The Dead Girl’s Stilettos

 

Title: The Dead Girl’s Stiletto
Author: Quinn Avery
Genre: Mystery Thriller
Cover Designer: Najla Qamber
Publication Date: April 2nd, 2019
 
Blurb:
Nearly a decade after moving across the country, journalist Bexley Squires returns home when one of Hollywood’s brightest stars makes her an offer she can’t refuse. After all, it’ll take more than the chump change in her bank account to find her missing sister.
But the elite seaside community of Papaya Springs has become more corrupt than she imagined, and she soon stumbles into a web of twisted games played by the rich and famous. With time running out, can she save her sister before it’s game over?
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QUINN AVERY is a bestselling and award winning author from the Midwest with 27 novels published under various pen names. The Bexley Squires Mystery series is the first mystery/thriller novel under the Quinn Avery pseudonym.
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Prologue
She knew the game was over—she was about to die. She could feel it in her bones. The young woman wept as she staggered across the main deck of a super yacht near Papaya Springs, playground for the filthy rich and famous. A crisp breeze sent a violent chill racing through her body. She was naked apart from a pair of high heels. She was also badly bruised, and utterly baffled. The moonlight cast a sinister glow on the dark water surrounding the vessel. The boat gently rocked beneath her with the ocean’s swells. Where was she? How did she get there?
Her chest heaved as she continued to stumble ahead. Pain radiated through her skull, and her forehead was covered with something warm that also saturated her eyes and blurred her vision. She swiped the sticky substance with a trembling hand. Blood coated her fingertips. Had someone hurt her? Did she have an accident? She remembered a fight…
Nausea sloshed through her stomach. She knew she should yell for help. In the deepest depths of her cloudy memory, she also knew no one would come to her rescue. They were after her. Her throat filled with bile.
She didn’t understand why her thoughts were so muddled. Had she taken something? Heart pounding an erratic beat, she continued to scurry across the teak wood. Her lungs burned. Panic set in. There was nowhere to hide.
Then she saw him emerging from the shadows. She limped into his open arms.
“I’m scared!” she cried. “What’s happening?”
Gentle hands caressed her back. Warm lips swept over her shoulder. His familiar scent instantly put her at ease.
But there was something off. The woman sensed it with every nerve in her body.
“Shhh…there’s no need to cry,” he cooed. “Everything’s going to be okay.” The words were a contradiction to the sorrow wavering in his voice.
“Noooo,” she slurred with a sob. She backed away until something was pressed against her shoulder blades. A railing. There was nowhere else to go. She was trapped. “Please…don’t let them do this.”
The woman’s cries came in agonizing howls. She wanted her mom and dad. She wanted to go home.
She knew his face was the last thing she would ever see.
* * *
Twenty-year-old Eric O’Neil sprinted across the sandy shore, his feet leaving deep indentations in the fine powder. Multimillion dollar yachts skimmed across the glittering Pacific Ocean less than a mile away. Hulls sparkled like diamonds in the sweltering sun. Crisp masts snapped in the warm wind. Speakers blasted whatever gangster rap was currently dominating the charts. Even on an early holiday afternoon, it was an opportunity for the wealthy to play in SoCal, exposing their sun kissed shoulders without a care in the world. A moderate amount of sunbathers dotted the majestic shoreline, generally those too poor to be among those playing in vessels on the water.
Generally only two types were known to be residents of the swanky community: those with unfathomable wealth, and those paid to serve them. It was common knowledge to locals that illegal drugs ran rampant, and everyone went out of their way to keep their secret, fearing their source of income would disappear along with their customers. It was rumored some establishments even had secret rooms where they could relax amongst luxurious amenities while ingesting white powder and popping pills. Eric had hoped he’d come across one of those places, but he was merely stoked he’d scored primo weed from a high-end dispensary using his fake ID. They didn’t have anything like it back in Detroit. He was higher than the blue skies above his head.
He yelled over his shoulder to his girlfriend, “Try to keep up!” He was slated to be Papaya Springs College’s best baller this season, having broken his state’s high school records two seasons in a row for most points scored by one player. The moment he stepped on the basketball court he was a true god, destined for a pro team after college. There had already been a handful of recruiters vying for his attention with under-the-table bribes of trips involving drugs and hordes of female companions.
It gave him an even greater sense of pride when Tehya Jensen—unquestionably the hottest and richest chick he knew—literally chased after him. Her parents owned a string of hotels all over the world, and they had invited Eric to spend Thanksgiving at their $20 million condo. He never imagined he’d be privileged to that kind of lifestyle. His parents had teetered on the edge of poverty ever since the automotive plants began to shut down. He’d only been able to afford college because of the athletic scholarship.
“Seriously, my limbs are too heavy for this!” Teyha whined from far away. “Slow down!”
Laughing manically, Eric rounded the corner, stumbling across a sand dune. He lost his footing, long limbs sprawled around him as he face-planted onto the beach. With a long grunt, he flipped around to his back and started to move his hands and legs at his sides.
“Look at me…I’m a sand angel,” he muttered before releasing a nasally chuckle.
Then the back of his arm connected with something firm, wet, and exceptionally clammy. Eric rolled to his side, blinking heavily at the sight before him. A naked woman with giant knockers was fast asleep where the tide had recently gone down in the sand. Dark, wet hair covered her face, and her arms and legs were spread out around her like she had just made angels in the sand too. In fact, one of her legs was crooked at an unusual angle. Wait, Eric thought to himself, she’s not naked. She’s wearing heels.
They weren’t just any pair of heels, either. They were a luminescent gold with rhinestones—hell, maybe even diamonds. If the water hadn’t ruined them, they could be outrageously expensive. Since Eric didn’t have two spare pennies to rub together after covering expenses not included in his scholarship, he would have to get creative in finding someone as rich as Tehya an impressive Christmas present. He didn’t want to screw up the chance of getting invited back to her parents’ condo.
Eric peered over his shoulder, ensuring Tehya wasn’t close before he went to work in removing the woman’s shoes. The suction of her wet skin made removing them more difficult than he had anticipated. Either that or he was still seriously tripping from his last hit of the primo joint. Tongue trapped between his teeth, Eric pulled and pulled until the unconscious woman’s feet gave up the fight.
Just as he was contemplating copping a quick feel of the woman’s perfect tits (he was dying to find out if they were real), Tehya’s muffled scream pierced the warm air. He twisted around to find his girlfriend holding both hands over her mouth, eyes as wide as a cartoon character’s. She wore a skimpy little dress that made her father’s face as red as a cherry when they came down from her room after a heated make out session. Warmth spread through Eric’s groin when he recalled how many times he had violated that sweet little body in the condo with her parents nearby.
“Ohmygod! Eric, what are you doing?”
All at once remembering he was holding the woman’s shoes—Tehya’s present—he clumsily moved them behind his back. “It’s fine, babe. She’s sleeping.”
A funny little noise slipped from Tehya’s throat. “She does not look like she’s sleeping. Look at her head!”
Eric stretched back to the woman. Now that he paid a little closer attention, it did seem like there was something terribly wrong. Was that her brain peering back at him? He crawled backwards on his hands and feet in the sand like the crab they’d tried to give a hit to earlier while getting high. Eric laughed at the memory as he climbed back up to his feet.
“This isn’t funny!” Tehya scolded, her voice becoming even more annoying with every syllable. “Were you stealing her shoes?”
“If she’s really dead, she’s not gonna need them anymore,” he insisted, lifting them in the air for emphasis. “They’d look hotter on you anyway.”
“No way I’m wearing shoes you stole off a corpse!”
Eric rolled his eyes. Women were never satisfied. He tossed them back by his feet. “Happy now?”
“You can’t leave them here! We have to call the police, and they’ll think we were somehow involved if they find your fingerprints! Ohmygod we’re totally going to jail! Our lives are over! You’re going to get kicked off the team, and—”
“Babe, stop!” Eric demanded, bracing a hand over her warm lips. “The weed is making you paranoid. We’re not going to jail, and they’re not kicking me off the team. We’ll take the shoes with us, then we’ll call the cops from somewhere far away from here.”
Eric scooped the incriminating evidence off the sand before taking his girlfriend’s hand and leading her away. He wasn’t going to prison because of some stupid shoes. Besides, if they were really as valuable as he suspected, then maybe there was a way they could bring in some money.
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Aquarius: Murders of the Zodiac

AQUARIUS: Murders of the Zodiac” is the first book in a series, but it can also be read as a stand-alone. Be prepared for unexpected twists and turns! The Murders of the Zodiac series would be perfect for those who enjoy suspense thrillers, especially if they like Patricia Cornwell or J. D. Robb novels too.

 

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Never Enough

Never Enough

By Isabella Adams

Detective Sean Malone always thought he would follow in his father’s footsteps. Some roads, however, are better left untraveled.

Patrick Malone had everything he ever wanted. A career, a family, and the respect of his community. Until one night on the beaches of Clearwater, it was all taken away.
Now, twenty years later, his son Sean is in the same position. In love with Andie Markos, he is about to become a father. About to realize all of his dreams.
About to lose it all.
What happened twenty years ago threatens to happen again. As the deadly secrets that should have died with Patrick Malone rise, ready to capture his son and everyone he knows in a web of addiction, doubt, and betrayal, Sean will discover that some family secrets never truly die.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07M77QLL6/

Murder is a Debate

Title: Murder is a Debate
Author: Brandy Nacole
Genre: YA Mystery
Publication Date: March 25th, 2019
Blurb:
Nora and her two best friends, Liv and Nina, aren’t like most people. Nora is the private school kid; the rich girl, though everyone hates her. Liv and Nina attend the run-down public school on the opposite side of town where the football team is a solid two and the art department was shut down due to funding. Their worlds should have never collided, but they had one common factor that brought them together, murder.
In an online mystery chat room, the three girls meet and decide to form The Murder Club. Each week one of the girls must come up with a murder scenario for the other two to solve. It’s fun. It’s active. It’s also deadly.
When one of Nora’s classmates ends up dead, she’s suspicious of her new friends. His death mirrors the very same scenario Nora came up with in their previous meeting. As clues emerge, pointing more definitively at the members of the Murder Club, Nora begins digging for her own clues, bringing fantasy to reality. Could Liv and Nina be involved, and if so why?
They were all curious, but the question is, was one of them too curious?
Whenever she’s not reading or writing, Brandy is spending time with her family and friends, throwing around crazy ideas, teaching, and singing like a rock star at a concert for no one else but herself. She loves plants, but unfortunately is a killer of anything that requires water but can’t voice (scream) their needs.
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Polyamory on Trial

BOOK BLAST

Book Title: Polyamory on Trial

Author: Jude Tresswell

Publisher: Self-published via Rowanvale Books

Cover Artist: Cerys Knighton

Release Date; August 31, 2018

Genre/s: M/M/M/M, crime and mystery

Heat Rating: 2 flames (Trigger Warning: references to rape)

Length: 63,000 words/ 236 pages

It can be read alone. A third story will be published early 2019 so it is part of a series.

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Blurb

A bittersweet story with two interwoven themes: a crime and mystery involving trafficking and a look at the workings of a polyamorous relationship.

A young Syrian needing treatment at Warbridge Hospital is seen by Phil Roberts, one quarter of a gay polyamorous quad living in north east England. The men in the doctor’s life are ex-cop, Mike Angells, gallery proprietor, Ross Whitmore and ceramist and artist, Raith Balan.

Phil is troubled. Is his patient in the UK legally? Who has caused his injuries? Is trafficking involved? As the foursome struggle to find out, hampered by the fact that Mike is no longer a detective, cracks begin to appear in their relationship. Can four men be equals? Is their lifestyle viable? Meanwhile, there are cracks of a different sort to deal with—and the job of doing so seems to fall exclusively on Mike’s broad shoulders.

 

 

Buy Links

Rowandale Books

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Available as paperback, ePub, Mobi and PDF from Rowanvale Books and all usual distributors.

 

Excerpt

(Mike is talking about honesty, which, together with openness, love and passion, guide the quad’s approach to life. His little ‘asides’ feature at the end of the chapters.)

You could say that there are the big honesties, and there are the little honesties as well. The little ones involve the practicalities of livin’ as a foursome. Four blokes together. Shoppin’ to get, meals to cook, washin’ to sort, the loo to clean, the garden to dig, the bills to pay… all the usual family practicalities. But in a poly, we’re equally in charge, equally responsible. Theoretically, that is. One of us seems to think that it’s beneath his dignity to use a mop and that cleanin’ the loo should be left to his minions. He cleans up after himself—I’d shove his bloody head down the toilet bowl if he didn’t—but the proper wash, the one with the detergent and the disinfectant? No way. So, sometimes, we just have to be very honest and tell him he’s a shiter, or rather, Ross and Phil tell him, and I try to look threatenin’. It’s hard, cos I often want to laugh. He comes up with such a load of bollocks for excuses! Then he sulks, or gets in a strop, because he feels we’re gettin’ at him, but we have to. It’s the thin end of the wedge otherwise. He’ll shirk everythin’ if we don’t get tough and lay down the law. That’s what I mean by the little honesties. If sumthin’s wrong, then we have to be upfront about it and say so, even if it causes bad feelin’ for a time.

But I think you probably meant the big honesties. Keepin’ secrets. That sort of thing. Obviously, by their very definition, I don’t know if the others are keepin’ secrets. And yes, I would keep sumthin’ secret if I thought that sharin’ it would place the other guys in danger. In fact, I have done that, and so has Ross. But, to me, that’s not dishonest. Personally, I would never tell the others a lie, a big lie, the kind that’d rock the boat. I might not tell the whole truth, but I would never tell an untruth, if that makes sense. I think our quad’d crumble if we weren’t honest with each other. If there isn’t trust… There has to be trust.

About the Author

I write about gay polyamorous men, but I’m a monogamous female. I’m also asexual. I have no problem imagining the lives of my four men, though, as long as there’s no me (or any other female) in the scene. The term for this dissociation is anegosexual, I think.

I have a lot of hobbies, which is just as well as I spend a lot of time with my imagination and I need to be metaphorically tied down to the real world. I dance, I sing, I play the guitar (the last two, badly), I love geology and I’m interested in languages, and, of course, I love to write.

 

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Dragon’s Blood

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Silas – half Wolf, half New Zealand Maori.

Makara – a White Dragon Princess.

She fills his thoughts, by day and by night.

He is her hope for the future.

Can this wolf capture the heart of his dragon and help bring peace to her kingdom?

Book 2 in The Midnight Crest Series

 

BUY LINKS

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Amazon AU

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BIO

 

 

ALEISHA MAREE

Aleisha Maree is a writer of contemporary romance with a dark erotic sexy side with a paranormal twist. Aleisha also writes an MC Series with MMA flair. She doesn’t let genre walls hold her back. Aleisha is from a small village called Wakefield in the South Island of New Zealand. She is a mum of 6 whom she loves more than breathing and she is married to the love of her life. Aleisha invites you into her mind full of stories and on the journeys, they will take you on.

 

 

 

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Maggie

Title: Maggie
Author: Mya O’Malley
Narrator: Emily Ember
Genre: Paranormal Mystery/ Romance
Cover Designer: Jena Brignola
Producer: The Audio Flow, LLC
 
Blurb:
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to share your home with an unearthly spirit who can’t find closure? Living on the edge of a cemetery with souls dating back to the 1700s would be enough to spook anyone, but Naomi finds it oddly romantic, and becomes inspired to write her next novel. Why not, when her muse, Maggie, calls to her from beyond her own window?
After all, the story couldn’t possibly be as complicated as Naomi’s own love life. Torn between Ryan, the mysterious and seemingly perfect man she just started dating, and Bryce, the sexy single dad who recently moved in next door, Naomi must navigate the tangled web of dating—all while trying to solve the mystery of Maggie’s death.
When things turn dangerous, Naomi quickly learns whom she can trust and, more importantly, whom she can’t. Will she be able to write Maggie’s story and finally give Maggie the peace she deserves?
Mya O’Malley was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, where she currently resides with her family.
Mya’s passion is writing; she has been creating stories and poetry since she was a child. She earned her undergraduate degree in special education and a graduate degree in reading and literacy.
Mya is a published writer of contemporary romance,young adult, and paranormal romance/mysteries. Presently, Mya’s novels have been published by Solstice Publishing, Clean Reads, TouchPoint Press, and Blue Tulip Publishing.
Mya spends her free time honing her skills in photography, painting, and reading just about anything she can get her hands on. Mya loves to travel; she has visited several amazing locations such as Aruba, St. Lucia, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Costa Rica, Canada, and Australia. Mya is currently working on her twelfth novel.
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Sky high cliffs, the serene Hudson River, and blue skies
surrounded them. Seagulls screeched overhead as they made their
way up the wide, winding path. Maggie jumped out of the way as
a cyclist whizzed past.
     “Oh!”
     He grabbed her waist, holding her tight. “You need to watch
out for those guys. They can be relentless around here.”
     Didn’t she know it. The local roads were dominated by the
cyclists in the warm weather. More than once in the past few
weeks, Maggie had to pull over to the side of the road to allow
them to pass.
     “This is nice.” Maggie followed the sound of the gulls’ cries
overhead. Not a cloud in the sky.
     “It is, but then again, anything would be nice with you by
my side.”
     “Thanks.” She snuggled her head against his shoulder for a
moment as they walked hand in hand further up the path.
     Walking in a companionable silence, Maggie was happy. This
was nice, being here with him.
     “Would you look at that?” He pointed up toward the edge of
the cliff. Maggie could just about make out the tiny figures of two
people. She swayed slightly. They had to be nuts to get that close
to the edge. They had to be nuts period.
     “Yeah, well if you ask me, they’re crazy.”
     “Crazy? How do you figure?” His eyes bore into hers.
 
     “Going way up there? They must have a death wish.” Maggie
nearly shivered even though the temperature was mild.
     He stopped her, placing his hands on her shoulders. “You’re
afraid of heights?”
     “No, don’t be ridiculous.”
     “You are, aren’t you?” His eyes lit up.
     “If I’m not mistaken, it seems as if you’re deriving some kind
of sick pleasure from this,” Maggie mumbled, head down.
     “No, honey. No.” He wrapped his arms around her as more
cyclists scurried by. “I didn’t mean to react that way. It’s just that
in my eyes you’re perfect. I didn’t imagine you’d have a fear in
the world.”
     If only he knew. She had plenty of fears, but Maggie figured
most people did.
     “Really? That’s nice of you to say. Untrue, but nice.”
     “Come on. Say, what’s your greatest fear? Top fear of all
time?”
     Strange turn in conversation. “Where are you going with this
line of questioning?”
     He blew out a hearty chuckle. “Come on, it’s all in good fun.
I’m just trying to get to know you.”
     “Okay. Heights. My top fear is heights.” She wished to change
the subject but wondered what his own fears were now that the
topic was on the table.
     “What about you? What are you afraid of?”
     “I guess it would be drowning.” Yes, drowning was also high
on her list.
     He was uncharacteristically quiet. Now would be a good time
to lighten the mood.
     “Enough of this macabre talk. Back to the beautiful day before
us.” Maggie stepped away from him to spread her arms wide. His
face remained serious.
     “Yes, it would be drowning.”
     A dark look passed over his brown eyes. He had already
mentioned the fact.
     “Okay. Can we move on? Maybe talk about something else?”
 
     “Since you’re the one who brought it up, I guess so.”
     “I didn’t…” He was the one who had pointed out the hikers
up high on the cliff.
     “Yes, you actually did. But I suppose that’s neither here nor
there. I never learned how to swim, did you know that?”
     “No, I didn’t.” Maggie took a step away from his reach. She
felt uncomfortable with the vibe he was creating. More than
anything, Maggie wished he would just stop talking about his
fears, her fears.
     “Can you imagine that? Being raised without swimming
lessons?”
     Maggie could almost taste the hostility that was radiating off
him. Someone had unresolved issues from his childhood, it seemed.
     Now wasn’t the time to inquire about his past, though. Maggie
slipped her hands into her light sweatshirt, wondering if it was
time they should be heading back.
     “It’s getting late. What do you say we head back?”
     It was as if a switch had been flipped. There was no other
way to describe it. As suddenly as his mood had become dark and
brooding, he was now light and charming once more.
     “What? And miss out on sharing this spectacular day with
you?” He leaned over and kissed her. Hard.
     It was a bit uncomfortable, standing there in the middle of the
path, in plain view, being kissed with such intensity.
     “Come.” He led her off the path and into the thick of the woods.
She had no choice but to follow.
     He chuckled as he led her to a large boulder. “Here.”
     He scooped her up and placed her on top of the large rock.
Following suit, he climbed up the slight incline and joined Maggie.
Kissing her again, he cupped her head in his hands. Moments
later, his hands smoothed over her body.
     Maggie stiffened, pulling away. He sat back, eyes wide. “What
is it, Maggie? What the hell is the problem now?”
     “I’m just not ready.”
     Placing his head in his hands, he sighed dramatically. “You’re
not ready.” His laugh was sharp.
 
     “Why not? Didn’t I just tell you I love you?” His tone rose
in agitation.
     Was that why he had declared his love for her? Her face must
have given away her thoughts.
     “Are you kidding me? You think that’s why I shared my
feelings with you?” He stood and paced on the boulder. “Let’s go.
Time to go.”
     What had just happened here? How had everything
deteriorated in a matter of mere minutes? And how much of it
was her fault?
     “No. Don’t. Sit down. Please.” Her eyes looked up at his
height, pleading for him to stay.
     “I don’t get you, Maggie. I have to be honest here with you.
You’re kind of driving me crazy. Pushing my limits, you know?”
His face flushed red as he paced.
     How was she pushing him? “Sit, please just come back and sit
beside me.” Maggie patted the spot beside her, her lip trembling.
She didn’t know why he was so upset, only that she wanted things
to return to how they were prior to this walk by the river.
     “Fine.” He plopped himself beside her, leaving at least a foot
between them.
     Maggie reached over for him, taking his hand in hers. He
didn’t move closer but didn’t pull away either.
     “Maggie. You’re killing me. I love you. I freaking love you,
and I feel you not returning my feelings.”
     “I…”
     “Let me finish. I open up to you, try to show you how much I
love you and I’m met with a slam of the door.” His hands moved
dramatically. Maggie leaned back so that he wouldn’t swipe her
as he spoke.
     “No response from you, telling me that you love me back, and
now I can’t even show you how I feel.” He was upon her, grabbing
her face, his eyes intense.
     It was true. She hadn’t said she loved him back. She hadn’t
been ready. What she definitely wasn’t ready for was showing
him. The words slipped out of her mouth before she could think.

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