Indie Crime Fiction of the Month for July 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 June 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, adventure thrillers, horror thrillers, police officers, FBI agents, private investigators, amateur sleuths, serial killers, kidnappings, missing persons, deadly weddings, plane crashes, redneck detectives, murdered space tourists, fly gods, crime-busting witches, crime-busting socialites, crime-busting butlers, crime-busting ghosts, murder and mayhem in London, Louisiana, New Mexico, Florida, the Australian Outback, a deserted island in the Pacific 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:

The Morass: Servant of the Fly God by Zachary AshfordThe Morass: Servant of the Fly God by Zachary Ashford

What if you had been kidnapped by a serial killer and your only hope of escape was cut off by rising floodwater?

“A terrifying descent into a nightmarish scenario, rendered with skill, imagination and a merciless desire to immerse the reader in undiluted horror. This is a terrific work of horror fiction by one of Australia’s best genre writers. I couldn’t put it down.”—Jamie Blanks, director of Urban Legend and Valentine

The Australian Outback is a place mired in myth, folklore, and rumour that’s inspired some of the best horror fiction and creature horror books. Some say it’s full of deadly creatures. Others claim it’s rife with serial killers hunting for backpackers and stranded tourists. Whatever the cause, young people in central Queensland are disappearing and the locals are frightened.

Katy is fresh from college and ready to research and write her magnum opus, a book investigating the many disappearances of outback youths in Australia. When she meets Kip, a guitarist on his way to the city, she knows she’s onto something good and that she can prove her hypothesis: there’s nothing there for the youth of today and they’re running away, searching for employment and prospects in the city.

Unfortunately, she’s wrong. In this terrifying cosmic horror book, there is a killer in the outback. One that thinks God is the ancient creature that lurks in the swamps near his property. With floodwaters rising, he’s certain Katy and Kip are the sacrifices that will allow the entity to emerge from the morass and cleanse the world of sinners. One terrifying abduction later, he has them both imprisoned.

As they struggle to escape the terror and the torture, their desperate fight for survival will lead only to more horror. Because their kidnapper is not crazy. His god is real. His god is hungry, and it is screaming to be reborn.

Aurealis-nominated Australian author Zachary Ashford turns his attention to the isolation of the outback with this fast-paced horror. The tension thrums. The brutality screams. The desperation of his protagonists’ plight bleeds from the page. For fans of extreme horror, splatterpunk, gore, violent films like Wolf Creek, or international movies like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and the grotesque creatures of movies like Aliens, The Thing, or The Fly, The Morass: Servant of the Fly God is not to be missed.

Will Katy and Kip survive? Will their killer succeed? Will the God in the swamp take over the world. Buy this supernatural thriller book now, and discover their fate.

Dead Among Stars by Kat BellemoreDead Among Stars by Kat Bellemore:

Space tourism isn’t dangerous. It’s the passengers.

Psychologist Maddie Swallows had always thought of space tourism as science fiction. That was before the phone call that turned her world upside down and she was hired to work with celebrity passengers as they prepared for their once-in-a-lifetime flight.

It was her dream job. Until six passengers went up into space, and two hours later, only five returned.

If you don’t count the dead body.

Investigating a murder hadn’t been in the job description, but Maddie now needs to use her psychological training to discover who of the remaining five passengers is a murderer.

Before they strike again.

Dead Among Stars is the fourth book of the Maddie Swallows mystery series. If you like confined suspects, humor, and impossible whodunits, you’ll love this cozy mystery.

Üotch Our Evils by Beth ByersPitch Our Evils by Beth Byers:

Once again, adventure arises for Smith and Bea. Only this time, it’s Bea who drags them into trouble. Bea who faces the dark side of her soul. And, it is Bea who has to decide just how deep into the darkness that she is willing to go.

The only question remaining is can Smith pull her back out?




Never Letting Go by Stacy ClaflinNever Letting Go by Stacy Claflin:

A destination wedding is the idyllic escape. Except when there’s a murderer on the loose.

Ariana and Damon are thrilled for a getaway weekend to celebrate their friends’ new life together. Everything is smooth sailing until strange things start happening… Unexplained noises. People feeling watchful eyes when alone. Mysterious threats.

Then a member of the wedding party goes missing.

Everybody must work together to find their friend. But who can they trust? Any of them could be behind the disappearance… or it could be someone who came without an invitation. Either way, they’re dealing with a desperate person who will stop at nothing to end the marriage before it even begins.

Ariana is determined to find answers before anyone else vanishes…

Uninvited House Ghosts by Rachel FordUninvited House Ghosts by Rachel Ford:

Ghosts are real, and they’re watching over their families. Sometimes, that’s a good thing. But not for the Evanses.

Tennessee Evans comes from a long, undistinguished line of crooks, grifters, layabouts, and rascals. She’s made her share of mistakes, sure, but she’s trying to break the mold. Even after a contentious breakup that hits her emotionally and financially, she works hard, keeps her head up, and carries on.

Then her ex winds up murdered in her backyard. And her prints are all over the murder weapon. She didn’t do it, but no one believes her.

Especially not the pigheaded, infuriatingly hot lead detective investigating the case. On the contrary, she seems to have it out for Tennessee.

Tennessee knows she needs help, and she needs it fast. What she doesn’t know is that the ancestral spirit council is on the job. Which is probably for the best, since their last few missions have ended in disaster – and the odd, accidental death. (Sorry about that, Jane!)

The council dispatches a 20th century American tax expert and an 18th century British criminal to tackle the case. Whether the pair can put aside centuries of personal and cultural differences to save Tennessee is anyone’s guess.

But one thing’s for sure – Marshmeadow will never be the same after this ill-advised haunting!

A supernatural cozy mystery with outrageous shenanigans, cute dogs, found family, a slow burn lesbian romance, and an old, definitely haunted house full of secrets.

Fatal Games by Elle and K.S. GrayFatal Game by Olivia and K.S. Gray:

Jumping off a plane is one thing, but being forced to do so amid a plane crash is something no one puts on their bucket list.

After surviving a plane crash in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, FBI agent Olivia Knight and a group of survivors are washed ashore onto a desolate island.

An island harboring more danger than any of them could have ever imagined.

As they set foot on the sandy shores, Olivia and Brock discover a chilling truth.
A masked figure known as the Game Master has brought all the survivors there for the purpose of his twisted games.
Games where the unwitting contestants must fight for their lives.
Forced to play the fatal games with possible enemies hiding at every turn,
Olivia and Brock must rely on one another more than ever before.

What is the true identity of the Game Master and what is the purpose of these games?
With mysteries at every turn and answers fleeting, there is only one thing certain.
On this forsaken island everyone is a pawn, and there’s only one way off it…

Witches of the Deep by Lily Harper HartWitches of the Deep by Lily Harper Hart:

Hali Waverly thought she’d seen the worst the world had to offer. Then her boyfriend Gray Hunter’s parents arrived on her beach. Now the horror truly begins.

Hali has a big problem…and that’s not including the skeletons that are taking over the beach thanks to an errant spell.

Nobody knows who cast the spell, or more importantly why, but Hali is determined to find out. When she’s not dodging visits from the people Gray wants to see least in his life that is.

Hali is a fixer, which means she can’t stay out of the situation. Will she make matters better or worse, though?

Gray knows exactly how he sees his future going. His parents aren’t part of it. Despite that, part of him doesn’t want to shut the door forever. If he lets them in, though, will he lose everything he’s been working toward?

Gray and Hali are a team. Dark forces are moving in on them from every direction, however. It’s going to take both of them working together to come out on the other side.

Even then, it might not be enough.

Death is coming for St. Pete Beach, and it’s not taking any prisoners.

Bewitched and Bothered by Amanda M. LeeBewitched and Bothered by Amanda M. Lee:

Hadley Hunter is taking some downtime with her fiancé Galen Blackwood. All she wants to do is bask in their happiness and pretend nothing bad could possibly happen.

This is Moonstone Bay, however. That’s simply not reality.

When Galen gets a call that an old-timer on the island is holding a gun on the guests at a local bar, Hadley accompanies him to the scene…and watches as the unthinkable happens. The man’s death is strange enough, but when news starts to spread that their victim had been carrying on with a woman who was young enough to be his granddaughter, things take an even odder turn.

It seems there’s an unknown power on the island, and this individual is casting the sort of love spells that force unusual couples to start burning—literally—for one another.

Not only are Hadley and Galen hot on the trail of an outside player, but they’re also targets.

Hadley has learned a lot since finding out she’s a witch. This lesson, however, might be too hot to handle.

The union of earth, air, fire, and water has become symbolic on Moonstone Bay. This time the union will lead to a whole new adventure.

Nothing will ever be the same again.

The Redneck Detective Agency by Phillip Quinn MorrisThe Redneck Detective Agency by Phillip Quinn Morris:

The title seems to say it all. But not quite. Fifty-five year old Rusty Clay does not claim to be a detective, though his office door says otherwise. He says he is no redneck, though his longtime friend Gloria Davenport asserts otherwise.

Not being a detective changes when a big man walks into Rusty’s office and insists he find his two hundred fourteen pound catfish. Five thousand dollars cash asserts this is no joke. And he wants it found so he can win first place in the annual grabbling (catching a catfish with one’s bare hands) rodeo.

Second Chance by Jim RileySecond Chance by Jim Riley:

FBI agent Sheila Richardson finds herself in a twisted game of cat and mouse when the daughter of a powerful Louisiana congressman is kidnapped. As she leads the search, Sheila discovers that the kidnapper possesses intimate knowledge of her dark past, turning the investigation into a treacherous dance of deception.

To save the young girl, Sheila joins forces with Niki Dupre, an independent investigator whose sharp instincts rival her own. But as tensions rise and the kidnapper demands ransoms from both women, they must unravel a web of secrets and betrayal, knowing that defying the captor’s demands could cost the girl her life.

With each passing moment, the kidnapper’s grip tightens, forcing Sheila and Niki to question everyone around them. In a heart-stopping race against time, they uncover a shocking truth that extends beyond the abduction, leading to a revelation that challenges their notions of loyalty and justice.

The Girl on the Road by A.J. RiversThe Girl on the Road by A.J. Rivers:

“You’re going on a date with someone you’ve just met online?
There are a bunch of crazies out there. You need to be careful!”

After multiple assassination attempts, FBI agent Emma Griffin is on the road to recovery.
At times though, her dreams and reality seem to blur together. Leaving her to question aspects of her life.

When the bodies of young women are found on the side of the road at multiple rest stops.
Emma and her team are assigned to the case.
No one could make sense of the brutal and sadistic murders, and it seems as though the bloodthirsty killer might be sending a message.

With more questions than anyone could answer. Nothing is certain.
On the pathway of justice, the pit stops to find the highway killer will exact a costly toll…

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