Nostalgia City Mysteries

By Mark S. Bacon

Tag Archives: crime fiction

New offerings in mystery and suspense

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Louisiana intrigue

River of Secrets: A Wallace Hartman Mystery
Roger Johns
Minotaur Books  304 pages
August 2018
Kindle $14.99    Hardback $27.99

Herbert Marioneaux, a Louisiana state legislator with a reputation for changing his mind on sensitive issues, has been murdered. DNA evidence points directly at Eddie Pitkin, a social justice activist who furthers his causes by using confrontation and social media to make powerful, wealthy people very uncomfortable with their past.

Based on a long, well-documented history of conflict between Marioneaux and Pitkin, many in the court of public opinion are quick to call for Pitkin’s conviction. Wallace Hartman, the homicide detective assigned to the investigation, is also the childhood best friend of Pitkin’s half-brother so, in the eyes of some, her objectivity is in question from the beginning.

Wallace discovers an iffy alibi witness along with evidence of a troubled relationship between Marioneaux and his son that puts a cloud of suspicion over the son. Questions about the source of the DNA evidence begin to surface, Pitkin’s supporters and enemies square off in the street, and what began as an open and shut case becomes murky and politicized, sparking waves of violence across Baton Rouge.

And, at her time of greatest need, the prospect of sabotage from an unknown leaker within the police department forces Wallace to go it alone as she digs deep into the dark heart of the political establishment to untangle a web of old, disturbing secrets.

Roger Johns is the 2018 Georgia Author of the Year (Detective ▪ Mystery Category) for his debut novel, Dark River Rising, which has also been nominated for a Killer Nashville Reader’s Choice Award.  Along with four other crime fiction writers, he co-authors the MurderBooks blog at http://www.murder-books.com.  His website is www.rogerjohnsbooks.com.


Book giveaway

Enter the 10-copy giveaway of River of Secrets on Goodreads at: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36742974-river-of-secrets?from_search=true. The giveaway ends September 3.

 

Spine tinglers for middle schoolers

Scream and Scream Again
Mystery Writers of America
Harper Collins  416 pages
July 2018
Kindle $9.99  Hardback $12.59

A harrowing array of scary stories for middle-grade readers that all have one thing in common: each either begins or ends with a scream!

R.L. Stine, the godfather of Goosebumps, and some of the most popular authors today bring an unrivaled mastery of all things fearsome, frightening, and fantabulous to this terrifying anthology of all-new scary short stories.

Scream and Scream Again! is full of twists and turns, dark corners, and devilish revenge. Collected in conjunction with the Mystery Writers of America, this set includes works from New York Times bestselling authors telling tales of wicked ice-cream trucks, time-travelling heroes, witches and warlocks, and of course, haunted houses.

It includes twenty never-before-published scary stories from some of the most popular authors today—including Alison McMahan’s Kamikaze Iguanas.

Alison McMahan grew up in Spain.As an adult she trudged through the jungles of Honduras and Cambodia, through the favelas of Brazil and from race tracks to drag strips in the U.S. in search of footage for her documentaries. Her most recent film is Bare Hands and Wooden Limbs (2010) narrated by Sam Waterston.

Online book prices vary depending on the day you order and the bookstore or website.

‘Desert Kill Switch’ is new Nostalgia City mystery

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The life and times of stressed-out, former detective—now cabbie—Lyle Deming, and former college basketball star Kate Sorensen, will continue in 2017 with the publication of the second Nostalgia City mystery, Desert Kill Switch

Many thanks to Lauri Wellington, my editor at Black Opal Books; I’m happy to announce that Desert Kill Switch will be followed by the third mystery in the series.  (I’m keeping that title under my fedora for the time being.)

In Desert Kill Switch, Lyle finds a bullet-riddled body in the Arizona desert near Nostalgia City.  But when he returns to the scene with sheriff’s deputies, there’s no trace of the dead young man or the classic 1970s Firebird Trans Am that the victim had apparently been driving.  Was Lyle seeing things?

Desert-Kill-SwitchAt the same time, Kate, Nostalgia City’s PR VP,  is in Reno, Nev., to promote the park at a ten-day classic car festival.  Soon she’s in the middle of a local controversy involving community leaders, a sleazy Las Vegas car dealer and the state legislature.  There’s a taste of violence in the desert, a cast of quirky characters and enough plot twists to satisfy Chubby Checker. The book will be available in print and all popular ebook formats.

I’ll be posting more details as we get closer to the book’s release date.  And no, this is not what the cover will look like, but the font style is the same.

Memo to Jeff Bezos

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Dear Jeff,

Congratulations on the launch of Handmade at Amazon. This fills a small gap in Amazon’s broad offerings. In fact, Amazon is now positioned to provide nearly everything consumers need from household goods to nearly all forms of entertainment. Your acquisition last year of the comedy firm, Rooftop Media, even supplies your companies with laughs—let’s face it, something you could use after that nasty New York Times article. (I’m thinking the story was prompted by support from the big five.)

Looking at the vast Amazon countryside, I see but one area missing: coverage of murder mystery fiction. Americans devour mystery books. The top selling titles of all time are mysteries. And although Amazon does sell millions of mystery books—including mine for which I’m grateful—it appears you don’t have a separate website dedicated to the genre.

May I suggest Baconsmysteries.com. I’ve been writing about mysteries here for several years. I do reviews, include mystery flash fiction stories and occasionally discuss industry trends. Okay, so I do self-promotion, too. Every book writer does that. We have to. But that’s not a deal-breaker for me.

Acquisition would be simple as I’m the only employee. Certainly I would be glad to stay on for a short time to organize things. You can contact me at the email address listed on the “about” tab on my website.   I’m sure we can agree on a reasonable price.

Sincerely,

Mark S. Bacon

 

P.S. This really has nothing to do with the above, but I applaud your acquisition of the venerable Washington Post. Newspapers are far from money makers today, but keeping the fourth estate alive, if only for its government and business watchdog functions, is a noble project. And I see you’re working on its bottom line. I read the Post online regularly, but I’m now going to have to subscribe for the privilege. Good idea.

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