Sleuthing Women II: Ten (TEN!) mystery novels by Maggie Toussaint, Camille Minichino, and more!

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Sleuthing Women II: 10 Mystery Novellas is a collection of ten mysteries featuring murder and assorted mayhem by ten critically acclaimed, award-winning, and bestselling authors. Each novella is a tie-in to an established multi-book series—a total of over 800 pages of reading pleasure for lovers of amateur sleuth, caper, cozy, and female P.I. mysteries.

Frosted, A Moreno & Hart Novella by Allison Brennan & Laura Griffin—Three years ago LAPD Detective Scarlet Moreno and rookie cop Krista Hart were nearly killed during a botched sting operation. Now, they’re best friends and partners in the Orange County private investigation firm of Moreno & Hart. But their routine assignments are anything but safe.

Crewel Intentions, An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Novella by Lois Winston—Craft editor Anastasia Pollack receives a desperate call for help from former fashion editor Erica Milano, now in Witness Protection. Erica is being stalked and is afraid to notify the authorities. She once saved Anastasia’s life. Will Anastasia be able to return the favor before the stalker strikes?

No Quarter, A Cleopatra Jones Novella by Maggie Toussaint—Amnesia, the doctor says when accountant Cleopatra Jones wakes in a distant hospital. Hours later most of her memory returns. Detective Jack Martinez visits Cleo’s nearby wealthy client, only she’s dead and broke. To Cleo’s horror, she’s a murder suspect. Will she totally recover her memory before the killer returns?

What the Widow Knew, A Kali-O’Brien Novella by Jonnie Jacobs—Attorney Kali O’Brien takes on the case of a young woman accused of murdering her much older, very rich husband. As evidence mounts and other possible suspects are eliminated, Kali’s doubts about her client’s innocence grow. Meanwhile, Kali is also grappling with her feelings for longtime boyfriend Detective Bryce Keating.

The Magnesium Murder, A Periodic Table Mystery by Camille Minichino—While freelance embalmer Anastasia Brent prepares the body of a young bride-to-be, she learns the girl’s mother suspects foul play. Once again Anastasia is pressed into service as a sleuth, following a trail of clues in search of a murderer and justice.

Honeymoons Can Be Murder, A Lee Alvarez Novella by Heather Haven— When PI Lee Alvarez goes on her honeymoon with bridegroom, Gurn Hanson, they find a dead woman practically on their doorstep. Kauai breezes may be soft, but there are gale force winds of accusation against Gurn. Will Lee find the real killer before her new hubby gets sent to a Hawaiian hoosegow?

Smoked Meat, A Carol Sabala Novella by Vinnie Hansen—Baker and wannabe sleuth Carol Sabala visits her mother for a family Christmas get-together. It’s murder, in more ways than one.

A Deadly Fundraiser, A Talk Radio Novella by Mary Kennedy—When radio talk show host Dr. Maggie Walsh and her pals start digging up clues in a scavenger hunt at a glitzy fundraiser, the game suddenly turns deadly. Will Maggie and her team be able to crack the case and solve the crime?

The Color of Fear. A Kelly O’Connell Novella by Judy Alter—Kelly receives a written kidnap threat targeting her infant daughter, Gracie. Kelly’s assistant Keisha narrates as Kelly and her family plot their precautions, but as time passes and the threat still looms, fear takes a toll on the family…and on Keisha.

Papa’s Ghost, A Gladdy Gold Mystery Novella by Rita Lakin—Gladdy and her girls accept an assignment iat a famous resort in Key West, thinking it will combine business with pleasure. Once they arrive, Gladdy suspects something is strange. Not only is their client an unexpected shock, but so is the case of murder they are expected to solve. Can they succeed when a whole city is against them?

Some explicit language in a few of the stories.

Character interview: Lee Alvarez from Honeymoons Can Be Murder

Lee, welcome back to Island Confidential! Last time we spoke, you had discovered your CEO in a very disadvantageous position (dead in the boardroom in his baby blue boxer shorts), and your ukulele was gathering dust under your bed. Focusing on the important things as we do here at Island Confidential, what’s your progress on the ukulele?

It’s been there for three years. I tried to play it when I first got it, but it’s really hard.  For about two weeks I would practice every day. The tips of my fingers were raw. I asked a musician friend to listen to me and he said if I practiced for the next two years or so, I might move up from ‘horrible’ to ‘amusingly bad’.

So under the bed it went. I don’t know if it’s pride or just the time factor. I mean, I spend the majority of my life investigating cybercrimes, stuff like theft of intellectual property, computer hardware or software. I am the lead in-house investigator for the family-run business, Discretionary Inquiries. Sadly, there are always a few bodies I fall over when I’m not looking.

But here’s the burning question: Do I see myself the same as Sherlock Holmes and his violin?  Hmmmm. First of all, I do like a good hat, but a hounds tooth deerstalker? I think not. Something a little saucier, with a flounce and wide brim. That said, maybe I’ll pick up my uke one of these days and play Tiny Bubbles for all the world to hear. Why not? I’m insured.

Now that you’re a newlywed, how are things with your family? Who’s your main confidant these days?

Here you got me. It’s a three-way tie. Actually, four. Tío, my uncle and an incredible chef, is my strongest confidant. I tell him everything. Wait, wait. I also tell my brother, Richard, everything, too. He really is the best. Wait, wait, wait. My SIL, Richard’s wife, Vicki, gives the Alvarez family large doses of heart. I adore her. But all things are on hold now. I just came back from a honeymoon in Kauai married to the best guy in the world, Gurn Hanson. Not only is he sexy, but he gets me like nobody else does.

Is Gurn okay with your investigating?

He’s happy to be Nick to my Nora Charles. That is, when he’s not going away on a secret mission for the U.S. government.

And how are things going with mom lately? 

Well, I sure hope my mother and CEO of Discretionary Inquiries, Lila Hamilton Alvarez, won’t be reading this. Not that I’m scared of her or anything, but when she speaks, I have been known to roll over with all four in the air and bark. Then I do whatever she says. She is probably the most sophisticated, beautiful, totally in control, and terrifying woman I’ve ever met. It’s ironic that this is the mother fate chose to give me. I love her, anyway.

And your author, Heather: How is she?

Mad as a Hatter. Nice enough, but she gets me into more trouble than I bargain for. Or is that for which I bargain? Anyway, I have been conked on the head, kidnapped, shot at, wounded, waterlogged, left for dead, and we’ve only seen five books! I can’t imagine what’s in store for me next, because Heather says she’s going to keep on writing them! I guess I wouldn’t have it any other way. She keeps my life interesting.

What’s next for you?

Book Six of the Alvarez Family Murder Mysteries, The Culinary Art of Murder, debuts November 2017. I don’t want to give too much away, but I go undercover at a Silicon Valley Culinary Arts School to find a murderer! My getup is pretty awful. I’m disguised as Arbela Einstein, a name given me by my brother Richard. Apparently, I bear a striking resemblance to the discoverer of E = mc 2. However, I see some éclairs in my future, so it can’t be all bad.

Heather Haven’s Honeymoons Can Be Murder, set on the island of Kauai in Hawaii, is one of the amazing stories in Sleuthing Women II. Right now it’s only 99 cents for ten stories!



About Lois Winston

USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry.

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About Heather Haven

Multi-award winning author, Heather Haven, writes humorous, noir, and romantic mysteries, short stories, and plays. The San Francisco Book Review writes of her Alvarez Family Murder Mysteries set in today’s Silicon Valley, “”I found the strongest part…is Lee Alvarez herself: strong, competent, and witty, in a growing tradition of tough female detectives….. All in all, this is a strong work in the genre of the mystery/thriller.”

Honeymoons Can Be Murder, A Lee Alvarez Mystery and more romantic in nature, is the first spin-off novella from that critically acclaimed series. Ms. Haven and her husband of thirty-five years are allowed to live in the foothills of San Jose with their two adorable but demanding cats.

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