Cover reveal: Wildfire

The first book in a brand-new mystery series

Launching March 22, 2018

That’s right, a brand new mystery series, about a young legal investigator named Tara Rezeck, will launch in less than a month. And here’s your first look at it—a striking cover by the one and only David C. Cassidy.

The book is now with my outstanding editor, Gary Henry, and after that it will go to the eagle-eyed Joy Lorton for proofreading.

In the meantime, I will soon set up pre-orders on Amazon and other e-tailers, and I’ll let you know when it’s available.

What’s it about?

Wildfires swept across California wine country in 2017, destroying thousands of homes and businesses, and killing dozens of people. Law school grad and single mother Tara Rezeck finds herself in the middle of the catastrophe. When she returns to her job after evacuating she finds her employer’s, body in the ashes.

The question that challenges her brains and her legal training is: was it an accident? Or was his body burned to hide evidence of murder?

Subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss your chance to pre-order it!


Cover reveal: Two new books coming over the next three weeks

I’ve told you about Echoes, my new Lei Crime Kindle World mystery featuring FBI Special Agent Vanessa Storm. This full-length novel appears on May 12, and I think it’s my best mystery, yet.

But two weeks before then, one week from today, on Thursday, April 27, a new Sydney Rye Kindle World adventure launches, too: The Three-Way, featuring your favourite, scruffiest, most irresistible and stubbornly independent secret agent, Van Freeman, along with his mysterious, ingenious partner, Earl LeBrun—the characters I introduced in Jet: Stealth, and featured again in The Wife Line.


In The Three-Way, Van and LeBrun take on Daesh, also known as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS.  Van, as usual, gets himself in way over his head. How he gets out has delighted beta readers so far.

Characters from the Sydney Rye universe created by Emily Kimelman include the smooth businessman and all-round enigma, Robert Maxim, as well as the Kurdish woman warrior from The Girl with the Gun, Mujada Taib.

Here’s a short sample

Chapter 2: Meet Van Freeman

Van swallowed the last of his espresso when he heard a voice that exuded confidence bordering on condescension. “Well, if it isn’t Van Freeman.” 

Deep, assured, relaxed. Van twisted toward the back of the café, nearly falling out of his chair. A tall man who looked to be in his late fifties sat in a chair against the wall. He leaned back, one ankle on the other knee, a hand on his raised thigh and his other holding an espresso cup. He had short brown hair, cut expensively, with silver at the temples. He wore dark travelling pants, a khaki-colored shirt and a light grey blazer that appeared to be poured onto him. 

Who is this guy? He wasn’t sitting there when I sat down. How did he get in without my noticing? Van thought. 

“Heyyy,” he said, smiling broadly. “Wow. It must be … How long since we’ve seen each other? And what brings you … Here, of all places?” He felt a tingle as the short hairs on the back of his neck stood up. He controlled his breathing and kept smiling. Without moving his eyes from the strange man, he scanned the room with his peripheral vision, looking for other threats, possible allies of the strange man and fastest escape route.  

“Relax, kid,” the stranger said, gesturing toward the chair across the table from him. “You’ve never met me, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with your memory.” 

Van moved so the table was between them. “Then how do you know my name?” 

“You stand out, especially here: a six-foot surfer dude with blond hair past his shoulders, and no beard. You’re hard to miss.” 

“That doesn’t explain how you know who I am.” 

“I read the report that Sydney Rye wrote.” 

Van’s chest tightened. He breathed out slowly. “Sydney wrote a report about me?” 

I have several people to thank for helping me get this book out so fast: my wife, Roxanne, for putting up with long silences as I wrote this furiously over a month; my elder son, Evan, for inspiring the character of Van and polishing his dialogue so it seems more realistic for a Millennial; Roger Eschbacher, Gary Henry and Joy Lorton for advice, insight, editing and proofreading; and Emily Kimelman for inviting me to the Sydney Rye Kindle World, and for creating the characters of Sydney, her dog, Blue, Bobby Maxim and Mujada Taib.

If you’re willing to leave a review on the Amazon page on release day, email me at and I’ll send you an advance review copy.



A new #LeiCrimeKW cover reveal: Dead Man Lying

This is it! The latest Vanessa Storm mystery, part of the whole #LeiCrimeKW Kindle World, will be on the Amazon e-shelves by June 27.

The cover is another masterpiece by David C. Cassidy, my favourite book cover designer. Check out his website,

About Dead Man Lying

Vanessa Storm is back — the FBI agent who always knows when you’re lying.

Maui is rain forest, black sand beaches and a laid-back lifestyle. The perfect retirement location for a folk singer.

But when that folk singer ends up dead, it’s up to Maui Detective Lei Texeira and FBI Special Agent Vanessa Storm to untangle the web of lies woven by the dead man’s family and friends before the body count escalates any higher.

Get it on Amazon starting June 27.

And check out the other Lei Crime Kindle World titles:

warrior dog cover

Warrior Dog by Emily Kimelman

A Snake in Paradise by Eden Baylee

A Snake in Paradise by Eden Baylee

Paradise Down by D.B. NcNicol

Paradise Down by D.B. NcNicol

Money Makes It Deadlier by Julie C. Gilbert

Money Makes It Deadlier by Julie C. Gilbert


Palm Trees & Snowflakes by Scott Bury

Torn Roots by Scott Bury

Torn Roots by Scott Bury

Cover reveal: The Wife Line

A Sydney Rye Kindle World book featuring Van and LeBrun.


The Sydney Rye Kindle World launches March 17 with 12 crackling tales from 7 bestselling authors—including my latest Van and LeBrun novella, The Wife Line.

What are Kindle Worlds?

SRKWlaunchimageKindle Worlds is an Amazon initiative that allows authors to publish stories set in another author’s fictional universe. The Sydney Rye Kindle World is based on the characters and situations created by bestselling author Emily Kimelman.

The Sydney Rye series of vigilante mysteries feature a strong female lead and her rescue dog, Blue. It is recommended for the 18+ who enjoy some violence, a dash of sex and don’t mind a little salty language. Not to mention an awesome, rollicking good mystery with tons of action that will keep you reading late into the night!

The Wife Line

Sydney Rye thought it would be an easy assignment: trail Nigel Willem, a software company executive because his boss suspects he’s up to something with mysterious trips across Europe. Sydney thinks he’s just a boring businessman. 

Then Willem is poisoned in his own home. Van, a mysterious young man with long, scruffy blond hair brings Sydney the dead man’s laptop, saying he knows who ordered the murder. The laptop reveals why Willem travelled: he was expediting human trafficking.

As Sydney follows Willem’s trail eastward, she finds more proof about Willem’s underworld contacts in pornography, people smuggling, drugs and murder. But the presence of the unpredictable, aggravating and irresistible Van may be more of an obstacle than a help.

It all launches on March 17 along with these six other exciting titles:WalkSoftlyCover

Walk Softly, Danger: A Reed Ferguson and Sydney Rye Mystery by Renée Pawlish

Nemesis, by Jennifer HarlowNemesisCover

Rough Road, by Toby Neal (creator of the Lei Crime series and inspiration of the Lei Crime Kindle World)RoughRoadCover

Strange Behavior, by Bev PettersenStrangeBehavior 600x900

The Catalyst, by DelSheree GladdenCatalystCover

Fatal Interest, by Julie C. GilbertFatalInterestCover

Come back to the blog through the week to read excerpts from each one of these titles.

Cover reveal: Under the Nazi Heel

It’s here! The cover from the unparalleled graphic designer David C. Cassidy for the follow-up to the memoir in novel form, Army of Worn Soles.

Under the Nazi Heel is the story of my father-in-law, Maurice Bury, fighting  against the German occupation of Ukraine from 1942 to 1944, as a member of the Ukrainian underground resistance.

Under the Nazi Heel will be available on Amazon this month.

In the meantime, check out Army of Worn Soles, the story of Maurice facing the greatest military invasion in history, Operation Barbarossa, when Nazi Germany invaded the USSR in 1941.


New cover: Dark Clouds

New cover Dark Clouds

I have updated Dark Clouds, Part 1: The Mandrake Ruse, complete with a new cover. I’m excited about it. I have to thank Quebec graphic designer Daniel Dufour for invaluable advice on typography and colours.

Original cover - Dark CloudsThe original cover wasn’t bad. I took the photograph in Venice, and while it’s a good image of dark clouds, when cropped and blown up to an image usable as a cover, the resolution was too low. Dots and artefacts were visible.

original Photo-clouds over Venice

In designing a new cover for my latest story, Palm Trees & Snowflakes (a Lei Crime short story), I bought some credits from a stock photo agency, and I had a few left over. So I found a really good image and reformatted the cover of Dark Clouds.

I also took the opportunity to revise the text itself. I took to heart a review that claimed there were some grammatical errors. I didn’t find any actual grammatical errors, but there were some typographical issues.

It’s interesting—I don’t think I’m the only writer who cringes over some of the sentences I wrote after a few years. I found some awkward or confusing passages in Dark Clouds, and fixed them. I then went on to fix up the second part of Dark Clouds: What Made Me Love You?, along with a new cover for it, too.

So let me know what you think. And if you want to buy a new copy, you can find it on:

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Cover reveal! Palm Trees & Snowflakes—a new Lei Crime mystery

I did it! I wrote a 10,000-word mystery story for the Lei Crime Kindle World in four days at the beginning of December. Since then, I’ve re-written it, shaved it down by 1,000 words, gotten it reviewed, changed it again, got it edited and got a fantastic cover image by the matchless David C. Cassidy. So without further ado, here it is:



Palm Trees & Snowflakes

Snowflake has a whole new meaning in Hawaii. The new designer drug being trafficked through Oahu gives users the perfect high—and slowly kills them.

In Honolulu, where the palm trees are strung with lights for the holidays, FBI Special Agents Vanessa Storm and Ken Yamada have their hands full trying to stop this deadly flow. Faulty intel brings the agents into a deadly firefight, which yields even more puzzles.

How do the drug lords change their smuggling routes and methods with every single shipment? Vanessa’s handsome, charming, and untrustworthy ex-boyfriend might have the answer.

Many debts of thanks

Thanks to:

  • Toby Neal, for inviting me to participate in the Lei Crime Kindle World in the first place
  • Julie C. Gilbert, fellow Lei Crime author, for inspiring me to write a Christmas-themed Lei Crime world by announcing her own, Christmas Makes it Chaos
  • Julie Gilbert, again, and Toby Neal (again) and Autumn Birt for excellent feedback to a beta-read
  • Joy Lorton for fast turnaround and excellent proofreading that caught some very embarrassing typos
  • and David C. Cassidy for such an outstanding cover.

Palm Trees & Snowflakes launches December 21 with eight other new Lei Crime titles. Watch for it on Amazon.  LeiCrimeChristmasLaunchBadge