- N. N. Light
Cover Reveal | Death by Pins and Needles by @hollyswimsuit #humorous #cozymystery #coverlove
I am so excited about this cover reveal. I love book covers, especially by this author. They are so colorful, I want to frame them and hang them on my wall. The fabulous Susie Black is sharing her upcoming 2023 release cover today. You won't want to miss it. So, without further ado, here is Death by Pins and Needles by Susie Black.
Title: Death by Pins and Needles
Author: Susie Black
Genre: Humorous Cozy Mystery
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
The last thing Mermaid Swimwear sales exec Holly Schlivnik expected to find when she opened the closet door was nasty competitor Lissa Charney’s battered corpse nailed to the wall. When Holly’s colleague is wrongly arrested for Lissa’s murder, the wise-cracking, irreverent amateur sleuth sticks her nose everywhere it doesn’t belong to sniff out the real killer. Nothing turns out the way she thinks it will as Holly matches wits with a heartless killer hellbent for revenge.
The elevator Goddess smiled at me, and I miraculously got to the swimwear floor at five-fifteen. Fifteen minutes to prepare for my meeting with Sue Ellen Magee to present the promotional program she requested I put together. And of course, the one available time in her majesty’s busy schedule to review the presentation? Five-thirty on Friday afternoon. Good thing my social life is in a dry spell. Ok, ok, so it’s non-existent, but let’s not quibble over small details. If one existed, it would not be Sue Ellen’s problem if I had to break a date. It begs the question. Did she ever go out on one? As if. Is Cruella de Ville’s dance card full? Catty? Too bad. Meow.
An empty swimwear aisle. Not a surprise. Fridays the whole industry gets out of Dodge early. Patti, our showroom manager, scribbled a note on the back of an old invoice and taped it on the front of the door. She left unexpectedly early to get her sick kid from preschool. Crap. In my rush to get to the mart, I left my showroom key in my office desk drawer. I didn’t remember it until I got halfway to the mart, but couldn’t turn back to get it. But no biggie; Patti practically lived in the showroom. Except for today. Fanfreakingtastic. A delivery notification was taped next to Patti’s note. With no one else around, the guy left the package of fabric swatches for my meeting with Sue Ellen at Lissa Charney’s. My heart sank. Cripes, of all the competitors to leave it with, he chose the one who closes shop the earliest. Unless by some miracle Lissa stayed late, count me screwed.
I called Queenie but her phone rang and rang. No one at the mart office answered either. No point in calling mart security; they don’t have a master key. Friday night. The whole world is in party mode except me, thanks to Sue Ellen Magee. I scrounged in my purse for something to jimmy the lock with. Nothing but a nail file. Oh yeah, dandy. Not. Explaining this key thing to crabby Sue Ellen ought to be scads of fun; same as an appendectomy with no anesthetic.
Think, think; I strained my brain for a solution. Of course! I snapped my fingers and relief calmed my pounding heart. Lissa had our spare key. Hot diggity dog. Most of the swimwear vendors on the eleventh floor were in the same showrooms for years; friendly competitors who kept an eye out for one another. We all exchanged keys with a neighbor in case of an emergency. Royal and Mermaid personnel exchanged keys years ago. I walked to Lissa’s in case God made a mistake, and by some miracle, she’d hung around. The Royal lights were dark, but the internal ones leading to the offices blazed bright as a beacon. For giggles and squeaks, I pushed on Lissa’s door. Remarkably, it opened. Hot Diggity Dog. Amazingly, the fabric Goddess covered my play. My envelope with the fabric swatches lay on the first workstation table. Now for the key, and I’d be all set.
“Lissa,” I called out, “It’s Holly from Mermaid. I came for my package. Thanks a bunch for accepting it. Listen, Patti left early and I forgot my mart key in my desk drawer at the factory. Can you give me my spare?” Dead silence. Weird. Maybe she’s on the phone with her office door closed?
“Lissa,” I funneled my hands around my mouth into a megaphone and yelled, “It’s Holly Schlivnik from Mermaid.” Still a whole lotta dead air. God short-changed me in the height department at four feet nine inches tall, but the Good Lord compensated for it by blessing me with a strong set of pipes. Unless the woman was deaf as a post, no way she couldn’t hear me.
The clock said eight minutes left. Crap. Buyers in this industry are famous for keeping vendors waiting. My luck, I get the one who’s never late. I stuck my head out in the hall. Hallelujah. Lady Luck smiled down on me. No Sue Ellen. If the congestion goddess loved me, the Queen of Mean sat stuck in Friday night rush hour traffic with the rest of the homebound Angelinos.
Since shouting at the top of my lungs failed to get her attention, I went back to Lissa’s office. Lights on, but nobody home. Her beige leather purse sat on the desk with her keys on top of it. I jangled the chain. Lots of keys, but none of them mine. I slid my fingers over the grainy purse to move it out of the way, and my digits got coated with dust. Weird. I opened all the drawers and rooted around her desk, but no key. Her jacket lay haphazardly draped on her chair behind the desk. She obviously hadn’t left for the day, but I’d combed the place from one end to another and found no sign of Lissa. Where the Sam Hill could she be? Not in the showroom. Not in her office. Not in the kitchen. Not in the copier room. In the ladies’ room? Abducted by aliens? Hiding in a closet? I was out of options and time; so, for giggles and squeaks, I pulled open the doors to the enormous sample closet that stretched across the back wall and peered inside. Good news. I found Lissa Charney. The question was; did she have my key?
A dozen swimsuits picture -framed Lissa’s battered, bloody corpse like a museum exhibit. Ringed with matching black and purplish-blue shiners, her wide-open, sightless eyes stared into space as though surprised by her situation. No kidding. That made two of us. I was no doctor, but you didn’t need a medical degree for this diagnosis. No need to take her pulse. One thing was for sure; Lissa Charney had made her last sales presentation.
Naturally, I burst out laughing.
I’d like to offer a FREE copy of my funny and informative Swimwear Fit Guide to everyone who reads this far. Please click here to read and download your very own copy.
Named Best US Author of the Year by N. N. Lights Book Heaven, award-winning cozy mystery author Susie Black was born in the Big Apple but now calls sunny Southern California home. Like the protagonist in her Holly Swimsuit Mystery Series, Susie is a successful apparel sales executive. Susie began telling stories as soon as she learned to talk. Now she’s telling all the stories from her garment industry experiences in humorous mysteries.
She reads, writes, and speaks Spanish, albeit with an accent that sounds like Mildred from Michigan went on a Mexican vacation and is trying to fit in with the locals. Since life without pizza and ice cream as her core food groups wouldn’t be worth living, she’s a dedicated walker to keep her girlish figure. A voracious reader, she’s also an avid stamp collector. Susie lives with a highly intelligent man and has one incredibly brainy but smart-aleck adult son who inexplicably blames his sarcasm on an inherited genetic defect
Looking for more? Reach her at email@example.com
Social Media Links:
Instagram: Susie Black (@hollyswimsuit) • Instagram photos and videos