Wednesday, October 18, 2017


Sleuthing Women II: 10 Mystery Novellas by Lois Winston, Allison Brennan, Laura Griffin, Maggie Toussaint, Jonnie Jacobs, Camille Minichino, Heather Haven, Vinnie Hansen, Mary Kennedy, Rita Lakin, and Judy Alter
Cozy Mysteries 
Self Published Publication Date: September 5, 2017 
Print Length: 675 pages 

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.


So. Let me introduce myself. I’m Gladdy Gold. I’m the one who really wrote this book. I channeled myself through Ms. Rita Lakin who insists on taking credit, so ignore her. I’m a self-proclaimed private eye. Operating out of Ft. Lauderdale. When did I get into the PI biz? Even as we speak. My credentials? Thirty years of reading mysteries.

Don’t mind me if I ramble. I am seventy-five. Still sharp as a tack, but I do have those senior moments. You wanna know something – the nouns are the first to go. You think that’s old? Hey, you young ones -- laugh. Wait ‘til you get to be my age. Then the laugh will be on you. You’ll ask the same questions we all ask –- where did the years go? And even worse –- where did all the money go? I was minding my own business in my condo in Lanai Gardens, when a few of my neighbors died too soon. Considering that the youngest of us is seventy-one and the oldest ninety-six, this is not something unexpected. I mean, everybody is on the checkout line.

Life had been going along as usual. The girls and I had our daily routines. By the “girls” I mean my sister, Evvie, and friends, Ida, Bella and Sophie, and my best friend Snookie. They are funny and adorable though often impossible. We shop, play cards, go to movies and eat out, early-bird special, of course. Let’s be honest here, it gets lonely. The kids and grandkids don’t come to visit very often anymore. Getting old has plenty of problems, which I know you don’t want to hear. But don’t go feeling sorry for us. We girls have each other. Plus we have a lot of ‘meshuganah’ people living down here, and that makes it interesting. Wait ‘til you meet Hy and Lo Binder and hear Hy’s annoying, though funny, old age jokes. And super swimmer, 250 pound Tessie. And Tessie’s boyfriend,Sol Spankowitz, who has such a secret, you wouldn’t believe it. And lots more unique characters.

And besides, do we have adventures. Remind me to tell you about getting lost on the way to a funeral and ending up playing Bingo! Or the time I paid gang members to break into my car! Then came the murders. It was when my best friend, Snookie, died, I started to suspect there was a killer stalking us. Oh, we girls grieved plenty for her, but no more crying, I was determined to find her killer. I enlisted the aid of the girls who were excited to do something, too. The police (I mean that lanky, young Detective Morrie Langford. What a cute punim!) said I was imagining things, but I knew I was right. All I had to do was prove it! The deaths piled up. Death by Pot Roast! Death by Chocolate! Death by Dumpster! Suspects galore. With more red herrings than in Jerry’s deli. Like Denny, the handyman or Mr. Sleaze, the crooked real estate broker. It began to look like the killer was getting away with the perfect crime.

But, by Golly, the brain cells ain’t dead yet and I figured out who did it and in the funniest chase scene you’ll ever read. The entire population of Lanai Gardens makes the capture, with canes and walkers, toilet plungers, tennis rackets and whatever else was handy. And a new career is born. Gladdy Gold and her Associates Detective Agency. Privates Eyes to Seniors Only. Our motto, “Never trust anyone under seventy-five.” My parting words are, you’ll love this, Florida is another character in my book. Wait ‘til you meet Grandpa Bandit who robs banks, and the newest craze we caused; Cane Fu! And what about that carwash squirrel!

Hey, I even have a shot at romance again! With a handsome senior hunk! Who woulda thunk it!?!

Let me tell you, I am securely located in Ms. Lakin’s brain cells. I will make sure she stays true to my character. I mean, who else knows me better than me! So, book after book, I’ll be there, keeping her honest. There’s GETTING OLD IS THE BEST REVENGE, GETTING OLD IS CRIMINAL, GETTING OLD IS TO DIE FOR, and SIX more.  Ms. Lakin has received multiple rave reviews and already won many awards. Did she share them with me? Hah! Ungrateful child.

My favorite reviews: "Young and old, Jewish, Protestant, Atheist, all will love this tale told with clarity, wit and interesting characters. This is a must-read mystery. Miss it and you'll be sorry."--Janet Overmyer. I Love A Mystery Newsletter.

Time to flee the damp gray climes of Britain and luxuriate (if only through literature) in the winter warmth of Florida. Imagine Miss Marple wielding bronzer, a sure command of Yiddish profanities and a mean elbow on the Early Bird Special buffet line, and you've got Gladdy Gold."--Maureen Corrigan. Washington Post

Rita Lakin spent twenty-five years in Television in LA as a writer of series, movies, miniseries, finally becoming producer/show runner on her own shows. Just published, The Only Woman in the Room, her memoir of those years.

She is also known for writing seven comedy mystery novels featuring Gladdy Gold and her zany geriatric partners in crimesolving. Starting with Getting Old is Murder. She won first place for her IMBA bestselling Getting Old is a Disaster. Same novel won Left Coast Crime LEFTY AWARD for most humorous mystery published in 2009.
She has just competed number eight and nine.

 Her many other awards and nominations include Writers Guild of America, MWA Edgar, and the Avery Hopwood award from the University of Michigan. Visit

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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An entertaining selection of shorter stories ranging from a half hour to just over an hour to read each. Charm, witty dialogue, humor and romance fill out these intriguing mystery tales.

Crewel Intentions: A short story of a young woman in witness protection who thinks she's being stalked and isn't feeling well protected. A sweet ending. Humorously entertaining and makes me want more from Anastasia.
No Quarter, A Cleopatra Jones Novella by Maggie Toussaint is a witty and charming tale of amnesia and family dysfunction. Deception and  irregular romance.
What the Widow Knew is suspenseful and very well written. I wish I had Jared's research skills.  A tough way to a happy potential future for Kali O'Brien.
A Deadly Fundraiser by Mary Kennedy: a  glimpse into the personal life of radio talk show host, Maggie Walsh along with her producer Vera Mae. Fast paced and funny with the Southern charm I love to read. This story begs you to read more by the author.
The Color of Fear sees Keisha's boss Kelly and her family worry about the threat of their baby being kidnapped. Although short this story recalls previous adventures and gives a delicious taste of the Kelly O'Connell series. I also like the mention of how valuable dogs are to a family.  It brings home the point that sometimes fear of the unknown can be more painful and cause more harm than actual events.
Papa's Ghost by Rita Lakin is a comedy mystery series. This story feaures seniors who are still very alert and active.

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  1. Thanks so much for featuring Sleuthing Women II on your blog!

  2. Sleuthing Women II has a lot of colorful, witty characters within its binding, but none as colorful or witty as author, Rita Lakin. Her Gladdy Gold character shines with those traits. Thanks for hosting us today, Laura's Interests.

  3. I love Gladdy and the girls! Thanks for that gift, Rita!

  4. I ask myself all the time "where did the years go!" This year I'm glad to be on tour with these fine Sleuthing Women authors. Thanks for hosting us and for the wonderful review!


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