Who’s That Indie Author? Janice J. Richardson

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Author name:  Janice J. Richardson

Genre:  Nonfiction, Fiction (Mystery)

BooksThe Making of a Funeral Director, Spencer Funeral Home Niagara Cozy Mystery Series – Casket Cache, Winter’s Mourning, Grave Mistake, First Call

Bio:  I am an identical twin, a special needs mom and a former funeral director. A news junkie, I’m an avid reader of nonfiction, historical fiction and anything that has words on it. Retired now, I am always reinventing myself, and as I look back at my various careers,  I would do it all again. Well, some of it. A little bit anyway.

Favorite thing about being a writer:  Getting to know readers, supporting authors. One of my biggest thrills is hearing from readers that they learned something from my books.

Biggest challenge as an indie author:  Promotion, marketing

Favorite booksA Thousand Splendid Suns (Khaled Hosseini), The Lover’s Portrait (Jennifer S. Alderson), Anne of Green Gables series (Lucy Maud Montgomery).

Contact Information:
Facebook:  Janice J. Richardson
Twitter:  @richardsonjan1
Email:  themakingofafuneral.director@gmail.com
Goodreads: Janice J. Richardson

Awards/special recognition:  Winter’s Mourning: semi-finalist in first lines contest (AUTHORSdb) 2018; Casket Cache – Best Canadian Cozy Mysteries (Listopia)


Are you an indie author?  Do you want to build your indie author network? Get your name out on Who’s That Indie Author!

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Death in a Mudflat by N. A. Granger

Death in a Mudflat
by
N.A. Granger

Rating:

When a dead woman’s body emerges from a mudflat in Pequod, Maine, it doesn’t matter that part-time detective Rhe Brewster and the chief of police are at a wedding across the way. Rhe and her former brother-in-law (and new love interest), Sam Brewster, are more than willing to run over, don a set of hazmat suits and secure the scene.

Sam and Rhe can only initially guess at the whys and hows, but their expert team’s careful attention to detail and Rhe’s nose for making connections take the reader on an investigation that is both cozy and challenging and in which Rhe places herself in many dangerous situations. Is she reckless or is she just an ace detective? Now that they’re a couple, Sam may have trouble working this out.

Death in a Mudflat is Granger’s fourth Rhe Brewster mystery, a fun series set in the fictional coastal town of Pequod. In this small-town setting, Granger has developed a cast of characters and community that reflect New England values and personalities. But just like other small towns and larger communities across the country, Pequod struggles with modern problems, including the east coast’s growing heroin crisis.

As the investigation continues, Rhe and Sam discover possible connections to other deaths, casting doubt on several shady characters. And when a student from Pequod College turns up dead, they must consider an even larger case. Granger does a great job introducing the second case into the story and readers won’t know if they are connected until the story’s exciting end.

These investigations consume a lot of time, while Rhe continues to work as an Emergency Room nurse at Sturtevant Hospital and also raise her son, Jack, an active eight-year-old. But Rhe, Sam and their friends manage to keep the fun going in their own lives. A little romance and a couple fights over Rhe’s risk-taking make the story both realistic and entertaining. In addition, Rhe’s close friendship with Paulette McGillivray adds another dimension to the story when Paulette joins a mystery group dedicated to solving cold cases.

Granger’s extensive medical knowledge shows, as Rhe’s hospital and police life forever overlap. The author also includes details about modern police procedures and technology which greatly enhance the story. Readers will also enjoy how Granger incorporates hot coffee and many tasty foods into her characters’ days, often from the Pie and Pickle, Pequod’s local café.

Themes about love, friendship, helping others and justice over the bad guys make Death in a Mudflat and the whole series great reads and I recommend these stories to mystery readers who like a good puzzle as well as others who enjoy reading about modern life in a small town.

Also by N. A. Granger:

Death in a Red Canvas Chair
Death in a Dacron Sail
Death by Pumpkin
Death at the Asylum (coming 2020)


I read Death in a Mudflat as part of my library’s Summer Reading Challenge to read a book set within the past 20 years.

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Who’s That Indie Author? G. M. Barlean

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Author name:  G. M. Barlean

Genre:  mainstream fiction, suspense, cozy mysteries, short stories

Books:  I have published 10 books, all are available on Amazon in digital, and many are also available in print.

  • Casting Stones, an historical, dramatic novel
  • Dead Blow, a suspense
  • Recipes for Revenge, a collection of short stories set up like a meal with four courses
  • Thorns of Rosewood, a cozy mystery, book 1
  • Flames of Rosewood, book 2
  • Bad Blood of Rosewood, book 3
  • Build a Writing Team, nonfiction self-help business
  • Moments of Clarity, a collection of memoir essays
  • Dark Works, a collection of short, scary stories
  • The Man With a Green Scarf, a short love story          

Bio:  G. M. Barlean is a Nebraska author with a Midwestern voice. Her books are generally set in Nebraska. She is a member of The Nebraska Writers Guild, and has provided a website to support indie authors’ book trailers. She has also run short story competitions for indie authors. Barlean is an avid reader, has been a professional photographer, and enjoys cooking, cats, friends and family, travel, and spending time with her husband at their lake house.

Favorite thing about being a writer:  Writing allows me to flesh out topics of interest to me. I’m able to express ideas I do not necessarily support or deny, but of which I’m curious, through character interaction. I love the idea of communicating a larger idea for people to consider over time. I believe writing fiction can effect change and challenge ideas.

Biggest challenge as an indie author:  Sticking to some kind of schedule.

Favorite books:  I’ve read too many to say I have a favorite, but Dean Koontz wrote a couple of books, Wilderness and Innocence, a couple of years ago. I really enjoyed the idea he put forth. I love to read Stephen King in general. I’m a fan of short stories by Flannery O’Connor. And of course, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee never gets old.

Contact Information: email is ginabarlean@gmail.com.
website:  ginambarlean.wordpress.com
indie author support website:  indietrailers.wordpress.com

Awards/special recognition:  I am currently a BookWorks featured author of the week. I was honored to receive a positive review from Publishers Weekly for my book, Thorns of Rosewood.


Are you an indie author?  Do you want to build your indie author network? Get your name out on Who’s That Indie Author!

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What’s in a mystery? Solving the genre

Everyone loves a good story and there’s nothing better than an intriguing mystery. But there are lots of books with the mystery label so how do you define the genre?

In the typical mystery, the main character solves a crime or a series of crimes and the story finishes with a nice tie-in of facts and events. It’s often full of puzzling clues, shady characters and red herrings. Sometimes the characters are amateur sleuths, sometimes they are professional detectives. While some readers like to solve the puzzle ahead of time, others prefer to see the story unfold. Many readers like complex stories, others like a fast-moving plot.



Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin
is an excellent mystery crime story about a town hampered by racism.

Mystery writers understand that readers have different tastes, which has led to many subgenres. The cozy mystery takes place in an intimate setting and leaves out the gory details. Hard boiled and noir mysteries are gritty and violent. Procedurals include a blow-by-blow analysis. Historical mysteries (surprise!) take place in the past.


     

Second Street Station and Brooklyn on Fire by Lawrence H. Levy are entertaining historical mysteries set in 1890s New York.

A developing subgenre is the science fiction mystery, which places its characters in a supernatural element. Adding to the list are legal and medical mysteries and comic capers. For those who prefer nonfiction, there are plenty of true crime stories. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote is one of the most well-known true crime stories and one that I want to read.

And for readers who like happy endings, there is the romantic suspense in which love and justice conquer. If you like this subgenre, check out Everything We Keep by Kerry Lonsdale.

While these mysteries involve solving a crime, thrillers and suspense come from a different angle – in these the protagonist is in high stakes danger from the very beginning. Many twists and turns propel the reader to an exciting conclusion.


  

If you like medical thrillers, you will enjoy Eating Bull by Carrie Rubin and her earlier book, The Seneca Scourge by Carrie Rubin, which steps into the medical sci-fi world.

No matter the style, writers of all subgenres often create lasting characters that feature in entire series of books. For an avid reader, what’s better than the anticipation of the next story?

In a rut? Expand your scope! Many mysteries include complex characters and dramatic settings and open the genre to readers who might not otherwise venture down the mystery aisle. From classic authors like Edgar Allan Poe, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie to modern writers like Michael Connelly, Peter May and Tana French, you are bound to find an exciting story!

Some mysteries and thrillers overlap subgenres, making them hard to label but always great to read!


  

Death in a Red Canvas Chair and Death in a Dacron Sail by N. A. Granger are a little bit cozy and a little bit medical and a lot of fun to read.

In the Woods by Tana French is a psychological crime story with many interesting characters.

Echo Park by Michael Connelly features the recurring character Harry Bosch, also a popular video series on Amazon. Soon I’ll be reading another by Connelly – The Lincoln Lawyer, Book 1 of the Mikey Haller series.

     

If you like dramatic landscapes and complex characters you will enjoy The Lewis Trilogy by Peter May. I’ve read The Blackhouse and The Lewis Man and I’m getting ready to read The Chessmen.

Others I’ve recently read include:

Caught by Harlan Coben
The Fever by Megan Abbott

The Good Neighbor by A.J. Banner

I’m a novice mystery reader and I’m having fun learning more about the genre. The books I’ve listed represent only a fraction of what’s out there. What type of story do you like? What are your favorites?

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