Newsletter for September 2021


Featured Book - Coldwater Revenge:  A Coldwater Mystery by James A. Ross

coldwaterrevenge.jpgTom Morgan is on leave from his Wall Street law firm pending the outcome of a criminal investigation by the state attorney general into the activities of Eurocon, an overseas subsidiary of a politically connected U.S. defense contractor. Tom returns to his hometown to sort his thoughts and plan a defense. But when he arrives, his younger brother, Joe, the town's solo cop, enlists Tom's help solve recent murder. The victim is Billy Pearce, the bad boy younger brother of Tom's old high school girlfriend, Susan Pearce.

Working together, the brothers quickly discover that a local bio-tech business has been acting as a no-questions-asked distributor for a shady Montreal research lab, and that Billy Pearce was their sometimes courier. Though an autopsy shows that Billy drowned, his body was riddled with deadly toxin.

Days into the investigation, Joe falls ill from exposure to same toxin found in the dead Billy Pearce. Too weak to leave the hospital, Joe pleads with Tom to take over the investigation, least the state police barge in and stumble upon Morgan family secrets best kept hidden. Tom reluctantly agrees, though by further delaying the launch of a serious defense to the Eurocon accusations, he risks jail and financial ruin.

Tom reconnects with his old high school girlfriend, Susan Pearce, sister of the dead man. But the rekindled romance is quickly stymied by Tom's discovery of evidence that links Susan and Joe to the toxin that killed Susan's brother, and to each other. Susan has plausible answers for the damning evidence, as does Joe, though their explanations are irreconcilable.

The state police arrive and take over the investigation. They give Tom an ultimatum. Help us, and we won't have to waste time investigating the cozy relationship between Morgan cops and Coldwater robbers that the locals say goes back generations. Aware that his brother lives beyond his means, as did their sheriff father before him, Tom agrees to cooperate.

Tom is abducted by the Montreal lab owner, Dr. Hassad, who was Susan's lover years ago when he was living with the Pearce family as a foreign exchange student. Local rednecks nearly beat Hassad to death when they found out about the forbidden romance. Now he's returned to exact his revenge by unleashing a deadly bio-toxin on the town.

Tom escapes with his brother's help. Susan is killed. The media runs frenzied stories about the heroic state police foiling a major terrorist plot, never mentioning the Morgan brothers or the crime's local nature. Tom agrees to let the state police take the credit, provided the state attorney general drops his bogus claims against Tom in connection with the Halliburton investigation. The attorney general agrees.

Tom is now free to return to his high-octane career; but he finds he no longer cares. Joe suggests that Tom redirect his legal and business skills to help the community build a school for troubled youths like Billy. To a spiritually and emotionally exhausted Tom, the idea is a timely life raft and he happily agrees.




Featured Book - The RayBright Caper (A Kirbi Mack Novel Book 1) by B.B. Teeter

theraybrightcaper.jpgIn this series debut, two wily criminals have set out to heist a valuable item of high-tech from a San Diego defense contractor, RayBright Labs. They're a volatile duo, but effective. And for a while, their plot plows forward undetected and meeting little resistance.

Enter smalltime security consultant Kirbi Mack. Young, female, and biracial, she’s used to being underestimated. Do so at your peril.

In a matter of hours she's picked up the scent and begun tracking her formidable adversaries along a trail of greed and increasing violence. Told from the point of view of multiple characters, it's a story filled with twists and turns and shocking betrayals. Kirbi will need to keep her head if she's to survive. Let alone prevail.



Featured Book - Princess Reigns by Roger Williams

princessreigns.jpgFrom the author of "Dangerous Bureau," comes another thriller "Princess Reigns." Ava Edwards is a young, beautiful minister. She's also a phony. She dreams of ruthlessly becoming a rich televangelist. She jealously hates her sweet, ten-year-old stepdaughter Susy. Susy will inherit a Trust Fund at age eighteen. Ava wants it; she can use it to help expand her ministry. But Susy has a big sister, Tori. She's never liked Ava, not due to age -- they're both late twenties, which is thirty years younger than her father -- but because she knows the true Ava. Tori suspects that Ava has cooked up a plot to murder her baby sister. She and Ava will clash over the future of little Susy. And it will be a fight that could very well be to the death -- regardless of what happens to baby sister.



Featured Book - Shadow Shinjuki by Ryu Takeshi

shadowshinjuku.jpgThe streets of Tokyo are different at night. There is darkness behind the glitter and the neon lights, and people who prefer to stay in the shadows, to dwell in the underworld -- whores, gangsters, the homeless, the lost. People like Sato. He's part of this world, he always has been, but a feeling of change is lingering in the heavy air of the bustling city. A feeling brought to life by fateful encounters of solitary souls.

Shadow Shinjuku is a dark, yet magical journey into the depths of Tokyo's nightlife and the depths of the human soul. Ryu Takeshi's first novel is a unique and mesmerizing blend of the imagery of Japanese animation and film, the colors and details of street photography, and the mystical lyricism of soulful music. But above everything, it is a beautiful story that wraps you in its embrace and doesn't let go.

Shadow Shinjuku is a dark and emotional tale exploring themes of love and family through the eyes of misfits and outcasts living in the shadows of Tokyo.

The novel follows Sato, a quiet and reclusive member of a crime organization. He is loyal to his boss, who took him in as a homeless, orphaned child, and he only feels comfortable at night, in the dark streets and mysterious bars of Tokyo. But all that changes when he befriends a weird, funny salaryman named Kon, and becomes the personal bodyguard to boss Yamaguchi's only daughter, Ren, who has the power to remove people's thoughts and send them back to the "Sea of Thought". Through their newly found bonds, Sato, Kon and Ren begin to question their lives and past decisions, and they embark on a dark and emotional journey in search of meaning, love and family, which takes them to the deepest hell of the Tokyo underworld, the sacred mountains of northern Japan, and a mystical dimension on the edges of the human realm.



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Elaine Shoji - CA


Camino Winds by John Grisham
Coldwater Revenge by James A. Ross
Princess Reigns by Roger Williams
Shadow Shinjuku by Ryu Takeshi
The Guardians by John Grisham
The Guilty by David Baldacci
The RayBright Caper (A Kirbi Mack Novel Book 1) by B.B. Teeter
The Stranger in the Mirror by Liv Constantine
Then She Vanishes by Claire Douglas
Under Currents by Nora Roberts



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