stories in and

The Fable of Wren by Rue Sparks

“There are wonders and terrors out there you can't yet imagine, and people out there you don't yet know are family." I don’t mix well with people; I prefer the birds. I spend my time trying to find the Trickster—a finch treasured by the locals. My smart mouth, brash behavior, and being non-binary in this secluded southern town keep me on the periphery of Spastoke’s society. Fine by me. All I need are the birds and my uncle Jeremy. Until he dies, and I can’t do anything to stop it. I want to withdraw from the town into the comfort of birdwatching and forget everything. Instead, Adrian Turney, my uncle’s friend and mentor, is found dead in the woods. My only hope of unravelling the truth is Jethro; a chatty newcomer that appears earnest, but can I trust him? When my uncle appears to me in my dreams, I quickly learn what started as a search for answers is so much more: a journey into the town’s shady past to uncover a danger in the woods lost to time. Along the way, I might discover I’m not alone as I thought.


The Mystery Of The Murdered Guy by G.M. Nair

After their very public triumph over the sinister machinations of the Future Group, Michael Duckett and Stephanie Dyer's accidental detective agency has become a household name. Practically overnight, they've cemented their place as the city's go-to sleuths for solving the weird, oddball cases that would confuse and irritate anyone else. Join them as they tackle the mysteries of a medically licensed vampire, a mysterious mad bomber, a genderfluid reverse werewolf, and the true meaning of Christmas - just to name a few. Meanwhile, an aging billionaire obsesses over his plans to achieve immortality, which could mean dire consequences for the world. But with Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire on the case, what could go wrong? If you said 'everything', you'd be correct.


The Trellis by Jools Cantor

Debbie Peck is a conflict mediator struggling to make ends meet in Chicago's near future. Conflict is everywhere, but jobs are scarce, so when her headhunter calls about an open position at the prestigious Jefferson Trellis, she jumps at the opportunity. She lands right in the middle of an active murder investigation—a tangle of half-truths, broken promises, and a growing snarl of danger and dread. But a job's a job. At least this one has health insurance. As Debbie navigates her new position and Detective Melody Jackson investigates the murders at the Trellis, they each untwine the tendrils of a secret creeping through its corner offices. Like the botanical gardens at the Trellis' base, their worlds weave between the lush, the stark, the delicate, and the deadly. Dancing between mystery, science fiction, and nail-biting suspense, THE TRELLIS layers a decade or two of decline to the current American condition. Whether it's drone swarms, deepfakes, or the growing divide between the have-it-alls and the have-nots, the technology predictably improved while the people predictably haven't. Debbie's tale is both familiar and fantastic, both funny and frightening, but calling her world a dystopia would damn ours the same definition. THE TRELLIS is Jools' first full-length novel. It paints a compelling picture of dangers to come—sometimes rich with thick impastos, sometimes sharp in sparks and flashes. But by the last page, Debbie's story becomes our own.


Behind Blue Eyes by Anna Mocikat

In a future world ruled by warring mega-corporations, cyborg Nephilim believed she was fighting a righteous cause. As a powerful, cybernetically enhanced elite soldier her job is to do all the dirty work for the mega-corporation she belongs to. She and her elite cyborg squad are deployed on the most dangerous missions – to protect Olympias from threats outside and inside at any cost. One day, a malfunction in her implants separates her from the all-controlling grid. For the first time in her life, Nephilim is free. She learns that everything she has believed in all her life is a lie and decides to defend her newfound freedom. But Metatron, the leader of her unit, has very special plans for her future and won’t let her get away. Soon, Nephilim finds herself hunted by the killer squads she once belonged to. She’s the best of them but will her skills be enough to survive? Blade Runner meets John Wick with a badass female lead.


All the Whys of Delilah's Demise by Neve Maslakovic

A future Seattle where popularity is everything. The mysterious death of the #1. And an elusive killer. A rocky year into adulthood and lacking a personal brand, Scottie's skidding toward the bottom spot on New Seattle's popularity list--which brings a short ride out into the frozen wasteland that surrounds the town dome. When a brand finally comes her way, it's a calamitous one: Scottie is blamed for the death of the longtime #1, a charismatic stage actress named Delilah. Aided by her "Watson," the companion her brain chip provides, Scottie scrambles to uncover the person who framed her--and who killed Delilah. What she unearths will shake the very foundation of her world...and place her squarely in the crosshairs of a shadowy killer intent on clearing a path to #1.


Zero Saints by Gabino Iglesias

Enforcer and drug dealer Fernando has seen better days. On his way home from work, some heavily tattoed gangsters throw him in the back of a car and take him to an abandoned house, where they saw off his friend’s head and feed the kid’s fingers to ... something. Their message is clear: this is their territory now. But Fernando isn’t put down that easily. Using the assisance of a Santerian priestess, an insane Puerto Rican pop sensation, a very human dog, and a Russian hitman, he’ll build the courage (and firepower) he’ll teed to fight a gangbanger who’s a bit more than human.


Ablem's Sanctuary by Briar Esterline

Right outside the small town of Burriston, Pennsylvania is Ablem’s Sanctuary: a luxurious inn with freshly-painted walls, sparkling windows, and a manicured apple orchard all run by the reclusive Ablem family; it’s a place straight from a fairytale. Then people start going missing in the late summer of 1995, vanishing without a trace and returning... different. Stanley Dolmen has his own problems: he's still reeling from his mother’s sudden death and an uncontrollable power awakening within him. But when his path crosses with the Ablems, he soon finds himself drawn into their world of wealth, secrecy, and the affection he’s been starved of in his own family. However, it seems to come with a hefty price. He begins to question their intentions when his world descends into terror, his family is caught in the crosshairs of dangerous people, and a supernatural force is growing wrathful in the surrounding woods. With the help of the outcasts in his neighborhood, he is forced to decide whether to believe the Ablem's checkered past or have the rest of the town pay the ultimate price for his mistakes.


What Happened on Box Hill by Elizabeth Gilliland

What would happen if you combined all of Jane Austen’s characters into one modern-day novel? Murder, of course. When Caty Morland’s roommate, Isabella, falls to her death on Initiation night, Austen University is quick to cover up the scandal and call it a tragic accident. But avid true-crime lover Caty remains convinced that Isabella didn’t fall; she was murdered. With the help of Pi Kappa Sigma President Emma Woodhouse, Caty organizes a dinner party with the most likely suspects, including familiar faces such as Darcy, Elizabeth Bennet, Knightley, and Marianne Dashwood. The theme of the night is murder, and Caty has three courses to find out what happened to Isabella--and to try to keep the killer from striking again.


The Girl in White by Shannon Reber

Two years before, Madison Meyer’s best friend killed herself . . . or that’s what they all believed. The truth about Emma’s death was something only Emma and her killer knew. Now, Emma’s spirit has returned to try and show Maddie what really happened to her. Seventeen-year-old Madison’s life has just begun to go back to something that resembles normal for a genius level girl with a special proclivity for anything electronic. Computers were the world she immersed herself in after the death of her friend. Now, Maddie has to figure out what really happened to Emma, using the intelligence that is her stock and trade. The trouble is, lives are being lost. Can Maddie and her friend Ian figure out the mystery of Emma’s death before it’s too late? Find out in this gripping mystery which is the first book in the exciting series to come!


The Murder Next Door by Sarah Bell

July 1912 Leeds, England. A man is found dead on his study floor and his now-missing wife is the obvious suspect. To their neighbour, Louisa Knight, it's a shocking piece of news but nothing more. However, when she tells her 'companion' over breakfast, Ada Chapman nearly breaks their teapot and looks ready to run out the door. For Ada watched Mrs Pearce leave from the window of her painting studio. A moment's glance of a fearful face brings back old memories and gives her doubts. As far as the more pragmatic Louisa is concerned, Ada's determination to investigate is bound to lead them into trouble. Again. Yet Louisa's curiosity cannot be denied, and as the pair delve deeper into their neighbour's life what they uncover only clouds the issue further. The question soon becomes not just 'Who killed Mr Pearce?' but also 'Does that person deserve to hang for it?' Even if the couple can find the guilty party, will they be able to agree what should become of them?


Alyssa Fairfield by Tiffany Christina Lewis

Smart, talented and fun-loving, Alyssa Fairfield is a junior at UCLA. She believes she is firmly in command of her life until one harrowing, late-night run proves to her that not everything is in her control. After surviving a vicious assault, Alyssa becomes devoted to finding her attacker. Now she must fight her own demons while developing her skills as an investigator, and trying to apprehend a cunning and deadly assailant. You will love this #OwnVoices story about survival and triumph, fighting demons and rising above tragedy.


Preacher Sam by Cassondra Windwalker

No one is more qualified to understand the blackest hearts than a disgraced, sex-addicted former preacher who is still in love with his estranged wife. Floundering for direction and beset by the needs of his well-meaning but aggravating atheist sister and her seven-year-old son, Sam Geisler is trying to put his past behind him when the murder of one of his former parishioners by another drags him back into the world he left behind. Sam may not be Broad Ripple’s favorite son, but his peculiar gift for listening has earned him the moniker murderer-whisperer, and the police need his help on what should be an open-and-shut case. Fighting for his marriage, fighting with his sister, and fighting against his own demons, Sam may be the only one who hears what the real murderer is all but shouting—but will it be enough to drive back his own darkness?


Money Matters A Novel by Brian Finney

At once a painful coming-of-age novel, an exciting amateur sleuth tale and an intriguing narrative involving social issues (immigration and wealth disparity), Money Matters has mystery at its core. This emotionally charged debut novel is firmly embedded in Los Angeles culture over the 2010 mid-term election. Jenny, the 27-year old inexperienced protagonist, faced with the tragic disappearance of a friend, is forced to take on financial tycoons, corrupt politicians, and the treacherous Baja drug cartel in her search to uncover the truth. Jenny's investigation takes her into the twilight world of undocumented immigrants, which leads her to seek the help of the handsome director of an immigrant rights organization to whom she is strongly attracted. But will the deadly enmity of the rich and powerful thwart her search and end her budding romance?


The Avenging Angel of Hasselwhite Hall (Malhaven Mysteries #2) by Helen Whistberry

When a series of escalating pranks at the Sisters of Mercy orphanage get out of hand, it's time for intrepid reporter Jim Malhaven to grab his trusty fedora and dust off his investigatory skills. A lost little girl with no voice and no past, an unpleasantly sinister pair of caretakers, and reported sightings of a heavenly visitor sporting a pair of wings. Can Jim and his friends get to the bottom of the mystery at Hasselwhite Hall before evil triumphs over good? This is book 2 of the series. The Malhaven Mysteries are light noir novels with a cozy mystery feel and a touch of the paranormal that pay loving tribute to the wise guy detectives of the 40s and 50s.


The Weird Sisters of Wynter Hill by Helen Whistberry

Jim Malhaven is a lonely hack reporter stringing along on assignments no one else wants at the local paper until he gets the scoop of his life. There's a mysterious wraith haunting the local cemetery, and it's up to him to get to the bottom of the ghostly goings-on. Along the way, he'll cross paths with a trio of weird sisters, uncover a sinister conspiracy, have more than one brush with death, and meet a gal with honey blonde hair and a killer smile. Is she that certain someone he's been looking for all his life, or is there a villain hiding behind that lovely face? This twisty tale will leave you guessing until the final shocking revelation. The Malhaven Mysteries are light noir novels with a cozy mystery feel and a touch of the paranormal that pay loving tribute to the wise guy detectives of the 40s and 50s.


The Witch's and the Wolf's Curse by Julia Pazdro

As the Witch entered the woods with her wolf close behind her, she knew that tonight was going to be difficult. Today was the long-awaited day. After 12 long years, she is finally going to attempt to break the curse. Will she succeed? What is the curse? Can she have a happily ever after?


Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire by G.M. Nair

Michael Duckett is fed up with his life. His job is a drag, and his roommate and best friend of fifteen years, Stephanie Dyer, is only making him more anxious with her lazy irresponsibility. Things continue to escalate when they face the threat of imminent eviction from their palatial 5th floor walk-up and find that someone has been plastering ads all over the city for their Detective Agency. The only problem is: He and Stephanie don’t have one of those. Despite their baffling levels of incompetence, Stephanie eagerly pursues this crazy scheme and drags Michael, kicking and screaming, into the fray only to find that they are way out of their depth. They stumble upon a web of missing people that are curiously linked to a sexually audacious theoretical physicist and his experiments with the fabric of space-time. And unless Michael and Stephanie can put their personal issues aside and fix the multi-verse, the concept of existence itself may, ironically, no longer exist.


The One-Hundred Percent Solution by G.M. Nair

The Future Group is the city’s biggest and most lucrative company even though no one really knows what it is they do. Michael Duckett has worked there for four years and he still has no clue. All he knows is that he hates his meaningless job and all the people in it. But it pays the bills. Bills that have been stacking up since his roommate and best friend Stephanie Dyer decided to open a detective agency – despite her chronic inability to commit to anything. When Michael is suddenly fired, he and Stephanie are forced to return to the world of private investigation against his better judgment. A mysterious woman wants to enlist the services of Duckett & Dyer: Dicks For Hire to track down an assassin who has a bone to pick with Michael’s former employer. Apparently, The Future Group has been harboring a deadly secret for decades. One that could put the world in the grip of an indescribable horror. It turns out Michael was lucky to get out of that job alive. Too bad he and Stephanie are being dragged back to work.


The Weight of Lies: A Novel by Emily Carpenter

In this gripping, atmospheric family drama, a young woman investigates the forty­-year­-old murder that inspired her mother’s bestselling novel, and uncovers devastating truths—and dangerous lies. Reformed party girl Meg Ashley leads a life of privilege, thanks to a bestselling horror novel her mother wrote decades ago. But Meg knows that the glow of their very public life hides a darker reality of lies, manipulation, and the heartbreak of her own solitary childhood. Desperate to break free of her mother, Meg accepts a proposal to write a scandalous, tell-all memoir. Digging into the past—and her mother’s cult classic—draws Meg to Bonny Island, Georgia, and an unusual woman said to be the inspiration for the book. At first island life seems idyllic, but as Meg starts to ask tough questions, disturbing revelations come to light…including some about her mother. Soon Meg’s search leads her to question the facts of a decades-old murder. She’s warned to leave it alone, but as the lies pile up, Meg knows she’s getting close to finding a murderer. When her own life is threatened, Meg realizes the darkness found in her mother’s book is nothing compared to the chilling truth that lurks off the page.


Address to Die For by Mary Feliz

For professional organizer Maggie McDonald, moving her family into a new home should be the perfect organizational challenge. But murder was definitely not on the to-do list . . . Maggie McDonald has a penchant for order that isn't confined to her clients' closets, kitchens, and sock drawers. As she lays out her plan to transfer her family to the hundred-year-old house her husband, Max, has inherited in the hills above Silicon Valley, she has every expectation for their new life to fall neatly into place. But as the family bounces up the driveway of their new home, she's shocked to discover the house's dilapidated condition. When her husband finds the caretaker face-down in their new basement, it's the detectives who end up moving in. What a mess! While the investigation unravels and the family camps out in a barn, a killer remains at large-exactly the sort of loose end Maggie can't help but clean up . . .


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