucky winners were Johanna A. from California, and Pat W. from New Mexico.)
Every Secret Thing Laura Lippman
Every Secret Thing (William Morrow 2011) is a reissue of the 2003 stand-alone novel. Alice and Ronnie are two little girls who find an infant in an abandoned stroller after being banished from a neighborhood birthday party. What happens next nearly destroys three families. Seven years later, the two girls, now 18, are released from juvenile detention, still haunted by the secrets surrounding the crime. Then another child disappears under similar circumstances, causing everyone to relive that terrible time. (Giveaway ended 8/22/11. Our lucky winners were Megan H. from Florida, and Sol T. from Virginia.)
Love Lies Bleeding Jess McConkey (aka Shirley Damsgaard)
Love Lies Bleeding (William Morrow 2011) is the story of Samantha Moore, whose perfect life is destroyed by a random act of violence resulting in a three-month coma. When Samantha awakes, she is bitter and in terrible pain, and fears that the inhabitants of the small town she is recovering in have a deadly secret. (Giveaway ended 8/22/11. Our lucky winners were Bob M. from Colorado, and Anita N. from New York.)

The Red Velvet TurnshoeCassandra Clark
The Red Velvet Turnshoe (Minotaur 2009) finds Sister Hildegard on her way to Italy on a secret mission in search of a precious relic, the cross of Constantine, which is believed to hold great power. Disguised as a pilgrim, Hildegard begins her journey with a guarded shipment of wool from Yorkshire. When the ship docks in Flanders, the decomposing body of a clerk is found hidden in a bale of wool. Pierrekyn, the clerk’s protegée and the last person seen in his company, is suspected of the murder, and Hildegard takes him with her to escape the mob clamoring for his head. Protected by a tournament knight, who works as a body guard in the off season, Hildegard and Pierrekyn begin an arduous trek across the Alps in the dead of winter in search of the cross. It’s dangerous in 1383: murderous thieves prey on travelers, England is in the middle of the Hundred Years’ War, Europe is divided between rival popes, and the Black Death is claiming new victims every day. The political intrigue leaves Hildegard unsure whom she can trust, especially after someone tries to kill her, but she is determined to complete her quest and clear Pierrekyn’s name. We are giving away a hardcover copy of this compelling historical mystery, the 2nd in the series. (Giveaway ended 8/8/11. Our lucky winner was Dorothea B. from Colorado.)

Baker Street LettersMichael Robertson
The Baker Street Letters (Minotaur 2009) introduces Reggie Heath, a high-powered London solicitor whose new suite of rooms includes 221B Baker Street. A clause in the lease requires the tenant to answer all letters addressed to Sherlock Holmes with a form response. Reggie’s younger brother Nigel, recently released from a “health and recreation center” is given the task of responding to the letters while waiting for a hearing about restoring his solicitor’s license. In the process, Nigel discovers a letter written 20 years earlier by 8-year-old Mara Ramiriz from Los Angeles, asking Sherlock Holmes to find her missing father. Two recent letters, supposedly from the same author, request the return of documents enclosed with the original letter. Nigel, using his burgeoning Sherlockian powers of observation, notices that the signature is exactly the same as the first letter, strangely missing the normal changes two decades makes in a signature. When Nigel doesn’t show up for his hearing as expected, Reggie discovers that Nigel has departed for Los Angeles, leaving a dead body in his ransacked office. The file of letters to Sherlock Holmes is also missing. Reggie follows Nigel to California, and discovers that a series of current crimes may be linked to the letter Mara wrote to Sherlock Holmes 20 years before. We are giving away a tradepaperback copy of this light-hearted debut novel. (Giveaway ended 7/21/11. Our lucky winner was Susan B. from Massachusetts.)

FallenKarin Slaughter
Fallen (Delacorte Press 2011) includes both Will Trent, an agent with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation in Atlanta, and Dr. Sara Linton, a pediatrician and coroner in Grant County, Georgia. There’s no police training stronger than a cop’s instinct. Faith Mitchell’s mother isn’t answering her phone. Her front door is open. There’s a bloodstain above the knob. Her infant daughter is hidden in a shed behind the house. All that the Georgia Bureau of Investigations taught Faith Mitchell goes out the window when she charges into her mother’s house, gun drawn. She sees a man dead in the laundry room. She sees a hostage situation in the bedroom. What she doesn’t see is her mother. When the hostage situation turns deadly, Faith is left with too many questions, and not enough answers. To find her mother, she’ll need the help of her partner, Will Trent, and they’ll both need the help of Dr. Sara Linton. But Faith isn’t just a cop anymore—she’s a witness. She’s also a suspect. The thin blue line hides police corruption, bribery, even murder. Faith will have to go up against the people she respects the most in order to find her mother and bring the truth to light—or bury it forever. Thanks to Wiley Saichek of AuthorsOnTheWeb, we have two hardcover copies of this thriller to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/8/11. Our lucky winners were Frances D. from Massachusetts, and Marie P. from Manitoba, Canada.)

The Cleveland CreepLes Roberts
The Cleveland Creep (Gray & Company, Publishers 2011) is the 15th book in a series featuring Slovenian American private investigator Milan Jacovich, a former Kent State University football player and ex-cop with a taste for klobasa sandwiches and Stroh’s beer — and a knack for finding trouble on the streets of Cleveland. A simple missing-person case gets complicated when Milan investigates the disappearance of 28-year-old Earl Dacey who left behind a strange collection of voyeuristic videos in his mother’s West Side Cleveland house. Was Earl just a pervert shadowing Catholic schoolgirls in Northeast Ohio shopping malls with his hidden camera? Or had he become entangled with unsavory characters in the local adult film business? Thanks to Jane Lassar of Gray & Company, Publishers, we are giving away a hardback copy of this mystery. (Giveaway ended 6/22/11. Our lucky winner was Jim F. from Ohio.)

Heart of IceLis Wiehl and April Henry
Heart of Ice (Thomas Nelson 2011) is the third in the series featuring federal prosecutor Allison Pierce, FBI special agent Nicole Hedges, and TV crime reporter Cassidy Shaw. At the Portland Fitness Center, Cassidy joins the boot camp class run by the beautiful instructor Elizabeth Avery, a beautiful, charismatic, and twisted killer. At the age of 13, when she was known as Sissy Hewsom, Elizabeth committed two horrific crimes and served time in a juvenile facility. When Elizabeth ruthlessly disposes of a young reporter, Allison, Nicole, and Cassidy know they are after a cold blooded killer. What they don’t know is that they’ve already met her. We are giving away a hardcover copy of this Triple Threat thriller. (Giveaway ended 6/8/11. Our lucky winner was Barbara L. from California.)

To Have and To KillMary Jane Clark
To Have and To Kill (William Morrow 2011) introduces Piper Donovan, a struggling actress who returns home to live with her parents in Hillwood, NJ. Piper’s father is obsessed with preparing for disaster, and her mother, who owns a bakery, has just discovered that her failing eyesight is caused by macular degeneration. Piper volunteers to make and decorate a wedding cake for her friend Glenna, the star of a soap opera Piper worked for. When Glenna’s fiancé is arrested for murder, Piper, with the help of her former neighbor Jack, an FBI agent, sets out to uncover the real killer. We are giving away a hardback copy of this cozy mystery, the first in a new series: The Wedding Cake Mysteries. (Giveaway ended 5/22/11. Our lucky winner was Doris L. from Illinois.)

SilencerJames W. Hall
Silencer (2010) finds Thorn, an eco-avenger private investigator, working with Earl Hammond, who is about to donate his Coquina Ranch to the state to preserve the land. Hammond is shot, and Thorn is kidnapped and imprisoned in a sinkhole from which there is no escape. Frisco Hammond, the dark sheep of the family, suspects that the murder of his father and the disappearance of Thorn are connected, and begins an investigation with his brother’s wife, Clare. The two uncover a sinster cabal of rich and powerful men whose evil deeds stretch back to the 1930s. We are giving away a trade paperback of this 11th in the series. (Giveaway ended 4/22/11. Our lucky winner was Lee G. from Indiana.)

Once Was a SoldierJulia Spencer-Fleming
Once Was a Soldier (Minotaur 2011) finds Reverend Clare Fergusson making the difficult adjustment back to civilian life after a tour flying helicopters in Iraq. Clare returns to her duties as priest of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church while struggling to cut down on her drinking and reliance on a mixture of pills left from her Army medical kit. Clare joins a community support group for veterans, and is shocked when a young member of the group dies, an apparent suicide. Clare doesn’t believe Tally killed herself, and pressures police chief Russ Van Alstyne to investigate her death as a murder. We are giving away a paperback advance readers’ copy of this powerful 7th in the series. (Giveaway ended 4/22/11. Our lucky winner was Carolyn N. from Kentucky.)

Soul TrapperF.J. Lennon
Soul Trapper (Atria 2011) is the story of Kane Pryce, a Hollywood slacker who also hunts ghosts using a soul trap, a powerful supernatural treasure that allows him to hunt down, capture, and send ghosts from the earthly realm to the afterlife. A priest’s request to rid his church of a ghost leads Kane to the ghost of six-year old Ollie Lonzi, who was killed with Kane’s mother in a car crash 50 years earlier. We are giving away a hardback copy of this debut thriller by computer game designer Lennon, the first novel to be adapted from an iPhone app. (Giveaway ended 4/8/11. Our lucky winner was Jeri S. from Kansas.)

Now You See HerJoy Fielding
Now You See Her (Atria 2011) is the story of Marcy Taggart, who lost her 21-year-old daughter Devon in a canoeing accident two years earlier. Her husband and sister are convinced that Devon, who suffered from bipolar disorder, committed suicide. But Devon’s body was never found, and Marcy is haunted by the idea that her daughter may have run away to start a new life. Now in Ireland, on a trip that was to be a celebration of their 26th wedding anniversary, Marcy struggles to accept the end of her marriage after her husband left her for another woman while seeing her daughter’s face in that of strangers in the street. We are giving away a hardback copy of this suspense thriller. (Giveaway ended 3/22/11. Our lucky winner was Kathryn W. from Michigan.)

Don’t Sweat the Small StuffDon Bruns
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff (Oceanview 2010) finds Skip Moore and James Lessor working their first official private investigator gig at a traveling carnival show, whose owner suspects someone is sabotaging the rides. The process by which More and Less Investigators became licensed won’t hold up to close scrutiny, but James is sure that they are on their way to fame and fortune despite their less than stellar first day on the job. The carnies are unfriendly, the attractions are scary, and Skip worries that they may not be cut out to be investigators after all. We are giving away a hardback copy in this 4th in the series featuring two bumbling best friends since grade school. (Giveaway ended 3/8/11. Our lucky winner was John M. from Florida.)

The Eagle CatcherMargaret Coel
The Eagle Catcher (1995) introduces John Aloysius O’Malley, a Jesuit missionary and recovering alcoholic exiled to the Wind River Reservation in Wyoming. When tribal chairman Harvey Castle is found murdered in his tent at a Arapaho ceremony, and his nephew Anthony is charged with the crime, Father O’Malley is sure that Anthony is being framed and works with Arapaho lawyer Vicky Holden to clear his name. We are giving away a paperback copy of this first in a long-running series that features interesting characters and fascinating insights into the Arapaho culture. The Spider’s Web, 15th in the series, is a finalist for the Hillerman Sky Award for the mystery that best captures the landscape of the Southwest. Margaret Coel will be one of the Guests of Honor at Left Coast Crime 2011: The Big Chile, held in Santa Fe, New Mexico, March 24–27, 2011. (Giveaway ended 2/21/11. Our lucky winner was Kitty W. from Louisiana.)

The Talented Miss HighsmithThe Talented Miss Highsmith: The Secret Life and Serious Art of Patricia Highsmith (St. Martin’s Press 2009, Picador 2010), by Joan Schenkar, is the compelling story of a woman who once said perversion was her guiding principle. Patricia Highsmith, one of the great writers of the 20th century, lived a bizarre life rivaling that of her best-known creation, Tom Ripley. This nearly 700 page biography includes 16 pages of black and white photographs. We are giving away a trade paperback copy of this finalist for the 2010 Edgar Award for Best Critical/Biographical Work. (Giveaway ended 2/8/11. Our lucky winner was John S. from Maryland.)

Alone in the CrowdLuiz Alfredo Garcia-Roza
Alone in the Crowd (Brazil 2007, Picador 2010) is the 7th mystery featuring Inspector Espinosa of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. An elderly woman collects her pension from the bank and then travels to the police station, asking to speak to Chief Espinosa. Espinosa is unavailable and she becomes tired of waiting and leaves. Two hours later she is killed by a bus, but the witnesses can’t agree if she fell or was pushed. Espinosa suspects Hugo Breno, a bank clerk who has been secretly following Espinosa around the city. Then Espinosa discovers a past connection between himself and Breno and tries to bring his childhood memories of a murder to the surface in this complex psychological thriller. (Giveaway ended 1/22/11. Our lucky winner was Marsha C. from New York.)

The Demon’s ParchmentJeri Westerson
The Demon’s Parchment (Minotaur 2010) finds disgraced knight Crispin Guest in debt and desperate for a client in the cold of winter in 1384 London. The Sheriff of London promises Crispin a reward if he can help track down whoever is strangling, sodomizing, and eviscerating young boys. Then Jacob of Provencal, a court physician, offers Crispin a hefty purse for the recovery of some stolen documents. The Jews were expelled from England a century earlier, but Jacob and his son have special dispensation to provide medical care for the Queen. Crispin advises Jacob to go to the authorities for help, but when Jacob hints that the stolen parchments may have something to do with the murders, Crispin overcomes his distrust of Jews and foreigners to take the case. Crispin suspects that the missing documents may have been used to create a Golem, a demon with a taste for blood molded from clay. The news that the Guest ancestral home has finally been sold intensifies Crispin’s sense of loss and despair, and he vacillates between bouts of drunkenness and throwing himself headlong into the investigation. Determined to find the serial killer before he can strike again, Crispin reluctantly accepts the help of his apprentice Jack Tucker and John Rykener, a cross-dressing male prostitute. Unbelievable as it seems, both John Rykener, who used the name Eleanor while dressed as a woman, and the blood-thirsty serial killer are based on historical characters, adding an extra dimension to this intense historical mystery. We are giving away a signed hardcover copy. (Giveaway ended 1/8/11. Our lucky winner was Eileen M. from Virginia.)

Death on the Holy MountainDavid Dickinson
Death on the Holy Mountain takes place in 1905, when Lord Francis Powerscourt sets off to Ireland to investigate a series of art thefts from country houses. The puzzling thing about the thefts is that old family portraits of the Protestant gentry were stolen while valuable Old Masters were left behind. Then people begin to vanish and Powerscourt’s own life is threatened. Powerscourt’s aristocratic English family was originally from Ireland, and he spent much of his youth there, so the local people trust him, but not quite enough to share their secrets. This deft portrayal of the unrest in Ireland at the time is populated with vivid characters. We are giving away a trade paperback copy of this book, the 7th in the series. (Giveaway ended 12/22/10. Our lucky winner was Kathy K. from New York.)

While My Guitar Gently WeepsDeborah Grabien
While My Guitar Gently Weeps (Minotaur 2009) finds JP Kinkaid, guitarist for a legendary British rock group, at home in San Francisco, California, playing with a local group who are scrambling to fulfill a CD contract after their founder died suddenly. The rehearsals are going well except for the egotistic and abrasive vocalist Vinny Fabiano, who seems to thrive on conflict. JP doesn’t care much for Vinny’s vocal style, but he does covet his pearl-top Zemaitis guitar, similar to one stolen from Ron Wood of the Rolling Stones. Vinny has also commissioned a new custom-made guitar from local luthier Bruno Baines. When Vinny is found dead, with his head bashed in by his new guitar, Bruno is charged with his murder since he delivered the guitar that evening. But JP can’t believe that Bruno would use his incredible creation as a murder weapon. The murder investigation at times takes a back seat to the details about guitars and their creation and the tensions and triumphs of session recording, but that doesn’t detract from the appeal of the book, ably narrated by the charming JP, still battling the symptoms of multiple sclerosis while trying to cope with the cancer diagnosis of long-time live-in girlfriend Bree. We are giving away a hardover copy of this book. (Giveaway ended 12/7/10. Our lucky winner was Leah H. from California.)

The Black DoveSteve Hockensmith
The Black Dove (2008), the third in the Holmes on the Range series, features cowboy brothers Otto “Big Red” Gustav “Old Red” Amlingmeyer. Finding themselves down on their luck and out of a job in 1893 San Francisco, the Sherlock Holmes-loving pair join forces with Diane Corvus to investigate the death of Dr. Chan, whose luggage was thrown from the train the brothers were patrolling. Chinatown tongs, Barbary Coast thugs, and shady San Francisco police give the brothers more than enough to worry about as they try their hand at “deducifying” in the big city. We are giving away a signed trade paperback of this funny historical mystery. (Giveaway ended 11/21/10. Our lucky winner was Collette B. from Washington.)

Monster in MiniatureMargaret Grace
Monster in Miniature (Berkley Prime Crime 2010) is the 4th in the series featuring Geraldine Porter, a retired high school English teacher in a small northern California town, whose hobby is building dollhouses and miniature scenes. To celebrate Halloween, Geraldine and her granddaughter Maddie are busy creating a multi-storied dollhouse haunted by witches, ghosts, and ghouls. While taking a break to admire the decorated neighborhood houses, they discover that a scarecrow is actually the body of Oliver Halbert, who was investigating city officials and builders he suspected of taking bribes and shortcuts. This cozy mystery has just the right amount of scary elements for the season. (Giveaway ended 11/8/10. Our lucky winner was Meredith V. from Michigan.)

Devil’s TrillGerald Elias
Devil’s Trill (Minotaur 2009) introduces Daniel Jacobus, a blind, reclusive, crotchety violin teacher living in self-imposed exile in rural New England. Jacobus emerges from his seclusion to attend the Grimsley Competition at Carnegie Hall in New York City, held every 13 years to select the best violinist age 13 or younger. The violinist chosen by the Grimsley Competition wins the honor of performing a concert on the Piccolino Stradivarius, a 3/4 size violin with a long and unfortunate history. Jacobus, a former competitor, firmly believes that the Grimsley Competition is destructive to young violinists, harmful to both their development as artists and to their mental well-being. When the Piccolino Stradivarius is stolen during the competition, Jacobus, who made no secret of his distaste for the competition, is the prime suspect. With the help of friend Nathaniel Williams and student Yumi Shinagawa, Jacobus begins a search for the missing violin through a maze of self-serving philanthropists, shady musical instrument dealers, competitive music teachers, ruthless parents, and fragile students. Fascinating insights into the world of violin players and the destructive industry of producing child prodigies enliven this debut mystery. Danse Macabre, the second in the series, was just released. (Giveaway ended 10/22/10. Our lucky winner was Joyce T. from Colorado.)

Serpent in the ThornsJeri Westerson
Serpent in the Thorns (Minotaur 2009) is the 2nd in the series featuring Crispin Guest, a disgraced knight in 1384 London, now known as Tracker for his ability to find the truth. A simple-minded girl working at a tavern comes to Crispin confessing to a murder of an unknown man. In her room Crispin discovers the body of a man killed with a crossbow, but the confused girl insists she must have killed him since no one else was there. With the body Crispin finds a golden box containing a crown of thorns, a holy relic sent to King Richard from the French king as a peace offering. Sure that returning the relic along with the identity of the assassin will convince the king to restore his lands and title, Crispin hides it in his room and sets out in search of the killer. Unfortunately Crispin’s prime suspect is Miles Aleyn, the king’s Captain of the Archers, a powerful man above the reach of a disgraced knight without definite proof. Assisting Crispin is young Jack, a thief Crispin has rescued from the streets. Jack can’t quite leave his thieving ways behind, but he is determined to help his master find the truth. Crispin’s struggle to adapt to his new circumstances is enhanced by his developing relationships with lower class people like Jack and friends who own a tavern, people below the notice of a titled knight, people who like him for the person he is rather than what he owns. We are giving away a trade paperback of this action-packed mystery, a finalist for the 2010 Bruce Alexander Award for Best Historical Mystery. (Giveaway ended 10/8/10. Our lucky winner was Tina B. from Indiana.)

The Hidden ManDavid Ellis
The Hidden Man (Putnam 2009) introduces Jason Kolarich, a grief-stricken lawyer in Chicago, Illinois. Jason is struggling to get his life back on track after losing his wife and baby daughter in a car accident four months ago, when a man who calls himself “Mr. Smith” presents him with a briefcase full of cash to take on the defense of Sam Cutler. Jason and Sammy were best friends as children and through high school, when football and a college scholarship for Jason separated them. Sam is now in jail, accused of killing Griffin Perlini, the pedophile suspected of kidnapping Sam’s two-year old sister Audrey nearly 30 years earlier. While searching for someone else with a motive against Perlini, Jason uncovers new evidence of Perlini’s crimes against children, but nothing to tie him to Audrey’s disappearance. Mr. Smith provides a witness who is willing to testify he saw someone else fleeing the murder scene, and pushes Jason to expedite the trial as much as possible, making Jason wonder if it is possible that Sammy didn’t murder Perlini after all. Jason is an engaging protagonist, desperately trying to pull himself out of his emotional coma in order to help his boyhood friend. Layers of the past are slowly stripped away, revealing uncomfortable truths in this compelling and complex legal thriller, a finalist for the 2010 Barry Award for Best Novel. We are giving away a paperback Advance Readers copy of this book. (Giveaway ended 9/22/10. Our lucky winner was Donna H. from Arizona.)

I’d Know You AnywhereLaura Lippman
I’d Know You Anywhere (William Morrow 2010) examines the life of a woman who was kidnapped in 1985 at age 15 (then Elizabeth Lerner), and held for nearly six weeks by Walter Bowman, now on death row in Virginia for the rape and murder of Holly, his final victim. Now Eliza Benedict has fashioned a comfortable, relatively trouble-free life as a homemaker in Maryland, with her supportive husband Peter, challenging 13-year-old daughter Iso (NOT Isobel!), and endearing 8-year-old son Albie. Walter’s execution date is drawing near, after 22 years on death row, and with some outside help he has tracked Eliza down and wants her help. This is most unwelcome to Eliza, but reminiscent of her behavior when she was kidnapped, she seems almost unable to resist communicating with Walter. Why didn’t she escape? And could she have saved Holly? The story alternates between 1985 and the present, and we see things from Eliza’s and Walter’s perspectives, as well as other characters. Lippman tells a compelling story, building unrelentingly step by step. As one would expect, the writing is superb, and even though we’ve grown tired of serial killer books, this one is an exception and not to be missed. Thanks to Megan Traynor of HarperCollins we have a paperback Advance Reader Copy of this book to give away. (Giveaway ended 9/8/10. Our lucky winner was Kathy L. from Maryland.)

Murder Suicide WhateverCrazy Fool Kills FiveGwen Freeman
Murder… Suicide… Whatever… (2007) introduces Fifi Cutter, a feisty, bi-racial, unemployed, twenty-something who is surprised when her free-loading half-brother, Bosco, appears on her front porch moaning that Uncle Ted has just been murdered. Though unsure she even had an Uncle Ted, Fifi is soon partnered with Bosco pretending to be private investigators disguised as grief counselors. They stumble over bodies, but all the violence happens off screen in this goofy thriller. Fifi and Bosco have real personalities and the minor characters are classic Los Angeles. We have two copies of this book plus one copy of Crazy Fool Kills Five, the next book in the series, to give away. (Giveaway ended 8/21/10. Our lucky winners were Stephanie C. from Nevada, Caryn S. from Illinois, and Catherine P. from Iowa.)

Stained GlassRalph M. McInerny
Stained Glass (Minotaur 2009), is the 28th Father Downling mystery. St. Hilary’s is threatened with closure because of shrinking numbers and tough economic times. Father Dowling tries to drum up support from church officials and parishioners, including the Deveres, a wealthy family who wants to protect the beautiful stained glass windows they donated to St. Hilary’s years ago. But then members of the Deveres family start turning up dead and Father Dowling finds himself embroiled in both church politics and long-hidden family secrets. We are giving away a hardback copy of what is probably the final book in this series, published just before Ralph McInery’s death earlier this year. (Giveaway ended 8/8/10. Our lucky winner was Lester S. from Illinois.)

The TerroristPeter Steiner
The Terrorist (2010), the third book in the Louis Morgon series, is a continuation of the tight, introspective, and wonderfully brief and thoughtful writing in the first two titles. Here, we focus on the start of the series, because they need to be read in order: Le Crime (2008) [originally published as A French Country Murder (2003)] opens with Louis Morgon finding a dead body on the doorstep of his refuge in a rural French village. He quickly determines it is a message telling him it will be harder to escape his past than he’d thought. Morgon was a brilliant and rising young thinker in the US State Department, eventually liaison with the CIA, and an operative in the Middle East. Two decades before, when his rapid rise was terminated mysteriously and without good cause, and as his marriage and family fell apart, Morgon headed to France to sort things out. While following an old pilgrimage route, he stumbles on the small village whose environment and people captivate him: among them, neighbors Solesmne, a graceful, intriguing woman with a spinal deformity, and Renard, the local gendarme, and his family. As events develop, Morgon’s past sweeps his new friends into his former world of intrigue, lies, and death. Steiner’s writing is careful and concise, with unexpected philosophical ruminations and complex character development. Travelogue is balanced with spy stuff, and Morgon, the gentle, philosophical, amateur painter, shows he still has the skills of a master CIA operative. L’Assassin (2008) continues the story of Morgon’s attempts to find peace in rural France, followed by The Terrorist, which was released in late May. Thanks to Rita Marcus and Hector DeJean at Minotaur, we have three signed hardcover copies to give away. (Giveaway ended 7/22/10. Our lucky winners were Susan D. from Texas, Judy E. from California, and Rita S. from Pennsylvania.)

Among the MadJacqueline Winspear
Among the Mad (Henry Holt 2009) begins on Christmas Eve 1931 when Masie Dobbs, a private investigator and psychologist in London, walks by an ex-soldier missing a leg. Sensing the man is desperate, Masie reaches out to him, but he detonates a grenade and kills himself. The next day the Prime Minister receives a letter threatening violence unless the government does something to help the impoverished, especially unemployed veterans. Since the letter mentions Masie by name, Inspector Stratton of Scotland Yard request her help with the investigation. Masie suspects that the threat comes from a man haunted by experiences in the war, who feels abandoned rather than supported by society upon his return home. A former war nurse, Masie has great sympathy for the veterans suffering emotional damage who are ineligible for the pensions, services, and benefits provided for physically injured veterans. Some of the darkest images in this historical mystery come from Masie’s visits to insane asylums, as she learns about the uncertain outcomes of the treatments provided to patients. Contrasting Masie’s exploration of the psychological trauma of war is the story of her assistant Billy’s wife, who is unable to escape the melancholia that overcame her at the death of their youngest child. Masie continues to confront her own war ghosts in this mesmerizing 6th in the series, a finalist for the 2010 Macavity Award for Best Historical Novel. (Giveaway ended 7/7/10. Our lucky winner was Susi P. from California.)

Baby SharkRobert Fate
Baby Shark (2006) introduces Kristin Van Dijk, a teenager who travels around with her father hustling pool in 1950s Texas. Dad is killed in the first few pages, and Baby Shark is raped, beaten, and left barely alive. But she comes back with a vengeance that could fuel a spaghetti Western. This is a fast-paced read, with a good feel for the time and place, and a regular dose of violence. Kristin returns a few years later as a PI in the next two in the series: Baby Shark’s Beaumont Blues and Baby Shark’s High Plains Redemption. We are giving away a set of trade paperbacks of all three books. (Giveaway ended 6/22/10. Our lucky winner was Dick M. from Wisconsin.)

Face of BetrayalLis Wiehl with April Henry
Face of Betrayal (Thomas Nelson 2009) introduces crime reporter Cassidy Shaw, federal prosecutor Allison Pierce, and FBI special agent Nicole Hedges, nicknamed The Triple Threat after a favorite dessert they often share at their frequent lunch meetings. Each of the three women struggles with a personal issue — trying to get pregnant, coping with life as a single mother, an inability to sustain a lasting relationship — but all three are passionate about their jobs. When Katie Converse, a 17-year-old Senate page, disappears while home in Portland, Oregon for Christmas break, Nicole is assigned to the case. Katie’s parents present their missing daughter as an innocent who doesn’t date yet, but Katie’s blog reveals that she was involved with an older man, perhaps a senator. Allison begins to unravel the threads of Katie’s life with the help of Nicole, and Cassidy, who sees the investigation as a career-maker. (Giveaway ended 6/8/10. Our lucky winner was Melanie B. from South Dakota.)

the Little SleepPaul Tremblay
The Little Sleep (Henry Holt 2009) introduces Mark Genevich, a severely narcoleptic private investigator in South Boston, Massachusetts. Not only does he fall asleep in mid-conversation, but he also has serious hallucination problems, making it difficult to run a detective business properly. Jennifer Times hires him to find her stolen fingers — or did she? Mark isn’t too sure, and Jennifer denies it. He finds compromising pictures of her in an envelope on his desk, so it must be true, but her father, the Suffolk County District Attorney, denies that the pictures are Jennifer. With Mark as the protagonist, the story can go about anywhere. He wants to be a tough, wise-cracking PI, but with his tenuous grip on reality, it is a hard act. Mark also finds he has to depend on his mother Ellen, if for no other reason than she owns his apartment and his office. Readers prone to nervous anxiety probably shouldn’t read this one — Mark insists on smoking (being a hard-boiled kind of guy), but tends to fall asleep with burning cigarets, and of course, he shouldn’t drive! But you have to give him credit for trying, and he is somehow endearing. (Giveaway ended 5/22/10. Our lucky winner was Barbara H. from South Carolina.)

Margarita NightsPhyllis Smallman
Margarita Nights (Canada 2008, US: McArthur & Company 2010) introduces Sherri Travis, self-proclaimed "white trash" and a bartender in the small beach town of Jacaranda, Florida. Sherri is separated from her well connected but unreliable husband Jimmy, but hasn’t gotten around to divorcing him. When she is informed by the police that Jimmy’s boat exploded with him on it, Sherri is convinced that Jimmy is running a scam to escape yet another gambling debt. Unfortunately Sherri is the recipient of Jimmy’s life insurance, and thus the prime suspect when evidence of foul play is discovered. Sherri is a bit too inclined to suspect everyone she knows of playing a part in Jimmy’s disappearance/murder, but the self-deprecating wry humor of her narration makes this light mystery an enjoyable read. A finalist for the 2009 Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel, the Florida setting is lovingly portrayed by this Canadian writer. (Giveaway ended 5/5/10. Our lucky winner was Lois R. from Pennsylvania.)

Gone TomorrowLee Child
Gone Tomorrow (Delacorte 2009) is the 13th book in the Jack Reacher series. Reacher is riding the Manhattan subway very early one morning when his suspicions are aroused by a woman he suspects might be a suicide bomber. Confronting the woman leads Reacher into an investigation that takes him on a wild ride from the war in Afganistan in the 1980s to the current war on terrorism. We are offering two paperback copies of this book. (Giveaway ended 4/21/10. Our lucky winners were Don S. from Illinois and Michelle S. from Alberta, Canada.)

Cut ShortLeigh Russell
Cut Short (No Exit Press 2009) introduces Geraldine Steel, a detective inspector who relocates from London to the small town of Woolsmarsh, England, after the unhappy end of a long-term relationship. Hoping for a fresh start, Geraldine buys a flat and settles into her new job and her first case: the brutal murder of a young woman in the local park. A second murder of another young girl in the same park ups the ante as everyone confronts the realization that there may be a serial killer preying on young blond women. Geraldine’s investigative strengths are her instinct and her ability to remember all the facts, so she throws herself into long hours of poring over all the evidence. Meanwhile, the disturbed killer, growing increasingly less balanced and more violent, prowls the park. Geraldine is a complex and compelling protagonist, totally devoted to her job yet wanting more out of life. This well written debut psychological thriller maintains the suspense to the final chapter. (Giveaway ended 4/6/10. Our lucky winner was Pat L. from Arkansas.)
City of DragonsKelli Stanley
City of Dragons (Minotaur 2010) introduces Miranda Corbie, a former Spanish Civil War nurse, ex-escort, and now private investigator in San Francisco. During the 1940 Rice Bowl Party in Chinatown to raise money to send to China for war relief, Miranda stumbles over young Eddie Takahashi, dying of a gunshot wound. When Eddie dies in her arms, Miranda feels compelled to find his killer but everyone else seems to want to sweep the whole thing under the rug. Meanwhile, a well-paying client hires Miranda to investigate the death of her husband, presumed dead of a heart attack while enjoying the favors of a prostitute. The wife is sure her husband was murdered, and that his death has something to do with the disappearance of her drug-addicted step-daughter. Living mainly on whiskey and Chesterfields, Miranda juggles both investigations while trying to cope with her loneliness after the death of her lover in Spain. Syncopated prose echoes the jazz lyrics that punctuate Miranda’s journey from nightclub to tenement to bordello in this intense series opener. (Giveaway ended 3/22/10. Our lucky winner was Shirley N. from Ohio.)
Trace of SmokeRebecca Cantrell
A Trace of Smoke (Forge Books 2009) introduces Hannah Vogel, a 32-year old crime reporter in 1931 Berlin. As part of her weekly routine, Hannah is examining the new photographs in the Hall of the Unnamed Dead in the Alexanderplatz police station when she is horrified to see the face of her beloved younger brother, Ernst. But Hannah is trapped in silence — she can’t identify her brother since Hannah has lent both her own and Ernst’s identity papers so that her Zionist friend Sarah and her son could flee Germany. So Hannah begins to investigate on her own by visiting the club where Ernst, a cross-dressing cabaret singer, worked. Here she meets both Ernst’s much older lover and his young Nazi boyfriend, who tells Hannah Ernst also had a secret lover high in the Nazi power structure. When a small boy named Anton, who claims she is his mother, is abandoned on her doorstep, Hannah’s life grows even more complicated and dangerous. The endearing Anton, clutching his stuffed bear for comfort, imagines himself an Indian brave from the western tales of Karl May in order to deal with his reality of hunger and pain. The portrait of Berlin’s gay community, valiantly maintaining a carefree facade while on the verge of Nazi persecution, is vivid and painful. This well-researched and unforgettable debut mystery melds an intricate plot with complex characters, and just won the Bruce Alexander Award for Best Historical Mystery. (Giveaway ended 3/7/10. Our lucky winner was Judy W. from Pennsylvania.)
Short SqueezeChris Knopf
Short Squeeze (Minotaur 2010), the 5th in the Sam Acquillo series, focuses on Sam’s friend Jackie Swaitkowski, a real estate lawyer in the Hamptons. When a new client turns up dead, things take a sudden and dangerous turn for Jackie. In the client’s pocket is an envelope that contains a shocking piece of evidence that suggests that the death was anything but an accident. Jackie has bigger fish to fry—like her old flame Harry’s surprise return to town—until a late-night car chase changes her priorities. Now she has every reason to believe that the next name on the killer’s list is her own. (Giveaway ended 3/7/10. Our lucky winner was Mary P. from Ohio.)
No MercyLori Armstrong
No Mercy (Touchstone 2010) introduces Mercy Gunderson, a former Army sniper who is one-quarter Minneconjou Sioux, returning home to South Dakota on medical leave. While Mercy is dealing with the death of her father and the responsibility of her younger sister, the body of a Sioux boy is discovered on her ranch. Mercy is pulled into the investigation of a killing spree targeting local Native American teens, and realizes that South Dakota may not be any safer than Iraq. Thanks to Kelly Bowen and Stacy Lasner of Touchstone Books and Simon and Schuster, we have two hardcover copies of this first in a new series to give away. (Giveaway ended 2/21/10. Our lucky winners were David F. from Pennsylvania and Barbara S. from Florida.)
Shadow of the WolfBrent Ghelfi
Shadow of the Wolf (Picador 2010) is the 2nd in the Alekei “Volk” Volkovoy series. Volk, an ex-army colonel with a prosthetic leg, a covert agent for the Russian army, and a major player in the Moscow underworld, is lured back to the mountains of Chechnya by an international cabal. The assignment seems simple, find a missing Fabergé egg, but nothing is simple in this complex and often violent thriller that revels in the dark side of contemporary Russia. We are offering a trade paperback of this novel, originally published by Henry Holt in 2008 as Volk’s Shadow. (Giveaway ended 2/7/10. Our lucky winner was Julie S. from California.)
Fatal FebruaryBarbara Levenson
Fatal February (Oceanview 2009) introduces Mary Magruder Katz, a half Jewish, half Southern Baptist criminal defense attorney, in Miami, Florida. A fender bender at the carwash results in a new romance with the charismatic and mysterious Carlos Martin that inspires Mary to break her engagement, leave her ex-fiancé’s law firm, and open her own practice. Her first client is Lillian Yarmouth, the prime suspect in the Miami high society murder of the year. While looking for proof that Lillian is innocent, Mary also has to defend herself from an ethics claim brought by her former fiancé. We are offering a hardback copy of this debut mystery. (Giveaway ended 2/7/10. Our lucky winner was Deanna S. from Massachusetts.)
Mixed BloodRoger Smith
Mixed Blood (Picador 2009) follows the travails of Jack Burn, an American whose gambling addiction and some serious crimes start him on a slippery slope to Cape Town, South Africa, where he hides out with his wife and young son. Not a good choice, in Jack’s case, because a chance home invasion by some local drugged-out gangsters draws him and his family ever deeper into a sea of inescapable violence. The poverty, hopelessness, and turmoil of Cape Town is portrayed frankly and unapologetically, and also with sympathy, but in this brutal noir world, almost no characters can escape. Smith creates memorable characters, including “Gatsby” Barnard, a vicious lone-wolf Afrikaaner cop, Disaster Zondi, a neat-freak Zulu detective from the new order, Benny Mongrel, an ex-con gang killer trying to turn things around, and Carmen Fortune, a crack addict surviving day to day with her damaged son and her Uncle Fatty. Smith’s writing is direct, clear, and compelling; the book is highly recommended for those who can stomach the violence. (Giveaway ended 1/22/10. Our lucky winner was Val V. from Texas.)
Veil of LiesJeri Westerson
Veil of Lies (Minotaur 2008) introduces Crispin Guest, a disgraced knight reduced to living by his wits on the mean streets of 1384 London. Now known as “Tracker,” Crispin is hired by a wealthy London cloth merchant who suspects his wife is unfaithful. Crispin is reluctant to take that sort of case, but a severe shortage of funds persuades him to go against his principles. The next day the merchant is found murdered in a room locked from the inside, and the wife hires Crispin to find the killer and a missing religious relic. Crispin is soon caught up in a mesh of conflicting interests: the sheriff who wants the relic for the king, a mysterious Saracen working for an equally mysterious cartel, and a gang of ruthless Italians. Crispin falls for the girl, uses his knightly skills to fight for his life, and relentlessly pursues justice in this thoroughly enjoyable Medieval Noir. (Giveaway ended 1/22/10. Our lucky winner was Robert H. from Alberta, Canada.)
Trial by FireJ.A. Jance
Trial by Fire (Touchstone 2009) is the 5th in the Ali Jennings series. A former television journalist, Ali has joined the Yavapai County Police Department as a media relations specialist. When an unfinished new Arizona subdivision goes up in flames, a naked and nearly dead woman is rescued from the fire. She is burned beyond recognition, and when she awakens from a coma months later has no memory of who she is or who might want to kill her. Sister Anselm, the hospital’s advocate for unidentified patients, asks Ali for help and the two soon realize that searching for the woman’s identity may expose her to danger once more. (Giveaway ended 1/8/10. Our lucky winners were Mary M from Nevada and Mary Jo A from Tennessee.)

Many and Many a Year AgoSelçuk Altun
Many and Many a Year Ago (2008) [Telegram Books 2009; trans. from Turkish by Ruth Christi & Selcuk Berilgen] is more of a mysterious literary quest for answers, than a mystery, not that there’s anything wrong with that. Kemal Kuray has vaulted to high rank in the Turkish Air Force, but his life changes dramatically when he crashes his F-16 in a test flight. Things take a strange turn when we receives a $5,000 monthly allowance from a friend who has disappeared. His friend was obsessed by Edgar Allen Poe, and Kemal is launched on an international search, following ephemeral clues, that eventually takes him to the Poe Museum in Baltimore. The book’s title is taken from Poe’s poem “Annabel Lee”, and the Poe element provides some sidelight interest as we wind down the bi-centennial of Poe’s birth. This is an intriguing, well-written, if off-beat book, full of literary references, but not overwhelmingly so. It is also refreshing to read of modern day Istanbul from the perspective of a native Turk. (Giveaway ended 12/22/09. Our lucky winner was Deb T from Idaho.)
Swan for the MoneyDonna Andrews
Swan for the Money (Minotaur 2009) is the 9th in the Meg Langslow series. Meg’s parents have become fanatic rose growers and have coerced Meg into organizing the Caerphilly Garden Club’s First Annual Rose Show, hosted by Philomena Winkleson at her ritzy estate farm. Everything on the Winkleston estate is monochromatic including the livestock: black and white Belted Galloway cows, black Frisian horses (kept inside during daylight to prevent reddening), fierce black swans, and a hilarious herd of Tennessee belted fainting goats that do exactly that when surprised or excited. Mrs. Winkleson is sponsoring a special prize for the blackest rose, and Meg’s father has thrown himself wholeheartedly into rose hybridization while her mother grooms the entries with tiny tools. When a friend of Mrs. Winkleson is found dead near the security fence surrounding the Winkleson rose garden, everyone asumes it is the eccentric and nasty hostess herself because of the monochromatic outfit, and Meg finds herself in the middle of another murder investigation. The mystery is not as interesting as Meg’s family and friends, but the quirky humor is more than enough to carry this amusing book. (Giveaway ended 12/22/09. Our lucky winner was Ellen M from New Jersey.)
DeKokA.C. Baantjer
DeKok and the Mask of Death (Dutch 1987, Speck Press 2009] is the 27th title in the long-running Dutch police detective series featuring Inspector Jurriaan DeKok (in English translations) and his loyal sidekick Inspector Dick Vledder, homicide detectives at Amsterdam’s Warmoes Street station. Women are going to Slotervaart Hospital and disappearing, their existence later denied by the hospital staff. There are enough suspicions surrounding the women’s lovers and associates to completely confuse investigators, but with DeKok and Vledder on the case, it is only a matter of time. This book is quite entertaining, with a compelling story and enjoyable characters. (Giveaway ended 12/6/09. Our lucky winner was Nick K from Texas.)
Holidays Can Be MurderConnie Shelton
Our second offering is a signed trade paperback of the novella Holidays Can Be Murder (anthology 2002, book 2009) . Charlie Parker, accountant and partner in a private investigation firm, is worried when her husband invites his mother to spend Christmas week with them in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Charlie doesn’t know her mother-in-law well, but she is relieved to discover that she is nothing like Paula, the mother-in-law from hell who is visiting her neighbor. When Paula is found dead and her neighbor is charged with the crime, Charlie steps in to investigate. Lots of details about celebrating Christmas in New Mexico plus two very tasty regional recipes. (Giveaway ended 12/6/09. Our lucky winner was Rose Alice H from New Jersey.)
Prime TimeHank Phillippi Ryan
Prime Time (2007) introduces Charlotte “Charlie” McNally, a TV investigative reporter, in Boston, Massachusetts. At age 46, workaholic Charlie, whose strongest relationship seems to be with her Emmy Award, worries that her news director is about to replace her with a younger model. Charlie is sent to interview the wife of a man killed in an auto accident and learns that the dead man recently emailed her about some mysterious papers. While searching through her SPAM, Charlie finds some intriguing messages that she hopes will result in a block buster news story just in time for Sweeps Week. Charlie meets the first man who has interested her in ages, but her instinct to investigate everything causes her to suspect he may not be one of the good guys. This debut novel won the Agatha Award for Best First Novel. The next books in the series are Face Time and Air Time. Drive Time, the 4th in the series, will come out in February 2010. (Giveaway ended 11/21/09. Our lucky winners were Sylvia M from Alaska, Bruce B from North Carolina, and LeAnne C from Texas.)
Starvation LakeBryan Gruley
Starvation Lake (Touchstone 2009) introduces reporter Gus Carpenter who has returned to his hometown of Starvation Lake, Michigan, after leaving the Detroit Times in disgrace. On top of that failure, everyone in town remembers that he was the goalie who gave up the winning goal to lose the town’s only chance at the state hockey championship ten years earlier. After that season, beloved hockey coach Jack Blackburn died in a snowmobile accident and the town’s economic health took a turn for the worse. Now working as editor for the Pilot, whose motto is “Michigan’s Finest Bluegill Wrapper,” Gus plays hockey with his boyhood teammates, rehashing aggressions and alliances on the ice. When the remains of a snowmobile emerge from a different lake with a bullet hole in the hood, the police and the press wonder if Blackburn was murdered. Most of the town, including the owner of the paper, would prefer that the past stay buried, but Gus and cub reporter Joanie McCarthy sink their teeth into the investigation and can’t let go. Gruley’s depiction of small town life is pitch perfect: the long group memory, the importance of hockey in a small northern town, and the difficulty of becoming an adult in a town who knew you as a kid. (Giveaway ended 11/8/09. Our lucky winners were Tena W from Texas and Ed F from North Carolina.)
AppraisalJane K. Cleland
Deadly Appraisal (2007), the 2nd in the series, finds Josie Prescott, an antiques dealer in a small town in coastal New Hampshire, feeling good about the growth of her new business. Then a woman is poisoned at the gala Prescott Antiques is sponsoring to raise money for the local Women’s Guild. Everyone who had access to the poisoned wine is under suspicion, but the police suspect that Josie may have been the intended victim. The theft of a valuable antique that was one of the fundraising auction items adds to the confusion as Josie and Wes, an untrustworthy yet talented investigative reporter, try to figure out what is really going on. Cleland is chair of the Wolfe Pack’s literary awards, and spotting references to Nero Wolfe (Saul Panzer and Fred Durkin appear on a list of car owners) adds to the fun, as does the inclusion of interesting information about antiques. (Giveaway ended 10/22/09. Our lucky winner was Danielle W from Michigan.)
The AmateursMarcus Sakey
The Amateurs (Dutton 2009) is Sakey’s fourth non-series thriller, this time following the spiraling fates of four 30-something friends who have gravitated together seemingly through a shared sense of failure: Jenn, a travel agent who can only dream of taking a vacation like the ones she arranges; Mitch, a hotel doorman, with major insecurity issues; Ian, a cokehead financial trader waiting to repeat his big score, who also has a gambling problem; and Alex, a divorced bartender with child support and custody problems, who once wanted to be a lawyer. Meeting as the Thursday Night Drinking Club where Alex tends bar, one night the sleazy owner, Johnny Love, puts the moves on Jenn, insults Mitch, and threatens Alex, who learns that Johnny has a large pile of money as middleman in some nefarious deal. The group finds a common purpose fantasizing about robbing Johnny’s safe. After all, they are smart and above suspicion. The plan takes on a life of its own, and the amateur crooks predictably find themselves involved in murder, pursued by scary professional killers, and with a lot more than money to worry about. The protagonists will resonate with some readers more than others, but the writing is compelling as the four losers struggle to cope with their unraveling lives and plans, with some ennobling theatrics to round out the plot. (Giveaway ended 10/7/09. Our lucky winner was Norm O from California.)
Hot Buttered’Jeffrey Cohen
Some Like It Hot-Buttered (2007) introduces Elliot Freed, a recently divorced writer who has just re-opened an old movie theater in New Jersey. Elliot shows nightly double features at Comedy Tonight: a classic comedy followed by a new one. When a patron is killed with a box of poisoned popcorn during Young Frankenstein, and the young projectionist/film student disappears, Elliot decides to help investigate. The characters are unique and presented with sympathetic humor. Elliot, who prefers wit over jokes, is continually working on his snappy comebacks, and Sophie the snack/ticket girl tries to be Goth but can’t quite pull it off. Loaded with classic movie references, this clever and funny book is a winner. (Giveaway ended 9/17/09. Thanks to Jeffrey Cohen who generously donated two extra books we had three winners: Radine N from Arkansas, Rose M from Wisconsin, and Joyce K from Illinois.)

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