If It’s Monday It Must be Murder…..

17 Sep

Author of the Kathleen S Allen’s GSP release: If It’s Monday It Must be Murder

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Mel is having a bad year. First she gets shot on the job and has to go on disability because she has a bullet wedged near her spine. She is in constant pain and now has to use a cane to walk. She is no longer a cop. Her boyfriend cop moved out because she asked him to. Her best friend since college calls her in the middle of the night; her youngest daughter, Jessie, is missing. Can Mel find her? A body found at the bottom of a tall building is discovered to be Jessie. The cops think it’s suicide but Cindy, her mother, thinks she was pushed off the building. Will Mel figure out who killed Jessie and not die in the process?

Excerpt:

The jangling ringtone of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Bad Moon Rising woke me from a sound sleep. I froze, watching the phone jiggle across my bedside table. Either someone was hurt or dead. A phone call in the middle of the night was never a good thing. I fumbled for the phone, but in my haste, managed to dump my uncapped water bottle onto the paperback book I had been reading. And me. “Shit!” I yelled, grabbing the phone before it got drenched, too. I wiped it on my nightshirt before answering.

“Hello?”

Now fully awake, I dabbed at the water with my pillowcase, and then limped barefoot to the bathroom to turn on the light and get a towel, cradling the phone between my ear and shoulder.

“Mel? Jessie is missing. I’ve called her cell so many times her Voice Mail is full. No one has seen her in days. She was supposed to come home tonight; I expected her at seven. It’s now after midnight, and she’s not here. Can you help?”

“Have you called the police?” I asked, attempting to sop up the rest of the water.

My nightshirt had a huge wet spot. Now I’d have to change. I threw the pillow, with its wet case, at the laundry basket. It landed on top of the pile, making it wobble precariously. I shifted the phone to the other hand, got the wet nightshirt off, switched hands again and stood shivering in the night breeze from the open window.

“Yes, I called the police,” Cindy said. She enunciated each word slowly as if I would not be capable of understanding speech, then she launched into frantic again. “They told me she had to be missing for two days before we could file a missing persons report! One of the cops told me she probably went away for a long weekend with her boyfriend. She doesn’t even have a boyfriend!” Cindy sobbed the last words.

Moving with what I call panther stealth, I tiptoe-limped to the closet and opened the door to get a robe out. Quietly shutting the door, I slipped the robe on, switched the phone to my other ear and sat back down on the bed. The end of the bed wasn’t wet. I listened, but there was only silence.

“Hello? Cindy? You there?”

“Yes, where else would I be? What were you doing . . . sneaking around your bedroom?”

“I had to put a robe on, my nightshirt was wet.” I said; then trying to sound comforting, added, “Try not to worry. We’ll find her.”

“Your nightshirt is wet. I’m not going to go there.” Then she sucked in a breath, “Are you alone? Oh my God, I forgot to ask if Byron was there. I’m just so . . .” she let the words trail away.

“No, Byron is not here. I told you we broke up right after I left the Force. Look, let me make a couple of calls and get back to you. Call me immediately if Jessie comes home or contacts you, okay?”

“Okay; thanks, Mel. I need to call John, Joan, and Joey to let them know she’s missing. I should’ve called them first, I guess. It’s just that you being a cop and all . . .” she let her voice trail off again.

“Former cop,” I said. “You haven’t called them yet?” Partial relief washed over me. “She’s probably with one of them; call me right back after you talk to them.” I crossed my fingers for luck. Not that I had much. Luck, that is.

“You’re right, I bet she went out to San Francisco to visit Joey; you know how well they get along. I’ll call you back.”

She hung up and so did I. Jessie is a smart girl; she wouldn’t just take off without telling someone. I hoped that someone was one of her siblings. But I had a gut feeling. Not one I liked. A hunch. I got them as a cop, and I was always right. This time I hoped I wasn’t.

Using the stairway railing, I padded downstairs sans cane. Yawning, I looked at the clock; after one in the morning—too late to make any calls tonight. Popping a pain pill, I headed back upstairs; then paused on the stairs, taking deep breaths until the spasms in my leg subsided. Hoping the pain pill would work a miracle and actually allow me to sleep pain-free, I climbed the stairs, pausing on each step

I hoped Cindy found Jessie safe and sound, I really did. Poor Cindy: first her husband died; then Jessie was in trouble, and now this. Her luck is worse than mine.

Leaning my leg against the side of the bed I changed the sheets before I laid down on my left side, pulling my knees up to my chest—the only position that allowed me any relief. I lay thinking about Jessie, waiting for the pain to dissipate and sleep to come; wanting Jessie to be okay. I wanted to go back a year ago, before the shooting. I wanted Byron back in my bed and in my life. Closing my eyes, I drifted off. The next thing I knew it was morning and for one shining moment I felt at peace. Then all hell broke loose. Pounding on my front door.

“Mel?”

I got up too quickly; a wave of dizziness assaulted me as I held onto the nightstand waiting for it to pass. The pounding continued. “Mel? Let me in, Mel!”

Cindy. I had fallen asleep wearing my robe, so I pulled it tighter as I made my way down the stairs, gripping the railing and trying not to favor my leg. Taking the chain off, I unlocked the door and opened it. Cindy stood there crying. She shoved something at me as she pushed past me, coming inside.

Looking out, I noticed the neighbors getting ready to start their day. Rob, dressed in his banking suit, waved at me from across the way as his garage doors opened; Maureen in her green scrubs nodded as she got into her car. I waved back. Sighing, I shut the door and limped to where Cindy stood. I unfolded the newspaper she handed me.

Student Jumps to Death—read the headline.

Oh, no! It can’t be Jessie!

My heart sank as I skimmed the article, making my way to the sofa and gesturing for Cindy to sit, too. She perched on the edge of a chair, still crying, but softly, as a wounded animal might cry. At one point I looked up, but she pointed to the article in my hand.

“No, read it. All of it, then we can talk.” I longed for a cup of coffee. No, two. Two cups of coffee and a bagel is my usual breakfast fare. One of my medications made me so sleepy I needed extra caffeine just to function like a normal person. Trying to focus, I read the article.

College student Jessie Lewis was found at the bottom of the Tower Building earlier today. Sources close to her say she was despondent after learning her grades were not as high as she wanted. According to the same sources, she was having boyfriend troubles, but they refused to elaborate further. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Glancing up at Cindy, I made eye contact with her.

“Mel! She didn’t jump!” She took a deep breath. “She’d never jump. She’d never go up to the roof of a building. She hated to stand on a step ladder. Someone forced her up there. Someone pushed her off!”

“Oh, Cindy, this is terrible. I’m so sorry.”   

Review:

what a refreshing story! i was able to finish the book in two sittings, unusual for me lately, but it was so good i put a few things aside to finish it.

it was easy to sympathize with the intrepid heroine, Mel, as i have some physical challenges myself so putting myself in her shoes made the story all the more real. i adore her boyfriend, Byron, he is certainly more than her match. LOL however, i did feel at times she was what we call TSTL [too stupid to live] by putting herself into situations where she could have definitely gone back out the door feet first. however, it was this type of ‘flaw’ that made her so real and easy to relate to. LOL

i had the killer of Jessie, her best friend’s daughter, nailed almost from the introduction. i have no idea why, it’s not like the author’s talent for suspense is lacking anything, i think it’s just that i read too many mystery/suspense books. whatever it was, i did have that one success. however, i’m still having a problem with the confession of the individual to shooting our heroine. it just never seemed to click with me, too easy maybe. i truly hope there is a sequel to this one so i can see if my instincts are spot on or i’m just not accepting the ‘truth’.

the whole supporting cast was very well written and stayed within their character boundaries, which doesn’t always happen in suspense stories. however, Ms. Allen has a firm grip on keeping you engaged in the story [attested to by my finishing the book in 2 readings] and emotionally attached to the characters. if you’re looking for a well-written, engaging and satisfying read, do give IF IT’S MONDAY IT MUST BE MURDER by Kathleen S. Allen a go. you won’t regret it.

i want to give props to the editor of this book. i’ve read some ebooks from mainstream publishers that were so poorly edited i couldn’t finish them. however, you’ll only find the rare oops in this book, so if this is as important to you as it is to me, you’ll be very happy to know this.

NOTE: i would rate this book PG13 or younger except for the occasional [read rare] swear word. The romance is sweet, nothing to hide from the kiddos there. i also love that the cover by Charlotte Holley doesn’t need hiding either.

overall, this was a great read, and i’ll definitely be checking out more stories from this author and publisher!

Links:

http://www.gypsyshadow.com/KathleenAllen.html#MondayExc

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Its-Monday-Must-Murder-ebook/dp/B005PFTW8Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379430680&sr=8-1&keywords=if+it%27s+monday+it+must+be+murder

 

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