Tag Archives: anthology

A day in the life of Chloe by Cathi Stoler

Most people think a model’s life is a series of one exciting event after another—glamorous parties and thrilling dinners filled with famous people and beautiful clothes. Well, they’d be half right. The other half is really hard work. Especially when you work with a photographer like Otto. Although, it didn’t seem like that at the beginning.

Otto plucked me from oblivion at a party for the opening of a fashion photography exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art. With one bold and impassioned gesture, he dubbed me his muse and swore to make me famous. Like the other one-named models of the day, Twiggy, Penelope and Veruschka, I would be Chloe. His Chloe. Sassoon cut my hair. Mary quant chose me to model her new line for her London show. Otto took the shots and Vogue featured them on glossy pages I viewed with awe. Me, an eighteen-year old from Iowa, who thought I’d died and gone to heaven with all the fame and fortune coming my way.

Otto and I lived and worked in a big, old loft downtown. It was 1969, a time of exciting changes for the world and us. We were going to put a man on the moon that summer and Otto became obsessed with creating a series of photos for MoMA, staring me, to mark this occasion.

Our studio was filled with people. Hair, makeup, wardrobe, lighting, set designers and assistants were there from morning until late at night. Only to have it all repeated the next day and every day for months. Otto could be kind, generous and loving. He could also be imperious, demanding and tyrannical, when things weren’t going exactly right.

The photographs were beautiful and Otto made me gleam and glitter like one of the stars surrounding the moon our astronauts were heading for. I loved the idea of being the face of the moon landing, but one wrong gesture or a prop out of place and Otto would be off in rage. Most of the time I shrugged it off; he loved me after all and only wanted the best for us.

His assistants were a different story, often leaving the studio after just a day or two of enduring his outrageous behavior. The newest one, Jed, was different. Somehow, he bore the brunt of Otto’s tirades and seemed to shrug them off. As Jed and I worked together, we became close and eventually, it turned into something more. As abusive as Otto was, Jed wasn’t leaving, not anytime soon and I knew why. Me. Even if I’d known what falling in love with Jed would lead to, I don’t think anything could have made me stop.

Chloe appears in Cathi Stoler’s short story, “Every Picture Tells A Story,” in Where Crime Never Sleeps: Murder New York Style 4, an anthology of crime and mystery short stories by members of the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime.

What is the essence of the New York experience? A stroll across the Brooklyn Bridge? A concert at Carnegie Hall? Crossing the finish line at the New York Marathon? A trip to the Bronx Zoo? Or any one of these—plus murder? These seventeen stories by members of the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime, with a foreword by Margaret Maron, explore the mystery and mayhem that lurk in every corner of the most unpredictable, irrepressible, inimitable city on the planet.

Where Crime Never Sleeps includes stories by Rona Bell – Fran Bannigan Cox – Lindsay A. Curcio – Joseph R. G. DeMarco – Ronnie Sue Ebenstein – Catherine Maiorisi – Nina Mansfield – Mary Moreno – Anita Page – Ellen Quint – Roslyn Siegel – Kathleen Snow – Triss Stein – Cathi Stoler – Mimi Weisbond – Stephanie Wilson-Flaherty – Elizabeth Zelvin

“A dream of an anthology for readers who appreciate a classic mystery unfolding in a perfectly characterized setting. A terrific collection of short stories!” —Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author of The Ex

“A collection of stories as diverse, original and exciting as New York itself. I really loved this book.” —Alison Gaylin, USA Today bestselling author

Buy Link

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About the author
Cathi Stoler is the author of the three volume Laurel & Helen New York Mystery series, including Telling Lies, Keeping Secrets and The Hard Way, as well as the novella, Nick Of Time. She has recently completed a new Urban Thriller, Bar None and Out Of Time, a full-length sequel to Nick Of Time. She is the winner of the 2015 Derringer for Best Short Story “The Kaluki Kings of Queens,” as well as the 2012 Derringer Short Story finalist for “Fatal Flaw” published at Beat To A Pulp. Her stories have also been published in several anthologies and online. Cathi is Co-Vice President of Sisters in Crime New York/Tri-State, and a member of Mystery Writers of America and International Thriller Writers. Please visit her at cathistoler.com.

All comments are welcomed.

A day in the life of Bruce Kohler by Elizabeth Zelvin

I wake up sober.

This has been happening every morning, one day at a time, for almost five years now, but I still find it unbelievable. Absurd. Some days, just for fun, I lock eyes with myself in the bathroom mirror and say, the way we do in AA, “Hi, I’m Bruce. I’m a grateful recovering alcoholic.” Then I make like De Niro in Taxi Driver and say, “You talkin’ to me?” Like De Niro, I’m a lot older than I used to be. He could play me in the movie. I’d like that.

My girlfriend Cindy caught me at it one time. She laughed, but she didn’t think I was crazy. She’s a recovering alcoholic too and one of the main reasons I’m grateful. She’s a cop, a detective. Me being madly in love with a cop is even more ludicrous than how I stay sober, like going to AA and having a Higher Power. Don’t ask me what I mean by a Higher Power. It’s (a) complicated, and (b) none of your business. But am I the most powerful force in the universe? Does the sun rise or the earth spin on my command? If I didn’t pay attention, would they stop? So yeah, I’ll make a meeting today with my best friend Jimmy. And at some point, maybe in the shower or on the subway, I’ll ask Something to give Jimmy and my other best friend Barbara and their little girl Sunshine health and happiness and keep Cindy safe when she goes out there to do her job catching the bad guys. She’s tougher than De Niro, so it’ll probably be okay.

Breakfast. I don’t dawdle over it, because I’m meeting Barbara in the Park to go running. Here’s the difference between drinking and sobriety. If you want to get a laugh at the very idea of granola for breakfast, go into a bar and joke about it. If you want to get a laugh about how breakfast used to be black coffee and half a pack of cigarettes, speak at an AA meeting. What cracks me up is that it’s the same guys laughing. Ten years later. The survivors, like me.

Central Park. The jewel in the crown of New York City. In my misspent youth, it was somewhere Jimmy and I would go to drink way too many 40-ounce bottles of Colt 45, throw the empties into the bushes, and lie under a park bench to sleep it off. Now it’s where Barbara nagged me one step at a time through endless circuits of the track around the reservoir, then the lower loop and the upper loop, then the entire road that circles the Park from Central Park South fifty blocks north to 110th, from Fifth Avenue half a mile as the pigeon flies to Central Park West, until I was fit to run the Marathon. Fit. I refuse to say ready. She didn’t call it nagging. Recovering codependents don’t nag. She was encouraging me. Empowering me. Demonstrating her concern for my health because she loves me. But if you think I could have chosen not to run that Marathon, you don’t know Barbara. I shudder to think what she’d get us into if she had a gun.

Cindy has a gun. But unlike Barbara, she’s not at all impulsive. She works in the Central Park Precinct’s detective squad now, but we probably won’t see her today. A friend of ours died at the Marathon, an old guy they called the Ancient Marathoner, and Cindy caught the case. Of course Barbara was wild to help investigate. She always is. That’s what codependents do. Compulsive helpers. Fixers. They don’t call it snooping. Cindy knows we can ask questions she can’t and that Barbara is unstoppable. Barbara and Jimmy and I have stumbled over a few bodies. To be honest, we’ve stumbled into a few murderers too, and we’ve been lucky not to get killed ourselves before the law arrived. Anyhow, this time, we’re all trying to cooperate and play nice, since Cindy and her partner Natali have the resources, Barbara and I know the runners, and Jimmy is a computer wiz who’s probably better than the NYPD computer techs, good as Cindy says they are. Besides, sometimes you have to color outside the lines to find the information you need on the Internet. The NYPD can’t do that. Need I say more?

The key question in any murder that’s a mystery is “Who done it?” But in this case, we all agree, it’s more baffling than usual. Because who would kill an old man everybody loved?

Bruce Kohler appears in Elizabeth Zelvin’s short story, “Death Will Improve Your Marathon,” in Where Crime Never Sleeps: Murder New York Style 4, an anthology of crime and mystery short stories by members of the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime.

What is the essence of the New York experience? A stroll across the Brooklyn Bridge? A concert at Carnegie Hall? Crossing the finish line at the New York Marathon? A trip to the Bronx Zoo? Or any one of these—plus murder? These seventeen stories by members of the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime, with a foreword by Margaret Maron, explore the mystery and mayhem that lurk in every corner of the most unpredictable, irrepressible, inimitable city on the planet.

Where Crime Never Sleeps includes stories by Rona Bell – Fran Bannigan Cox – Lindsay A. Curcio – Joseph R. G. DeMarco – Ronnie Sue Ebenstein – Catherine Maiorisi – Nina Mansfield – Mary Moreno – Anita Page – Ellen Quint – Roslyn Siegel – Kathleen Snow – Triss Stein – Cathi Stoler – Mimi Weisbond – Stephanie Wilson-Flaherty – Elizabeth Zelvin

“A dream of an anthology for readers who appreciate a classic mystery unfolding in a perfectly characterized setting. A terrific collection of short stories!” —Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author of The Ex

“A collection of stories as diverse, original and exciting as New York itself. I really loved this book.” —Alison Gaylin, USA Today bestselling author

Buy Link

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About the author
Elizabeth Zelvin, editor of Where Crime Never Sleeps, is the author of the Bruce Kohler Mysteries, a New York series that includes five novels, beginning with Death Will Get You Sober, and seven short stories. She is also the author of the Mendoza Family Saga, historical fiction about a Jewish brother and sister who sail with Columbus and find refuge in the Ottoman Empire. Her short stories have been nominated twice for the Derringer and three times for the Agatha Award.

All comments are welcomed.

Kiki Lowenstein and the Sour Note by Joanna Campbell Slan

After six weeks of teaching various Zentangle patterns, or “tangles” as they’re called, I’d gotten a pretty good idea which of my students exceled and which ones were struggling. My name is Kiki Lowenstein; I own a scrapbook and crafts store. My job is to encourage every student, no matter what the finished product looks like. This particular week, I’d taught a challenging tangle, a basket-weave design. I’d purposely saved this pattern for last, because it takes a lot of concentration. As usual, we’d done the design on a tile, a small square of high quality paper that’s ideal for Zentangle purposes. Not surprisingly, the results were mixed. My star student, Darcy Rosenblatt, caught on right away. So did Vanessa Johnson, a long-time customer. The rest of my students worked diligently, struggling to master the complex design. I spent an inordinate amount of time with Lydia Connelly, who was the class problem child. She had been honest when she had told me, “I can’t draw a straight line.” To my horror, I discovered she couldn’t even draw a straight line with the help of a ruler. Bless her heart, she made up for finesse in pure enthusiasm.

Darcy and Vanessa not only executed the new pattern perfectly, they went ahead and shaded their tangles in such a way that they looked three dimensional. Both women were way ahead of their classmates.

“Since this is the last class in our Level One session,” I said, “I’d like to take pictures of your work. Please spread all your tiles on this work table. While I take photos, you can help yourselves to the goodies on our food table.”

“How’s life with your grandson?” I asked Vanessa, after I’d finished with my picture taking.

“Izzy is a sweet young man, but Lord love him, he has the attention span of a gnat. Left his cello at music school, and he has a concert coming up that he needs to practice for.” Vanessa shook her head. She was a commanding figure, a big dark-skinned woman in cornrow braids. Her soft brown eyes always drew me in because they radiated warmth and friendship. “I need to teach that boy a lesson,” she added.

I chuckled at that.

After a clap of my hands to get their attention, I announced, “I’ve finished taking my photos. You are welcome to pick up your tiles and take them home. Thank you all for coming and don’t forget to sign up for our Level Two session.”

No one was in a hurry to leave. Instead, we chatted with each other as we munched on nachos and cheese, mock Margaritas, and chicken quesadillas. I love watching my students build friendships and support networks. Closer to nine p.m., people migrated away from the food and toward the work table. While they gathered their tiles, I opened Tupperware containers and filled them with leftovers. I’d no sooner snapped the lid on a plastic tub when Darcy shrieked. “They’re gone! All gone! My tiles have disappeared!”

Of course, I’ve had problems crop up while teaching, but this was a new one. Generally, people feel proud of their work. At the very least, they feel possessive. Why on earth would someone steal another person’s art? The pieces had to be misplaced.

I fisted my hips. “Okay, everybody. Start looking around. No one leaves until we find Darcy’s tiles.”

There was a general flurry of activity. Students turned their purses and satchels inside out. I crawled under the tables and searched. Finally, one conclusion was obvious: The only person who had resisted opening her handbag was Lydia.

“Lydia?” I asked gently. “Please go through your things.” With tearful eyes, she reached deep into her purse and withdrew all six of Darcy’s tiles. Lydia couldn’t meet Darcy’s eyes as she pushed the stack across the table toward their owner. A mumbled, “Sorry,” accompanied the artwork.

“What on earth made you do that?” Darcy’s face flamed red with anger. She was a short, stout woman with wide hips, and a face like a bulldog. Her art was a point of pride.

Tears spilled down Lydia’s face. I handed her a tissue. Her voice broke as she said, “Harvey keeps saying I’m no good at this. He won’t let me take any more classes. I thought if I showed him your work, Darcy, he’d think I improved. It was a dumb idea to take your tiles, but it was the best I could come up with.”

Vanessa shook her head. “You mean to tell me that man of yours controls what you do for fun?”

“Harvey’s in charge of our budget. He says it’s obvious that Zentangle lessons are wasted on me.”

That churned my stomach. The rest of the group asked Lydia questions like, “Has he always been this way?” and “Are you having money troubles?”

In minutes, we learned that Harvey was always controlling to a degree, but as a former high school football coach, he was also a big believer in mastery. “He took golf lessons from an expensive pro for three years to get his handicap down to the single digits. He attended a top-notch tennis academy so he could get to the top of the charts in the local Y. It’s not that he doesn’t want me to have a hobby. It’s just that he thinks it should be something I’m good at.”

“Do you enjoy doing Zentangle?” I asked.

“You know I do.”

“Then this is really just about the money.” Vanessa crossed her arms over her chest. “You need to convince him it’s worth the small amount you spend to take classes.”

That’s when I got an idea, one that could solve problems for both Vanessa and Lydia. “Vanessa, why don’t you loan Lydia that cello Izzy keeps forgetting? Lydia, when you get home tonight, show Harvey the cello and tell him that instead of taking Zentangle classes, you’ve signed up to buy the cello on a payment plan. Say it’s a Stradivarius. Tell him you’re going to take lessons from a teacher who’s with the St. Louis Symphony. Come up with a big number as your tuition.”

Vanessa and Lydia exchanged amused glances. Vanessa shrugged. “Sounds like a plan. You in, Lydia?”

“You know it.”

Sure enough, when the next week rolled around, I gave Lydia a call. “I’m hoping I’ll see you for our next Zentangle session.”

“Absolutely!” She laughed. “I did exactly as you suggested, Kiki. Once Harvey got a good look at the cost of me learning to master the cello, he nearly fainted. Then I gave him a choice: cello or Zentangle. You know exactly what he chose. Isn’t that funny? Izzy’s cello hit a sour note—and I never even took it out of the case!”

~The End~

You can read more in Cookin’ Up Crime, the sixth book in the “Happy Homicides” anthology series.

Our biggest collection of seasonal cozy (traditional and clean) mysteries yet! Fifteen award-winning, multi-published, and bestselling authors share food fantasies with a fatal twist. And as always, the book comes with a special code so you can email for a FREE bonus file with recipes and craft ideas that go along with the stories. Included are Kiki Lowenstein and the Smoothie Operator by Joanna Campbell Slan; Dying for Spiced Tea: A Beach Tea Shop Short Story by Linda Gordon Hengerer; A Gift for Gus: A Pecan Bayou Mystery by Teresa Trent; Recipe For Murder: A Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast Mystery by Terry Ambrose; Nectar of the Dogs: A Golden Mystery by Neil S. Plakcy; Irish Texas Chili Story: A Jonathan Boykin Short Story by Randy Rawls; Dot Didn’t Do it: A Pineapple Port Mini Mystery by Amy Vansant; Simmer to Death by Christina Freeburn; Food for Thought: A Rosalie Hart Mystery by Wendy Sand Eckel; Catering to Murder: A Shelby Nichols Adventure by Colleen Helme; Murder, Moonlight, and Muffins: A Myrtle Grove Garden Club Short Mystery by Loulou Harrington; F is for Fruitcake by Micki Browning; A Death in Customs: The Cozy Tea Shoppe Mystery Series by Vered Ehsani; Silent Harmonies by Vincent H. O’Neil; and Fish Fried by R. V. Reyes.

About the author
Joanna Campbell Slan is the award-winning and national bestselling author of three mystery series. The first book in this series—Paper, Scissors, Death–was a finalist for the Agatha Award. There are now thirteen books and nearly 30 short stories detailing Kiki’s life. Learn more at joannacampbellslan.com

Get Love, Die, Neighbor: The Prequel to the Kiki Lowenstein Mystery Series absolutely free by going to BookHip.com/QJXAHT.

All comments are welcomed.

A day in the life of Ms. Slutzkaya by Nina Mansfield

To be an actor is to be the height of holiness. After all, an actor must be mother, father and womb simultaneously, in order to birth a living, breathing human, all in front of a live audience. And all while projecting her voice.

To be an acting teacher, is to be a shepherd to this holiness. Daily, I must awaken the inner beast inside my student actors. Walk into my class, and you will see me goading out their inner animals. You will see my students screaming, groaning and writhing. This sort of behavior might be frowned upon in some public high school settings, but I assure you, it is all in service to the greatest of art forms.

Today in class, however, I was all business.
“As tedious as the task may be, it is essential that you all turn in your permission slips on time.”
“Why are we going to the Bronx Zoo, exactly?” Anthony asked.
“My dear boy, we are going to the Bronx Zoo because for the next two weeks, we will be working on our Animal Exercises.”
“What’s that?” Abe whispered, sounding a little terrified, as usual.
I then drew back my shoulders, stood on one leg, and affected a vacant hopelessness in my eyes.
“Ms. Slooz, are you OK?” Aurelia asked with true concern.
“Shhh, she’s acting,” Victor whispered.

I paused in my performance. “Ah, Victor, that is where you are wrong. I was not acting. I was becoming. That, my darling thespians, was the crane. I captured the spirit of that bird after weeks of observation at the Moscow Zoo. You too will become one with a non-human creature. First, you must decide on an animal. Then, you must study this animal. Finally, you must become this animal!”

Every year I have taken my acting students to the Bronx Zoo. Every year I have watched them transform into apes and antelopes, gorillas and giraffes.

This year would be just like every other year. Of course, I hadn’t told my students yet that Mr. Dower would be joining us. I know many of them aren’t on the best terms with our creatively-challenged principal. But surely, they won’t mind. And even if they do object, it’s not like they are going to kill him.

Ms. Slutskaya appears in Nina Mansfield’s short story, “An Actor Prepares,” in Where Crime Never Sleeps: Murder New York Style 4, an anthology of crime and mystery short stories by members of the New York / Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime.

What is the essence of the New York experience? A stroll across the Brooklyn Bridge? A concert at Carnegie Hall? Crossing the finish line at the New York Marathon? A trip to the Bronx Zoo? Or any one of these—plus murder? These seventeen stories by members of the New York/Tri-State Chapter of Sisters in Crime, with a foreword by Margaret Maron, explore the mystery and mayhem that lurk in every corner of the most unpredictable, irrepressible, inimitable city on the planet.

Where Crime Never Sleeps includes stories by Rona Bell – Fran Bannigan Cox – Lindsay A. Curcio – Joseph R. G. DeMarco – Ronnie Sue Ebenstein – Catherine Maiorisi – Nina Mansfield – Mary Moreno – Anita Page – Ellen Quint – Roslyn Siegel – Kathleen Snow – Triss Stein – Cathi Stoler – Mimi Weisbond – Stephanie Wilson-Flaherty – Elizabeth Zelvin

“A dream of an anthology for readers who appreciate a classic mystery unfolding in a perfectly characterized setting. A terrific collection of short stories!” —Alafair Burke, New York Times bestselling author of The Ex

“A collection of stories as diverse, original and exciting as New York itself. I really loved this book.” —Alison Gaylin, USA Today bestselling author

Buy Link

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About the author
Nina Mansfield is a Cos Cob, CT based playwright, fiction writer, and educator. Her young adult mystery novel, Swimming Alone, was published by Fire & Ice YA in 2015. Nina’s short fiction has appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Mysterical-E, Kings River Life, and anthologized in Where Crime Never Sleeps (Level Best Books, 2017) and Fast Women and Neon Lights: Eighties-Inspired Neon Noir (Short Stack Books, 2016). Nina’s ten-minute and one-act plays have had over 100 productions throughout the United States and internationally. Nina is a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, The Dramatists Guild, and The Society for Children’s Book Writers. Please visit her at www.ninamansfield.com.

All comments are welcomed.

A day in the life of Myra Wilkinson by Barb Goffman

50-shades-of-cabernetDear Douglas,

Take this job and shove it!


Leaning back in my swivel chair, I stared at the words on my computer screen. My friend Gwen was right. It was cathartic to type them out, even if I’d never actually say them or send them. It’s silly to burn bridges, and these words would start a fire. Gwen knows. She runs the Human Resources department here at the Washington, DC, law firm we both work at, and she received a bridge-burner email a few years ago. It didn’t work out well for the sender in the long run.

I deleted the unsent email and glanced around. It was after seven p.m. on a Tuesday night, and our floor was quiet. The attorneys who were still here were busy and focused, hunkered down in their offices, writing briefs or reading case law. No one was paying attention to me, which is as it should be. As secretary to the head of the litigation department, my job was to make others’ lives easier. I arranged schedules and couriers, set up meetings and depositions, filed, typed, ordered supplies, and, most importantly, anticipated problems and solved them.

I’ve been assisting Douglas—our department head—in this manner for forty years. Some people wouldn’t like my job, always taking a supporting role, never being in the limelight. But it’s been just fine for me. In fact, up until this week, I’ve been darn happy. It’s only since I started trying to train Jessica to take over for me—I retire on Friday—that I’ve gotten aggravated enough to toy with taking a stand.

I mean, honestly, what does it say about me that my boss thinks I can be replaced by a twenty-something bimbo who clearly cares nothing about the job and is only here to land a rich husband? I tried to tell Douglas yesterday that he’s chosen the wrong person for his new assistant, but he wouldn’t hear it. As if my word means nothing.

Maybe I should tell him to take this job and shove it.

No no no. I love my job. And I love Douglas. And I only have three days left before I retire. I should focus on the positive. Maybe I could get through to Jessica before the end of the day Friday, make her see how important this job is, how she needs to focus on the details. Or at the very least, to wear longer skirts. Oh, who was I kidding? I needed to work on Douglas. Make him see reason.

Besides, I couldn’t leave before my goodbye party on Friday afternoon. I’d been planning them for years, and finally, this one was going to be for me—a public acknowledgment of all my years of dedication. There should be great food, as well as delicious wine. Organic cabernet sauvignon. We always have organic red wine at litigation department events because Douglas is allergic to the real thing. I’ll have to make sure Jessica knows about Douglas’s allergy and understands how important it is that his allergy remains a secret. He thinks if word got out, it would undermine his scary litigator persona.

Entrusting a big secret to a woman who isn’t detail oriented? What could go wrong with that?

Pick up a copy of 50 Shades of Cabernet, published March 20th by Koehler Books, to find out. This short-story anthology opens with Agatha Award-winning author Barb Goffman’s newest story—“Whose Wine Is It Anyway?”—about Myra’s last days at the law firm.

In vino mysterium is the theme for this anthology, each story blending a baffling mystery and a glass (or more) of cabernet. When eighteen mystery writers combine their talents, the result is the perfect “flight” of stories that range from the light-bodied puzzles to sparkling cozy mysteries to darker, heavier tales of deceit and murder. While cabernet is the featured wine, this anthology will appeal to connoisseurs of all varietals—in both wine preference and mystery style.

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About the author
Barb Goffman edits mysteries by day and writes them by night. She’s won the Agatha, Macavity, and Silver Falchion awards for her short stories, and she’s been a finalist for national crime-writing awards nineteen times: ten times for the Agatha, four times for the Macavity, three times for the Anthony, and once each for the Derringer and Silver Falchion awards. Her book Don’t Get Mad, Get Even won the Silver Falchion for the best short-story collection of 2013. When not writing, Barb runs a freelance editing and proofreading service. She lives in Winchester, Virginia, and blogs every third Tuesday at www.SleuthSayers.org. In her spare time, she reads, reads, reads and plays with her dog. Learn more at www.barbgoffman.com.

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a Kindle copy of 50 Shades of Cabernet. The giveaway ends March 24, 2017. Good luck everyone!

50 Shades of Cabernet is available at retail and online booksellers.

My Musing ~ Lowcountry Crime edited by James M. Jackson

Lowcountry Crime by Jonathan M. Bryant, Polly Iyer, James M. Jackson, Tina Whittle, published by Wolf’s Echo Press, February 7, 2017

lowcountry-crimeLowcountry: That portion of the Southeastern United States characterized by low, generally flat country, whether barrier island, tidal marsh, tidal river valleys, swamps. piney forests, or great cities like Charleston and Savannah.

Crime: An act, forbidden by a public law, that makes the offender liable to punishment by that law.

These four novellas capture the unique aspects of Lowcountry with stories incorporating Charleston high life and Savannah low life, island vacations and life on boat. You’ll be treated to thieves doing good and rapscallions doing bad, loves won and loves lost, family relations providing wonderful support and life after divorce.

“Trouble Like A Freight Train Coming” by Tina Whittle
“Last Heist” by Polly Iyer
“Blue Nude” by Jonathan M. Bryant
“Low Tide at Tybee” James M. Jackson

This is a great collection of novellas taking place in low country states where anything can and will happen. All four stories kept me engaged and riveted to the drama unfolding from Tai’s search for her *not-so-dead* cousin; to Paul uncovering a sinister plot; to Brad becoming entangled with artwork (felt sorry for him at the end) and to Seamus and the condo. This is a tantalizing taste of the low country and I look forward to reading more stories from these terrific authors.

FTC Full Disclosure – I received an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) from the author.

Christmas with Cozy Mystery Characters by Gin Jones

cozyshortsFranki Amato from “Rosolio Red” by Traci Andrighetti
Ciao, y’all. Franki Amato here, coming at you for Christmas from The Crescent City. Because my best friend and boss, Veronica, is giving me time off from my PI job at Private Chicks, I’m staying in NOLA instead of going home to Houston for the holidays. What I’m not planning to do—watch my landlady, Glenda, dance in the senior stripper revue “Let It Show, Let It Show, Let It Show” at Madame Moiselle’s on Bourbon Street. What I am planning to do—cook up a special present for my sugarplum, Bradley (hint: It’s not a fruitcake!). Anyway, my mom’s calling, so I’ve gotta run. I sure hope everything’s okay with the family . . .

Aunt Stella from “Christmas, Spies & Dead Guys” by Jennifer Fischetto
Since I’ve been dead, I can’t enjoy the holidays like I used to. No more extra spiced eggnog or my sister’s awful, mushy asparagus. I guess the last one is a plus. I don’t mind too much though. Now I get my jollies in other ways. Like hiding the silverware right before dinner or putting rocks in my brother-in-law’s stocking. It’s the little things that make this ghost chuckle.

Amy Ridley from “Christmas Canapés & Sabotage” by Janel Gradowski
I’m Amy Ridley. I’ve lived in Michigan my entire life, so I’ve dealt with lots of cold weather. One of my favorite ways to stay warm is with a mug of hot chocolate. One of the simplest ways to make this yummy treat is to warm milk over low heat then stir in chunks of chocolate candy bars, like Hershey or Dove, until melted. You can customize it by adding in things like cinnamon, vanilla extract, a shot of espresso or even a bit of rum. Pour into a mug and enjoy!

Ambrose Tate from “A (Gingerbread) Diorama of Death” by Gin Jones
Call me Tate. I’m a retired lawyer, although my landlord Helen Binney keeps ignoring the “retired” part of it, dragging me into murder investigations. I’ve been thinking about inviting her to Christmas dinner with my extended family. Otherwise, I’ll spend the whole day worrying that she’ll get herself into trouble. On the other hand, I have to consider whether she’ll bring that trouble with her. Most people could safely enjoy a holiday event, but Helen couldn’t even judge a gingerbread house contest recently without almost getting herself killed. Maybe I could hire a bodyguard. Not for her. For my family.

Jamie Winters from “Motion for Mistletoe” by Kelly Rey
My daily life doesn’t change all that much during the holiday season. It’s still glamour all the time: traffic jams, layaway, and to-do lists. Especially to-do lists, memorializing things I’ll never find time to do or money to buy, or even my most heartfelt wishes, like a driver’s license for Maizy or a laundry accident that leaves Curt shirtless. Maybe it’s not my heart involved in that one.

Christmas wishes are the granddaddy of them all, and my wish this year especially is for peace, for you and yours, and for everyone. Happy holidays.

Bronwyn Sinclair from “Sleighed at Castle Rock” by Anne Marie Stoddard
Hey, y’all–Bronwyn Sinclair here with a major case of the humbugs. Amelia is out of town, and I’m helping Kat run a Christmas themed music festival and Battle of the Bands competition at Castle Rock–in July. My elf costume is itchy, the eggnog is curdling, and now someone’s slipped mistletoe in one of the judge’s drinks. It looks like it’s up to me to catch the culprit and send them jingle bell rockin’ all the way to jail before the festival is ruined. What would Ame and Kat do without me?

Barb Jackson from “The Blonde Before Christmas,” by Anna Snow
I’m Barb Jackson. Christmas is my favorite time of the year, the snow, the decorations, giving gifts, murder. . .

Okay, so the murder part isn’t exactly part of Christmas, but when you’re a private investigator, you never know what’s going to pop up of any given day. It just so happens that last Christmas, my best friend Kelly and I discovered the dead body of the local mall Santa. Let me tell you, that was one case I’ll never forget. . .

Tessie King from “Baby It’s Cold Outside” by T. Sue VerSteeg
Holidays are always shared with family. Unless I find myself frozen, quite literally, in my work. A raging ice storm and a packed house of cranky patrons stuck with me at the Royal Palace wasn’t exactly how I’d pictured my first Christmas at the helm. There just weren’t enough apple-tinis to go around. I was at least comforted to know that my BFFs were stuck with me, along with one hot, handsome snowboarder. Plans for a festive party to thaw out the frozen Christmas spirit get shoved to the backburner when someone tries to kill me by locking me outside in the storm. I suddenly found myself hot on the trail, you know, once I was able to move again. Was it wrong that I found a silver lining when the ruckus brought the hunky Fed back to town? Enjoy an apple-tini for us! Or two.

Cozy Christmas Shorts is a holiday short story collection, published by Gemma Halliday Publishing, September 2016.

Eleven holiday themed cozy mystery short stories by New York Times, USA Today, and National Bestselling authors! Short holiday bites perfect for enjoying while waiting in holiday lines or binge-reading over a cup of hot cocoa.

**The authors are donating a portion of proceeds from this collection to Toys for Tots!**

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About the authors
Traci Andrighetti is an enthusiast of luscious Italian liqueurs, risqué Italian recipes, and embarrassing family encounters, all of which informed the writing of her holiday story.

Jennifer Fischetto writes while staring at the multi-colored lights on her tree and envisioning snarky ghosts.

Janel Gradowski has spent almost every Christmas Eve stuffing herself with holiday treats at her family’s Christmas parties. The experiences provided some of the inspiration for her story

Gin Jones loves gingerbread, mysteries and cold weather, all of which inspired her holiday story.

Kelly Rey loves the first snow and the coziness of a long winter evening spent by the faux fireplace with a good book.

Anne Marie Stoddard loves holiday music and drinking cranberry mojitos that aren’t poisoned with mistletoe. Like Bronwyn, she hates itchy elf costumes and curdled egg nog.

Anna Snow is a wife, mom, lipstick junkie, and USA Today Bestselling Author of the Barb Jackson Mysteries.

T. Sue VerSteeg absolutely loves the glisten of fresh snow on Christmas morning. But it needs to be gone by the next day and replaced by sand, sun, and 80 degree temps. A Midwestern girl can dream, right?

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a digital copy of your choice of any one book published by Gemma Halliday Publishing and written by one of the Cozy Christmas Shorts authors. The giveaway ends December 25, 2016. Good luck everyone!

Halloween with Mystery Characters by LynDee Walker

midnight-mysteriesHalloween ranks among favorite holidays for many a mystery reader—so we gathered some of our favorite characters from the anthology MIDNIGHT MYSTERIES around the fire pit tonight to share tales of their favorite Halloweens, past and present. Grab a mug of cocoa or cider and pull up an adirondack chair—we’ll start with our favorite talkative ghost. . .

Marmaduke Dodsworth (It Takes a Ghost/Karen Cantwell): My favorite Halloween story, you say? Well, yes, that is a most fascinating question to ask a ghost, now isn’t it? First, let me introduce myself: My name is Marmaduke Dodsworth. I was born in Dartford, England in the year eighteen hundred and eighty-four. I lived a mostly content life until 1915 when I traveled to the United States of America where I was struck by a car and killed. I would not say it was a good death, but oh well, as you Americans say. One Halloween, not so long ago, I joined my living friend, Sophie on a haunted house tour. There, I met a fellow spirit by the name of Myrtle May. Myrtle tutored me in the fine art of moving objects through space. Some may consider that this is a feat which comes easily to ghosts, but I assure you, this is not the case. Myrtle, ah, fair Myrtle. She had a gift and she taught me well. In no time at all she had me levitating tea pots, tea cups, spoons, and even a lamp. Why, you should have seen the faces on the tour patrons! Wide eyes, fallen jaws. We had them trembling in their boots! Yes, it was a fine Halloween indeed.

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Cherry Tucker (Vigilante Vignette/Larissa Reinhart): My favorite Halloween memories are not from childhood since I was the sole kid wearing a handmade costume. Not that my third grade Chiquita Banana suit wasn’t brilliant—although it did cause a bit of a mess—but you have to understand when I was growing up, Pinterest didn’t exist so homemade costumes were not in vogue.

But even after Shawna Branson played Monkey in the Middle with my bananas (literally), I grew to love making costumes. And now handmade costumes are in vogue. I even get paid for them. When you’re an artist, you hustle for any kind of job.

My particular favorite was a recent Halloween party at Red’s County Line Tap. Painted a Renaissance landscape backdrop in ochres and siennas, cut a big hole in the canvas, inserted my head, and went as the Mona Lisa. Luke wore a dusty pair of Wranglers, boots, and a western shirt. In the crowded bar, Luke’s cowboy had found my Mona Lisa smile and pulled me into the gents’ bathroom before our friends and family could notice. We’re the Romeo and Juliet of Halo, if you didn’t know.

Actually more like Hatfields and McCoys.

Before we could talk, my brother-in-law Nik had kicked in the bathroom door.

His kick alerted my brother, Cody. Who, misinterpreting our bathroom cluster, threatened to kill Luke.

Which led to my sister, Casey, pitching a fit for all to hear.

And then Red booted us all from the party.

But I’ve had worse happen. I just may reprise that Mona Lisa costume yet.

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Jackson Bell (Salad Days, Halloween Nights/Eleanor Cawood Jones): I don’t talk about it much, but a big part of the reason I love dressing up for Halloween as an adult is because there were a couple of years as a kid when I didn’t get to put on a costume or even enjoy any candy. My foster parents were good to me, but strict, and Halloween wasn’t on their radar.

So when I became Chef Jackson Bell, opened my own restaurant, and Halloween rolled around, I couldn’t wait to decorate, dress up, and throw a party for new customers and their kids on Halloween eve. It started small, but now we sell out every year. We carve pumpkins, admire costumes, eat treats and pumpkin pie, and laugh a lot.

My favorite Halloween was five years ago, when I first invited all the kids in foster care in our little city to come to their own party at the restaurant. It’s an annual event now. We provide costumes and masks, and the kids trick or treat at the tables and in the kitchen, enjoy Halloween lunch, and take home a bag of treats and a little pumpkin apiece. I love it!

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Nichelle Clarke (Frightening Features/LynDee Walker): I haven’t had much luck with Halloween the past couple of years—my late Octobers seem to be stuck in a “recovering from a life-threatening injury” rut that leaves me parked on the sofa with a bag of Oreos and Anderson Cooper on my TV. But sometimes, that’s not as bad as it sounds.

I’ve always loved this holiday—costumes and spooky stories are such fun, and my mom had the only “Halloween Tree” in our neighborhood when I was a kid (we got an old Christmas tree from Goodwill and spray-painted it black. If only we’d decided to sell them, we’d be holiday millionaires today.) These days, I have a teeny one that sits on the table behind the sofa, and this year, my boyfriend (still pinching myself a little on that one) camped out to play nurse/entertainment director, and it turns out he’s pretty good at it. He even dug out my spooky light up witch and the “Munchies for Monsters” candy bowl, slicked his dark hair back and popped in some vampire teeth for the trick or treaters. And, when he wasn’t manning the door, he gave a wicked foot massage. It may just be my favorite Halloween yet, healing surgical wound and all.

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The Black Cat (Weeping Moon/Maria Grazia Swan): Halloween is a canine conspiracy. The word Halloween is a dead giveaway. Try saying it slow and with a high pitch. . .get it? It’s the sound of a dog howling. . .

Ghosts, witches and goblins is what makes the day fun they say. Ah! Is what they aren’t mentioning that matters. Black cats. . .yes, black cats.

Every witch has a black cat. I’m not saying that Lella, my human personal assistant, is a witch, although there are days—but in general she pays attention to my needs and I heard her say a firm no to some neighbor kid who wanted to ‘borrow’ me, Flash, for Halloween.

Borrow. Is that even legal? And tonight is Halloween. I get to sit and watch the parade of loud kids wearing silly costumes that will be obsolete in the morning. And what for? So they can go door to door to beg for cheap candies? Take the costume money and buy your own candies I say. So everyone would stay home and my human could rub my belly instead of wasting time opening and closing the front door.

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Samantha Sweet (Spellbound Sweets/Connie Shelton): Prior to one very special Halloween, Samantha Sweet was a 50-something woman who broke into houses for a living. Covering the bills was a stretch and she baked pastries at home to fill in the gaps. Early one autumn, she encountered a dead body in one of her break-in houses, clashed with the very handsome deputy sheriff, and was handed a magical artifact. Those three events set her life on a new course and led to the first mystery she ever solved.

Halloween will always hold a special place in Samantha’s heart because October was the month in which she finally realized her dream of opening her own pastry shop, Sweet’s Sweets, and Halloween was the first crazy-busy holiday for her new business. Each year, as autumn rolls around, the witches come out of the woodwork and when costumed kids stop by Sweet’s Sweets for decorated cookies, Sam readies for the holiday with her best baked goodies of the season.

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The Kitchen Witch (No Time to Witch/Morgana Best): “You’re kidding me, right?” I asked.

Thyme, my closest friend, shook her head. “Every Halloween, an evil demon, repelled only by pumpkins, manifests the very worst fears of the townspeople.”

I wasn’t sure if she was pranking me. “Worst fears, like snakes, spiders, being buried alive, getting peanut butter stuck on the roof of your mouth?”

“All that, and more.”

I disabled the smoke alarm and threw the burned remains of my latest attempt at baking into the sink in one fluid motion. “Mine is that my cupcakes make someone spontaneously combust.”

“I can understand that. Anyway, last year, a man forgot to place a pumpkin, and he. . .” Thyme paused to wipe a tear from her eye. “Amelia, do you have a pumpkin outside your house?”

“No!” I exclaimed, as I heard a knock at the door. “Be right back.” I opened the door, using one of my charred cupcakes as a doorstop.

The hideous demon standing there struck terror into my very soul. As he stretched out a gnarled black hand to my throat, I threw my cupcake at him. He dissolved into flames.

Thyme gasped behind me. “How did you kill the demon?”

I shrugged. “It was a piece of cake.”

You can catch up with these characters plus other favorites in the limited-edition anthology MIDNIGHT MYSTERIES, which includes all-new stories by Ritter Ames, Carolyn Haines, LynDee Walker, Larissa Reinhart, Karen Cantwell, Maria Grazia Swan, Morgana Best, Connie Shelton, and Eleanor Cawood Jones. Tell us about your favorite Halloween below, and you could win one of two kindle copies! The giveaway ends November 6, 2016 at 11:59 AM EST. Good luck everyone!

Thanks so much for having us today, Dru!

All comments are welcomed.

Author Showcase with Ross Klavan, Tim O’Mara, and Charles Salzberg

Triple Shot

Ross Klavan “Thump Gun Hitched” – I’ve got two main characters. . .Ty Haran and Bobby Dane. Both start off as cops in LA and both end up without badges and in real trouble. Haran is older, an experienced special officer and a decorated veteran who fought in the Middle East and has no illusions about heroism. He’s also trying not to let Bobby Dane drive him back to drinking (and failing at that). As for Bobby Dane, he’s been like a son to Haran, looks up to him but never really caught on to what Haran’s been trying to tell him—“Try not to get yourself killed.” These two guys have had one another’s backs for years…and ultimately, that’s what gets them into hard times.

For questions. . .

–If I had to ask each of them personally, the question would be. . .”What the hell were you thinking?” I guess Haran would say that watching out for one another became a habit and eventually they ran up a bill between them, a debt, that nobody could pay. So when Bobby Dane needed help, Haran listened, even though he wanted to wash his hands of the guy. And I think Bobby Dane would say that he wanted to be like Haran, or at least his fantasy of what kind of guy Haran was, and that kind of thinking can lead you to trouble, the kind that you can’t turn back from.

–I’d ask myself. . .are these guys based on anyone real? Good question. They’re a combination of certain guys I knew in the Army and when I was reporting the news, mixed in with fictional characters so that the reader gets an interesting take on this kind of story. And, I used to know a guy who taught hand-to-hand combat and was mostly hired by the police and military. He said he was once a cop. . .until he spent a year in prison after doing something really stupid with a handgun while drunk at a cop party. That’s what gave me the germ idea for the story.

–I’d also ask about the tone of the story—it’s really sort of a Western with automatic weapons. As a city boy, I like the desert. . .I like the way it looks and the feel of just that much lurking danger. I have a lot of respect for the desert and the Sun and what’s out there and have had enough experience not to go too far out. But I enjoyed writing about two guys who were friends who wind up in real danger in a place that’s dangerous just because it is.

The lead character in Smoked, you can call him Aggie, is a low-level marijuana and crystal meth dealer doing business in an unnamed Midwestern state. He’s the kind of guy who—when not selling illegal substances—is either lying or rationalizing. (You can tell because his lips are moving.) After getting in way over his head, and putting the few loved ones he has in jeopardy, he finds an inner strength he never knew he had in order to make things right. Back east in New York City, we refer to this realization as “Growing a pair.”

Question: Is Aggie based on someone in your life?
Answer: Yes. And to answer your next question, I’m pretty confident I’m safe from any liability as this person doesn’t read all that much and would have to admit to some pretty shady—read illegal—activities if he (or she) ever decided to prove Aggie was based on him (or her.)

Question: Why base the story in the Midwest? Aren’t your Raymond Donne novels all set in the New York City (mostly Brooklyn) area?
Answer: I spend a lot of time in the Midwest as that’s where my wife grew up and my in-laws still live. I visit with my wife and daughter twice a year—summer and Christmas—and have developed quite a fondness for the location and the people. As much as I love NYC, I need to get out every once in a while, either physically or through my fiction. Writing about a location I don’t actually live in was quite a challenge and I learned a lot from taking it on.

Question: Will we see “Aggie” in a future novella?
Answer: Read Smoked—and the other two novellas in Triple Shot—and then you tell me. Since he is a first-person narrator with a penchant for manipulating the truth, it could go either way.

Trish Sullivan, approaching forty, is an on-air TV investigative reporter, working for a Syracuse, New York daily newscast. She’s smart, talented, and most of all ambitious. She realizes that if she’s going to move up on the food chain, which means getting signed by a network like NBC, ABC, and CBS, or a cable news network like CNN, MSNBC or Fox, she’s going to have to do it soon. And the only thing that’s going to get national attention is a big story. And so, when Trish is contacted by Meg Montgomery, who’s serving a life sentence for murdering her husband and two young children insisting she’s innocent, Trish thinks this might be the breakout story that gets her where she wants to go.

Meg Montgomery is in her early thirties, blonde, very pretty—thing a young Meg Ryan. She’s married and has two children, both under the age of 10. Or rather she was married with children. Now she’s in prison, convicted of killing all of them. She claims innocence and, with no other avenue open to her to prove that, she writes a letter to a local TV news reporter, Trish Sullivan, in hopes that Trish will investigate her case and perhaps uncover the real killer.

In effect, Meg and Trish are not so different—opposite sides of the coin—and this is perhaps what attracts them to each other.

Questions for Trish Sullivan
1. What made you go into the news business?
I’ve always been a news junkie. When I was a kid every night I looked forward to the news. I imagined myself up there, telling a story, breaking news to the public. My idol was Barbara Walters. She was tough, honest, and not afraid to ask the right questions. That’s who I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to interview important people. I wanted to travel around the world. I wanted to watch news being made and I wanted a hand in making the news.

2. What made you decide to investigate Meg Montgomery’s conviction?
Frankly, I saw a bit of myself in Meg. She looked fragile and yet she was obviously tough. She had to be to go through what she did. I was predisposed to believing she was innocent, but I wanted to make sure, which is why I offered her the choice. I wouldn’t investigate her case unless she took a polygraph test and passed. When she did, I was thrilled. This might be the story I was looking for, the story that would get the attention of the national news organizations. And if I could find enough evidence to get her a new trial, I was sure it would get me out of Syracuse and onto the career path I always wanted.

3. How did you feel when you realized you were being manipulated?
Betrayed. Embarrassed. Ashamed. I’d put my faith in Meg and she’d used me. My credibility was damaged, perhaps beyond repair. I knew I had to do something, otherwise my career would be over.

Questions for Meg Montgomery
1. Why did you marry your husband?
I was the girl from the wrong side of the tracks. The cute girl who was always popular in school, but still looked down on simply because I didn’t come from a family with money or prestige. Marrying my husband was a step to change all that.

2. What was your marriage like?
It was more like a business partnership more than a marriage. My husband gave me something: legitimacy and instant prestige. He got a very pretty woman to be by his side, which raised his stock as much as he raised mine. That’s why I say it was a business deal more than a love match. But love fades anyway, so I didn’t think I was doing anything particularly wrong. He gained something and so did I, but in the end I gave more than I got, because he was not the man I hoped him to be.

3. Did you feel remorse or guilt for what happened?
I’m not the kind of person who looks back. I do what I do, what I have to do to survive, and I try not to judge myself. I know other people judge me all the time, so why would I have to judge myself?

Shadow towns, smugglers and secret notes—this trio of New York authors are a Triple Shot of twists and turns in three novellas published by Down & Out Books, August 2016

Payback leads to an unmarked grave in Ross Klavan’s Thump Gun Hitched. A freak accident forces two L.A. cops to play out a deadly obsession that takes them from back alley payoffs to hard time in prison, then deep into the tunnel networks south of the border to a murderous town that’s only rumored to exist. Before the last shot is fired, everything they thought was certain proves to be a shadow and everything they trusted opens into a trap.

Life was so much simpler for Tim O’Mara’s marijuana-selling narrator in Smoked when all he had to worry about was keeping his customers, now ex-wife, and daughter satisfied. When he forges a reluctant alliance with his ex-wife’s new lover, he realizes there’s lots of money to be made from the world’s number one smuggled legal product—cigarettes. Unfortunately, his latest shipment contained some illegal automatic weapons. Now he’s playing with the big boys and finds the price of the game way over his head. Murder was never part of his business model.

And finally in Twist of Fate, Charles Salzberg follows Trish Sullivan, an ambitious TV reporter working in a small, upstate New York market. She receives a note from Meg Montgomery, a beautiful young woman convicted of murdering her husband and two children. Montgomery claims she’s innocent and Sullivan, smelling a big story that may garner some national attention, investigates and turns up evidence that the woman has, indeed, been framed. What happens next changes the life of both women in unexpected ways.

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Meet the authors
Ross KlavanROSS KLAVAN’s novel, Schmuck, was published by Greenpoint Press in 2014. He recently finished the screenplay for The Colony based on the book by John Bowers. Nominated for an Independent Spirit Award, his original screenplay, Tigerland, was directed by Joel Schumacher and starred Colin Farrell. He has written screenplays for InterMedia, Walden Media, Miramax, Paramount, A&E and TNT. As a performer, Klavan’s voice has been heard in dozens of feature films including Revolutionary Road, Sometimes in April, Casino, In and Out, and You Can Count On Me as well as in numerous TV and radio commercials. In other lives, he was a member of the NYC alternative art group Four Walls and was a reporter covering New York City and London, England.


Tim O'MaraTIM O’MARA has been teaching math and special education in New York City public schools since 1987, yet he is best known for his Raymond Donne mysteries about an ex-cop who now teaches in the same Williamsburg, Brooklyn, neighborhood he once policed: Sacrifice Fly (2012), Crooked Numbers (2013), Dead Red (2015), Nasty Cutter (January 2017). His short story, The Tip, is featured in the 2016 anthology Unloaded. The anthology’s proceeds benefit the nonprofit States United To Prevent Gun Violence.


Charles SalzbergCHARLES SALZBERG is the author of the Shamus Award-nominated Swann’s Last Song, Swann Dives In, Swann’s Lake of Despair (re-release Nov. 2016), Devil in the Hole (re-release Nov. 2016), Triple Shot (Aug. 2016), and Swann’s Way Out (Feb. 2017). His novels have been recognized by Suspense Magazine, the Silver Falchion Awards, the Beverly Hills Book Award and the Indie Excellence Award. He has written over 25 nonfiction books, including From Set Shot to Slam Dunk, an oral history of the NBA, and Soupy Sez: My Life and Zany Times, with Soupy Sales. He has been a visiting professor of magazine at the S.I. Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University, and he teaches writing at the Writer’s Voice and the New York Writers Workshop where he is a founding member.

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a print copy of Triple Shot. US entries only, please. The giveaway will end September 19, 2016 at 12 AM (midnight) EST. Good luck everyone!