Monday, 21 March 2011

Series Nos./Thumbnails

Hi, fellow readers and writers. I've seen a lot of help asked for by avid readers like me, to find the first and other numbers of novels in a series so we can read them in order (I like to do that too :-) So here goes: The Title; No.; and a thumbnail

The Maryvale series:
A stunning homicide in the small town of Maryvale sends Sheriff Cas Larkin on an investigation from a trailer park on the industrial side of town to the Pine County Coutry Club uncovering the town's darkest secrets; a secret club at the high school which smacks of devil worship; and he is also plagued with cattle rustling and mutilation. Fighting lack of evidence and the Pine County Judge with only circumstantial evidence and his gut feeling, Cas sets a trap for the killer in their midst.

Sherif Cas Larkin has two homicides on his hands which may be connected and his wife Connie, runs into classic 'haunting' conditions in the Pine County Library basement. Cas and his matchmaking wife follow hot clues and cold trails to investigate four homicides, two of them over a hundred years old.

Pine County's only celebrity, Mattie Carrington is writing another cookbook rumored to be even more popular than her first. However, before she's got a good start, her kitchen blows up and she decides to find privacy to work at a cabin on the lake near Maryvale which involves more delay and comic interest in the Present Too Often form of Mattie's younger sister, Katie's boyfriend, Eugene. When mattie finally is settled in to work, someone poisons her and the whole thing is beginning to look like a recipe for trouble. As Mattie lies in a coma, it's up to Cas to find the culprit and save Mattie in spite of friends and relatives all trying to help.

Sheriff Cas Larkin and his matchmaking wife, Connie, and even his Aunt Harry, have their hands full with Cas's case involving a stranger drowned in the lake; a disappearance no one is willing to admit is a disappearance; and a Maryvale citizen accused of homicide way down yonder in New Orleans! They wade through old politician's secrets, a witch's interfering mother, and alligators to get at the truth. C'mon in, the entertainment's fine...

When Hannah, Asst. Librarian of the Pine County Library tries to get her morning paper the door is blocked by the legs of a strange and quite dead man. When Sheriff Cas Larkin finally gets his idenity and other personal information the question that comes to mind along with 'who done it?' is why didn't they do it sooner - the man was very unpopular and no one really wants to talk about him or why he was dumped on Hannah's porch. In spite of his interest in a young woman of which Cas does not approve, Coroner Cliff helps him untangle clues that just don't seem to go together or solve any part of what happened. The plot twists will keep you turning pages to a surprising and unexpected climax.

Maggie Murphy's husband Horace's motorcycle accident leaves her a widow at twenty-four. Broke, and the cosmetic ads say your skin starts drying out at twenty-five, Maggie wastes no time on self pity. She gets a part-time job which turns into full time when she finds the mutilated body of the journalist she was hired to replace. On top of other financial and emotional problems there is an instant attraction between Maggie and Joe Driver, the handsome policeman sent to investigate the murder. He helps her get more information on Horace's accident and the relationship between them heats up as Maggie's Aunt Myrtle keeps a sharp eye on Maggie's social life. With characters like: a co-worker named Fatima (AKA Queen Esther Johnson); Evil Elvira, a former slave who claims to be over a hundred years old; and friends at the paper, it's a merry southern romp with love, laughs, the MPD, the FBI all trying to find out 'who all done what?'

When two young hoodlums are disappointed at the take from robbing convenience stores, they decide to try kidnapping and search the papers for information on local businessmen. They decide to kidnap Grace Hanover, Maggie's cousin and boss's wife and ask for a hundred thousand in small bills which they think will be low enough so he will just pay and not involve the police. They plan the kidnapping for Halloween night and everything goes well except for one little glitch. There is a party going on and they get the wrong woman. They snatch Maggie, Hank's cousin instead of Grace. With Maggie chloroformed, bound hand and foot in their van they call Hank at his Halloween party and tell them they have his wife and the figure they have in mind is only hundred thousand dollars in small bills. Hank, full of good bourbon and looking at his wife across the room laughs at them. He says the way Grace spends money and credit he can't possible take her back for a mere hundred grand and hangs up on them! Waking during the last part of the conversation Maggie smiles to herself at the difference between her and Joe's bank balance and a hundred thousand dollars. This is followed by panic as she wonders if Joe is looking for her; if he even knows she's gone; and what's going to happen to her when these two idiots find out she's not Grace?

There's an insurance series with two so far: ONCE BURNED (1) AND VARMINT (2)

Happy reading, break's over,

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