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After the apparent shotgun suicide of Emerson Ward's childhood friend Lou Barrett, the Chicago freelance sleuth heads back home to Huntley, Ill., for the funeral in Sherer's sixth whodunit (after 2006's Death Is No Bargain). Meanwhile, Emerson's girlfriend, Nell Reilly, threatens to leave for Seattle with their two-year-old daughter, Emily, to visit her cancer-stricken mother. Emerson was planning to drive back to Chicago the afternoon of the funeral, but deci..
Who would want the director of the Minnesota Valley Zoo dead? Everyone! Anthony Wright made a career of getting what he wanted, whatever the price. When he's murdered and ends up as a late night snack for the zoo's fifteen- foot crocodile, few are shedding any tears. After police arrest the lead crocodile handler, it's up to zookeeper Lavender "Snake" Jones to prove her friend's innocence. But is she really helping? Each lie she exposes only serves t..
On the eve of tourist season in the resort community of Doo County, Wisconsin, a killer is targeting young blond women, leaving their strangled bodies along the desolate Mink River. The killer ritualistically arranges the bodies to mimic sleep, except for the long blond hair, brushed over their faces, and his deadly calling card, a purple band wound around the victim’s ring finger – a macabre symbol of love. Reporter Leigh Girard’s investigation into the mur..
When the cops catch mystery writer Tracy Eaton's mom, Hollywood legend Martha Collins, alone with the bloody remains of celebrity litigant Vince Sperry -- holding nothing but a lame excuse -- Tracy leaps to her mother's defense, despite her own publication woes. But all roads seem to lead to the past and she blunders into one scandal after another. Will Tracy's digging clear Martha or will she unearth something that's sure to slam the cell door shut on her exa..
Andy Brady was an honest lawman, a good husband, and a good candidate for Sheriff of Cochise County - until a bullet abruptly and permanently terminated his life and his future. Now the police brass are claiming he was a maverick whose involvement in drug-running drove him to suicide. But Andy's strong-willed wife, Joanna, knows a cover-up when she hears one and murder when she sees it. And, to her great peril, she is relentlessly determined to clear his name. But, ..
One week before her wedding a young woman strips, takes the time to fold her clothes, then calmly walks into Lake Michigan. When Sam Casey is asked to look into the death of a young mother who left her infant in a high chair, walked down the street and jumped off the overpass, Sam finds a strange similarity-they each received a phone call just prior to committing suicide. Both calls were from disposable phones and both calls lasted four seconds. Were these really suicides or ..
An amateur naturalist dies of mushroom poisoning, a day later the local librarian kills herself, then the buried bones of an infant are discovered. Chicago native Leigh Girard is finding life in a small town can be fatal. Determined to start a new life after her mastectomy, Leigh flees to Wisconsin’s Door County peninsula, where she takes a job as reporter for the local newspaper. Her first assignment, the naturalist’s obituary, turns into a hunt for a murderer.
The report of a homicide at Cochise Stronghold in the Dragoon Mountains captures Joanna’s full attention. An Indian woman has been found shot to death...a woman recently released from prison after serving time for the manslaughter killing of her husband. And her fifteen-year-old daughter, Lucy, is missing. The death at first appears to be a case of exploding domestic rage, and a troubled teen runaway may be a victim - or a cold blooded killer. Joanna’s investigati..
How much physical and mental pain can a sixteen-year-old girl stand? Jeanette Connor is about to find out. It's Chicago, 1955, and she is on the brink of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: a contract with the New York City Ballet. However, since she's a minor, her mother must co-sign and she has different ideas. Jeanette's dream is smashed and instead she soon finds herself in a high-class brothel, being offered up as a little-girl-virgin type. Then she's left ..
A nearly flawless museum robbery, a missing million-dollar necklace, a stalled investigation. For the victim of the crime, the situation calls for desperate measures, and spunky 72-year-old Pen Fitzpatrick isn't going to sit by and do nothing. When the police have a dozen excuses why they can’t solve the crime, Pen does the only thing she can do—gather a group of friends to help catch the crooks and steal back the necklace. They call themselves The Heist Ladie..
It’s trouble at sea when eighty-year old Flossie and Sterling Silver, former Vaudeville magicians, are invited on a relaxing cruise. Goldie’s husband, Captain Red Pepper, has arranged for her mother and uncle to sail on his ship, the Aurora Borealis, and mingle with magicians during the Magic on the High Seas cruise. Goldie thinks it’s a great idea and her twin sister, Godiva, sees it as a chance to keep the old folks out of trouble while she spends time wit..
During a full moon, people are quirky. But a full moon on Friday the 13th means everything’s game and Madrona Bay Hospital’s Patient Relations manager, Robyn Kelly, knows it. Still she is unprepared for finding patient Jason Hilliard strangled with IV tubing in his hospital bed.
Now, she’s got a hospital in panic, a police investigation going awry, and anonymous letters that promise more trouble to come. Not to mention her college-age son announcing a &ld..
Owen finds himself defending his Aunt Lizzie against a murder charge. With her land threatened by the construction of a shopping mall, Lizzie parks herself at the edge of her property, shotgun in her lap, vowing to do whatever it takes to stop the dump trucks; then, suddenly, a truck driver is dead. Did Aunt Lizzie really shoot him? Owen smells a rat, but Lizzie seems determined to refuse his help. Throw in an assortment of well-drawn characters (Billheimer's special..
Computers, poetry and Samurai lore were successful businessman Tadeo Kurobashi's passions. So it stood to reason that the ancient "art" of harakiri would be his suicide method of choice. But Detective Beaumont wasn't certain that the dead software magnate had any choice in the matter - despite the bloody Samurai sword Kurobashi clutched in his lifeless hand. Especially since an error in the time-honored death ritual indicated cold-blooded homicide...of..