When Cary Trubody’s routine traffic stop turns into a nightmare of mistaken identity, she becomes a wanted woman in a town of dirty cops. In a frenzied forty hours, she’ll find a few answers, plenty of questions, and more than one body in Graffiti Creek.

Sleepless Flame is a faced-paced action-packed scifi story that features a nonbinary protagonist. Follow the exploits of a disgraced war criminal as they navigate a vibrant cyberpunk world full of corporate intrigue while using fascinating automated combat technology and computer skills. Great for readers who enjoy Bladerunner and Shadowrun games.

When Varian Pike is offered a sketchy job for too much money, the results are predictable and catastrophic: He puts a new friend in danger and old enemies are out to get him. Beat Bop is a wild and bumpy ride from Wall Street to Pacific Street for Pike and his unlikely new partner, a doo-wop singing Walt Whitman quoting member of the Vagabond Jesters, Pike has to outrun gangsters, cops and a gang of Cobras. The result: dead bodies scattered all over southern New England and consequences he will never shake.

Raimo Jarvi’s new detective agency is short of clients and prospects. But the sweltering August heat and forthcoming total eclipse will bring a terrible mystery into the light that he must resolve–his life and his brother’s depend on it.

A decadent and eccentric tableau of theatre and treachery, old secrets and betrayals; exploring friendship, guilt and obsession … slipping between characters to gradually reveal a century-old mystery.

Got wishes? Meet Jack Gilmour, Las Vegas’ first and only demonic contract lawyer, protecting people against themselves from offers they can’t refuse.

Join Yuki on her grief and vengeance fueled hunt through Tokyo’s underbelly for her friend’s murderers.

A science fiction noir that wraps the razor wit of Raymond Chandler around the extraordinary vision of Philip K Dick – Nineveh Editions.

This is a dystopian thriller about the power of words and the worlds they can create. While a company has found a way to reduce formulaic text into a power source, the laws have evolved to ensure that anyone who harbors old literature or creates new material is put down. Non-conformity is a risk, and asking questions may cost you your life, as Billy Stringer learns. The story moves at a blistering pace and provides many surprising twists along the way, as well as some delicious prose of its own. Captivating and timely, with a perfect bittersweet ending.

Review by Sandra Ruttan

Revenge and Dark Noir wrapped up in one fast-paced novella featuring a hit man who calls himself Smitty.

Scarlett’s hopes of a quiet night in with with boyfriend after work are dashed when she is taken against her will. Over the following few hours she will discover that she’ll do whatever it takes to get home alive. Anything.

Whatever happened to Jane Roe’s (the Roe v Wade) baby? The Jane Roe real-life child would now be a woman in her late forties, the potential of her polarizing celebrity unknown to her. Someone wants to reveal her, someone else wants her dead.

Bill Kieffer
Votes: 0 Not eligible for review
Underground Title

Welcome to Aesop’s World. It’s a dark world where love and redemption have a cost that can only be measured in blood and violence. It’s just like our own world, except darker… furrier… scalier. FURRY NOIR. Six stories of things that go BITE in the night.

Gritty British noir, following hitman Jason Dean – lover of classical music and highbrow literature – as his life and his conscience unravel on the worst day of his life. Where beauty meets carnage, stands Jason Dean – drowning in blood and tears.

A grief-stricken young mother switches her dead child for a Vietnamese street kid, then spends the next decade living a lie. She remarries and starts to feel safe when she gets a note: I know what you did. Can she save her daughter from her dark secret?

Pitch Perfect Finalist

A troubled, ageing hit man leaves London and returns to his hometown in the north east of England hoping for peace. But the ghosts of his past return to haunt him.

Andy Rausch
Votes: 0 Not eligible for review

“Andy Rausch has written a tight, taut crime thriller that’ll have you on the edge of your seat. I can see my father’s [novelist Elmore Leonard] influence in his prose.” — Peter Leonard, novelist, Voices of the Dead

Meet Mercie: an ordinary young woman in midtown America. Her existence is ripped apart, collateral damage when her parents are murdered, their home repossessed, and she’s left with nothing. Her bewildered rage soon lands her in the worst kind of trouble…

Pitch Perfect Pick

Ellis Mazer is a soon-to-be father and first-year English teacher in a small Arkansas town dealing with the disappearance of a little girl from her mobile home. But when one of his own students stops coming to school, Ellis discovers that he may be the only person who cares.

Jay Desmarteaux served 25 years in prison for killing a brutal rapist. All he learned was how to get away with it.

Three-fingered Jack Davis sells some laced black tar heroin that contained carfentanyl, a drug used to tranquilize elephants. Several of the addicts overdose, and now Jack and a new friend, Jesse James Hofstetler, are stuck with a number of dead bodies to deal with. The two men aren’t evil, not in the way a serial killer is, but under the law they have committed murder.

Fishing on a Florida beach before dawn, Zeke Adams lands something big. A corpse. Then his day goes downhill from there: He learns his name is on the sexual offender list due to identify theft. PARIAH is a tale of murder, smuggling, human trafficking and never giving up.

When PI Cassie Tam is hired to investigate the death of a Virtual Reality junkie, she thinks it’ll be easy money. But the more she digs, the more things don’t seem to add up, and soon, she finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation.

The Trumpets of Jericho blasted from the sky, heralding the imminent arrival of death. ​ So begins this novel that is equal parts mystery and thriller in which five eccentric friends, all veterans of international intelligence agencies, meet a captivating, provocative young woman down on her luck, who triggers a chain of unforeseen, ill-fated events and steers them toward a ruthless enemy.

With her past finally in her rearview, Frankie Mourning is still trying to do what’s right. But with the monstrous power inside her, Frankie is afraid of what she’s capable of. There’s work to be done, though: bodies frozen solid with their hearts missing are washing up onto the Oregon coast, and Frankie finds herself knee-deep in darkness once again. Roving gods, visions, women bursting into flame; it’s all in a day’s work in J.L. Murray’s sequel to Monstrous.

Don’t even think about inviting these women home to meet your mother . . .

Local journalist Angie Fell has just learned the horrific truth about the identity of her real mother. When possible solace from her ill-fated life presents itself in the form of a baroque social club called the Edendale Society, she soon realizes things are not at all what they seem.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

On his best days, Zero Slade is the worst man you can imagine. He has to be. It’s the only way to save the Lost Girls.

PI Charlie Miner, freshly revived from his own murder, and Homicide Detective Dave Putnam follow a series of murders mysteriously described by a psychic.

This story will appeal to people who like gritty crime fiction with a touch of the supernatural who appreciate character development.

Review by Sandra Ruttan

A young man moves to Los Angeles to pursue his dream of becoming a great artist, where he meets and falls in love with a mysterious socialite who proves thwarting to his efforts, and makes him rethink everything he has come to believe.

Former DOD operative Gavin Randall is coming home after twenty-eight years of war. Dismissed by the government he spent his life fighting for, his only solace is knowing that the life waiting for him is one of peace. Unfortunately, Gavin stumbles upon a secret underworld that exists alongside ours.

Surviving in a city ruled by the supernatural is hard. Harder still with a serial killer on your trail, and a demon on your back. For sorcerer Creed, magick will either save the day…or destroy it.

Thomas Haftmann, a much beleaguered private investigator with a shortage of clients and a long-standing drinking problem, decides to take a few days off–namely, put in time on a case that take shim to the sunshine state tracking a runaway teen girl. Before he knows what hit him, he’s in big trouble and the two thugs escorting him to a mangrove swamp where a hungry alligator lies waiting are making no secret of what’s on the menu for that massive reptile.

Aliens invade and the survivors search for a weapon that millions have died to give them

A novel in the flavor of Less Than Zero and Bright Lights, Big City. The book is about one man’s disillusionment with the America he thought he knew. Within the context of the novel are many political references as well as humor and satire. But the real context of the story centers on drug abuse, jewelry theft, fine wine theft, art theft, working for the mafia, and stealing from the mafia, as well as the author’s employment in the exciting, fast-paced world of fashion photography and his eventual downfall. It is the story about how, for a brief period of time he obeyed only the law… of gravity. He once believed that the answers to all of life’s problems could be found in the bottom of a bottle. They are probably still there, but now they are printed in Chinese. It is a story in which he learns “A heart is not judged by how much you love; but how much you are loved by others.”

After a series of encounters with the law, a young man yearns for a better life and escapes his past as he heads to New York City where his pursuit of happiness and success sends him on a series of well-intentioned misadventures that lead him into the dark side of the criminal underworld and revenge. A marriage of real events and fiction, Love and Theft pulls from the author’s personal experience to create a man whose life path is no more his own fault than the color of his hair.

Michael Malone and Dick Cherry are two down on their luck friends that reconnect after 30 years and stumble upon a serial killer in Tarpon Springs, Florida during Hurricane Katrina. Night after night as the storm is growing in form and power, the two friends race against time to find the killer. But perhaps they are not ready for the truth? Could the killer be one of them?

This is a noir style novel full of Hollywood history, mystery, murder and suspense. Pick up a copy today, and see why all the reviews are 5 stars!

The Skin Room is an unnerving suspense thriller narrated by Alex Melville. The bloodstained document that comprises the narrative of the novel is his claustrophobic account of the murder of Valentina, and the incarceration and death of his drug-addicted sister, Sonia. The Skin Room is a ‘whydunnit’ with a twist.

RED EARTH is ground zero for Max Bowman – as he uncovers a shocking secret that will rock his world forever—forcing him to cross an unthinkable line.

For readers who enjoy gritty novels like those by John Grisham, or those who love great humor jam-packed with lots of action scenes like the children’s fiction series by Rick Riordan, or all of the above, you will find an exciting and wonderfully enjoyable experience reading this book.

Review by Kate Ashley

An unassuming life is about to take a remarkable turn. How does a modest man survive stardom? How does he survive Celebrity Gulag?

These 15 short noirs have been collected from a variety of outstanding publications and blog sites, ranging from “Powder Burn Flash” through “A Twist of Noir” to “Sex and Murder Magazine.” Thomas Haftmann’s dark world of murder and madness is not for the lover of the cozy mystery.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

Solomon Bull is the son of a rebel who died fighting for the American Indian Movement. Wary of assimilation, he uses monkey wrench tactics to destroy a corrupt senator. Pursued by Treasury, Militia, and the corrupt senator’s henchman, Solomon will learn if he is heir to his father’s revolution.

A phone call in the small hours after midnight lands Dallas PI Ed Earl Burch in a lethal game where nobody can be trusted and everybody wants him dead. That includes the caller, an old flame with a violent temper and a terminal knack for larceny and betrayal.

The Right Wrong Number is filled with the latest and greatest of Nesbitt’s Quentin-Tarantino wit mixed with everything gory, despicable, irreverent, and plenty of sex. Indeed, a great combination of mystery and a plain laugh-out-loud read—guaranteed to be a favorite for noir enthusiasts.

Review by The Right Wrong Number

“this strikes me as a finely crafted story…I rate it as a superior novel and recommend it to anyone who appreciates the challenge of an unflinching mystery. Certainly I was repeatedly surprised.” —Multiple NYT bestseller Piers Anthony

Whether you’re a fan of sci-fi fan, hard-boiled detective stories, or mysteries, this book will appeal to you. Yes, it crosses genre lines, but in such a seamless manner and with such elegant prose, even purists of any one of those genres will be satisfied. But, don’t grab this if you’re looking for a cozy mystery. The violence isn’t gratuitous but some of it is graphic. The superb writing and editing (the few errors stand out because of their paucity), and complex plotting of The Last Detective make it a great read for anyone who enjoys an exciting who-done-it.

Review by The Last Detective

Samantha Davidson is just your run of the mill PI… except, you know, she can talk to the dead. Find out what happens in the first installment of this novella series “Ghosts Among Men”.

This book is recommended for enthusiastic pop culture nerds, particularly fans of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Jessica Jones, and Doctor Who. Samantha drops little pop culture references throughout and the story’s style is very reminiscent of these shows. However, the book is not recommended for someone who enjoys plot development over characterization.

Review by Ghosts Among Men

Pour yourself a nice warm drink, dim the lights and conjure up in your consciousness; Femme Fatales, handguns, seedy bars, bad luck, thieves, scoundrels, a book of matches, a pack of Pall Mall’s, low lighting and definitely everything in glorious black and white and you’ll have “Alcohol and Cigarettes”

Henk van Wijnen-Swarttouw, a born entrepreneur and self-made man, gets in trouble when his daughter Julia becomes famous in the art world as a performance artist.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

In ‘Time Lies’, a devious mystery-thriller set in Cold War Germany, a reluctant serial killer realises he has been murdering the wrong people. But there is hope for him yet…

Third Eye Watch is a romantic suspense novel which features friendship, love, and passion. The heart-tugging romance between Serena Shaw and Samvir Raina will make your heart skip a beat and their journey to solve a major crime will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

A fast-paced cyber mystery with shades of Hitchcock, classic noir, and 50’s pulp.

Everything Nyah has ever loved has been taken from her.  All she wants is someone to pay.  Nyah wants vengeance. Nyah needs a hero. What she gets is Grady Fisk.

Pitch Perfect Pick

Charlie Porter thinks he’s found the American dream in 20 pounds of stolen raw opium. The only problem standing between him and easy street is a desperate American landscape. A landscape filled with friendly foes and beautiful women, strewn with border …

When an ex-cop from Chicago walks into a bar in Sydney’s red-light district, there’s only one thing on her mind… getting rich.

A bent copper is compromising national security and needs to be rapidly neutralised, but none of the evidence will stand up in court. That’s exactly why men like Stoner operate in the shadows, ready to terminate the target once an identity is confirmed…

Aurora, a holiday maker, and David, a globetrotting sushi chef, meet-cute on a skydive, literally falling head over heels for each other. However, after a few days of bliss reality rears its ugly head and they have to part again. Three months later Aurora has rearranged her life to be with David. When she returns to Mallorca their love remains strong. Only, nobody reckoned with the human baggage Aurora unwittingly brings to the island. Two professional hitmen with nothing but murder on their minds. The chase is on

Stanke’s wildly thrilling period piece captures not just the groovy vibe of post-Franco Spain in 1977, but also the feel, the look, the smell, of Mallorca just as tourism was starting to really make inroads into the formerly pristine island.

His unusual and ambitious jumps in point of view wouldn’t have worked in the hands of a less skilled author, but here you’re in good hands. David and Aurora’s whirlwind courtship is over almost before it began, and then, upon her return to him three months later (surprise! With a child in tow) the breathless chase through the pine forests and over the mountains unwinds skillfully. David and his young charge flee for their lives from hit men, and then murderous cops. Then Stanke rewinds and adds another perspective, layering on a new level of understanding for the reader. And again he backs up and goes over the same ground again but in the head of yet another character. By the end, when the whole heart-squeezing narrative has unfolded, the reader knows everything and is satisfied. It’s not an entirely happy ending, you know that going in—but it’s a just one, and a thrill right to the last scene.

I wholeheartedly recommend Falling in Death and Love, for anyone who enjoys and appreciates intricate plotting, who has an affinity for Spain, or who needs a reason to stay up late. Once you start this novel, you won’t want to stop.

Review by Kim Kash

Ex-marine returns to modern-day Vietnam to shoot tourism videos of the now prosperous country when he falls for a beautiful woman with a dark secret that could destroy the country.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

Kobe is a novel with interweaving plot lines and strong characters. The reader will follow a search for a missing waitress, a junkie with a flare for the macabre, a dope boy hell-bent on revenge, and two lovers mixed up in the crazy town drama.

When a murder victim is found wearing a goat mask, it’s a strange murder. When a second victim turns up, it’s a serial killer. When the killer calls and taunts the police, it turns into something else, especially since the detective on the case doesn’t exactly go by the book.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

Disgraced Detective Henry Santiago is torn between the violent aggression of his profession and the safety of his private transvestism as he stumbles into a conspiracy of murder, kidnapping, and small town political corruption.

A woman with a lust for money and danger… A man with a hunger for risk and adrenaline… Can they con the Sydney underworld and get away with murder? Or will they both end up dumped in a dark alley? No one can be believed. No one can be trusted.

A high-end escort and an out of control ex-MI6 operative team up to bring down an organised crime ring.

Will Tony blow the whistle in time to avert disaster and earn the trust of his people? Will the distractions of the lovely Connie Delaney prove fatal to his mission? Will his dastardly employers get the upper hand? These questions and more are answered in Tony Blair: The Wilderness Years.

John Biscello
Votes: 0 Not eligible for review
Underground Title

A spectral, existential noir set against the aging irons of Coney Island and old guard lions of hip hop and silent film, Broken Land, a Brooklyn Tale tracks the singular odyssey of would-be sleuth and soon-to-be wordsmith, Salvatore Massimo Lunezzi. Pr …

Ed Earl Burch is an ex-Dallas homicide detective tormented by memories of a dead partner and a killer snuffed before Burch could track him down. He’s a burnout, living drink by drink. Then Carla Sue Cantrell points a Colt 1911 at him and says the killer is still alive.

The first book in the Ed Earl Burch series, The Last Second Chance isn’t for everyone. Audiences who get a thrill out of Quentin Tarentino’s flicks will no doubt find Nesbitt’s plot captivating from beginning to end.

Review by Anita Lock

Fall, Leaves, Fall is a compelling Supernatural Thriller. Can James Bridge keep the promise he made all those years ago, and what will be the cost if he does?

A fast-action crime thriller: Evan Powers has left his dull office job to become the new manager in Nick Grady’s marijuana growing operation … however, Nick’s complex past comes full circle, thrusting Evan in a scramble to decipher the truth behind the enigmatic lives of the people he holds dear.

An expertly plotted and devised crime thriller which keeps you guessing until the end – a great, fast paced read, despite the lack of connection between the reader and the main protagonist who I never really felt I got to know.

Review by Chantelle Atkins

A terrible wartime tragedy leads to murder at home.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

San Francisco 1899. As the city prepares to welcome the new century, a twisted killer enacts his final, grisly legacy.

A tantalizing adventure, The Lost Thorn takes on the traditional pillars of cyberpunk and shatters them with a fresh gush of inspired and playful narrative. Fast-paced and grim, this book and its characters scramble the contrasts of the modern world, a testament to the crumbling norms of society.

James Finn finds himself trapped in the persona of Clay Cross, a 1950s cold war warrior and misogynist private eye, a composite of every pulp novel he’s ever read. Out of his time and ignorant of political correctness, Clay Cross blunders and offends in equal measure, and at the same time explores gender in unexpected ways.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

James Bennett didn’t come to the Florida Keys to find a new father, but when he meets smooth-talking ex-televangelist John Wainwright , he decides to help Wainwright rebuild his church. James’ faith in his new mentor and his infatuation with Wainwright’s estranged daughter lead him into a maze of double-crosses.

Smart…Sexy…Mad! Polaroids: Original Nature tells the story of a schizophrenic, voyeuristic outsider artist, Singer Fauth, and her highly hedonistic relationship with a slightly narcissistic partner in mischief, Lee Heureux.

Journalist Skylar Shaw covers a plane crash on a Florida beach that leads her to a handsome yet mysterious Italian man…and the conspiracy that threatens all he holds dear.

Pitch Perfect Pick

Augustine Shaw is a killer. On an overnight road trip, he relives the erratic series of events that changed his life and ended others. Shaw must decide: bury the past forever or confess

Stumpy McCabe is forced back into the deceitful world of prize fighting to save his family and to chase away the nightmare that has tormented him for decades. Navigate through Trenton, NJ’s crime-infested backstreets and alleys with Stumpy as he obsessively defends the integrity and honor of his legacy.

With Strings Attached is for readers interested in a crime novel with likable characters, vivid descriptions and a close look at the underworld. Though a bit slow-paced with its detailed writing, there are still plenty of reasons to enjoy this street-smart, Jersey novel.

Review by Candi Sary

It’s 1927, the son of a rural Irish cop, Michael Gallagher joins the Shanghai Municipal Police to escape an Ireland crippled by its recent bitter independence fight, and to trace the aristocratic woman whose memory still haunts him. Shanghai in 1927 is a city where after dark anything seems possible. A city where anyone can be crushed, and anyone corrupted. Even an innocent Irish cop.

O’Sullivan’s first novel is a treasure trove of historical information and a fully realized portrait of a complex, exquisite, and cruel place. I was not as concerned with the plot, though it was a fast-paced and well-constructed tale.

Sometimes the characters in the novel felt a bit too stereotypical and one-dimensional. More—and better—dialog would have served it well. But these are small things to get past in order to enjoy the vivid descriptions in Gangsters of Shanghai. I recommend this to anyone who enjoys reading well-researched action stories in order to understand history.

Review by Kim Kash

When good guy social worker James Morrow and his police detective wife Maya meet local New England lobsterman, Tucker Flynn, the two families encounter tragedy too close to home.

Taking on Water is for those who enjoy a novel that takes them so deep into a setting that it feels like they’re actually there. Readers with enough patience to get through a sluggish first half will find a captivating finish.

Review by Taking on Water

The Silver Herring sees Rog Beagle deal with the obnoxious Miss Francine Mayweather, a nosy, violent O’Reilly, and the pernicious Hans as he seeks to uncover the plot behind a missing shawl that leads a swathe of deaths.

Pitch Perfect Finalist

1972. Harvard Square. Sex. Drugs. Riots. Across the Charles River–the Combat Zone, Boston’s notorious red-light district. Strip Clubs. Peep Shows. Dirty Bookstores. These are the streets new PI Mike Malloy roams trying to stay away from danger, especially the danger in his own mind.