Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we’re shining the BOOK SPOTLIGHT on a murder mystery filled with who-dun-its, and how-can-they-be-stopped moments galore! It’s a title currently on tour with Rachel’s Random Resources and from the SPECIAL EXCERPT we’re sharing today, it sounds like the private investigator has her work cut out for her. Ladies and gents, get your reading groove on as we take a look between the pages of today’s title in the spotlight...
The Lake Templeton Murders
About the book...
A body washes up on the shores of Lake Templeton, a small town on the coast of Vancouver Island. Sharon Reese, the victim, was a dedicated government employee. Everyone liked her, but no one knew much about her. Was she hiding something? Maybe a questionable past riddled with scandal. And did it lead to her plunge to death, in a drunken stupor, off the dock outside her secluded lakefront lodge?
Was it an accident? A suicide? Or cold-blooded murder? Private Investigator, Fati Rizvi, is determined to find out.
Fati arrives in Lake Templeton to find secrets that run as deep as the City’s sewers. Everyone is hiding something and nothing is as it seems. A cult escapee. A corrupt politician. A struggling airline. A multi-million dollar public-private project to revitalize the Lake Templeton waterfront. How are they all connected?
As Fati valiantly unravels the knots, another body is found on the shore. Is it the same killer? And can Fati stop them before they strike again?
~~~ EXCERPT ~~~
This scene represents the first time Private Investigator, Fati Rizvi, goes to the crime scene where our victim, Sharon Reese’s body was found. The scene calls to her and creates a driving need in her to find answers.
On the way, I stop at Culver Beach, where Sharon’s body was found. Culver Beach is shaped like a claw, with the shores of Lake Templeton hugging it from one side and the other opening up to the ocean. In high tides, waves batter it from one direction, bringing debris from the neighbouring houses.
It was these waves that carried Sharon once the water besieged her lungs and she stopped breathing. Maybe her killer was hoping that the body would descend to the depths of the ocean, swallowing its secrets. It must have been a rude shock to see the evidence of their crime splashed across the morning papers.
Sharon’s body was half-reposed face-down on the wet sand, deposited on the shore like plastic waste. Clumps of hair were caught in the jagged rocks that edge the receding land, one bloated arm flung over a large boulder, as if trying to find a grip. Her legs floated behind her like windsocks. Silk shirt ballooned over the surface of the water like a parachute.
The crime scene has been cleared up. Culver Beach sparkles in the vestiges of the sinking sunlight, sand glinting like diamond dust. The only remnants of the morning’s tragic discovery - dried boot prints in the grassy sand, left behind by the police.
The nearest house is walled off by a thicket of trees and is currently empty, owned by a businessman who only spends a few months here in the summers. The beach is quiet, with not even a dog walker in sight. I walk on the sand for a few minutes, shoes in hand, reveling in the quietude. I breathe in the fresh air, slightly briny, and crisp enough to open up my nasal pathways.
No answers will be found here. Not for me. I have limited experience analyzing crime scenes. Even though, as a beat cop, I elbowed my way to many sites above my pay grade, attaching myself to the most brilliant detectives like a barnacle. Thankfully, you don’t need to be an expert at crime scene analysis to catch a killer.
And catching a killer is what I do best.
I will answer the plea in Sharon’s outstretched arms, still flailing in death as her body collided against the land, unmoored from its watery grave. I will unravel the secrets in the wide eyes and rote responses of Sharon’s colleagues, all identical, parroting one another. The combative non-responses of Mayor Alena Krutova. And the exaggerated sorrow of Sergio Alvarez, Marketing Manager at City Hall, who claims to only know Sharon as a dear colleague.
I will piece together the puzzle of Sharon’s life. Who was she? What was she doing in Lake Templeton? Did she steal a half a million dollars from the City? And did it drag her to an early death, pitched off the deck outside her own home?
What transpired on Sharon’s deck last night after the sun sank behind the heavy winter shadows?
The answers hover in the glacial air. They wisp through the fog rising from the lake. They’re protected by the dense night, blackening every surface it touches. They’re hidden - but I will find them.
I turn away from the beach and start walking towards my car. There’s much more to unravel in the mystery of Sharon Reese’s death. I am just getting started.
About the author...
HS Burney writes fast-moving, action-packed mysteries set against the backdrop of majestic mountains and crystalline ocean in West Coast Canada. She loves creating characters that keep you on your toes. A corporate executive by day and a novelist by night, HS Burney received her Bachelors’ in Creative Writing from Lafayette College. A proud Canadian immigrant, she takes her readers into worlds populated by diverse characters with unique cultural backgrounds. When not writing, she is out hiking, waiting for the next story idea to strike, and pull her into a new world.
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...a $10 Amazon Gift Card!
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Special thanks to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, this promotion, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today and be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more bookish fun!
Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!