Indie Crime Fiction of the Month for March 2022


Welcome to the latest edition of “Indie Crime Fiction of the Month”.

So what is “Indie Crime Fiction of the Month”? It’s a round-up of crime fiction by indie authors newly published this month, though some February books I missed the last time around snuck in as well. The books are arranged in alphabetical order by author. So far, most links only go to Amazon.com, though I may add other retailers for future editions.

Our new releases cover the broad spectrum of crime fiction. We have cozy mysteries, historical mysteries, Jazz Age mysteries, Regency mysteries, paranormal mysteries, crime thrillers, psychological thrillers, legal thrillers, adventure thrillers, financial thrillers, financial thrillers, historical thrillers, romantic suspense, police officers, private investigators, amateur sleuths, FBI agents, lawyers, hookers, serial killers, con artists, missing children, terrorism, organised crime, crime-busting witches, crime-busting socialites, crime-busting reporters, crime-busting morticians, murder and mayhem in London, Chicago, Florida, Ohio, Montana, the Caribbean and much more.

Don’t forget that Indie Crime Fiction of the Month is also crossposted to the Indie Crime Scene, a group blog which features new release spotlights, guest posts, interviews and link round-ups regarding all things crime fiction several times per week.

As always, I know the authors at least vaguely, but I haven’t read all of the books, so Caveat emptor.

And now on to the books without further ado:

Murder Among the Silent Dead by Blythe BakerMurder Among the Silent Dead by Blythe Baker:

While visiting a London cemetery, Lillian Crawford and her twin brother Felix are witnesses to a violent crime. When Felix is mistakenly arrested as the culprit, it’s up to Lillian, with some assistance from the handsome Eugene Osbourn, to uncover the truth.

But will Lillian find the answers she needs in time to clear her brother’s name?

 

 

An Infamous End by Blythe BakerAn Infamous End by Blythe Baker:

After the terrible revelations of the past several weeks, Jane realizes she can no longer stay with her Pemberton relations. Fleeing to the countryside, she becomes a temporary guest in the home of her sister and brother-in-law.

But danger finds Jane once more, when she becomes entangled in the investigation of a local murder. And worse, the shadows of Pemberton Heights continue to beckon, threatening to draw her back once more…

 

The Tea Shop Witch by Thora BluestoneThe Tea Shop Witch by Thora Bluestone:

A disappearing body.
Hidden magical talents.
An adorable mind-reading dog.
And small-town secrets . . .

Addie James’s life imploded when she discovered her fiancé cheating and got downsized from her biotech job. So she left Silicon Valley for the haven of her Aunt Kate’s tea and apothecary shop in the peaceful mountain town of Stargaze. There, she plans to take a deep breath and figure out what’s next.

But when Addie reaches Stargaze, there’s no trace of her aunt. Until one night, Aunt Kate’s lifeless body shows up and then disappears from the locked shop.

And that’s when things really start to get strange.

As Addie sets out to find the murderer, she begins to realize her own hidden magical talent is the key to discovering what really happened to her aunt . . . who might not be quite so dead after all.

The problem is, logical Addie isn’t sure she can accept the magical parts of herself that science can’t explain. Will she learn to embrace this new life that’s full of supernatural surprises and solve her aunt’s case?

Hometown Magic by Amy BoylesHometown Magic by Amy Boyles:

There is a killer on the loose in Peachwood, and that person is targeting witches. Worse, there’s no rhyme or reason to the murders. Clementine and Rufus are at a loss as to how to find the killer.

They need help, and a lot of it. So the entire witch and wizard community of Peachwood bands together to help. Only, those folks tend to whine a lot and they’re not sure if Rufus can be trusted. With time running out, and more attacks occurring, Clem and Rufus are forced to rely on witches who can’t be trusted for help.

Will they solve the mystery? Or will Clem and Rufus be the next victims?

God's Ponzi by Robert BuschelGod’s Ponzi by Robert Buschel:

Gregory Portent demands revenge. Revenge is best served cold and when the prey begs to be the target. With his skills and charisma he lures them in easy—using an investment bank to launch a Ponzi scheme. Gregory Portent has one advantage—artificial intelligence. At a critical point, he loses his way. A ‘black swan’ event follows and the Ponzi scheme borders on the brink of collapse. It’s not about revenge anymore; it’s about survival. Greedy lawyers, the FBI, and international syndicates pursue him. Greg must go on the run. Everyone he cares about is now in danger. He must win. The strange thing? You’ll be rooting for him the whole time. Will he win big and get his vengeance? Robert Buschel proves beyond a reasonable doubt, he is a rising storyteller. Pick up God’s Ponzi and unlock the secret behind the world’s most diabolical Ponzi scheme.

A Romantic Little Murder by Beth ByersA Romantic Little Murder by Beth Byers:

Jack and Vi have been on edge. Maybe Vi has been snippy and distracted. Maybe Jack has been sharp and irritable. Maybe they panic when they realize they’re unhappy with each other.

On an evening of romance, they dance, they kiss, they connect, and then they find a body. Of course, they aren’t surprised. Only this time, they realize they know the victim.

Once again, they delve into an investigation. They work together to find a killer, and if they repair what’s been going amiss between them at the same time, they’re all right with that too.

Fortuitious Justice by Dennis Carstens Fortuitious Justice by Dennis Carstens:

WHEN THEY THROW THE BOOK
AT YOU, WHO YOU GONNA CALL?

ANSWER: You’d better call top Minneapolis criminal defense attorney Marc Kadella.

Fixer Burt Chayson had well and truly fixed it this time. About to be charged in a vote-buying scandal, he was overheard declaring that if he went down, he’d take some people with him. Within hours he’s dead, and, at first glance, it looks like a suicide—until incriminating fingerprints are found.

The suspect—and Marc’s client—is realtor Hope Slade, one of a group of law-breaking former Vikings cheerleaders, now known as the Suburban Housewife Hooker Ring. Hope’s had a little bad luck lately—her husband threw her out, her children no longer trust her, and she’s already facing a plethora of other criminal charges. All she needs is a murder rap.

But not only are her fingerprints on the murder weapon but the victim, a client of several of the Housewife Hookers, was last seen with her.

Relying on the SODDI (Some Other Dude Did It) defense that’s worked so well for him before, Marc knows he’ll have no trouble coming up with other suspects. But even if Hope’s not convicted of the murder, she faces RICO, prostitution, and money laundering charges.

And it’s not just Hope. The Grand Jury’s thrown the book at the entire hooker gang, apparently in an attempt to squeeze them for information on much bigger fish – a major local drug wholesaler. The major local drug wholesaler. And danger shadows them since some of those people the fixer had planned on taking down with him want to make sure the hookers don’t spill Burt’s pillow talk.

Bridge to Trouble by Elisabeth Grace FoleyBridge to Trouble by Elisabeth Grace Foley:

Jeanette Pierpont is out of patience.

On the run from hurt and humiliation, she’s fled back to her home in the Montana mountains in search of solitude. But to her unpleasant surprise, she discovers she’s not alone there. In fact, there are altogether too many strangers lurking in the woods and around the abandoned mining town nearby—some decidedly suspicious, others merely infuriating.

Before long it becomes clear that the mountain has become the setting for a daring crime—and Jeanette finds herself dragged into a race against time to foil it before it’s too late.

A novella that blends the classic romantic-suspense style of Mary Stewart with the rugged setting of the American West.

Love, Lies and Suicide by Elle and K.S. GrayLove, Lies and Suicide by Elle and K.S. Gray:

“You can’t always get what you want.”
“But, if you try, you might find…”

You’ll get exactly what’s coming for you.

FBI agent Olivia Knight has seen the realities of what happens when nightmares come to life.

When she’s called to investigate a case of an apparent murder-suicide in an affluent community.

She finds herself buried by the unexplainable questions that arise regarding the couple’s seemingly perfect life.

When a deep dive into the life of the philanthropic couple leads to a revelation to a potential double life.

Olivia finds herself wondering if their hidden life finally caught up to them…

They say the purest form of good in this world is love.
But what happens if the love you feel is all a lie?
What happens when the thing you love the most turns into a monster that breaks you?

With her own romantic life in shambles, Olivia begins to wonder what price one’s willing is to pay for love?
And what is the truth behind this case of love, lies, and suicide?

Tall Tales and Witchy Fails by Lily Harper HartTall Tales and Witchy Fails by Lily Harper Hart:

Splat.

That’s the sound Hali Waverly made when she hit the pavement after a drunken billionaire ran her over with his golf cart.

Cha-ching.

That’s the sound her bank account made when his handlers got him under control and swooped in to buy Hali off. The offer? Ownership of a tiki bar on the property of a busy resort and lodging in one of the villas on St. Pete Beach.

Now Hali is officially successful. That doesn’t mean her life is a beach of roses.

When private investigator Grayson “Gray” Hunter shows up asking questions about a missing woman, Hali is evasive. It’s not because she doesn’t want to help as much as she’s already running her own investigation with the help of her best friend, another witch, and a group of sirens who control the beach.

Gray and Hali lock horns as they continuously cross paths with one another, to the point where they agree to join forces … but only temporarily.

Evil is stalking the resort. Young women are going missing at every turn. It’s going to take a mixture of magic and might to save the day … and even that might not be enough.

St. Petersburg has a new crime-fighting team. Are they strong enough to survive the rising tide and take down a monster?

You’re about to find out.

Path of Justice by Robin JamesPath of Justice by Robin James:

To everyone else, Denny Sizemore is the handsome face on a highway billboard. A man to be trusted. Respected. Re-elected.

To college student Neveah Ward, he is her monster.

When Neveah accuses the former mayor of a brutal rape, it’s easier for everyone not to believe her. Mayor Sizemore has lived his life in the public eye. He’s a family man. A rising star in Ohio politics. She’s a nobody with questionable motives and a shady past.

Except DNA doesn’t lie and Neveah never wavers from her story.

Lucky for her, Prosecutor Mara Brent never backs down from a worthy fight.

The case will pit Mara against some of the biggest power players in the state. They soon learn Mara can’t be bought. But she has plenty at risk in her personal life as she gears up for a nasty custody battle against her formidable ex-husband.

Mara’s willing to put her career on the line to champion Neveah. But when the rape trial takes a shocking turn, the fallout could cost Mara what she cherishes most of all. Her son. This time, the path to justice could reveal a dark family secret those close to her would do anything to protect.

Sticks and Crones by Amanda M. LeeSticks and Crones by Amanda M. Lee:

When Scout Randall’s past came into focus, she thought the hard part was behind her. She was wrong.

Now, not only is she dealing with a day-walking vampire who has all the strengths and none of the weaknesses associated with his kind, but there’s also a new bloodsucker in town … and this one is out for revenge.

When she killed the last master, Scout assumed that was it. She didn’t count on him having a brother. That brother is intent on making her pay, and he’s not shy about dropping bodies in an attempt to rattle her along the way.

Scout has a sister she can’t trust, a former partner she’s trying to bring back to the world of the living, and a crew that’s often steeped in drama. When you add the Winchesters from Hemlock Cove into the mix, she has her hands full. A new vampire gang is the last thing she needs, especially when people start falling under glamours and making targets of themselves.

Scout has magic and might on her side but the fight she’s facing could force her to make a choice she never thought she would have to make.

Darkness is taking over Hawthorne Hollow. Vampires are gathering evil forces to take over the town.

The fight is on.

Fake News and Office Blues by Amanda M. LeeFake News & Office Blues by Amanda M. Lee:

Taking down a killing team means Avery Shaw is getting a lot of attention. It’s almost too much attention. That’s why she’s ready for a new story, and when one falls in her lap, she’s more than ready to flip the script.

When leaving the courthouse, she witnesses two men in a car trying to abduct a local woman. She intervenes, but when the dust settles, the woman is nowhere to be found and people are telling her that she’s reading too much into the situation.

She knows better. Unfortunately, nobody will listen.

Her boss is trying to force her to cover pageant stories. Her husband is trying to placate her. And the sheriff? He’s convinced she’s losing her mind.

Avery doesn’t play around, however, and she keeps digging … despite the numerous distractions she’s got going. What she finds is a huge operation, and when it’s time to take it down, she’s the one in danger of not only losing her life but also her freedom.

Avery Shaw is a force to be reckoned with. She’s about to prove it … again.

Patient Vengenace by A.L. MastersPatient Vengeance by A.L. Masters:

The 2012 London Olympic Games are coming up and the country is in a state of excitement. The mood in the country is positive and hard times are forgotten, if just for a short time. But a young woman is reported missing. And then a dismembered woman’s body is discovered at an ancient historical site. Or is it? Another young woman is reported missing. Another body is found floating in the Thames. Or is it? Spence Hargreaves and his team find themselves hurled into an investigation that stretches from the Wiltshire countryside to London to East Anglia to Australia. What brings things together? Is the past the past and the present the present? Or can past and present never be separated? Is vengeance ever just? Is it true that we reap what we sow? As the reader ponders such issues, Spence and his team struggle to understand the reason why? And then how to unravel the threads.

Don't Get Close by Matt MiksaDon’t Get Close by Matt Miksa:

An infamous reincarnation cult resurfaces in the wake of a deadly bombing, and it’s up to an FBI novice to learn its true aim—and uncover its dark past before it consumes her.

Special Agent Vera Taggart walked away from a promising career as an artist to join the FBI, and she impresses her new colleagues with her eerie ability to divine conclusions from the grisliest crime scenes. Taggart’s first assignment is a decades-old cold case centered on a cult of suicide bombers known as the Sons of Elijah who believe they’ve been reborn hundreds of times, going back centuries. It seems like a low-risk assignment until a bomb tears apart a crowded Chicago restaurant. The Sons of Elijah have returned—and now it’s up to Taggart to stop their modern-day reign of terror.

Taggart’s investigation begins with Dr. Seth Jacobson, a renowned psychiatrist who claims to help people remember past lives through hypnotherapy. Jacobson had treated two of the Sons of Elijah’s founders before they’d gone on to commit a series of horrific murders. Desperate to understand how these ordinary patients could have taken such a violent path, Taggart agrees to undergo similar treatment with Jacobson.

Through her hypnosis sessions, Taggart comes to suspect the Sons of Elijah are targeting a high-tech government laboratory that could expose the group’s greatest secret with a controversial experiment. To save millions of innocent lives, Tag must come to grips with the shocking truth about the cult and her own puzzling role in its timeless mission. The fate of humanity rests on her ability to determine which threats are real and which exist only in her mind—and to decide whose side she’s really fighting for.

Bad Blood Sisters by Saralyn RichardBad Blood Sisters by Saralyn Richard:

Quinn McFarland has grown up around dead bodies…

Quinn’s always joked about death, but this summer, death stops being funny. For one thing, her brother finally undergoes transplant surgery. For another, Quinn’s estranged BFF—her “blood sister”—is brought into the family mortuary, bludgeoned to death.

Quinn is haunted by the past, her friendship gone awry, and the blood oath she’s sworn to keep secret. The police consider her a person of interest, and someone threatens her not to talk. Quinn is the only one who knows enough to bring the killer to justice, but what she’s buried puts her in extreme danger.

Little Did She Know by Willow RoseLittle Did She Know by Willow Rose:

It was supposed to be the happiest day of her life when her kidnapped daughter returned, but it wasn’t.

Fourteen years ago, Clarissa Smalls was born, and a few hours later, she was taken from the hospital. Kidnapped. Her mother searched desperately for her for years, but she never found her.

Until now.

When Clarissa Smalls is suddenly found in the swamps of central Florida, badly bruised and confused, it causes much joy and celebration in her family, especially with her mother, who has waited fourteen years to see her baby girl again. Little did she know that this day would end up being the worst in her life. Because Clarissa doesn’t want to know about her mother, she refuses to talk to anyone and won’t tell the police what happened to her.

When another baby girl is kidnapped from the same hospital, in the same manner, the police believe it’s the same kidnapper that took Clarissa. Suddenly, time is of the essence to make her answer the many questions that are piling up.

Where was she for fourteen years?

Who took her?

Why won’t she tell them who her kidnapper is?

The FBI brings in former profiler Eva Rae Thomas to help them in this peculiar case. Eva Rae Thomas knows the girl’s mother very well and is willing to go to great lengths to help her out, even though the two of them share an unpleasant history. In addition, Eva Rae’s sister recently came back into her life after being kidnapped thirty-five years ago, so the FBI hopes that she can contribute with a deeper understanding of the situation and maybe get through to Clarissa.

Little could she have known that soon she would wish that she never got involved in this, as the case becomes very personal for her.

Murder at the Savoy by Lee StraussMurder at the Savoy by Lee Strauss:

Mrs. Ginger Reed, known also as Lady Gold, settles into homelife with her husband Chief Inspector Basil Reed, son Scout and newborn daughter Rosa, but when an opportunity to join a dinner party at the renowned Savoy Hotel is offered, she’s eager to engage in a carefree night with friends. Some of the guests are troubled when their party’s number lands at unlucky thirteen, as death is sure to come to the first person who leaves the table.

Thankfully, the Savoy has an answer to this superstitious dilemma. A small statue of a black cat fondly known as Kaspar is given the empty seat, rounding the number to fourteen.

Unfortunately, in this instance Kaspar didn’t fulfill his duties and a murder is committed. The case is tricky and complicated by a recent escape of a prisoner who has a bone to pick with Basil. Are the two seemingly unrelated incidents connected?

Ginger and Basil work together to solve one while avoiding the other, and what can they do about the black cat who crossed their path?

Confusion People by Ed TejaConfusion People by Ted Teja:

Framed for a bewildering array of crimes, Martin is on the run. The government thinks Hodges is either dead or gone rogue. That makes it hard to save the world from his ex-wife who is doing her best to take over various arms and drug deals, and whatever else the cartels are doing. With both Interpol and the bad guys after them, time is not their friend.

 

 

The Girl Who Killed You by Amy VansantThe Girl Who Killed You by Amy Vansant:

When Mick and his retired military gun-for-hire “fixer” service is hired by a United States Senator to find his missing son, he enlists the help of his daughter, Siofra “Shee” McQueen. An experienced tracker, Shee quickly tracks the boy to a Bahamian island playground catering to the young and wealthy. The job seems like such a breeze, she hires her daughter, Charlotte, to infiltrate the age-restricted compound. They’ve just been reunited after a lifetime apart, and the mission offers them serious quality mother-daughter time.

Is the mother-of-the-year award in the mail yet?

Before Shee can kick back with a Bahama Mama, the senator’s son’s girlfriend turns up dead. The boy is the primary suspect. Could be he’s not the underachieving goofball he seemed to be…and her daughter is on the island with him.

Shee needs to extract Charlotte, but communication has been cut, and the sinister underbelly of the resort is beginning to show.

Shee will need to tap into her father’s collection of ex-military misfits, including a retired FBI agent, a newly-hired thief hiding a secret, and Charlotte’s father—the wounded SEAL whose heart Shee once trampled—if she’s going to save their daughter.

The island has other ideas.

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