Where nothing bad ever happens…

Imagine a nice neighborhood of fancy high-rises lined along the seashore, each looking like a picture perfect resort, with a private beach and a pool sparkling under the blazing sun. I am sure you must have received postcards from well-intentioned friends, rubbing it in that they are sunbathing in Florida while you are freezing in arctic weather.

When you visit friends living in a high-rise, you have to sign in at the front desk. Security officers would check with the people you are visiting before directing you to one of the elevators. In other words, high-rises benefit from a tight and reassuring security.

Nothing bad could ever happen in these places. Right?

Wrong! This crime occurred in a neighboring building. A friend related the story before it was printed in the local newspaper.

The couple have been married for a year. Picture her tall, artificially blond, fashionable with tight dresses and high heeled-sandals. It’d be difficult to guess her age, anywhere between 40 and 50. Her husband, well-tanned, rugged, often looking younger. He likes the beach and often swims. She protects her face with a wide-rim hat when walking to her car. The neighbors regularly see her taking her daily jog in the morning and the security officer at the front desk greets her with an appreciative smile. Mrs. X. is wealthy and gives generous Christmas bonuses to the building employees.

So when Mrs. X didn’t show up for her daily walk for three consecutive days, security got worried. Her car was still in the parking lot but not her husband’s. Security called her apartment several times. No one answered. Having an extra key, the security officer knocked on her door and opened when receiving no answer. The apartment was empty. Maybe she was gone with her husband.

Mr. X returned from his trip in the night and two days later called the police saying that his wife was missing.

The police found her purse and car keys at home. So where was she?

A day later, a woman body dressed in bra and bikini, and high-heeled sandals was found lying on the sand of a beach at a two-hour distance. The woman was identified as Mrs. X.

Mr. X collapsed, crying that his wife has committed suicide.

What is your verdict? Who killed Mrs. X and why?

Police suspected everyone. Husband, security guard, creep from outside, Mrs. X committing suicide.

Then police looked at motives and alibis.

1-Creep from outside could have killed her while she was on the beach but would have thrown her in the ocean in front of her building. Why take extra chance in moving her elsewhere?

2- Security guard had no serious motive to kill her. In the contrary he benefited from her gifts when she was alive.

3-Suicide: how could she have gone to that faraway beach without her car? The way she took care of herself was not characteristic of a depressed woman.

4-husband had a great alibi. He was on a trip and proofed that he met with people, but the fact he took so long to report the crime incriminated him. Also the fact that her car keys were in the purse left at home.

Police report said that the husband killed her by strangulation, shoved her in his trunk, then went on his trip, came back to dump her in the ocean, then went back to meet again with his partners, there by consolidating his alibi.

His motive: Money. Police discovered he had taken an insurance on his wife, and claimed she was depressive because she often visited a friend who was a psychiatrist, but they were friendly visits, not professional. He is in jail, awaiting his sentence. The apartment was sold.

Think you know your neighbors? Reviewed in the United States “This is an enjoyable cozy mystery, its emphasis on the romance between the main characters, Alexa Partson and Dante Cantari. The Italian hunk is every woman’s dream – smart, attentive and a dynamo in the boudoir. As well as on the beach! When Alexa is accused of killing her neighbor and nemesis, Steve Bairey, Dante steps up as her lawyer and protector, too. Through it all, the author skillfully weaves in the high life of condo living on the sands of Fort Lauderdale. And it’s dangers. Because someone in the building wants Alexa dead. And won’t stop until she is. There’s a host of interesting secondary characters, who become suspects in Alexa’s eyes, as she and Dante play amateur sleuths in order to catch the real murderer. The conclusion is fast-paced and the mystery kept me guessing right to the end. I will definitely be reading more from this writer.

“Her French Count is a great romance with an excellent mystery.” ~Publishers’ Weekly
“This is a wonderfully exciting romantic suspense novel. The characters are appealing and the setting is very romantic, a chateau in the Loire Valley. There is an interesting cast of characters. The plot is full of action and the reader is never sure who is on the side of good or evil.” ~ Romance Studio
“Murder, mystery, and intrigue seem to follow Cheryl as she assists Francois on his project. A great contemporary romantic read.” ~Review Your Book
“Mona Risk brings old-fashioned romance back into style… full of mystery and intrigue.  I loved Ms. Risk’s injection of humor into the story. A sweet mystery romance you’re guaranteed to enjoy.” ~ Two Lips Review
“Ms. Risk does a nice job of building the relationship between the main characters while exploring the mystery of the lost statue.” ~ Simply Romance Review
“Mona Risk will pull you in with her amazing characters and in-depth twisting suspense. She takes armchair travel to whole new heights as her characters travel to their heart wrenching and spine tingling doom.”~ Night Owl Romance Book Reviews
“A great romance with an excellent mystery. The instant attraction is met with a slow and sure build up of emotions. The couple are very complementary, compelling, and wonderfully romantic.” ~Coffee Time Romance

Are you a reader, a watcher, or a listener?

The Authors’ Billboard: a great place to find Free & Bargain Books & Box Sets

We all love to be entertained… or to entertain. Some of us wear both sombreros. Before there were books, entertainers – jesters and gladiators of one sort or another – strutted their stuff to elicit reactions. Then folks learned to write. Can you imagine the thrill when someone figured out how to go beyond hash marks for tallying sheaves of grain and used scribbles to create words to share stories and histories?
Coming forward a few millennia, new ways have been developed to entertain us. I still like the written word, but I can’t read and drive, shop, garden, or clean house (ugh) at the same time. Well, I can – sort of – if I ‘listen’ to my book. Audiobooks are cool, but unless you have a fantastic public library that lends them, they’re pricey to buy and only a small percentage of books are recorded.

The solution to reading while driving, washing dishes, pulling weeds, swinging from the trees… whatever… is to enable text-to-speech on your phone, computer, or other smart device. Chrome, Apple, and Amazon all have their own versions of TTS. I couldn’t test Apple’s because I have a PC, but here are two other options.
The Chrome Store has a free app that will read several different formats (Kindle, Google Play, Scribd, Overdrive) to you. The reading pace is adjustable in settings, but the speech is mechanical. I’d have to be desperate or really mad at Amazon to use it.


The other way to go is with Amazon. I think all their Echo and Fire devices are now Alexa enabled. I love my Echo units. I can start ‘reading’ (listening) to a book in the car, walk into the store and continue listening through the wee speakers in my Echo glasses frames, come home and listen to more on the Echo Show, then fall asleep as Alexa continues to read on the Kindle Fire. No eyestrain involved plus all the devices automatically sync to each other. Alexa’s voice is sweet and the rate and manner of speech are great, too. Oh, and she also pauses, skips forward or back, or changes books when you tell her to (no fumbling for a keyboard). Awesome if you missed a passage.
Now, no excuses for not checking out a great read. Go ahead. Put in your earbuds and listen to a book while your sweetie is watching a ball game or you’re hauling kids to karate class. You deserve a break today. Just try and time it right so you’re not at an emotional moment in the story when picking out produce. The other shoppers might wonder if you’re crying at the prices or losing it completely. They won’t know it’s because Claire just left Jamie (again).

NEW RELEASE! Sweet Romantic Nights – A Fabulous Freebie Collection

A great place to start! SWEET ROMANTIC NIGHTS: Seven stories, all sweet, a few are also funny, but all were created with love by @gr8authors from The Authors’ Billboard. Available everywhere for Free. Limited Release, so grab it now.

Growing Up and Moving On by Stacy Eaton

Thirteen years ago, I sat in the high school gymnasium and watched my son cross the stage for his diploma. I remember sitting there thinking about the day that his sister would do it too. It seemed like it would be forever and a day before my sweet little girl was crossing over that stage. This past week, that forever and a day occurred, and my daughter graduated.

My son went on to join the Navy, and now has a devoted wife and two beautiful children. I haven’t seen him since the pandemic hit, and I have yet to meet my granddaughter in person, but that is coming very soon.

With my daughter graduating, I find myself rather reflective these days. I guess that is natural to think back on those earlier days when they were young. As much as I wish I could stop time, I know I can’t and I have had to recently undo the tight leash I had on my daughter so that she can now spread her wings and fly on her own soon. Now that high school is officially over, college is just around the corner and we are in full swing of preparing for that with orientation later this month.

With her heading off in August, that leaves the nest empty, and I’m not sure exactly how to feel about that. It will be a new world where it’s just my husband and me on a daily basis. It’s a good thing that we like each other. For thirty-one years I have had a child under my roof, and now that will change.

But that’s okay. Like I wanted my son to succeed, I can only dream of what my daughter will achieve, and hope that she will find everything she has ever dreamed to have.

I guess with her gone, I’ll have more time to write, and I look forward to putting more of myself into my work. One of the books that I’ll be working on is Mission: Courage. It is the fourth book in the Rise Again Warrior Series. A series that is emotional and intense and deals with what our military service members go through once they return from war.

To find out more about the series, visit my website!

Hot Summer Romance Box Set by @AliciaStreet1

It’s the time of year for beach reads—and hot summer romance. Time for taking a morning coffee out to a sunny porch to gobble up a few more pages of a book. Even if I’m inside, sitting in my favorite reading chair, I love summer romances. Stories that take me away. Lounging on a beach or splashing in a pool. Swimming in a mountain lake or hiking in a lush forest.

Beach Reads Alicia Street

A new boxed set of HOT SUMMER ROMANCE releases June 13 and is guaranteed to sweep you into summertime adventures with hot guys and swoony sighs. You can pre-order it now!

Hot Summer Romance

Rolling Waves and Sun-Drenched Days. NINE HOT SUMMER ROMANCES From Award-Winning USA Today, International Bestselling Authors to Fuel Your Beach Reading Needs…

Hot Summer Romance Includes:

THE HEAT OF YOUR KISS (NEW) by Alicia Street, USA Today Bestselling Author: Rory had no idea his new job managing the summer sports at a posh country club would bring him face to face with the woman who rocked his world.

HEAT OF THE MOMENT (NEW) by Allyson R Abbott, International Bestselling Author: When the heat is rising and you only have a moment to choose. What would you do?

JOHNNIE WALKER by Jen Talty, USA Today Bestselling Author: When past and his scandal collide, it throws him into the spotlight…the very thing he’d been running from to begin with.

LOVE ALONG THE LAKESHORE: A SAUGATUCK SUMMER (NEW) by Joan Donaldson, Award-Winning Author: When nineteen-year-old Ginny Madden returns to her family cottage on the Lake Michigan shoreline, she discovers greater meaning to life as she associates with folks outside of her wealthy society, especially with a fruit farmer who yearns for a second chance at love.

CHANGING THE RULES by Katie O’Sullivan, Bestselling Author: Caroline and Brian mix business and pleasure. Except… the more time they spend together, the more complicated their relationship gets. Can the pair stay alive when her family comes to find her?

Need More? Keep Reading! Also included:

THAT INCREDIBLE KISS by Tamara Ferguson, USA Today Bestselling Author: After ten years apart, Ashley Mitchum and Brian O’Neill are fatefully reunited in Crystal Rock. Will unveiling their dark family secrets heal two wounded hearts?

FINDING LOVE by Natalie Ann, USA Today Bestselling Author: What happens when a hopeless romantic falls for a cynical romance writer?

THE BRIDE WORE LEATHER by Suzanne Jenkins, USA Today Bestselling Author: Lisa’s reluctant lover reveals a secret that will change their relationship forever.

SLOW BURN by Stephanie Morris, USA Today Bestselling Author: Sun-drenched days and starlit nights fuel a summer romance that threatens to burn them both.

        ~~~~~~ HOT SUMMER ROMANCE ~ ON SALE FOR 99¢ ~~~~~~