Alma Bond’s “Mary Wells Psychiatrist Mystery” series released by Sunbury Press

Alma Bond’s “Mary Wells Psychiatrist Mystery” series released by Sunbury Press

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. — Sunbury Press has released the first three books in Alma Bond’s  Mary Wells Psychiatrist Mystery series titles:  The Deadly Jigsaw Puzzle, Murder on the Streetcar, and Who Killed Marcia Maynard?

About the Books:

The Deadly Jigsaw Puzzle: Mary’s patient, Veronica Vail, was murdered in her Park Avenue apartment. Lt. John Franklin asks for her help in finding the killer. They interview her husband Roland, his daughter by a former marriage who never liked Veronica, and Carlos de la Cuesta, a handsome, black-haired drag queen in love with Roland. Lt. Franklin hypothesizes that a stranger broke into the Vail apartment to steal a painting. Roland confirms that an expensive painting has disappeared. A maid named Lottie Lobell tells them that while looking out the window on the day of the murder, she saw a black-haired man run away from the building carrying a painting. He is found and brought in for questioning. Using purely psychological clues, Mary confronts all the suspects with the truth. The killer collapses under her inquisition, and confesses.

Murder on the Streetcar: Dr. Mary Wells is a psychoanalyst, whose patient, Cecily Johnson, is playing the part of Stella in a new production of “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Cecily gives the doctor two tickets to see a performance of the play. She invites Lt. John Franklin, a detective who is her lover, to accompany her. During a particularly rowdy scene, the sound of a shot is heard. The audience thinks it is part of the play, until the stage manager comes out and announces that a person has been shot back stage and the performance cannot continue. The murdered man is the actor playing Stanley Kowalski. Lt. Franklin takes on the case. After checking out the ballistics and interrogating the cast, he and Dr. Wells conclude that one of the actors in the play was the killer. They consider possible motives for the murder by each actor. Utilizing Dr. Wells’ psychological expertise and Lt. Franklin’s experience and perceptiveness, they are able to eliminate some performers, while others remain under suspicion. Through an idea of Dr. Wells to have the cast reenact the death scene, she and the Lieutenant are able to discover and apprehend the killer.

Who Killed Marcia Maynard?: Dr. Marcia Maynard, famous child psychoanalyst and infant researcher, was murdered in her bed at the El Dorado Apartment House in Manhattan by an unknown killer. Psychoanalyst Mary Wells helps solve the mystery with her astute analytical and psychological skills. In conjunction with her lover Detective John Franklin, they are an almost unstoppable team.

Dr. Wells and Lt. Franklin are devastated to hear that his “Auntie Marcie” and Well’s colleague and former analyst has been murdered. The pair, who are both in mourning for Maynard, need all their wits about them as they question her colleagues, staff, and friends.

Finding someone angry enough to kill Maynard was not difficult, as many people had been mistreated by the doctor. The suspects included her beautiful Indian housekeeper, Asha Rupashi, whom Maynard continually abused and who was a beneficiary in Maynard’s will, her chief associate for 30 years, Dr. James Whirter, a man her colleagues said she treated “like a lapdog,” Rogerio Chavez, a Chinese restaurant delivery man, whom Maynard had insulted and infuriated, and several suitors whom she had rejected. The book ends with the killer opening up under ingenious psychological questioning by Dr. Wells, who then falls into Lt. Franklin’s arms.

About the Author:

Dr. Alma H. Bond is the author of twenty-one published books, including, most recently, Marilyn Monroe: On the Couch, Jackie: On the Couch,  Lady Macbeth: On the CouchMichelle Obama: A BiographyThe Autobiography of Maria CallasMargaret Mahler: A Biography of the PsychoanalystCamille Claude: A NovelAmerica’s First Woman Warrior: The Story of Deborah Sampson; and Who Killed Virginia Woolf? A Psychobiography.

Dr. Bond received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from Columbia University, graduated from the post-doctoral program in psychoanalysis at the Freudian Society, and was a psychoanalyst in private practice for 37 years in New York City. She “retired” to become a full-time writer, but now maintains a small practice in addition to writing.

Dr. Bond is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, the Dramatists Guild, and the Authors Guild, as well as a fellow and faculty member of the Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, the International Psychoanalytic Association, and the American Psychological Association. She was one of the first non-medical analysts to be elected to the International Psychoanalytic Association.

Dr. Bond grew up in Philadelphia, where she obtained her undergraduate degree in psychology from Temple University, and following voluntary military service, moved to New York, where she earned a Ph D. in psychology from Columbia University.

A longtime resident of New York City, she lived for nearly a dozen years in south Florida, and now resides in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

The Deadly Jigsaw Puzzle

Authored by Alma H. Bond

List Price: $12.95
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm) 
Black & White on Cream paper
196 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620067703
ISBN-10: 1620067706
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths
Murder on the Streetcar

Authored by Alma H Bond

List Price: $12.95
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm) 
Black & White on Cream paper
186 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620067741
ISBN-10: 1620067749
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths
Who Killed Marcia Maynard?

Authored by Alma H. Bond

List Price: $14.95
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm) 
Black & White on Cream paper
232 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620067727
ISBN-10: 1620067722
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Alma-Bond_c159.htm

"The Honey Trap" is Wade Fowler's latest Rev Polk mystery set in the Keystone state

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Sunbury Press has released Wade Fowler’s The Honey Trap, the latest Rev Polk Mystery set in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

About the Book:
Investigative reporter Revere Polk of the Daily Telegraph is stunned when Pennsylvania Governor Casey Lawrence, a liberal Democrat, suddenly reverses course and decides to back the privatization of the state lottery, a proposal of the far right.

When a colleague is murdered while investigating whether the governor is being blackmailed, Polk picks up the gauntlet. Catastrophes pile up like a chain-reaction accident on Interstate 95.

Polk narrowly survives a bomb targeting a topless dancer alleged to be sleeping with the governor.

His National Guard unit is called to service in Afghanistan.

And his live-in girl friend, New Cumberland Chief of Police Olivia Pearson, announces she is pregnant.

Meanwhile, Polk is paralyzed by the certainty that he is not alone within his own skin. His great granduncle, Jake Addison, speaks to him from within. Jake, a notorious and profane naval aviator, died forty years ago.

Is Rev crazy, or is he Jake Addison reincarnate?

The answer is ensnared in The Honey Trap.

About the Author:
Wade Fowler is a career journalist with more than thirty years of experience with daily and weekly newspapers. He was a copy editor, feature writer and beat reporter for The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, PA, for 10 years before leaving to become editor of the Perry County Times in New Bloomfield.

He has won Keystone Press Awards for investigative reporting, feature series writing, and headline writing and is a former president of the Pennsylvania Society of Newspaper Editors.

Fowler is a native of North Carolina, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, and a graduate of Guilford College, Greensboro, N.C.
He and his wife, Sharon, live in New Cumberland, PA. They have three children and two grandchildren.

Excerpt:
2:30 p.m., Monday, January 2, 2012, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
“Why are you here?”
“Now there’s a deep question,” Revere Polk said. “I’ve asked God, and he hasn’t gotten back to me on that one yet.”
Henrietta Winslow laughed. “This is going to be fun.”
“What?”
“Cracking you open like a walnut.”
“I’m already cracked.”
She laughed again.
They were seated across from each other in comfortable armchairs positioned on the wide side of a five-by-seven foot faux oriental carpet, the centerpiece of a conversation nook in Dr. Winslow’s office.
“Talk to me,” she said.
“I’m dreaming.”
“Nothing unusual about that. In fact, it’s healthy.”
“These dreams aren’t. They belong to someone else.”
“What makes you think that?”
He shook his head. “It’s just when I wake up, it seems like I’ve been . . . I don’t know, violated somehow.”
“What wakes you up?”
Rev lied: “I don’t know.”
Winslow stroked her chin. “If you can’t be honest with me this intervention isn’t going to work. You’re at a crossroads here. Choose your path carefully.”
“That sounds like a warning.”
“Nope. Just friendly advice.”
Rev shuddered. “OK. Here it is. I’ve been having dreams of flying.”
“Like Icarus?”
Rev caught the allusion. “No. I’m not sprouting wings. I’m at the controls of an airplane—a PBY Catalina.”
“What’s that?”

The Honey Trap: A Rev Polk Mystery
Authored by Wade Fowler
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
306 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066812
ISBN-10: 1620066815
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Amateur Sleuth

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/The-Honey-Trap-978162006…

Serial killer wreaks havoc in Tuxedo Park

mitp_fcNEW YORKNov. 28, 2015PRLog — Sunbury Press has released Murder in Tuxedo Park, William E. Lemanski’s first novel, set in late Victorian New York state.

The wealthy, gated community of Tuxedo Park, in upstate New York, has been home to many of America’s financial titans and social luminaries for over one hundred years. However, during the later nineteenth century, this staid, secluded enclave became the stalking-ground for one of America’s most heinous, early serial killers. The murder and mayhem continued unabated until an eccentric and brilliant young scientist and his alluring new acquaintance began their pursuit.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
William E. Lemanski, a Viet Nam combat veteran, has a former engineering background in the nuclear power industry.  Since retiring from both the New York Power Authority and Entergy Nuclear Northeast, he has been a freelance journalist in the Hudson Valley of New York, has held public office as a councilman and served as a police commissioner in the Town of Tuxedo, New York.  When not researching new book material, he spends time traveling the world on various big-game hunting expeditions.

EXCERPT:
The long, narrow, serpentine road curved beneath the overhanging trees in dappled shadows as it wound through the quiet forest. Barely noticeable in the shadows, a large, stately mansion, will occasionally emerge, setback a distance from the road and shielded by a stone wall or iron gate or a barrier of yew. Some with sprawling gardens, others with boathouses fronting the lake and still others with courtyards and horse stables.

The imposing structures were the abodes of the rich and influential titans of Wall Street and the sporting class of the early 20th Century. The gated enclave of Tuxedo Park, nestled in the Ramapo Hills, a mere thirty miles north of Manhattan, was one of the first planned communities in the country as well as one of the most affluent. And why not, after all, the new elegant dinner jacket worn by the upper class and heads of state is named after Tuxedo. This new look in fashion occurred when the New York gossip columnists would swoon over the Hamptons in the summer along with the Autumn Ball and winter sports of Tuxedo Park as the seasons revolved. The Park was even the national epicenter of that ancient, arcane and elitist sport called court tennis, not to mention the home of some of the nation’s finest thoroughbred racehorses.

Author William Lemanski reclines in his Tuxedo Park residence.

Author William Lemanski relaxes in his Tuxedo Park residence.

Originally created as a forested playground by tobacco magnate, Pierre Lorillard, the uniqueness of the Park became just as eccentric as some of its inhabitants. Aside from its thousands of acres of stonewalled seclusion, it boasted miles of electric street lighting and its own electric generating plant while over ninety-nine percent of the country still burned gas lamps. Just outside its imposing stone entry on the Post Road, a small community, actually a company town was established to house the hundreds of European laborers imported by Lorillard to build his many miles of roads and stone fencing and who also served as the maids, butlers and general staff of the Park’s inhabitants.

One of which, I became.

***

Perhaps one of its most eccentric and brilliant property owners was James I. Montague-Smith, who was referred to as Monti. His middle name was bestowed in honor of the famous British engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the brilliant and equally eccentric 19th Century character who built the Great Western Railway and the first propeller-driven transatlantic steamship. Monti’s father was a British expatriate who, besides working with Brunel in the early years, became a colleague of Nicola Tesla, Edison and many other of the shining stars of 19th Century electrical science. Although also an engineer, Monti’s father focused more on the economic growth of the technology and became fabulously wealthy accruing a fortune from his many business interests.

Monti, although holding degrees in medicine and engineering, lived as a country squire and relied on his vast inheritance while spending his time dabbling in various experiments in his Tuxedo Park laboratory. Curiosity was his driving force having never found a diversion that wouldn’t interest him. His twelve-hour days were spent sequestered in his lab pursuing arcane investigations into obscure and sometimes bizarre topics. Science fiction was not his forte, but rather he questioned “by what force would a pencil drop to the floor?” And why would mass exert attraction to other mass, and just what defined the nature of one’s spirit, and so on into many of the inexplicable and esoteric phenomena of nature’s mysteries.

Murder in Tuxedo Park
Authored by William E Lemanski
List Price: $14.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on White paper
136 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066997
ISBN-10: 1620066998
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Historical

Coming Soon on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Murder-in-Tuxedo-Park-97…

Molly Pitcher look-alike found dead at memorial to Revolutionary War hero

CARLISLE, Pa. — Sunbury Press has released Darkness at First Light, J M West’s third novel in the Carlisle Crime Cases series.

dafl_fcIn Darkness at First Light, Carlisle Homicide Detectives Christopher Snow and Erin ‘Mac’ McCoy discover an unidentified body, dressed like Molly Pitcher’s statue, lashed to the cannon in front of the folk hero’s gravesite. While at the macabre scene, Mac receives a call from Chief March assigning her and K-9 Officer Shadow to an Amber Alert kidnapping. In the process, the CPD IT guru discovers the girl online on a pay-for-porn site, which brings the FBI on board. The trail leads to the Revolutionary War reenactors’ encampment at Valley Forge. As the detectives track ‘Molly Pitcher’s’ elusive killer and Emma’s obsessed kidnapper, the media dog their movements to get the scoop on the sensational trial that follows.

When Mac receives enigmatic, threatening jingles, she risks her life on a solo investigation. As a result, sparks fly as tempers flare at CPD. As the pressure builds, the danger increases! Can Snow and McCoy’s marriage endure the stress of double cases and an infant at home? Can the detectives corral the criminals before they destroy more lives?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Darkness at First Light
is the third in the Carlisle Crime Casesseries of murder mysteries featuring Homicide detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy by Jody McGibney West, pseudonym for Joan M. West, Professor Emerita of English Studies at Harrisburg Area Community College, The Gettysburg Campus. She also taught at Messiah College and Shippensburg University as an adjunct and served as Assistant Director of the Learning Center (SU). She is a member of Sisters in Crime. She has previously published poetry and Glory in the Flower,her debut novel. It depicts four coeds who meet during the turbulent sixties.

She and her husband live near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. They have two sons and two grandsons. In her spare time, West volunteers at the Bookery—Bosler Memorial Library’s used bookstore, participates in the Litwits Book group, and reads voraciously.

molly3EXCERPT:
Death casts a pall of absolute darkness—solid and devoid of sense or sensation, a psyche or any other living trait, a shock nearly beyond human comprehension—and certainly far from the realm of daily conversation—unless it’s somebody else’s. But the abandoned shell tells much, as Dr. Haili Chen, Cumberland County coroner and Fire Marshal Lane Rusk hovered, waiting for a scrim of light to illume the stark scene before them. Rusk’s assistant, Russell Garrett, lumbered among crowded markers carrying a tripod and camera, kicking clumps of dirty snow from his path.

Approaching sirens howled in the distance.

A female corpse dressed in eighteenth-century garb, skirt and legs partially burned, was lashed to the cannon in front of Molly Pitcher’s monument in the Old Carlisle Cemetery enclosed by a limestone wall at the corner of South Bedford and East South Street. In the east, a dove grey ribbon of light exposed a disturbing scene.

The previous night’s downpour had swept the victim’s cap to the ground, freeing limp, mouse-brown curls that hugged the cannon. Eyes—wide pools matching the gray sky—gazed into the void, her face a mask of surprise and terror. Fine crow’s feet, a mole beside her left eyebrow and a wide mouth pulled in a death grimace. A stout, stumpy handle protruded from her chest. Beneath the barrel, her legs and hands were lashed together.

Rusk circled the corpse, examining the scene with a perplexed frown, heavy eyebrows drawn; his mustache quivered as he nosed the charred shreds of burned cloth, bodily fluids and decaying flesh. He scraped a sample from the leg and cut a scrap of the skirt to test. The woman had a decent build, as the wet, coarse homespun clung to her body; she wore no underwear.

“Where’s Detective Snow?” he inquired of Dr. Chen to break the dreadful silence where winter ruled, despite the calendar marking March. A silent cloak of white fog hovered where sounds echoed eerily. Chills shimmied through Rusk’s open coat; he shivered and zipped it.

“On his way.” She consulted her watch, set her leather bag on a nearby stone marker, with an apology to the deceased. She unsnapped it and extracted her thermometer from the inside flap where each sterile instrument was tucked into its own pocket.

“TOD?” He tried again, assuming she’d estimate.

“Hard to say without a liver temp.”

Darkness at First Light: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery
Authored by J M West
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
292 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066485
ISBN-10: 1620066483
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths

Coming Soon on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Darkness-at-First-Light-…

Handyman witnesses a murder in Connecticut's Litchfield Hills

LITCHFIELD, Conn. — Sunbury Press has released Murder Run, Shelly Frome’s latest murder mystery, set in the Litchfield Hills of Connecticut.

mr_fcIn this crime novel, a wayward handyman grapples with the suspicious death of his employer, a fragile choreographer who secluded herself in the Litchfield Hills. As the fallout mounts, the reader is taken to various locales in and around Manhattan, an escapade in Miami Springs and back again to the hills of Connecticut until this twisty conundrum is finally laid to rest.

EXCERPT:
Jed turned around and headed back for the cellar. Banging into things, he brushed past the mess the guy had made, located the breaker panel, flipped the switches, and climbed the stairs as the lights came back on. He called her name as he passed the kitchen and cut around the dining room, but there was no answer.

He hurried up to the bedroom and stopped short. Though he’d never entered, never gone beyond the pull-down attic ladder, he could picture exactly what should have happened. She should’ve opened her window and cried out the second Jed pulled in. Or shouted the moment the guy split. Or certainly just now when Jed barged into the cellar, hit the breaker switches, and began calling for her.

Hesitating a few seconds more, he slipped through the open door and found the bedroom half in shadow. Lit only by the little Coleman lantern he’d given her in case the power went off, knowing how frightened she was of being alone in the dark.

And there, in the dimness, he saw her. On the canopy bed, wearing a ruffled nightgown, looking half her age like a sleeping princess. Only she was lying sideways, on a slant, her back to him, clutching her raincoat. And she didn’t appear to be breathing. Didn’t respond at all even as he stood over her.

In his panic, he thought of CPR . . . but didn’t know how to do it and was afraid to touch her . . . spotted the phone cradle but couldn’t dial 911 because the handset was missing.

He found the wall switch and the bathroom lights, scoured the medicine cabinet and the nightstand for prescription vials. But there were no pills anywhere, no beta blockers or whatever it was she said she was taking. He thought of opening her mouth, at least doing that, but stepped back and froze when the motion-detecting floods flashed onto the rutted drive below, merging with the sound of squealing brakes.

He didn’t have to wait to find out what was next. First the crackle of the police radio and, in practically no time, Road Trooper Charlie Tate was up the stairs and upon him.

Tate glanced at the lifeless form on the bed, glanced back, and uttered the inevitable words:

“Right. Jed Cooper. Now how in hell did I know it would be you?”

Murder Run
Authored by Shelly Frome
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
244 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066164
ISBN-10: 1620066165
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Amateur Sleuth

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Murder-Run-9781620066164…

"Feeble-minded" youth accused of murdering young woman

SUNBURY, Pa.Sunbury Press has released Something So Divine, J R Lindermuth’s tragic tale of murder in the rural hills of Pennsylvania.

“… reminds us of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, with similar intrigue and tension, but set in Pennsylvania ..” The Publisher

ssd_fcWhen a young girl is found murdered in a Pennsylvania rye field in the autumn of 1897, Ned Gebhardt, a feeble-minded youth known to have stalked the victim, is the prime suspect. Incidents involving another girl and gossip stir emotions to a frenzy, nearly leading to a lynching.

Evidence against Ned is circumstantial and there are other suspects. Influenced by the opinions of Ned’s stepsister and Ellen, a woman who has perked his interest, Simon Roth, the investigator, is inclined to give Ned benefit of the doubt. Then he discovers damaging evidence.

Still unwilling to view Ned as a cold-blooded killer, Roth puts his job and reputation in jeopardy as he seeks to assure a fair trial for the accused.

EXCERPT:
The dog stirred beside him. Ned Gebhardt tilted his head, listening. Though he couldn’t see the girl for the thickness of the second-growth trees, the rattle of brush told him she was coming his way. The dog whined and started to rise. Cupping a hand around her muzzle, Ned patted the dog’s head. “Be still,” he whispered.

Excitement gripped Ned as he awaited a sight of her. His foot jiggled in the leaves, and his breath came a little faster. He snuffled, drawing in the scent of leaf mold and sun-warmed wood. But Susannah thwarted his desire, cutting across the hill opposite instead of coming to where he waited. Ned pursed his lips and muttered, his tongue thrusting out to test the air like a snake while one hand plucked at his pant leg. He rose to his feet and grinned down at the dog. “She foxed us, didn’t she? Well, there’s always tomorrow.” The dog cocked its head, gazing up at him as if expected to reply.

The boy plopped down again, drawing his knees up to his chin and sitting with arms wrapped round his legs, contemplating what to do next. He sighed in annoyance at not having intercepted the girl. Ned felt certain he knew where she’d go as he’d watched her leave home earlier that morning. I told her where to go. Why didn’t she come here? He sucked his lower lip. His disappointment souring the good mood of anticipation.

He sighed. Pap would be angry he’d skipped out on his chores. But it would be all right if he took home a couple squirrel or a rabbit. Especially rabbit. Pap’s awful fond of rabbit. Yes, that’s what I’ll do—hunt up a rabbit or two.

The warm air was heady with the odor of rotting leaves and damp earth. Almost too warm for this October morning in 1897 on a Pennsylvania hillside. But Ned knew the frost would be coming soon. He’d seen a flight of geese heading south the previous morning, and there hadn’t been any sign of frogs or turtles along the crick for the last week. A rustle overhead, and he raised his eyes to scan the canopy. Acorn caps and the hulls and shells of other nuts littered the ground beneath the nearest big tree. But it was no squirrel he spied. Only a nuthatch flitting from limb to limb.

Ned rose, brushed dry leaf litter from his trousers, picked up his shotgun by the barrel, and started up hill. The dog shook itself and followed.

Anyone watching would have had no difficulty picking Ned out of a crowd. Tall and gangly, big hands and knobby wrists protruding from the sleeves of a too-often washed cambrey shirt, strong legs encased in hand-me-down corduroy trousers, worn brogans on his big feet, he strode along with the ease of one accustomed to climbing hills and walking fields. Not yet a man, shy and immature, but with muscles and calluses defined by long hours of manual labor. He had a shock of thick hair the color of bleached corn shocks, big eyes reflecting the blue of the sky, and a protruding lower lip usually wet with dribble.

The maples were red and gold now, but the boy was oblivious to their beauty, intent on another vision flashing across the screen of his mind. He’d been sure Susannah would come to this hillside to hunt chanterelles. It was late in the season for them, but Ned had spotted a nice crop under the oaks above her father’s rye field, and he’d told Susannah. He knew her family loved these golden mush-rooms, and Ned was certain that would be her destination.

Something So Divine
Authored by J. R Lindermuth
List Price: $14.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
226 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066126
ISBN-10: 1620066122
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Historical

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Something-So-Divine-9781…

Who killed Confederate General Earl Van Dorn?

VICKSBURG, Miss.Sunbury Press has released Where Elephants Fought: A Story of Murder and Intrigue During the Civil War, Bridget Smith’s historical novel about the death of Confederate General Earl Van Dorn.

wef_fcFor 150 years, scholars and amateur Civil War buffs have misinterpreted the infamous murder of the well-known Confederate General Earl Van Dorn. Based on twenty years of intense research, the author suggests that all is not as it appears. The real motivation behind the doctor’s decision to murder Van Dorn is not a story of jealousy between a husband and wife, but of loyalty and sacrifice. This story reveals one woman’s struggle with the blame for another’s crime and the secret that fractured the Peters family forever. Perhaps most compelling is the impact the tragedy has had on the Peters family, with the continued perpetuation of the 150 year old lie to this day.

Excerpt:
The soldiers lay down a section of split-rail fence for use in repairing the Duck River Bridge and tied the rails end to end behind an old mule. When the mule got stuck in the frozen muddy road leading to Columbia, they walked on the planks to avoid the flooded roadbed, balancing themselves on the beams like delicate ballerinas. They avoided getting wet at all costs. They understood frostbite. Just keep out of the water was all a fellow had to do. The camp doctor had preached this ever since a bunch of them showed up with black toes after the last march from Ripley.

Crossing the washed-out road had taken more time than anticipated. Most of them were exhausted by the time they reached dry ground, and though he was eager to reach Columbia by evening, General Van Dorn announced they would rest there till morning. They had but a few hours’ march remaining, but complaints had been rumbling up the line since morning. The general knew well the repercussions of pushing the men beyond their limits. The train of men and horses stopped abruptly as orders were sent down the line. A few men grumbled from within the ranks about wasting time now with such a short distance remaining, but Van Dorn ignored them. Better listen to the ones who moaned and complained. Better to stop the procession. Corinth taught him that.

A handful of men from Company E, Third Texas Infantry, warmed their hands by the fire near a grove of trees at the far corner of an old cornfield. General Van Dorn floated from campfire to campfire, making small talk with the men. He stopped just as he reached Private James Thomas who sat at the base of a large elm tree. The private propped his journal against the mass of bark, pulled a pencil from his coat pocket, and scribbled across the top line of the page.

“Private?” Van Dorn smiled at him and leaned forward.

“Yes, sir!” Thomas shot up off the ground and saluted his commander. His face turned red with embarrassment.

“At ease, soldier.” The general leaned against the trunk of the tree. He picked at a blade of grass as he spoke. “About your brother,” he said in a whisper. “He was a fine soldier, son. I want you to know that.”

Private Thomas looked away and nodded. “Yes, sir. Will was a fine soldier indeed. Mighty nice of you to say so.”

Van Dorn put a hand on his shoulder. “You can tell your mama, too. In that letter you’re writing.”

Thomas turned to the general and smiled. “Yes, sir. I’ll tell her. He was mighty fond of you, sir, I’ll tell you that.”

“Thank you, soldier. It’s not often I hear—” But he stopped there. “Give your mother my condolences if you will.”

The private smiled. “Yes sir. I’ll do that right now.” He picked up the notebook and finished the letter as the general walked away toward another group of soldiers.

Van-DornFebruary 21, 1863

Last night we had some biscuits cooked at a house close to our camp. Consequently we fared finely today… The railroad is close to a town named Columbia. This is the place where General Pillow lives who built the fortifications at Fort Pillow on the Mississippi. M. D. Cooper and D. Frierson & Company also reside here. There is a large female Academy in town. We traveled all day in a very hard rain. The water run in my boots. The weather got very cold and I came very near freezing. The Yankee pickets are in fifteen miles of our camp.

General Van Dorn has just spent a private moment with me to let me know his sorrow over poor Will’s passing. He bids me tell my dear mother what a fine soldier Will was. I believe he is the finest soldier and man in the whole of the Confederate army.

From your loving son,
Jimmie

About the Author:
Bridget Smith was born and raised in Columbia, a lush Tennessee valley town filled with antebellum homes and sprawling farms, a setting that both haunted and intrigued her until she could give it life in her Civil War era novel Where Elephants Fought. From the first glimpse into the lives of Jessie McKissack Peters and General Earl Van Dorn, she felt a deep connection to the story and soon found herself immersed in the world of research, a task that what would span nearly twenty years. After receiving her MEd in English, she soon married and moved to a quaint Mississippi town, a town not unlike her beautiful Columbia and equally as steeped in Civil War history. She has taught English for over twenty years and currently teaches English Composition. Though her life is a whirlwind with her four children, she has begun writing her second novel, a modern tale of sin and eccentricities set in her beloved South.

Where Elephants Fought: A Story of Murder and Intrigue During the Civil War
List Price: $19.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
336 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065983
ISBN-10: 1620065983
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Historical

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Where-Elephants-Fought-9…

Attorney and family vanish at sea? Mishap? Murder?

MECHANICSBURG, Pa.Sunbury Press has released Blood Moon, S. J. Vermillion’s mystery thriller novel.

About the Book:
bm_fcThe Blood Moon. Legend has it that whenever the Moon looms and hovers over the horizon stained in crimson, innocent victims will reap their vengeance from those whose cruelty resulted in their untimely demise. It is the night that lost souls rejoice from beyond. It is a night of terror that those bereft of conscience will realize at their moment of truth when agents of the Supreme Council converge to exact a just and deserving revenge on two men, Richard Evergreen and “Big Bill” Danko whose indifference know no bounds. With Death, these wicked men are faced with a foolish and feckless last second attempt to atone for their sins. It is now up to Gyrotupran justice as they pass from the Earth; their consequences never realized by the common man.

Jimmy Castro is a tortured soul. Scarred from war, both physically and emotionally, he is ever seeking peace and escape from his nightly terror from a fiery inferno at sea in 1966. With his family, he moves to a quaint coastal resort town, hoping to find escape at last. Serving as a jack- of -all -trades at a local marina, he is accused of negligence by a corrupt municipal administration in the disappearance of a prominent prosecuting attorney and his family that vanish from sight aboard their boat, The Donovan’s Pride. It is years later that Castro has a chance to clear his name. The Donovan’s Pride appears mysteriously on the night of The Blood Moon.

Excerpt:
Ted Minnis scurried up the creaky steps to the marina manager’s office with a mission. He would want an ironclad guarantee from Oscar Coleman the marina boss that he would be granted exclusive privileges in the event of the annual bottleneck debacle that occurred every Fourth of July in the Monnachawee Bay. His main objective was to secure the prime vantage point off the coast of Seaside, Maryland to view the fireworks display from the deck of his Sea Ray 440 with his mistress and his friends. He did not want to suffer the embarrassment of promising something to his friends that he could not deliver. Everything had to be perfect. Ever the opportunist, the forty-two year old successful hospital supply sales manager had even harangued the boatyard staff to ensure his craft, The Rough Rider, would not be bottled up at the Bay Marina as had happened in the past. After all this was the Fourth of July and as custom would have it, all boat owners desired to have the same prime viewing spot for the 9:20 PM display.

Minnis’s tantrums were notorious and his reputation definitely preceded him. Unknown to Minnis was that Coleman was not on duty this morning. Instead his assistant Earl Carruthers was in charge. Carruthers had seen these self-important types before and was not going to be intimidated. He had a unique way that he had tweaked and perfected through the years. Call it Prozac induced maturity, but basically it was indifference. If somebody like Minnis tried to provoke him coarsely with an urgent request, ‘Old Earl’ would smile benignly and grant the party their wish. Earl adopted a new mantra—If it isn’t important for me to remember then fuck them and the Ferrari they rode in on! It beat heated confrontations and the lawsuits that ensued from his bygone temper laced confrontations over trivial matters. But most important, his sixty-eight year old heart couldn’t stand such infantile altercations. Carruthers gave the jerk his way although the traffic would be light at the time that Minnis requested.

Arriving the next day in a 1990 BMW 325i convertible, Minnis and his bimbo du jour pulled sharply into a gravel parking space at the front of the marina. The black canvas top emerged from the trunk and engulfed the interior of the glossy white coupe while the windows rose electrically to seal the auto. The CD player was abruptly turned off in the middle of Bob Marley’s, “We Jammin.” The passenger door swung open delicately to reveal two perfectly manicured Gucci sandaled feet and a pair of long shapely legs. The heat and humidity coupled with the lack of any semblance of a breeze they had experienced in their ride to the marina dampened their faces. Minnis glanced at his diamond-laced Rolex and shook his head incredulously.

“Three forty-five! I told them three forty-five! Where the hell are they?”

“ They’ll be here, Ted. Relax!” his date consoled.

Octavia Bledsoe comforted the anxious sales manager by clutching his sun-burned forearm. A former Miss Baltimore runner-up, Miss Bledsoe was a stunning and accomplished African-American woman who worked as an assistant administrator at Baltimore General Hospital. Her appearance complimented her drug rehabilitated acquaintance to say the least. Minnis stood 5 foot 6 and Miss Bledsoe towered above her mate at 6 foot 1. On this day she was clad in short green khaki shorts and a maroon pullover. Her neck was adorned by a gold necklace with a solid gold heart pendant which hung above her ample cleavage. The necklace of course was a gift from her diminutive wife-cheating beau. Her black hair was styled long but on this day slicked back and kept from being swept in her face by a Baltimore Orioles baseball cap.

Minnis, bathed in British Sterling cologne and bath products, swatted away the increasing swarm of various flying insects attracted to his manly scent. At forty two years old, Minnis’s well-coiffed curly receding brown hair, tanned body, and gaudy golden chain around his chest hair encroaching neck were testament that he was still a player in his mind. Like a knight preparing for battle, Minnis would preen his looks to perfection in front of a mirror prior to exiting his abode each morning for work or play but not before uttering his conceited anticipation of better looks for tomorrow to his reflection in the vanity mirror.

Minnis shuffled to the rear of his car to retrieve the two blue and white coolers which were in the trunk. The heavier of the two fell from his smallish hands and landed with a crash on the gravel lot. He cursed silently and opened it. To his satisfaction the Chivas Regal, Grey Goose, Jim Beam and the Kendall-Jackson Chardonnay were intact. He had used an old beach towel to cushion the spirits in the cooler while in transit along with plastic cups, plastic plates and plastic cutlery purchased at a gasoline station convenience store with his platinum credit card. The other cooler contained cold fried chicken, chilled steamed shrimp, potato salad and rolls along with ice he bought at a grocery store that morning before he picked up Miss Bledsoe.…

Blood Moon
Authored by S J Vermillion
List Price: $19.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on White paper
246 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065693
ISBN-10: 162006569X
BISAC: Fiction / Thrillers / Crime

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Blood-Moon-9781620065693…

Nude body found in Letort Spring near Carlisle, Cumberland County, PA

CARLISLE, Pa.Sunbury Press has released J. M. West’s second installment of the Carlisle Crime CasesCourting Doubt and Darkness – A Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy Mystery.

About the Book:
cdad_fcIn the second Carlisle Crimes Case, Courting Doubt and Darkness, Homicide Detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy tail a killer who stymies the police with multiple MO’s. While McCoy testifies at the trial of sisters who kidnapped her in Dying for Vengeance, Snow and Savage recover a  nude body from the Letort Spring. While tracking sparse clues, another killing surfaces  that rings alarms: the victims were connected. The chase leads to an active Marcellus oil rig. As police tangle with hostile suspects, they are courting doubt and darkness, leaving the comfort of Carlisle to the wilds of the Raccoon Mountain. When eight-month pregnant McCoy joins the case, she discovers her Native American relatives are involved. Then she stumbles into the killer’s path!  Join them on their journey!

Excerpt:
Carlisle Police Department’s Senior Detective Christopher Snow hammered the Wrangler’s brakes to avoid blowing through the red light on R 15 south of Lewisburg. “Shit!” Glancing in his rear view and side mirrors for any flashing lights and cocking his head to catch a siren’s whine, he huffed a sigh when none materialized. Oh, he could flash his shield, but that wasn’t setting much of an example.

The recorder on the seat beside him shifted. Snow picked it up, leaned over to open the glove box and tossed it in. His thumbs drummed the steering wheel, waiting impatiently for green while traffic piled up behind him. Unease gripped his gut, and experience had taught him to pay attention. “What spooked that woman during our interview?” he mumbled. “What had she gained from her husband’s death? Her inheritance seemed typical.” The query about her job caused her to break eye contact and cross her arms defensively across her chest. “Why? Because she knows more than she’s telling.” He talked to himself a lot since he’d ordered his wife and partner, Detective Erin McCoy, who usually accompanied him, to man the war room and feed him information when he needed it. “Damn it, woman, why can’t you follow orders?” He had also assigned his former partner Reese Savage to assist Mac, since the Chief relegated him to desk duty.

Neither answered the phone in Conference One when he called for a background check on Greer. CPD had consolidated the case files, data, listed info on white boards on their homicide and two other related ones—at the RV parked along the Susquehanna near Winfield and the Safety Coordinator’s body at the West Enterprises’ Williamsport well.

Worry forced him to accelerate. He dialed HQ again and left a terse message for both. “I need to know what I’m up against!” Part of the Marcellus Shale zone beneath Penn’s Woods, West Enterprises’active well was ‘fracking,’ or shattering the shale with millions of gallons of water, sand and over 500 chemicals miles underneath the surface to free the natural gas and oil, which then flowed to the surface through the horizontal pipes and up the vertical well, to be delivered to consumers.

He dialed Mac’s cell. It went to voicemail. “This is important; neither you nor Savage are at HQ working this case? Where the hell are you?” He snapped the clamshell shut. “You’re both insubordinate, so you’d better have a damn good explanation for your absence!” When his cell chirped, he checked the caller: HQ. “About damn time.”

Snow hit talk. “Hello? Where the hell have you two been?”

Savage explained that they’d gone to BWI to arrest Abigail Benedict for the murder of Mindy Murphy. Then he put Mac on speakerphone to summarize Sienna Greer’s arrest record, which included a DV incident, several DUIs and a road rage incident.

“Chris, where are you exactly?” Erin asked.

He dialed back his anger and gazed at the water. “About twelve miles south of Lewisburg.” The river, a beautiful silvery ribbon slipping downstream, the sun playing upon the waves. Silver and gold reflections darted back and forth, refracted into a thousand dancing crosses of light. What he wouldn’t give to spend a few hours…

While the Susquehanna distracted him, a blue semi barreled out of nowhere, bearing down on him, gaining ground quickly. Though there was room to pass, the trucker just mowed down the highway toward his Jeep. He checked the rear-view mirror as the cab loomed into view. Too late, he floored his accelerator as he veered into the outside lane, the truck following.

Suddenly, squealing breaks and metal smacking metal followed, crunching and what sounded like dragging. His last conscious thought was Mac yelling into the phone. “Describe your location!”

About the Author:
JMWCourting Doubt and Darkness
is the second in the Carlisle Crime Cases series of murder/mysteries featuring Homicide detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy by Jody McGibney West, pseudonym for Joan M. West, Professor Emerita of English Studies at Harrisburg Area Community College, The Gettysburg Campus. She also taught at Messiah College and Shippensburg University as an adjunct and served as Assistant Director of the Learning Center (SU). She has previously published poetry andGlory in the Flower, her debut novel. It depicts four coeds who meet during the turbulent sixties.

She and her husband live near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. They have two sons and two grandsons. In her spare time, West volunteers at the Bookery—Bosler Memorial Library’s used bookstore, participates in the Litwits Book group, and reads voraciously.

Courting Doubt and Darkness: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery
Authored by J. M. West
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
372 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065488
ISBN-10: 1620065487
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Police Procedural

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Courting-Doubt-and-Darkn…

BOOKSIGNING EVENT:

Joan West will be appearing at the Sunbury Press Store ar 50 West Main Street in Mechanicsburg, PA along with author Catherine Jordan (the Bookseller’s Secret) on Friday, February 6th from 6 pm to 9PM.  The authors will read from their books at 8 PM.

Cumberland Valley attorney stumbles upon a murder with eerie ties to the past

SHIPPENSBURG, Pa.Sunbury Press has released Sherry Knowlton’s first novel  Dead of Autumn, a murder mystery set in the Cumberland Valley of Pennsylvania.

DOA-FCAbout the Book:
Alexa Williams is a successful lawyer, volunteers weekly at a women’s clinic, and has a sexy weekend boyfriend—not to mention an endearing best friend in her giant English mastiff, Scout. But one autumn day, when Scout takes off into the Pennsylvania woods, Alexa discovers a nightmare she’d never imagined. From that fateful day, Alexa becomes entangled in a murder mystery—one that she tries to unravel by linking it to experiences and symbols in her own life.

Dewilla Noakes, a child of the Depression, has recently lost her mother. Her father, packs up the girls—and their attractive cousin, Winnie—and hits the road to look for a job on the east coast. Along the way, money becomes tighter, food becomes scarcer, and relationships become strained. Dewilla’s father fears he’s failing his daughters. Running out of options, he begins to consider the unthinkable to end the misery he’s brought upon his family …

Horrific scene of the "Babes in the Woods" referred to in "Dead of Autumn."

Horrific scene of the “Babes in the Woods” referred to in “Dead of Autumn.”

Alexa soon finds herself amidst violence aimed at the clinic where she volunteers, brought on by pro-life extremists. In a bizarre turn of events, she’s almost raped, ambushed by religious zealots who wish to convert her, then taken by surprise as another romance enters her life. Plus, she seems to be seeing quite a lot of the local law enforcement these days.

No matter what else happens in her life, Alexa can’t shake feeling some sort of connection to the mysterious murder victim. She thinks back to the stories she heard as a child, about the Babes in the Woods, who were murdered close to where the victim’s body was found, wondering if that might be why she draws the connection. But when the murderer strikes again, Alexa must rely on her knowledge of local history and terrain in order to save her own life.

DEAD of AUTUMN ties together the struggles faced by females, young and old, past and present, and the degrees of power they embrace to combat their situations.

Excerpt:
“Last one, Scout,” Alexa warned as she arced the ball high into the air, but her throw went astray. The ball clipped a low-hanging branch, plummeted to the ground, and disappeared over a small hill. The mastiff chased after the ball as it hit the dirt and rolled down the far slope.

For a few seconds, Alexa lost sight of both Scout and the ball. She rushed in their direction, calling out to the dog. She stopped dead in her tracks then sprinted when she heard Scout barking furiously. When the pitch of his bark rose to a high keen, an icy tremor fluttered down Alexa’s spine.

Frantic thoughts of bears, porcupines, and animal traps flew through Alexa’s mind as she reached the top of the rise. She slowed as she caught sight of Scout about twenty yards away. Still yelping, the red ball forgotten at his feet, the mastiff seemed riveted by a bushy area near the small stream.

The dog didn’t appear to be hurt, but she still worried that some wild animal was involved. This state forest saw several cases of rabies every year, and she didn’t want to confront a rabid fox or other animal. She picked up a fallen branch.

Despite repeated calls, Scout would not come to her. Alexa continued to edge nearer, her heart thumping. She glimpsed a bright flash of pink at the far base of the mountain laurel and wondered why Scout would flip out over a pile of trash. Tensed to flee, Alexa tiptoed still closer to Scout and whatever had him behaving so strangely.

A slight, blonde girl lay completely still beneath the mountain laurel, a patch of her torn fuchsia blouse lifting on the breeze. Her legs, clad in trendy blue jeans, skewed at an impossible angle to her waist. Her back rested on a pile of scarlet leaves, right arm flung above her head; blue eyes staring sightless at the sky.

Alexa gasped and let the branch slip from her fingers. She reached out to grip Scout’s collar, and the dog immediately stopped his keening. An abrupt silence fell over the forest. The sudden quiet unnerved Alexa. The small slope blocked any sounds of traffic from the road. She could hear nothing except the muted burble of the creek and the dry rustle of autumn leaves.

The murmur of the dying leaves seemed to whisper a warning. Alexa scanned the surrounding area, but she and Scout were alone.

Alone with a dead body.

sherryAbout the Author:
Sherry Knowlton (nee Rothenberger) was born and raised in Chambersburg, PA, where she developed a lifelong passion for books. She was that kid who would sneak a flashlight to bed at night so she could read beneath the covers. All the local librarians knew her by name.

Sherry launched her writing career with a mimeographed elementary school newsletter and went on to write and edit for her high school and college newspapers. Since then, Sherry’s creative and technical writing has run the gamut from poetry, essays, and short stories to environmental newsletters, policy papers, regulations, and grant proposals. Dead of Autumn is her first novel.

Sherry spent much of her early career in state government, working primarily with social and human services programs, including services for abused children, rape crisis, domestic violence, and family planning. In the 1990s, she served as the Deputy Secretary for Medical Assistance in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The latter part of Sherry’s career has focused on the field of Medicaid managed care. Now retired from executive positions in the health insurance industry, Sherry runs her own health care consulting business.

Sherry has a B.A. in English and psychology from Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA.

Sherry and her husband, Mike, began their journey together in the days of peace and music when they traversed the country in a hippie van. Running out of money several months into the trip, Sherry waitressed the night shift at a cowboy hangout in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Mike washed dishes in a bakery. Undeterred, they embraced the travel experience and continue to explore far-flung places around the globe. Sherry and Mike have one son, Josh, a craft brewer in upstate New York.

Sherry lives in the mountains of South Central Pennsylvania, only a short distance from the Babes in the Woods memorial.

Dead of Autumn
Authored by Sherry Knowlton
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
286 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620064764
ISBN-10: 1620064766
BISAC: Fiction / Thrillers / Crime

Also available on Kindle
For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Dead-of-Autumn-978162006…