Indie Crime Fiction of the Month for November 2019

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 speculative fiction by indie authors newly published this month, though some October 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 harboiled mysteries, cozy mysteries, small town mysteries, animal mysteries, culinary mysteries, historical mysteries, regency mysteries, jazz age mysteries, 1940s mysteries paranormal mysteries, crime thrillers, adventure thrillers, action thrillers, medical thrillers, legal thrillers, spy thrillers, police officers, private investigators, FBI agents, amateur sleuths, lawyers, murdered judges, murdered vicars, terrorists, spies, cults, crime-busting bakers, crime-busting witches, crime-busting realtors, crime-busting witch realtors, suicide sonatas, hijacked drones, mayhem and murder in country mansions, hospitals and the circus, in Florida, the Appalachians, Napa Valley, Hollywood, Washington D.C., the Cotswolds 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:

A Simple Country Killing by Blythe BakerA Simple Country Killing by Blythe Baker:

Death, and Helen Lightholder, return to Brookminster with the murder of the village vicar. As Helen investigates the ghastly crime, she soon finds herself a suspect of the local police. To clear her name and protect her friends, Helen must discover the truth and outwit a devious killer.

But Helen’s personal life is not without its own mysteries and one of them continues to stalk her in the shadows…



Fall's Killer Vintage by Anne Celeste BurkeFall’s Killer Vintage by Anne Celeste Burke:

In wine country, a federal judge is murdered and Aunt Lettie’s old friend, Judge Colin Brinkley, quickly becomes a suspect.

Lily, Austin, and her friends are excited about the Calla Lily Winery vintages entered in the fall Taste of Napa Challenge. The event turns out to be more challenging than anyone imagined when a fire ends the awards ceremony before the winners are announced. The plot thickens when police become concerned that one of the wines entered in the competition may have been a killer vintage. The U.S. Marshal Service is on the job, but when Aunt Lettie’s old friend becomes a suspect, Lily and her friends are soon caught up in the mystery too. Is the murder of a federal judge about trouble at a winery, the judges’ cases, or something more personal? Join Lily and Austin as they try to discover who’s responsible for murder, arson, and fraud.

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

December 1925

Violet Wakefield is determined to dive into the holiday and enjoy every occasion. She’s going to see the live nativity, listen to Handel’s Messiah, and attend the Nutcracker ballet. She’ll cover her house in all the holly and lights. In fact, Vi wants nothing more than to put up the largest Christmas tree she can locate and stuff it with gifts. ??She little expects, however, to stumble across a crime in action. When she gets pulled into the madness, her biggest concern isn’t the crime, it’s keeping Jack from committing a holiday homicide.

Kicked to the Curb by Joanna Campbell SlanKicked to the Curb by Joanna Campbell Slan:

Life in Paradise isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. Cara Mia Delgatto feels like she is drowning in problems!

Stuart, Florida. Her ex-husband is refusing to pay their son’s college tuition (as promised), her sister is pulling mean pranks, and her old boyfriend has broken her heart…again. And that’s just the personal stuff.

She’s also concerned about keeping the cash register ringing at the Treasure Chest, her store specializing in upcycled, recycled, and repurposed goods.

An important media event goes sadly wrong and Cara’s famous temper gets the better of her. Then a prying reporter turns up dead, practically in Cara’s backyard. Could the reporter’s murder have anything to do with a century’s old blot on Florida state history, the infamous Dozier Boys School? Suddenly, Cara’s personal problems seem trivial compared to the abuse and murder of hundreds of innocent boys.

Kicked to the Curb is the charming second novel in the Cara Mia Delgatto cozy mystery series. If you like witty heroines, former flames reconnecting, and Florida’s beautiful Treasure Coast, you’ll adore Joanna Campbell Slan’s captivating tale.

Art Attack by Mike FaricyArt Attack by Mike Faricy:

Careful what you wish for . . .

PI Dev Haskell runs into Kristi McKenzie, his old high-school flame. Amazingly, she needs help . . .

Her artist husband has been missing for over half a year – and she’s never contacted the police!
Turns out he’s the guy she dumped Dev for way back when.
Her previous fiancé died under suspicious circumstances . . .
Dev begins his search but keeps coming up with more questions.
One thing is clear, someone is definitely on a mission to KILL Dev Haskell!

The Shield by Ken FiteThe Shield by Ken Fite:

When terrorists hijack weaponized military drones, a former government agent must team up with the people he swore he’d never work with to find the hijackers before they unleash the drones on DC.





Fatal Limit by Inge-Lise GossFatal Limit by Inge-Lise Goss:

A Murderer Is Loose In The Hospital

Dora Stephens can’t refuse this case.

When she witnesses Sheila, the aunt of her best friend, stagger out of the hospital and die from a traffic accident, Dora’s private eye instincts kick in. Something’s not right. Sheila had no known enemies… but someone wanted her dead.

Digging into the circumstances of Sheila’s death leads Dora on a devious path where she encounters lies, drugs, betrayal, and infidelity. She uncovers another mysterious death and stumbles upon a dark secret kept by some of the hospital’s top staff and privileged doctors.

Sheila was not the only nurse who had an affair with the hospital’s star surgeon. Would one of her romantic rivals stoop to murder? Or had she learned too much about the well-kept dark secret?

Wicked Decisions by Lily Harper HartWicked Decisions by Lily Harper Hart:

Ivy Morgan is getting married, which means she needs a dress. Now that she’s finally embraced the idea of planning for the wedding (rather than just enjoying the marriage and honeymoon) she’s gung-ho to check things off her list.

The local dressmaker Zelda Morris has just the thing for Ivy. Before she can show it to her, though, she’s murdered in the back of her own store … while Ivy waits for her to return to the storefront. Unfortunately for Ivy, because she didn’t hear a thing, that makes her a suspect.

Jack Harker isn’t happy with the turn of events. He knows Ivy is innocent but he’s in a precarious position. If word gets out that he’s protecting his fiancée, then the Michigan State Police could take over the investigation, and he’s worried they might fixate on Ivy. That means he has to dig deep for answers … and what he finds is troubling.

It seems Zelda was only one of a multitude of women dating local lothario Henry Spencer, a man who has more girlfriends than brains. One of those girlfriends happens to be Ivy’s aunt, Felicity Goodings, which means the long eye of the law falls directly on both of them.

It’s up to Jack and Ivy to untangle a mess of motives and suspects, which include her beloved aunt. That causes issues with Ivy’s mother, who is loyal to her sister to a fault.

It’s a tense time, and it only gets worse when Ivy decides to embrace her magic and use it to solve the case.

There’s a killer on the loose and Ivy might be a target because she can’t keep her nose out of trouble. She needs to discover a killer, avoid this individual’s wrath, and continue planning her wedding if she wants a happily ever after.

It’s going to be a tall task.

With Killer Views by CeeCee JamesWith Killer Views by CeeCee James:

Stella O’Neil has found a treasure of a house to list… a house possibly full of treasure, that is. Her new listing belonged to a man who died from a seemingly innocent accident. He also was embroiled in a bank investigation involving missing property and many enemies. The rumors have gone wild and people will stop at nothing to search it out.

If keeping treasure hunters out of her listing and avoiding being killed wasn’t enough drama, Stella has finally found her mom and a way to rescue her. With the rest of her family in place, and the neighbor and a hunky policeman friend to help, she’s determined to get her mom out. But someone is just as determined to stop her, even through murder.

Stella has come this far fighting to unite her family. She won’t stop until she’s finished. But will she regret it?

The Suicide Sonata by B.V. LawsonThe Suicide Sonata by B.V. Lawson:

Can a piece of music be cursed?

When a young marine biologist is found dead of suicide, his father can’t believe he took his own life and hires Scott Drayco to prove it was murder. But what of the strange song found with the young man’s body—the same song linked to a piano sonata that led to a wave of suicides in 1930s Hungary?

As Drayco digs deeper, he finds even more unusual aspects of the case not easily explained: the victim’s missing cellphone; his “Gang of Five” friends and their interest in the Akashic Records spiritual philosophy; and the gun used by the victim that was mysteriously stolen from a friend’s car.

Drayco fears a tragic incident from his own past may be clouding his objectivity. After all, the facts point to suicide, case closed. But when Drayco starts suffering from depression himself after playing the sonata, can he really be sure of what’s real and what’s imagined?

The Suicide Sonata is the fifth installment in the acclaimed Scott Drayco mystery series, a finalist for the Shamus, Silver Falchion, Daphne, and Kindle Book Awards.

Witchin' Around the Clock by Amanda M. LeeWitchin’ Around the Clock by Amanda M. Lee:

Witches are descending on Hemlock Cove and the town is gearing up for mayhem. Bay Winchester is ready to cover the event for her newspaper, and is excited to see faces she hasn’t interacted with in more than a decade.

Then the unthinkable happens.

The local blacksmith shop catches fire and Bay and her cousin Thistle risk death to try and rescue the owner. Unfortunately, they’re too late, and the man is unable to be resuscitated. Not only that, but it wasn’t the fire that killed him. No, he was murdered.

Bay can’t shake the feeling that something bad is about to happen. Harbingers of the feathered variety are filling the sky … and threatening attack. Dark magic is at work, and someone is plotting multiple deaths.

It’s up to Bay and her family to save the day, and they have to do it before cousin Clove gets married on the summer solstice. It’s a big day for the family, and a big moment for Bay. She’s the center of attention as the clock ticks down, the weight of the world on her shoulders.

The Winchesters won’t sit back and wait for a fight to come to them, they’ll go after the fight … and this is no exception. As death comes calling, they will answer.

Sit back and enjoy the ride. Love, marriage, death, and destruction are about to collide. You won’t want to miss a thing.

A Treacherous Performance by Lynn MessinaA Treacherous Performance by Lynn Messina:

Having inexplicably nabbed the Duke of Kesgrave, twenty-six-year-old spinster Beatrice Hyde-Clare is determined to marry him at once and no amount of handwringing from anxious family members, worried friends and well-meaning acquaintances will convince her to delay. Except…maybe she is a little swayed by her uncle’s efforts to make amends for treating her with cold indifference during her childhood. And her aunt’s concern about the growing scandal around her unfortunate habit of unmasking murderers in the middle of society events isn’t entirely unfounded.

And then there’s the truly unfathomable appearance on her doorstep of the former Miss Brougham, the spiteful heiress whose cruel taunts derailed Bea’s social career. Remarkably, the society matron has a mystery to solve and knows Bea is the only person who can help her. A dead grandfather, a missing jewel, a cryptic letter, an opportunity to condescend to her archnemesis—the case seems simple enough.

And yet somehow it all goes terribly, horribly wrong.

Game of Shadows by R.J. PattersonGame of Shadows by R.J. Patterson:

Titus Black wasn’t the trusting kind of guy, even for a black ops agent. And when he ventures into Russia to bring home a missing scientist, Black learns some information that makes him question everything he’s known to be true about his director, J.D. Blunt.

Meanwhile, Black and the Firestorm team uncover a treasonous plot from one of the most powerful men in congress. As Black’s worlds converge, he must thwart an assassination attempt or face dire consequences, including the end of the very organization that keeps his country safe from terrorists of every kind.

Eclairs and Extortion by C.A. PhippsEclairs and Extortion by C.A. Phipps:

Marriage, Menace, and Murder!

Is it just coincidence that a body turns up in the park the same day as Maddie’s mom arrives in Maple Falls?

And who is the dark stranger wandering about on the streets of her home town?

Preparations for a surprise seventieth birthday celebration for Gran are jeopardized when Maddie’s absentee parent shows up unannounced. Devoted to her grandmother, Maddie won’t allow her mom to ruin things like she usually does.

With three generations at logger-heads, a murderer to find, and a party to organize, life is about to get crazy.

If you love your eclairs with a side of mystery, click the buy button today!

The Maple Lane Mysteries are light, cozy mysteries featuring a quirky cat-loving bakery owner who discovers she’s a talented amateur sleuth.

Let Me Go by Willow RoseLet Me Go by Willow Rose:

What if a stranger told you that she believed your child is about to be killed? What if that woman was an ex-FBI profiler with a disputable reputation?

Would you believe her?

Eva Rae Thomas is chasing down a vicious killer, but no one will believe he even exists. If there are no unexplained dead bodies or missing persons, then how can there be a killer on the loose?

What they don’t understand is that the perfect murder is the one that doesn’t look like murder.

Can Eva Rae convince local law enforcement to help her with this case before the killer strikes once more? Or will she have to take matters into her own hands – again?

LET ME GO is the fifth book in the Eva Rae Thomas Mystery Series and can be read as a standalone.

Doll Crimes by Karen RungeDoll Crimes by Karen Runge:

‘It’s not that there aren’t good people in the world. It’s that the bad ones are so much easier to find.’

A teen mother raises her daughter on a looping road trip, living hand-to-mouth in motel rest stops and backwater towns, stepping occasionally into the heat and chaos of the surrounding cities. A life without permanence, filled with terrors and joys, their stability is dependent on the strangers—and strange men—they meet along the way. But what is the difference between the love of a mother, and the love of a friend? And in a world with such blurred lines, where money is tight and there’s little outside influence, when does the need to survive slide into something more sinister?

Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.

Blind Justice by Rachel SinclairBlind Justice by Rachel Sinclair:

A prominent Hollywood A-List actor is killed on set.

It wasn’t an accident.

But the wrong woman stands accused.

Bianca Giancomo is a beautiful, and blind, music composer. The first woman to win an Oscar for best original score, she is well-respected, with a story that is made for Hollywood. She grew up poor, and handicapped, and had to teach herself how to play and compose music.

Now, however, she is simply Bianca Giancomo, accused murderess. Her lover, Chris Jenkins, was working on set with a prop gun when he was killed. It turns out the gun had actual bullets in it. Bianca is arrested for his murder when the authorities discover just how tumultous her relationship was with Chris.

Bianca had motive, means and opportunity.

Emerson Justice takes Bianca’s case, and finds that there are much more sinister elements afoot. Somebody wanted Chris dead, alright, and, when Emerson finds out why, she is shocked. And her own life becomes endangered.

Helter Witchelter by Lotta SmithHelter Witchelter by Lotta Smith:

A haunted mansion in a beautiful town… A chilling ghost awaiting for his next prey… Throw in a newbie witch realtor!

Fio Valentine is starting to settle into her sometimes vexing job in the Haunted and Hexed Properties Management Department of Quest Realty, but when her friend Suze invites her on a weekend trip to Santa Barbara, she’s less than excited about visiting yet another haunted house.

Rumored to be hosting the ghost of a wealthy businessman, the mansion could hold a clue to the disappearance of Chris Adams, the older brother of her foxy boss Jack, and since Jack has decided his current assignment is too dangerous for her, Fio takes Suze up her offer, her spirit animal Champ in tow.

Can Fio solve the mystery of the ghost in the garden and earn some points with Jack at same time? Find out in Book Three of the Witches Guide to Haunted Properties.

Rising Spirit by Wayne StinnettRising Spirit by Wayne Stinnett:

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Jesse McDermitt has rebuilt his island in the Content Keys far better than it was before the storm. The task was enormous, but so was his need to make things better.

Unbeknownst to Jesse, an environmentally conscious woman from his past has stumbled onto a drug manufacturing cartel in Virginia while working on a pollution mitigation problem. The cartel responds by sending someone to murder people Jesse cares for. A contract killer stalks the woman all the way to Miami, leaving bodies in his wake.

With the help of an old flame in the FBI, Jesse goes to the snow-covered Appalachians to get to the root of the trouble; an unscrupulous prosecutor and dirty sheriff, who are producing LSD on an unbelievable scale.

Is Jesse out of his element this time? Can he protect the people he cares for most? It’s a race against time and Mother Nature to find a killer stalking the quiet neighborhoods of Coconut Grove.

Fate by Kirtsen WeissFate by Kirsten Weiss:

Something wicked this way comes…

Witch Jayce Bonheim has spent the last four months waiting for a horde of dark magicians to come to town.

Now, they’ve arrived, embedded in a traveling circus.

And they’re bigger and badder than this ex-party girl could have imagined, wreaking havoc wherever they go.

But when a murder rocks her small town, Jayce must stop the chaos. Walking a tightrope between dark spells and past regrets, can Jayce stop a murderer and stop these magicians from transforming the world forever?

ill-fated by Jody Wennerill-fated by Jody Wenner:

When Shana’s father joins a cult, she tries to find someone, anyone who will help her. Unsuccessful, she takes on the monumental task of fixing it herself. Eventually, she gets some support from the families of the other followers. Adding to her problems, the person she connects with the most is the leader’s son. She figures that’s the worst of it, until the rest of the group is found dead, and her dad is charged with eleven counts of first-degree murder and arson. With the trial looming, everything starts to nosedive as new revelations about the cult and their bizarre philosophies come to light. Shana’s confidence in her dad begins to waver. Maybe he isn’t a victim after all?

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