Indie Crime Fiction of the Month for September 2023

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 August 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, though I may add other retailers for future editions.

Our new releases cover the broad spectrum of crime fiction. We have cozy mysteries, small town mysteries, historical mysteries, Jazz Age mysteries, paranormal mysteries, crime thrillers, legal thrillers, conspiracy thrillers, adventure thrillers, romantic suspense, police officers, FBI agents, amateur sleuths, assassins, serial killers, missing persons, murdered tea shop owners, bigfoot crime-busting witches, crime-busting socialites, crime-busting journalists, murder and mayhem in London, Florida, California, Arizona, the Midwest 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 With Money by Blythe BakerMurder With Money by Blythe Baker:

When Sylvia’s sister disappears unexpectedly, Sylvia doubts the official story. Joan wouldn’t run off to California to become a film star without first saying goodbye to her family. Clearly, she’s in some sort of danger and it’s up to Sylvia to find out what.

But can Sylvia set aside her doubts about her mysterious butler in order to enlist help from Miles when she needs it most?


Chocolate Dipped Intrigue by Beth ByersChocolate Dipped Intrigue by Beth Byers:

Long time friend of Violet Carlyle, that rogue Smith, and Jack Wakefield, Denny Lancaster is a devoted husband, a father to two, and an avid lover of crime. He’s also a little addicted to chocolate.

So he notices when things change at his favorite chocolate shop. Convinced something is amiss, Denny delves right in. This time on his own. And discovers that maybe the time has come for him to be the hero.


Josephine West and the Unexpected Corpse by Beth Byers and Anne WarrenJosephine West and the Unexpected Corpse by Beth Byers and Ann Warren:

Josephine West is broken after losing her husband during the Great War. She spends her days writing nonsense articles for the local newspaper and evenings avoiding the suitors her mother pushes her way.

Then, Josephine discovers a dead body in beautiful Carmel-By-the-Sea, California. She’s determined to both be the one who solves the murder and the one who publishes the story. Can she do it when everyone would try to stop her? She thinks she can, and she’s sure no one else will beat her to the truth. The only question is whether the chase will put her at risk?

The Hunt for Thaddeus Murfee by John EllsworthThe Hunt for Thaddeus Murfee by John Ellsworth:

In the heart-pounding legal thriller “The Hunt for Thaddeus Murfee,” acclaimed author John Ellsworth introduces readers to the brilliant and resourceful attorney, Thaddeus Murfee, whose life takes an unexpected turn when he crosses paths with the cunning and dangerous criminal, Johnny Seventeen.

The story begins with a shocking incident—a bar room shouting match turns fatal when Johnny Seventeen pulls out a gun and shoots a man in cold blood. Arrested and charged with murder, Johnny hires Thaddeus Murfee, known for his unparalleled courtroom skills, to defend him against the charges. As the trial unfolds, tensions rise, and the truth becomes increasingly elusive. The first trial ends with a hung jury, leaving the case open for a second trial.

With the weight of Johnny Seventeen’s conviction hanging over him, Thaddeus discovers that the stakes are higher than he ever imagined. Johnny, consumed by a thirst for revenge, breaks out of jail and becomes a relentless predator, determined to track down and eliminate the one man standing between him and freedom: Thaddeus Murfee.

Forced to abandon his comfortable life and go on the run, Thaddeus finds himself in a race against time. As Johnny’s pursuit grows more relentless, Thaddeus must rely on his wit, legal acumen, and survival instincts to outmaneuver the relentless villain. With each passing moment, the line between justice and survival blurs, forcing Thaddeus to confront his own limits.

In “The Hunt for Thaddeus Murfee,” readers will be captivated by the intricate twists and turns of the legal world as they follow Thaddeus Murfee’s desperate struggle for survival. Packed with suspense, courtroom drama, and a gripping cat-and-mouse chase, this gripping legal thriller will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last page.

Twisted by Maggie GilesTwisted by Maggie Giles:

Detective Ryan Boone thought the simple jewelry heist was an open-and-shut case. That is until he discovers an unknown drug, and this minor crime he was investigating may be tied to a string of seemingly unconnected murders.

Meanwhile, Mel Parker, unscrupulous leader of a less-than-legal high-end escort service, stumbles across the same pills. On top of protecting her “investment,” she has her own reasons for attempting to unravel the mystery behind the medication.

Ryan knows someone has the answers he seeks, and Mel can’t come forward. To complicate things further, five other women are implicated in the murders despite most having never met.

As the trail turns up as many mysteries as resolutions, Ryan and Mel must discover the twisted connection before someone else ends up dead.

Memories of the Falls by Elle GrayMemories of the Falls by Elle Gray:

It’s summertime at the Falls, and this season revenge tastes even sweeter…

Sheriff Spenser Song thought she would get a much-needed break after aiding FBI agent Blake Wilder on an international trafficking ring.
Shortly upon her return to the Falls and to Ryker, the place is once again in an uproar.

When the town’s star athletes are found dead due to a drug overdose.
Once again, it’s up to Spenser with a bit of aid from Ryker to get to the bottom of the string of drug related deaths.

Mean girls, star athletes, and class clowns.
Leaving high school is easy, but the memories you make there will always stay with you.

Of Moms and Monsters by Lily Harper HartOf Moms and Monsters by Lily Harper Hart:

Maddie Graves-Winters is looking forward to a week of relaxation with her best friends. She had no idea a camping trip would be so stressful, however. She might have been picturing s’mores and ghost stories around the campfire, but the world has other plans.

Having her best friends Ivy Morgan-Harker, Harper Harlow-Monroe, and Rowan Gray-Davenport—as well as their husbands and children—around for a full week is her idea of bliss. There’s just one little problem.

Maddie doesn’t consider herself a suspicious person by nature, but when one of the college-aged girls at a nearby campsite goes missing—and nobody seems to care—she’s intrigued. Then, when a mother at a different campsite also appears to have disappeared in the middle of the night, she’s officially on the case.

Maddie and her friends can’t seem to help themselves from investigating. Their husbands are another story. They’re convinced the women are making things up in their heads.

Who will turn out to be right? And if it’s the women, what happens when they draw a potential killer’s attention to their campsite?

The group is strongest when they’re together. But this trip might be the death of one of them.

Crone Cold Dead by Amanda M. LeeCrone Cold Dead by Amanda M. Lee:

Scout Randall’s life has taken more turns than she was ready for, and it’s a new dawn in Hawthorne Hollow.

Her parents have arrived on the scene, and it turns out, they’ve been hiding in the shadows for years waiting for her.

The prophecy that foretold her winning what should be an unwinnable war, has enemies crawling out of the woodwork.

And, worst of all, she’s grappling with the realization that one of her own has betrayed her.

It’s too much for Scout to deal with, which means that the snowmen popping up around town and acting like sentries are barely a blip. When Bigfoot joins the fray, however, Scout realizes trouble is afoot.

All Scout wants is a few weeks to catch her breath. That’s not in the cards. Her life is starting to spiral, and now that she knows who the enemy is, the only thing she’s certain of is that she doesn’t have the strength to fight him.

Hawthorne Hollow is a magical nexus, and all the players are lining up. The ultimate fight isn’t far away, so when new faces appear, it’s easy to question if they’re friend or foe.

Who will come out victorious?

Press Releases and Puff Pieces by Amanda M. LeePress Releases & Puff Pieces by Amanda M. Lee:

Avery Shaw is looking forward to a quiet—but entertaining—day in court when a furious plaintiff takes off after losing what Avery believes to be one of the funniest cases she’s ever covered. Avery gives chase because she wants an interview, and her life is thrown into turmoil during the melee that follows.

Alice Wendell likes to sue people. She’s made a name for herself suing neighbors, police officers, dogs, and even dates. That’s why, when a car is aimed at her in downtown Mount Clemens, it’s not exactly a surprise. The ensuing explosion is, however, and Avery is there for the unfortunate aftermath.

When she wakes in the hospital following a serious head injury, she finds Alice is dead…and maybe not from the blast that took out the clocktower downtown.

Once back on her feet, Avery is determined to chase the case. Her boss, husband, and the very annoyed sheriff in charge of the death investigation have other plans…and they involve Avery being pushed to the puff piece beat until she’s no longer shaky from the explosion.

Avery Shaw is not going down without a fight, however. She’s determined to get to the bottom of things, even if she dies in the process.

There’s something hinky going on at the biggest hospital in the county, and Avery won’t stop until she knows exactly what that something is. That puts a target on her back, and the individual aiming at that target just might have the upper hand.

It’s a fight to the finish for Macomb County’s favorite reporter. Will she survive to claim yet another win, or is this finally the end for Avery Shaw?

The Deadly Deal by J. LeeThe Deadly Deal by J. Lee:

David Centrelli is a junior business development executive at a pharmaceutical company in Richmond with no military training or criminal record whatsoever…but an innocent knock on the door one typical Monday morning changes his life forever.

Thrust into a world of unbelievable accusations, outrageous claims and danger he’s only seen in the movies, he’s told that his best friend’s death two weeks earlier was no accident, and that his buddy has a message for him from the grave. As skeptical as he is, clues far too specific to be coincidental keep coming, and soon his own home is engulfed in flames. When the perpetrator contacts him, he learns that not only are the accusations legitimate, but that people trained to eliminate problems have labeled him one.

Blackmailed by decisions he made years ago, informed that his brother has been kidnapped, and threatened with a future not even his worst nightmare could imagine, the temptation to give up what he knows and disappear into affluent anonymity grows stronger by the second…until he learns that millions of lives depend on him trying to do the right thing. But can this ordinary businessman really escape death from experts trained to administer it and prevent a colossal calamity already set in motion by the highest levels of government.

Behind the Mask by A.J. RiversBehind the Mask by A.J. Rivers:

Every small town has its secrets.
This secret is worth taking lives for…

After saving Molly from a trafficking ring and reuniting with her mother, FBI agent Ava James feels as though she has found true happiness.
While having a family dinner Ava receives a call from an old friend, with some bad news.

Every Halloween, teen girls from the rural Vermont town are going missing.
Each year more than the last.
Did the teens simply run away from home? Or is something far more sinister at play?

With no bodies to be found, it seems as though the teens simply just vanished.
At her friends urging and with only 11 days until Hollow’s Eve, Ava goes to Pine Bend, Vermont to investigate the disappearances.

Phantom serial killer, smugglers, weird Wicca club, and annoying youth groups.
Pine Bend is a town full of weirdos.
And behind a mask, anyone can hide in plain sight.

A Seller's Market by Wayne StinnettA Seller’s Market by Wayne Stinnett:

Six months out of high school and just days after finishing Marine boot camp, Jesse McDermitt is finally ready to unwind and have a little fun when he goes home on leave.

But everything Jesse remembers—his friends, his family, the sparkling beaches and familiar waters of the Caloosahatchee River and Pine Island Sound, even his faithful Lab, Molly, have all changed.

Only when he reunites with a boot camp buddy to explore the reefs of the Florida Keys and the oddly relaxing shallows of the backcountry does Jesse finally understand that it was he, himself, who had changed.

The two young men, enjoying life in paradise while on boot camp leave, soon find out that there are still pirates in those tropical waters. Only their galleons and corsairs have been replaced with offshore racing boats and motorcycles.

Arrest the Alibi by Anne R. TanArrest the Alibi by Anne R. Tan:

My name is Cedar Woods, and I am a recovering ostrich. I have the unfortunate habit of burying my head in the sand. Newly divorced and penniless, I am cleaning my friends’ fancy McMansions to make ends meet while lawyering up for a financial audit on my ex-husband’s tech company.

When my Aunt Coco fell and broke her hip, I hightailed back to Mirror Falls. But things took a bizarre turn when I found out my Chinese aunt thought her new corgi was her husband’s reincarnated spirit, and she took the dog’s financial advice to invest her retirement money into a tea shop. Is she losing her mind, or am I being punished by my ancestors?

To make matters worse, a rival shop owner turns up dead, and Aunt Coco becomes the prime suspect. With the help of newfound friends, I must shift through the town’s secrets to exonerate my aunt and prepare the tea shop for its grand opening. But with a vicious murderer on the loose, I might be in over my head. Can I catch the killer before someone else gets hurt? Will I find the home I spent my entire life searching for?

This humorous cozy mystery will charm readers with its endearing characters, heartwarming family relationships, and an intriguing whodunit that will keep readers guessing until the end. Don’t miss out on the fun. Grab your copy now.

The Girl Who Found Joy by Amy VasantThe Girl Who Found Joy by Amy Vasant:

Mason and Shee travel to Palm Beach to hunt a killer the FBI has nicknamed “Portia”—a type of spider more clever than a black widow. Portia finds a victim and someone to frame for his murder before disappearing with the money—the perfect crime.

Shee befriends their target but plans quickly unravel. A man stabbed to death, mysterious messages, a body washed ashore—all of it a little crazy to fit Portia’s style…

Do they have the wrong killer, or is this another of Portia’s tricks?

Shee and Mason must tap the Loggerhead crew to unravel the crime, but Portia’s web only grows more twisted…and deadly.

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