Whirlwind Romance

A rush of emotion dropped a veil over all but the tiny world of the two people in seats 11A and 11B, in a jet plane floating somewhere over the Atlantic, in a still moment in time.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Penhallow Train Incident: Buy it at Book Obsessed Babes Destin 9/9


Come find me at Table 1 right at the entrance to the fabulous book signing in Destin September 9. I’ll have nine books—murder mysteries & romantic suspense—available for purchase. Here’s one:

The Penhallow Train Incident



In the sleepy coastal Maine town of Penhallow, a stranger dies on a train, drawing Historical Society Director, Rachel Tinker, and curmudgeonly retired professor, Griffin Tate, into a spider’s web of archaeological obsession and greed. With the help of the victim’s rival, they set out to locate the Queen of Sheba’s tomb. Their plans are stymied when a war erupts between the sheriff and a state police detective who want to arrest the same man for different crimes. It’s up to Rachel to solve a mystery that includes two more murders, if she wants to unlock the soft heart that beats under Griffin’s hard crust. 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Artful Dodging: Available for Sale at Book Obsessed Babes Destin

Coming to Destin soon!



Come find me at Table 1 right at the entrance to the fabulous book signing in Destin September 9. I’ll have ten books—murder mysteries & romantic suspense—available for purchase. Here’s one:


Artful Dodging

Brooding on both the death of her husband and the four needlepoint stockings she has to finish,  not to mention two mysterious murders, Milo Everhart is distracted by the handsome man standing in the pub doorway.


Tristram Brodie, hard-driving lawyer and former Marine, is focused on his plan to convert the Torpedo Factory Art Center into a box store. He is drawn to the beautiful woman watching him, but blocking the road to romance is his proposal to gut her beloved studio. 

As Milo and Tristram edge closer to love, they must find a way to overcome not only their differences but also the still painful memory of her loss.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Meet Me in Destin September 9

I'm going to the Book Obsessed Babes Book Signing in Destin and I hope to see you there! I'll have all my books available for sale. 




Besides, books we have a really cool coloring book featuring covers from all the artists. One of these will be in it:

OR:

Right on the beach, many wonderful authors, lots to do and see. Here's the QR Code for the event:



Saturday, August 26, 2017

The Mason's Mark: Featuring the Remarkable Marples

Today I’m featuring my romantic mystery set in Old Town Alexandria,  The Mason’s Mark: Love and Death in the Tower.


In both the best and worst first day at work ever, docent Claire Wilding meets the man of her dreams, but her carefully rehearsed guided tour of the George Washington National Masonic Memorial collapses when she discovers a body and is drawn into a dark world of black ops and Italian renegade masons, of secret cabals and hidden treasure. Also cloaked in mystery is handsome Gideon Bliss, a George Washington expert who haunts the Memorial, his manner evasive. What is his secret? Claire fears she'll fall in love with him only to learn he's a thief or even a murderer. Juggling two eccentric mothers, an inquisitive sister, and an increasingly smitten detective, Claire must find answers to a complex web of intrigue, including who to trust and who to love.

This time let’s focus on two people who play a larger than expected role in the story.

Complicating the affairs of both our hero and heroine, but also of the villains, are two eccentric but lovable characters. Letitia Canfield, Claire’s mother, meets Andromeda Miller Bliss, Gideon’s mother, in Paris and they immediately hit it off. Being naturally inquisitive and terrible snobs, they take charge of both their victims’ love lives and the mystery.

Lovely Lady Who Could be Letitia Canfield


In this excerpt, Letitia amazes her daughter with her power of observation.


Excerpt (G): The Marples

Letitia Canfield carefully laid her lavender and petal pink fascinator down on the kitchen counter and patted her hair. “I can’t believe you’d let that…that hussy hold sway over your love life.”
Claire poured her mother a glass of iced tea from a crystal pitcher. “Let’s go out to the patio.” She unfolded two plastic chairs and a plastic table and set the pitcher on it. In the tiny open space their knees almost touched, but the profusion of roses, purple ageratum, and coreopsis the color of lemon sherbet surrounding them made up for the cramped quarters. She clinked her mother’s glass. “Hussy or not, she’s also Gideon’s wife. Until that’s resolved I do not want to see him. I will not see him.”
“He’s beside himself.”
Claire couldn’t imagine the tall, broad-shouldered man she might possibly love “beside himself.” “I doubt that.”
“Well, his mother is, anyway. She’s fit to be tied. Dorcas hasn’t answered any of her calls. They sent her the papers, but there’s been no response from either Dorcas or her lawyers.”
 “Has Gideon tried to get in touch with his…his wife since our luncheon?”
“I don’t know. The Senate went back into session this week, and I’m sure he has his hands full. He’s left it to us to get this thing resolved.”
“Mother!” Claire spilled her tea. “Say it ain’t so.”
Her mother’s indignation was genuine. “Don’t give me that look, child. Someone’s got to take action. You young people always think you have plenty of time, that nature will take its natural course and lead you to the Promised Land without your lifting a finger to help it along. Well, Andromeda and I both know sometimes destiny needs a little goose. And don’t use ‘ain’t,’ even in a quote.”
“Yes, Mother.”
Her mother acknowledged the apology with a benevolent nod and sipped her tea. “You don’t have any of those scrumptious deviled eggs you make so well, do you?” She looked around vaguely.
“Sorry. I have some raspberries.”
“That would be nice.” The small box of scarlet berries took up most of one shelf in the mini refrigerator.
When Claire returned with a bowl and napkins, Letitia took up arms again. “Andy believes—and I agree—that if we keep up the pressure on Dorcas she’ll have to cave. What woman wants a mother-in-law who hounds her constantly?”
Claire took a raspberry and nibbled on it. The tart sweetness burst on her tongue. “What do you think she wants anyway?”
“Dorcas? I’m not sure. After all, her lover has apparently been in touch with her.”
Claire stared open-mouthed at her mother. “How did you know?”
Letitia’s half-smile would have put Mona Lisa out of sorts. “You are always staggered by my powers of observation, aren’t you, my dear? I know because I saw him.”
“That day we were in Vermilion?”
“Of course.” The old lady ate another berry. “Andy says he’s the man she left Gideon for.”
“Andy?” “Andromeda. We’ve been indulging in a little sleuthing since our luncheon.”
Nuts. Just what we need—two Miss Marples on the case. “They met in Argentina.”

Wild Rose Press, May 6,2016 (Crimson Rose imprint)
Mystery/Cozy Mystery, Romantic suspense
ebook 79,000 words; print 322 pp.
M/F;  3 flames

Buy Links:


Friday, August 25, 2017

The Pit & the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel Has a Cover!

So, folks, what do you think of this fantastic cover for The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel, coming soon to a fine on-line bookstore near you:

Here's the blurb:

At midnight, in the darkness of a deserted hotel, comes a scream and a splash.  Eighty-five years later, workmen uncover a skeleton in an old elevator shaft.  Who is it, and how did it get there? To find out, Charity Snow, ace reporter for the Longboat Key Planet, teams up with Rancor Bass, best-selling author. A college ring they find at the dig site may prove to be their best clue. 

Although his arrogance nearly exceeds his talent, Charity soon discovers a warm heart beating under Rancor’s handsome exterior. While dealing with a drop-dead gorgeous editor who may or may not be a villain, a publisher with a dark secret, and an irascible forensic specialist, Charity and Rancor unearth an unexpected link to the most famous circus family in the world.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel is Nearly Here!

I am SO excited! The Pit and the Passion: Murder at the Ghost Hotel will be my next release from the wonderful folks at The Wild Rose Press. They have just approved the blurb so it's on the way to galley stage. It will be my first new release since we published second editions of all my backlist. 

The Ghost Hotel

Here's the blurb. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

At midnight, in the darkness of a deserted hotel, comes a scream and a splash.  Eighty-five years later, workmen uncover a skeleton in an old elevator shaft.  Who is it, and how did it get there? To find out, Charity Snow, ace reporter for the Longboat Key Planet, teams up with Rancor Bass, best-selling author. A college ring they find at the dig site may prove to be their best clue. 

Although his arrogance nearly exceeds his talent, Charity soon discovers a warm heart beating under Rancor’s handsome exterior. While dealing with a drop-dead gorgeous editor who may or may not be a villain, a publisher with a dark secret, and an irascible forensic specialist, Charity and Rancor unearth an unexpected link to the most famous circus family in the world.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Captured: Luc & Miranda in a Tight Spot--Excerpt from Triptych

Set in Washington DC above the three rocks known as the Three Sisters, my romantic suspense Triptych weaves three stories in and out of legend, modern romance and past intrigue.


Take lost masterpieces, brilliant inventors, and stolen prototypes. Add the Three Sisters, Indian spirits who guard the Potomac River. Stir in three sisters and their lovers. Result? Jealousy, sex, genius, larceny and love. Who will end up with whom, and will the Three Sisters take another life as the legend demands?

Triptych, by M. S. Spencer
Ebook 67,300 words; Print 213 pp.
Romantic suspense/Adventure
M/F, 2 flames

Remember that wonderful scene in the Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Man, wake up and run joyously toward the Emerald City? Unfortunately, it didn’t work out so well for Miranda and Luc, as you’ll see in this excerpt.

Where Luc & Miranda are held


Excerpt (G): Captured

Miranda waited for the footsteps to die away and for her heart to stop vibrating like a Chinese gong. She couldn’t believe her luck. In a stroke of providential stupidity, Pongo had tied her hands in front of her. Considering his scintillating conversation, I should have expected no less. She bent from the waist until she could reach the rubber band with her lips and pull it off, reflecting that those endless crunches were useful for more than energetic sex. She untied the rope around her ankles and rubbed the raw skin while she looked around. They were in a small room about four feet square. Mops and pails were hung on the wall, and sponges and bottles lined the shelves.
Luc hadn’t moved. Please let him not be dead. A glimmer of light filtered in from the hall and Miranda shunted toward him. She managed to untie the rope on his feet, but couldn’t tear the duct tape wrapped tightly around his wrists. Still he didn’t move.
She brushed her lips over his. He stirred at last and opened his eyes—and just as quickly shut them again. “Ooph.”
“Oh, Luc, you’re alive!” She kissed him again. “Are you okay? What hurts?”
He smiled, but kept his eyes closed. “Besides everything else? I have a splitting headache. Where are we?”
“In a closet. In Crandall’s house. Luc, I think he’s insane.”
He chuckled. “Yeah I got that feeling too. One doesn’t cross Mr. Adolphus T. Crandall the Fourth.”
“What do we do now?”
“Give me a minute, will you, mon d├ęsir? I am not at my best just now.”
Miranda bit off the tart reply, telling herself they weren’t going anywhere anyway. She sat as patiently as possible, listening to his labored breathing and for any outside sounds.
It seemed only a minute later that she woke. A sunbeam crept in over the threshold. I must have slept, but for how long?
“My watch says almost nine. We’ve been asleep about five hours.”
Miranda jumped. “Luc!”
Shhh. Maybe they’ve forgotten about us.”
“No…” She lowered her voice. “I don’t think Crandall knows we’re here. The two thugs talked about letting us go when he went to bed. I wonder what happened.”
“Letting us go? Why?”
“I’m not sure, but they mentioned the ransom. Pongo said—”
Pongo?”
“I’m not responsible for his name,” she retorted crossly. “Anyway, he said something about not getting the money if we were dead.”
Hmm, I wonder. Considering the frenzied paroxysms of young Mr. Crandall last night, maybe there’s a rebellion brewing among the rank and file…”
Miranda put a warning hand on Luc’s arm. “Someone’s right outside.”
An unfamiliar voice spoke. “No, sir, I don’t think the storm caused it. I saw no evidence of a simple blown fuse. Someone tripped the alarm yesterday evening. Whoever did it was not a professional burglar.”
“What difference does that make?” came the high-pitched reply. Evidently Crandall had not yet slept. Or maybe he was always in a tizzy. “I don’t care how much it costs to fix—I want it repaired now.
“Well, that’s just it, sir. The intruder made a real hash of the wiring. It’ll take me a couple of hours to untangle it and replace the fuses.”
Miranda glared at Luc. “Can’t you do anything right?” she hissed.
He grinned at her. “Let me get this straight—you wanted me to do a professional job dismantling the alarm so it could be easily reset?”
She stuck out her tongue.
“Oh, very mature. Now, shush.”
They heard the repairman say, “Okay, I’ll get right on it then.” The voices faded away.
“They’re gone. Hopefully the coast is clear. Can you get this duct tape off me?” Miranda plucked at the tight plastic clinging to Luc’s arms. It came off in long strands, but held firm. “Use your teeth.”
“All right.” She managed to tear a section of the tape and pull the rest off.
He rubbed his wrists and touched a palm to her face. “Thanks. Can you stand?”
“I think so.”
Holding each other tightly and trying not to knock anything over, they hoisted themselves to their feet. Luc turned the knob. Miranda thanked the makers of closet doors everywhere for not bothering with inside locks. He stuck his head out. “I don’t see anyone.”
The door to the outside stood open. Luc grabbed Miranda’s hand and tiptoed toward it. They saw sunlight glinting on a white van parked in a cobblestone courtyard. Birds twittered in the pines and a train whistle blew in the distance. Miranda felt like Dorothy as she ran out of the woods toward the Emerald City. That is, until something smashed into her skull. Before she blacked out, she heard a nasty, scratchy voice, saying, “Going somewhere, my pretty?”


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Triptych is available in both eBook and Print-on-Demand.


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