We Love Cold Cases – And Here’s a Special One!

We Love Cold Cases – And Here’s a Special One!

Sisters in Crime-CO member Helen Starbuck’s new book A Cold Case of Conscience launches this month. It’s Book Four in the Annie Collins Mysteries. Join her for a Zoom launch party on March 8th at 6:30 pm MST. RVSP by DM on Facebook: Helensstarbuck or Instagram: Helenstarbuck_author or email her at helens.pashley@gmail.com.

In A Cold Case of Conscience, Annie Collins wants to unofficially review cold cases for Denver Homicide Detective Alex Frost. But solving them isn’t easy, like the arson death of a man known for his predatory behavior toward women. There are no suspects, no witnesses, and no one who is sorry that he’s gone.

Annie can’t resist the pull of a recent murder that may be connected to an old cold case. Annie and Frost aren’t sure if the two cases are connected, and the person who knows the answer isn’t talking.

Angel Cisneros, Annie’s husband, is struggling to recover after their brush with death, and his ability to tolerate the repercussions of her involvement with Frost is at an end. Annie may be forced to choose between helping Frost or concealing what she’s doing from Angel—something she’s never done.

Colorado native and former OR nurse, Helen Starbuck is an award-winning author of The Annie Collins Mystery Series. 

While she lays no claim to the coffee empires, she does fondly foster two crabby cats and a 22-year-old pampered pasture-pet horse.

When she’s not writing, you can find her dressing up like a princess and ballroom dancing with her friends or reading books about strong women and interesting men who find themselves in suspense-filled situations.

What Are You Going To Read Next? – Pick An Award-Winner!

What Are You Going To Read Next? – Pick An Award-Winner!

Sisters in Crime – CO member, Margaret Mizushima has announced the upcoming release of STANDING DEAD, her eighth Timber Creek K-9 Mystery.  The Timber Creek K-9 books are police procedurals. Each adventure contains a combination of K-9 cops, veterinary work, and family relationships as well as a murder case to investigate and solve.

In this episode, the case for Deputy Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner Robo becomes personal when Mattie’s mother vanishes without a trace. After a dead man is found tied to a standing dead pine in the beetle-killed forest near Timber Creek, Mattie is forced to play cat and mouse with a killer.

In a last-ditch gambit, she goes undercover into the killer’s lair to try to save her mother—or die trying. STANDING DEAD can be found wherever books are sold and is available for preorder now. The book releases March 7th.

Margaret Mizushima is the author of the award-winning and internationally published Timber Creek K-9 Mysteries. Active within the writing community, Margaret serves as past president for the Rocky Mountain Chapter of Mystery Writers of America, was elected the 2019 Writer of the Year by Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, and is also a member of Northern Colorado Writers, Sisters in Crime, and Women Writing the West.

She and her husband recently moved from their home in Colorado to the Pacific Northwest. She can be found on Facebook/AuthorMargaretMizushima, Twitter @margmizu, Instagram at margmizu, and her website at www.MargaretMizushima.com

Best of the West: One Night of Crime Fiction Awards; 20 Writers You’ll Want to Read.

Best of the West: One Night of Crime Fiction Awards; 20 Writers You’ll Want to Read.

The Lefty Awards Are Back! This year’s Left Coast Crime Convention’s annual banquet and awards presentation takes place on Saturday, March 18, at the El Conquistador Resort in the Oro Valley of Tucson, Arizona.

Left Coast Crime is an annual mystery convention sponsored by mystery fans, including readers as well as authors. This LCC celebration takes place first quarter of the year in Western North America. Conventions have been held from Anchorage to El Paso, from Denver to Hawaii.

The convention honors writers in these categories:

  • Best Humorous Mystery Novel
  • Best Historical Mystery Novel (Bruce Alexander Memorial)
  • Best Mystery Novel
  • Best Debut Mystery Novel

These are the nominees for 2022 awards:

Lefty Nominees for Best Humorous Mystery Novel

  • Ellen Byron, Bayou Book Thief (Berkley Prime Crime)
  • Jennifer J. Chow, Death by Bubble Tea (Berkley Prime Crime)
  • A.J. Devlin, Five Moves of Doom (NeWest Press)
  • T.G. Herren, A Streetcar Named Murder (Crooked Lane Books)
  • Catriona McPherson, Scot in a Trap (Severn House)

Lefty Nominees for Best Historical Mystery Novel
(The Bill Gottfried Memorial) for books set before 1970)

  • Dianne Freeman, A Bride’s Guide to Marriage and Murder (Kensington Books)
  • Catriona McPherson, In Place of Fear (Severn House)
  • Wanda M. Morris, Anywhere You Run (William Morrow)
  • Karen Odden, Under a Veiled Moon (Crooked Lane Books)
  • Ann Parker, The Secret in the Wall (Poisoned Pen Press)
  • Iona Whishaw, Framed in Fire (Touchwood)

Lefty Nominees for Best Debut Mystery Novel

  • Erin E. Adams, Jackal (Bantam Books)
  • Eli Cranor, Don’t Know Tough (Soho Crime)
  • Ramona Emerson, Shutter (Soho Crime)
  • Meredith Hambrock, Other People’s Secrets (Crooked Lane Books)
  • Harini Nagendra, The Bangalore Detectives Club (Pegasus Crime)
  • Rob Osler, Devil’s Chew Toy (Crooked Lane Books)
  • Jane Pek, The Verifiers (Vintage Books)

Lefty Nominees for Best Mystery Novel

  • Kellye Garrett, Like a Sister (Mulholland Books)
  • Laurie R. King, Back to the Garden (Bantam Books)
  • James L’Etoile, Dead Drop (Level Best Books)
  • Gigi Pandian, Under Lock & Skeleton Key (Minotaur Books)
  • Louise Penny, A World of Curiosities (Minotaur Books)
  • Alex Segura, Secret Identity (Flatiron Books)

To register for Left Coast Crime:

Questions about the Lefty Award? Email the LCC Awards Co-Chairs

Adventures in the Book Trade

Adventures in the Book Trade

How to Find the Agent, Wow the Agent, Sign with the Agent.

Agent hunting got you down?  Bewildered in the wilds of publishing?  Get the scoop from winners in our chosen trade with the Citrus Crime Writers (CCW) event on February 12.  Scheduled for this Zoom session are some of CCW’s traditionally published authors who know all too wall about the travails of getting an agent—and how to deal with them.

Listen to their stories and how they learned the hard way.  Join Martha Geaney (Star O’Brien Mystery Series), Nancy Cohen (Bad Hair Day Mysteries), Ruth Owen (Romance Writers of America), Charlotte Hunter and S. K. Golden as they inform and entertain us about their agent experiences.

About the Authors 

Nancy J. Cohen writes the Bad Hair Day Mysteries featuring South Florida hairstylist Marla Vail. Titles in this series have been named Best Cozy Mystery by Suspense Magazine, won the RONE and Readers’ Favorite Book Awards, placed first in the Chanticleer International Book Awards and third in the Arizona Literary Awards.

Ruth Owen has published ten novels in the contemporary and historical romance field with Random House. The Romance Writers of America (RWA) selected her novel, Taming the Pirate, for its prestigious Maggie Award, and her novel, Someone to Watch Over Me as one of the RWA’s Top Ten Books of the Year. In addition, she received ten (10) Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Awards for her works.

S.K. Golden is the author of the Pinnacle Hotel cozy mystery series.

Secrets From the Medical Examiner’s Office

Secrets From the Medical Examiner’s Office

For all you hard-boiled and horror readers!  Shannon Lawrence and the Colorado chapter of Horror Writers of American sponsor an up-close- and- personal tour guided by with Colorado’s El Paso County Coroner and Medical Examiner, Dr. Leon Kelly.  Tour scheduled for TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 2023 AT 7 PM. 

Voters selected Dr. Kelly in 2022 to serve once again as coroner of El Paso County. El Paso County has the only on-site Forensic Toxicology lab in Colorado. Two on-site forensic toxicologists routinely perform toxicology studies for many other Colorado Counties. Six full time deputy coroners, a histologist and one office administrator also staff the office.  

Dr. Kelly is a nationally respected board-certified forensic pathologist. He’s served as coroner the last four years and as deputy coroner for years before that. Beyond his involvement in suspicious deaths, Dr. Kelly has led efforts to combat teen and veteran suicide, the opioid crisis, and now a fentanyl epidemic. 

He has generously agreed to do a Q&A and a tour of the Coroner’s Office. No charge to attend. Bring your writing implements to take notes and plenty of questions!  Now’s your chance!  Sign up now.

A MUST ATTEND for Police Procedural Fans

A MUST ATTEND for Police Procedural Fans

Mark your calendars! San Diego Partners in Crime will be welcoming David Putnam on Saturday, January 14 at 5:00 pm ET. David will talk about how his career in law enforcement influenced his writing. His latest is A Fearsome Midnight Black. The new “Dave Beckett” book joins a laudatory body of 16 preceding works in the Crime Thriller, Police Procedural categories!


Dave Beckett is a wide-eyed young man when he joins the police department in a small town in Southern California. His naivete allows him to believe in his world, a vision where the cops are the good guys championing the rights of the wronged. He learns quickly that crime is not black and white, and the bad guys aren’t always the ones committing the crimes. This is the story of a victim turned predator, a young man who grows up too fast and becomes an apt pupil in the pursuit of criminals on both sides of the fence.


“A cop’s life, whether a rookie or a seasoned detective, is jammed with encounters that are often routine, sometimes disturbing, and all too often life-threateningly dangerous, a grind that takes its toll on personal relationships. A FEARSOME MIDNIGHT BLACK pulls back the curtain and takes the reader into that world with in-your-face clarity.”

Award-winning author of the Jake Longly and Cain/Harper Thriller Series

“When writing about police procedures and cases, Putnam knows his stuff. Based on his own true experiences, he brings his characters to life. Real and raw, there’s no way the reader can’t be drawn in quickly and held tightly until the very end.”

Member of Amazon’s Vine Voice (Vine Voice is an invitation only program that gives Amazon reviewers advance access to not-yet-released products for the purpose of writing reviews.)


During his career in law enforcement, author David Putnam has done it all: from narcotics, violent crimes and hostage rescue to SWAT, criminal intel and internal affairs. A real-life Five-O! David was recruited to Hawaii’s “Five-O” – like task force as a Special Agent for their Attorney General’s investigation of smuggling and white-collar crimes.

His Bruno Johnson Crime Series launched in 2014 and consists of 7 books up to 2020. Johnson is modeled after a real-life friend of the author who worked with him in a Los Angeles patrol unit. The Sinister is the ninth novel in this best-selling series.

David is also notable for his multiple police awards and commendations for heroism. Putnam lives in the Los Angeles area with his wife, Mary.

David Putnam is the author you’ll want to hear from. Ask questions. Don’t miss your chance – Register for David’s Presentation.