Detective Katie Scott and K9 Cisco are back in THREE SMALL BONES–out now!

I’m so excited to announce that THREE SMALL BONES is out today! I love publication day! This was a fun and exciting story to write for cold case Detective Katie Scott. There’s plenty of action and crime scenes of course! One area of forensics that I find fascinating is forensic anthropology. You’ll have to wait and find out in this book.

SYNOPSIS:

Smoke curls from what’s left of the beautiful family home on the edge of the woods. The heat is unbearable as she descends the stairs to the basement, past a set of bicycles––two big, one small. That’s when she sees three little white bones in the cracked earth at her feet, turning her blood to ice…

When firefighters tackling a blazing house in a quiet suburb of Pine Valley, California discover human remains, Detective Katie Scott races to 717 Maple Street. She calls a halt to the excavations the moment she sees the full number and size of the bones; someone has buried a whole family down here.

Working night and day, it’s up to Katie to prove her theory that the fire was no accident, that someone wanted to expose the secret in the basement. Tiny traces of explosives residue found at the scene is all the proof she needs. But the Cross family have been missing for months––leaving friends and loved ones in agonizing pain––what twisted soul would do this now? And why?

The case takes another heart-shattering turn when Katie’s suspicions over recent renovation work on the house leads to the discovery of more bodies in the back yard: two little girls, buried years apart. What other devastating secrets are hidden in this perfect family home?

It’s a dead end at every turn as Katie tracks down anyone who knew the family. Just when it looks like all hope is lost, reports of the Cross’s landlord harassing the family before they went missing gives Katie a crucial lead. With a menacing grey sedan following her every move, how many more innocent lives will be lost before Katie can dig up the truth?

An absolutely gripping and totally addictive thriller from a USA Today and Amazon bestselling author. It will keep you racing through the pages all night long—fans of Lisa Regan, Rachel Caine and Melinda Leigh will devour in one sitting!

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BUY THE BOOK HERE: ow.ly/gE2N50KJawW

AUDIO AVAILABLE HERE: ow.ly/i7ax50KJb1I

🎧Listen to a sample here: ow.ly/oeH150KJb1J

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Readers love Three Small Bones:

“Edge-of-your-seat suspense to the very end! … Clear your schedule… you will not want to put it down!” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“Love, love, LOVE… I absolutely adore this series!!” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“Grabbed me from the very first page! It was so intense, and enthralling. I stayed up until 11pm two nights in a row so I could finish it.” NetGalley reviewer

“I was glued to my chair flipping pages!” Danie Reads

***

If you haven’t read any of the Detective Katie Scott Series, you can read the first book, LITTLE GIRLS SLEEPING for FREE.

AUTHOR JENNIFER CHASE AMAZON BOOK PAGE

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Two High-Profile Deadly Mysteries Solved by Forensics

ColdCases

Years pass, but the scars remain. Family members agonize for a resolution of the case that destroyed their lives. While many cold cases go unsolved, there always remains a sliver of hope that a resolution will be attained.

Whether it’s—a distraught witness finally coming forward, a determined family member who won’t let the case go, or a modern forensic technology that sheds light on a mystery – many of these so-called cold cases do eventually get solved.

And, although the resolution of the case does not bring back the victim, the family members do often feel a sense of closure. Finally, they can move on with their lives.

Here are two high-profile mysteries that were recently solved with the help of modern forensic science.

blogPhoto_1

Photo courtesy of suffolktimes.com.

The Disappearance of Louise Pietrewicz

On a cool Long Island autumn day in October of 1966, a 38-year old mother named Louise Pietrewicz withdrew her remaining funds from the bank and closed her account. She was never seen again. At that time, she was in an abusive marriage, and had been secretly seeing another man, a police officer named William P. Boken.

On the day of her disappearance, Louise’s 12-year old daughter vividly remembers kissing her mother good-bye at the school bus stop. The daughter also recalls believing that her mother would eventually return home to her. And that something awful must have happened—because she was a dedicated parent who would never willingly leave her daughter.

The local police apparently never took the case very seriously, despite the fact that her boyfriend, Boken, had called out sick the three days prior to the disappearance. And then, quit the police force on the day after Louise closed her bank account and vanished.

The case went cold for almost 50 years. Then, a local newspaper renewed the public’s interest in the matter after publishing a piece on the incident. A documentary soon followed. And, as a result of the exploding media exposure, a witness finally came forward. It was the former wife of the now-deceased Boken.

Boken’s wife dropped a bombshell by revealing that she believed a body was buried in the basement of her modest Long Island home. A forensic team swooped on the scene, and using ground penetrating radar (GPR), investigators discovered a skeleton. The GPR impressively discovered the body despite it being buried 7-feet underground, beneath a 5-inch concrete slab.

A forensic pathologist determined the cause of death to be a fatal gunshot. Then, on March 19, 2018, forensic investigators also made the determination that the body found in the basement was, in fact, Louise Pietrewicz.

Despite the overwhelming evidence pointing to Boken, the confirmed identity of Louise’s killer will most likely never be determined.

blogPhoto_2

Photo courtesy of nationalgeographic.com.

The Identity of Buckskin Girl

On April 22, 1981, a young woman’s body was found in a ditch alongside a highway outside of Troy, Ohio. The woman had no identification on her. And all attempts to ID the young lady through published and broadcasted police sketches proved to be fruitless. The young Jane Doe victim was then nicknamed “Buckskin Girl” due to the tasseled buckskin jacket she was wearing at time her body was discovered.

The forensic pathologist determined her age to be 21, and that she died due to strangulation and blunt force trauma to the head. Buckskin Girl was eventually buried at a local Troy cemetery, but her clothing remained in storage at a police evidence facility. Prior to her burial, investigators were able to extract her fingerprints, dental information and other items that would be later used for DNA analysis.

Police found no evidence of sexual assault. And, as a result, investigators’ primary theory that Buckskin Girl may have been another victim of a recent killing spree of local sex workers was ruled out. Police ran into dead-end after dead-end, and eventually the investigation went cold.

In 2008, the police had a renewed interest in this case. So, at that time, investigators entered the victim’s dental information, fingerprints and DNA analysis into the National Missing and Unidentified Persons database. No matches were found.

Then, finally in 2016, there was significant progress in the quest to determine the identity of Buckskin Girl. First, forensic pathologists conducted testing on the woman’s clothing, and a forensic facial reconstruction was performed that resulted in a three-dimensional facial image of the woman.

Through the clothing analysis, the forensics team was able to narrow down the areas of the country where she had frequented during the months prior to her death. And, as a result of the forensic facial reconstruction, investigators were able to reach out to the media in those areas with a tangible image of Buckskin Girl.

The non-profit group DNA Doe Project  soon got involved in the investigation, and their help led to the eventual identification of the woman. The Project created a DNA profile using blood taken at the time of the victim’s death. They entered the profile into a public genealogy database, and voila – a family member match was found.

After speaking with the family member, it was revealed – on April 9, 2018 – that Buckskin Girl’s real name was Marcia Lenore King, a runaway from Arkansas. Marcia was never officially reported missing, but her mother never left the family home in hopes that Marcia would someday return.

To date, there are no murder suspects being investigated in connection with Marcia’s murder.

These cases prove that – with the help of modern forensic science – no case is every truly cold.  Are there are any murder mysteries of which you are aware that could be included in this post?

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WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT THE DETECTIVE KATIE SCOTT SERIES:

THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS PUTTING THIS BOOK DOWN!!!!!… I was literally holding my breathI HAD TO KNOW!!!!! As for the explosive ending: WOW definitely not what, or who I was expecting.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Fantastic… had me glued to the pages and I didn’t want to put it down so gripping and suspenseful and wonderfully paced… A brilliant, nail-biting and highly recommended read.” Brianne’s Book Reviews, 5 stars

I was hooked from the start. I couldn’t stop reading. I just needed to find out what happens. Katie is a total badassI loved the story sooo much awesome…I recommend it to everyone.” Mama Bear’s Book Shelf, 5 stars

One hell of an unpredictable rollercoaster ride with several twists and turns along the way… I almost had to read through my fingers… A brilliant, and highly recommended read.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

I envy you the binge read!” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“An excellent, exhilarating read. I had to keep reading just another page, another page, as everything raced towards a high tension ending.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

A twist at every page!Absolutely loved this book… so engrossed, read it in 2 days… well-written and enthralling. Couldn’t put it down.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Brilliant! Brilliant! Absolutely freaking brilliant!!Shalini’s Books & Reviews, 5 stars

SILENT LITTLE ANGELS (Detective Katie Scott Book 7)

Order Here: http://ow.ly/erw950HsCfZ

Out April 19th!

***

AUTHOR JENNIFER CHASE AMAZON BOOK PAGE

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COMPULSION–An Emily Stone Thriller–Is FREE on Amazon This Weekend!

The first Emily Stone Thriller COMPULSION is FREE this weekend! The Emily Stone Series is available on Amazon Kindle Unlimited. If you’ve not met this vigilante detective, then I would suggest checking out how it all began for this serial killer hunter.

COMPULSION US: http://amzn.to/z1daYq

COMPULSION UK: http://amzn.to/OPlSe8

I caught up with Emily Stone from Compulsion recently and had 5 questions for her so that you can get to know her better.

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EMILY STONE INTERVIEW WITH 5 QUESTIONS

Jennifer Chase:  Thank you Ms. Stone for taking the time to stop by to answer five questions.  I know that you have never given an interview because you work covertly and wish to remain anonymous.  First, tell us a little bit about your working background.

Emily Stone:  I was a police deputy sheriff for almost eight years in Indiana.  I worked patrol, special investigations and was overlooked for SWAT.  My primary interest was to work child cases.  I felt it was where I could make a difference.  I studied forensics and criminal profiling intensely through college courses and police seminars.

JC:  Now you are working on your own hunting down serial killers and child abductors.  What made you decide to quit the police department and work on your own? Was it something that happened to you? Did they make you quit?

EmilyStone_E

Emily Stone:  I have the background, training, and determination.  It’s a calling, or need if you will, that I feel strongly about.  Why I quit the department is a personal decision that I’m not prepared to discuss right now.  I find that I could do more work effectively behind the scenes as a ghost detective unrestrained by police politics in order to assist various law enforcement agencies. They’ve never questioned my anonymous emails or where my complete investigations came from.  In fact, they are relieved to have assistance and most of the time the forensic evidence helps to find a serial killer or child abductor.

JC:  It must be dangerous work.  Do you ever worry about your personal safety?

EmilyStone_workout

Emily Stone:  Of course, but I plan ahead, make deliberate decisions and do not act on impulse or emotions.  Well… at least most of the time (softly laughs).  I’m an expert with firearms and self-defense. I am always learning new techniques to keep me alive.  I’m also fortunate to have someone on my side – so I’m not alone now.  I don’t know if I would have quit or found another way of conducting my investigations if it weren’t for him. (Her voice faded as she thought about Rick)

JC:  I’m familiar with serial crime and what potentially drives the various types of serial killers. Give us an example of your method of finding a serial killer.

Emily Stone:  That is a complex question, but I will give you a quick overview in the time I have available.  I start at the beginning with the crime scene or crime scenes. I ask myself many questions.  Why this particular area to kill or dump the body?  What does this area mean to the killer? What behavioral evidence is evident from the crime? Quite often, police overlook the areas that are indeed part of the crime scene, such as the areas that transport a person to the actual dumping ground.  I make the crime scene areas much larger in my investigations than the police initially conducted theirs.  Almost like clockwork, I find subtle clues that helps to give the beginning insight into the killer’s motives, behavior, modus operandi, signature, and if and when he’ll kill again.  Every case is different, but my methods are always the same. That’s what makes it work.

JC:  Ms. Stone where do you see yourself in the next few years?

Emily Stone:  That’s your sixth question.  I’m sorry, but those cases haven’t been written yet and I’m not prepared to discuss them with you.

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CHECK OUT THE EMILY STONE SERIES

US: http://amzn.to/z1daYq

UK: http://amzn.to/OPlSe8

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AUTHOR JENNIFER CHASE AMAZON BOOK PAGE

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PUBLICATION DAY! Silent Little Angels, Detective Katie Scott Thriller, Book 7 is Here!

SILENT LITTLE ANGLES publication day has finally arrived! Cold Case Detective Katie Scott and her K9 Cisco are back and this time it’s personal.

GRAB YOUR COPY NOW

***

The water ripples as the girl’s body escapes the reeds and floats silently upwards. Her beautiful face—blue eyes frozen open, skin as white as snow—breaks the surface. But it’s too late, this innocent soul has taken her final breath…

When camp counselor Carolyn Sable’s body is found floating in a lake beside Eagle Ridge Summer Camp,Detective Katie Scott must dig deep to stay focused. As a child, Katie spent many happy weeks at that camp toasting marshmallows on the fire with her best friend Jenny… until the day Jenny disappeared. The loss will always haunt Katie, but Carolyn’s inconsolable family need answers.

Searching the area, the devastating discovery of two more bodies sends the case into a tailspin. Suddenly on the hunt for a serial killer, Katie’s blood turns to ice when she finds newspaper clippings about her own past cases planted near one of the bodies. Was this twisted killer banking on Katie taking the lead? And why?

Carolyn was adored by children and staff at the camp, so Katie thinks her sudden resignation is key to cracking the case. Uncovering a tragic accident involving a group of children in the weeks before Carolyn left, Katie knows she’s getting close.

But when the carefully laid trap Katie sets to catch Carolyn’s killer backfires, Katie finds herself in unthinkable danger and unable to even trust her own team. Can she stay alive long enough to crack the toughest case of her career, and how many more innocent lives will be lost before she does?

An absolutely unputdownable crime thriller from a USA Today and Amazon bestselling author. Fans of of Lisa Regan, Rachel Caine and Melinda Leigh will be sleeping with the lights on!

GRAB YOUR COPY NOW

Everyone is talking about SILENT LITTLE ANGELS:
 

“All-time favorite… I was shouting in my head, don’t go back there… wow!” I Spooky’s Maze Of Books, 5 stars

“THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS PUTTING THIS BOOK DOWN!!!!!… I was literally holding my breath… I HAD TO KNOW!!!!! As for the explosive ending: WOW definitely not what, or who I was expecting.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“It kept me guessing right until the end. There is plenty of action, suspense, and tension. I’ve become so invested in these characters. I was glued to this one and up way past my bedtime. I couldn’t put it down.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“I read this in one very short sitting, I couldn’t put it down. It was well written with well-developed characters and a gripping storyline that was full of mystery, tension and twists… a thrilling read.” NetGalley reviewer 5 stars

“I still have goosebumps!Omg……… amazing I flew through the pages with Olympic speed. I was hooked from the veryfirst page.” NetGalley reviewer, 5 stars

Katie and K9 Cisco are back to solve the next cold case!

GET YOUR EBOOK, PAPERBACK, OR AUDIO COPY HERE!

AUTHOR JENNIFER CHASE AMAZON BOOK PAGE

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9 Strategic Steps for a Successful Crime Scene Investigation

To perform a successful crime scene investigation, there are a myriad of individual procedures used by investigators. And, of course, different crimes call for specific methods. Despite, however, the various tactics and circumstances, individual investigators generally utilize the following nine universal steps in order to conduct a fruitful and efficient crime scene investigation.

Establish Scene Dimensions / Identify Potential Hazards

An investigator must initially locate the main area of the disturbance, i.e. the focal point of the crime. This  could be a ransacked living room, a traffic intersection where a collision occurred or a remote part of nature where a murder took place. Once the focal point has been ascertained, the investigator creates a radius of the area, in which all the immediate, relevant physical evidence may be present.

It benefits the investigator to create a relatively large radius, due to the fact that it is much easier to later condense the crime scene than enlarge it. It would be detrimental to the investigation if the area was too small, and crucial evidence (outside of the area) was compromised by onlookers or the media.

In addition to establishing the focal point’s radius, the investigator must identify the potential areas of ingress and egress of the criminal. The safety of all people in the area must also be taken into consideration. Therefore, any sort of hazardous materials, weapons or intentional traps must be identified.

Secure the Perimeter

Every single person who enters and exits the crime scene will “add or subtract” crucial material from the crime scene. Thus, it is vital that the lead investigator secure the area as quickly as possible.

In order to control access, the scene is generally cordoned off with yellow crime scene tape or other methods, such as rope or cones.  Further,  an entrance is established for all personnel to use when entering and exiting the scene. Once the common entryway has been created, all people who enter and leave the area must be documented. For larger and more complex crime scenes, additional consultation and evidence storage areas may be created.

Organize and Communicate

Prior to the collection of evidence, the crime scene investigators must develop a theory concerning what exactly transpired at the scene. Once the team has a working knowledge of what type of crime occurred, the investigators will be more prepared to anticipate what kind of evidence may be present.

A method for developing the crime theory is to interview witnesses, or persons of interest. Once the investigators have obtained sufficient information, the team will develop their strategy for collecting evidence.

Perform Initial Survey of Scene

A preliminary crime scene survey is performed in an effort to prioritize the collection of evidence. While conducting the scene walkthrough, the lead investigator will identify and take photos of important evidence.

Investigators will also document certain aspects of the crime scene, so that the scene conditions are properly captured. For example, the investigators will note weather conditions, the exact position of items such as furniture, the presence of any smells and whether the lights were on or off.

Process the Scene

After the plan has been established and the initial survey has been performed, the crime scene investigators conduct a diligent, thorough and coordinated investigation of the scene. At that time, the team will collect all probative evidence. The collection of evidence includes the proper digital documentation of the scene and evidence, which also may include 3D scanners, diagrams, models and sketches.

While the collection of evidence is being conducted, it is vital that all investigators follow strict protocol in the collection, packaging and preservation of the evidence. If the integrity of any of the evidence is compromised, it could hinder the investigation and eventual prosecution.

Conduct Second Walkthrough

For quality control purposes, a secondary walkthrough is conducted by the lead investigator so as to ensure that the entire crime scene has been thoroughly searched.

Preserve and Record Evidence

In order to ensure that all collected evidence has been documented, the investigation team will create an inventory log. Each piece of evidence is described in the log, and such description must match the photo of the evidence and the crime scene report description.

The evidence log and crime scene report establishes the chain of custody, which will follow the evidence throughout the duration of the case.

Perform Final Survey

The final survey allows the investigators to conduct a critical review of all aspects of the crime scene investigation. Each team member participates in the final survey to ensure that no inadvertent errors are found in the documentation, and that the paper trail is thorough, accurate and complete.

One last search of the area is performed to ensure evidence was not overlooked in hidden or hard to access sections of the crime scene.

Release Crime Scene

Once the final survey has been completed, the lead investigator or other authorized persons may release the crime scene. Oftentimes, in order to gain re-entry to a released crime scene, a warrant is required.

I thoroughly enjoy the topic of crime scene analysis and investigation. I hope you found this article both informative and interesting. And, most importantly, I hope you learned something about the fascinating world of criminal science.

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WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT THE DETECTIVE KATIE SCOTT SERIES:

THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS PUTTING THIS BOOK DOWN!!!!!… I was literally holding my breathI HAD TO KNOW!!!!! As for the explosive ending: WOW definitely not what, or who I was expecting.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Fantastic… had me glued to the pages and I didn’t want to put it down so gripping and suspenseful and wonderfully paced… A brilliant, nail-biting and highly recommended read.” Brianne’s Book Reviews, 5 stars

I was hooked from the start. I couldn’t stop reading. I just needed to find out what happens. Katie is a total badassI loved the story sooo much awesome…I recommend it to everyone.” Mama Bear’s Book Shelf, 5 stars

One hell of an unpredictable rollercoaster ride with several twists and turns along the way… I almost had to read through my fingers… A brilliant, and highly recommended read.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

I envy you the binge read!” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“An excellent, exhilarating read. I had to keep reading just another page, another page, as everything raced towards a high tension ending.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

A twist at every page!Absolutely loved this book… so engrossed, read it in 2 days… well-written and enthralling. Couldn’t put it down.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Brilliant! Brilliant! Absolutely freaking brilliant!!Shalini’s Books & Reviews, 5 stars

SILENT LITTLE ANGELS (Detective Katie Scott Book 7)

Pre order here: http://ow.ly/erw950HsCfZ

Out April 19th!

***

AUTHOR JENNIFER CHASE AMAZON BOOK PAGE

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PRE ORDER and COVER REVEAL: Silent Little Angels, Detective Katie Scott Book 7

I really excited to announce that the 7th installment of the Detective Katie Scott book is NOW available for pre-order! Check out SILENT LITTLE ANGELS.

This story was a ton of fun for me. I wanted to incorporate more of K9 Cisco and some special searches. You can expect to read more grisly crime scenes, great forensics, and of course our tough heroine and her partner. What predicaments are they going to get themselves into?

SYNOPSIS:

The water ripples as the girl’s body escapes the reeds and floats silently upwards. Her beautiful face—blue eyes frozen open, skin as white as snow—breaks the surface. But it’s too late, this innocent soul has taken her final breath…

When camp counselor Carolyn Sable’s body is found floating in a lake beside Eagle Ridge Summer Camp, Detective Katie Scott must dig deep to stay focused. As a child, Katie spent many happy weeks at that camp toasting marshmallows on the fire with her best friend Jenny… until the day Jenny disappeared. The loss will always haunt Katie, but Carolyn’s inconsolable family need answers.

Searching the area, the devastating discovery of two more bodies sends the case into a tailspin. Suddenly on the hunt for a serial killer, Katie’s blood turns to ice when she finds newspaper clippings about her own past cases planted near one of the bodies. Was this twisted killer banking on Katie taking the lead? And why?

Carolyn was adored by children and staff at the camp, so Katie thinks her sudden resignation is key to cracking the case. Uncovering a tragic accident involving a group of children the weeks before Carolyn left, Katie knows she’s getting close.

But when the carefully laid trap Katie sets to catch Carolyn’s killer backfires, Katie finds herself in unthinkable danger and unable to even trust her own team. Can she stay alive long enough to crack the toughest case of her career, and how many more innocent lives will be lost before she does?

*

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT THE DETECTIVE KATIE SCOTT SERIES:

THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS PUTTING THIS BOOK DOWN!!!!!… I was literally holding my breathI HAD TO KNOW!!!!! As for the explosive ending: WOW definitely not what, or who I was expecting.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Fantastic… had me glued to the pages and I didn’t want to put it down so gripping and suspenseful and wonderfully paced… A brilliant, nail-biting and highly recommended read.” Brianne’s Book Reviews, 5 stars

I was hooked from the start. I couldn’t stop reading. I just needed to find out what happens. Katie is a total badassI loved the story sooo much awesome…I recommend it to everyone.” Mama Bear’s Book Shelf, 5 stars

One hell of an unpredictable rollercoaster ride with several twists and turns along the way… I almost had to read through my fingers… A brilliant, and highly recommended read.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

I envy you the binge read!” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

“An excellent, exhilarating read. I had to keep reading just another page, another page, as everything raced towards a high tension ending.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

A twist at every page!Absolutely loved this book… so engrossed, read it in 2 days… well-written and enthralling. Couldn’t put it down.” Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Brilliant! Brilliant! Absolutely freaking brilliant!!Shalini’s Books & Reviews, 5 stars

SILENT LITTLE ANGELS (Detective Katie Scott Book 7)

Pre order here: http://ow.ly/erw950HsCfZ

Out April 19th!

Posted in detective katie scott, Silent Little Angels | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Writing Inspiration for Crime Fiction: So This Happened on a 1600 mile Journey

Many of you don’t know that I moved from California to Texas last year. Yep, I’m in Texas now with summer heat and scary tornadoes. Remember, it’s a big wide open world out there to stay in one place forever. It’s been interesting and enlightening to say the least. People are kind and you just can’t beat that Texas hospitality. There were many reasons for my relocation, but I won’t bore you with the details. I’ll let you fill in the blanks. It’s just a stopping point, like the next chapter, until I figure out where my next homestead will be in the future.

So imagine this, buying a home, packing up my entire life, and then comes the dreaded “lockdown”. So what’s next? The ink on our contract wasn’t dry and we hadn’t left California yet. If you would like to have seen a major scramble dance—that was me and my husband.  Rental trucks were backed up. Motels and hotels were sketchy and sparse unless you were considered “essential”. I wanted to sit down and cry, or punch somebody, but that fighting spirit in me dusted myself off and forged ahead.

It took us almost another two months before we hit the open road and headed for the barn—so to speak. We drove—my husband behind the wheel of the largest moving truck we could rent and me in my car with a dog and two cats. We could only drive so many miles a day, so we were forced to stop at motels that would take us—since we were moving and could prove that our new location was in Texas. We ate our meals at large gas stations that had snacks and some fast food—since restaurants were closed. Did I mention that I had two cats and my German shepherd? That was fun. Insert sarcasm here.

The closest description I can relate to you was that we were headed into the great unknown with everything that was going on in the world. You know what I mean. So we stopped at our first motel. It was large but there were only a few other people staying there in the health and construction industries.

Once we arrived and checked into our room—completely exhausted and with two very indignant cats after about 600 miles of road. I took my German shepherd, Odin, out and we went for a nice walk. I stretched my legs and cleared my head, basically thinking about the book I was in the middle of writing—and of course new storylines. I’m always thinking about storylines and bad guys.

This particular motel was quite large, so I walked the grounds and down the outdoor hallways. When… a young man appeared from another building that was supposed to be vacant. He stumbled toward us bleeding and said that someone had stabbed him. Blood was gushing from his arm. Keep in mind Odin is a bred military grade type of dog, so he wasn’t particularly happy about this situation. I glanced around to make sure that there wasn’t a psycho running from a room wielding a bloody butcher knife. Then I instructed the young man sit down and apply pressure on his arm. It was nasty as he had left a trail of blood. By this time, the manager came out and said he had called the police (due to security cameras), but when he saw the blood up close, he became woozy. So I told him to sit down and catch his breath. So now, if you can imagine it, I have a bleeding man and a fainting motel manager in front of me while I waited for the police and ambulance to arrive.

People ask me all the time where I get my ideas and inspiration. And I answer, everywhere. It can be from a news headline, but it’s also from everyday things. It can be something on a walk or when you’re shopping at the grocery store. Inspiration is everywhere!

So back to the bleeding guy and the woozy motel manager… I was calm partly due to the fact that my dog kept a watchful eye for any other movement—he always has my back. The police showed up with three cruisers, then the fire truck, then an ambulance, and finally they had a CSI van. My little walk turned into a full-blown investigation unfolding in front of me. I have to say that the CSI vehicle was one of the most awesome ones I had ever seen. I hung around a bit. It was funny that the police officers asked me if I had been a cop or in the military. Wow. I was stunned. I politely told them that I was a crime fiction author—basically, I just make up stories. And everyone laughed. I’m still not quite sure if they really believed me or not.

It turned out that the bleeding guy had broken into one of the rooms with two undisclosed people (one woman and one man) and a fight broke out—and I’m sure that you can probably fill in the blanks. So, to make a long story short, I ran into some inspiration that day and you never know where you’re going to find it. I can’t wait for my journey around Texas checking out small towns and ghost towns—you never know what I’ll run into.

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PRETTY BROKEN DOLLS

Detective Katie Scott Thriller

Book 6

Available now at:

Amazon: http://ow.ly/aa8250FeIqN

Apple: http://ow.ly/M82450FeIqQ

Kobo: http://ow.ly/lGBl50FeIqP

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