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Penthouse, Pools, & Poison by @donna_simonetta is an Indie Authors pick #cozymystery #giveaway
Title: Penthouse, Pools, & Poison
Author: Louise Stevens
Genre: Cozy Mystery
I’m Millie Wentworth, Assistant General Manager of the swanky Gulf Palms Resort and Spa, and sleuthing is not part of my job description. But when the obnoxious guest in the penthouse is poisoned beside his private pool, my daily planner is turned upside down.
Solving the murder shouldn’t be my job, but the only food found near the body is a charcuterie board sent to the victim by yours truly. The Port Sunset Police are looking my way until a shocking revelation shifts their attention to a friend. Suddenly, cracking the case moves to the top of my to-do list.
It’s up to me to find the real killer and clear my friend’s name. Uncovering the truth should be a breeze with me, my pink-haired grandmother, her rescue corgi, and her crew of fun-loving septuagenarian beach bunnies on the case. What could possibly go wrong?
“Who’s the heart attack waiting to happen?” I whispered out of the corner of my mouth to Stan, as he leaned around me and pressed the call button for the elevator again.
“Eugene Tarkington. His family checked in last night after you left. I was just watching the show, but I better get these bags up to their owners.” He winked at me as he rolled the cart onto the service elevator. “Let me know how it turns out.”
I took one last bracing sip of my iced coffee, and tossed the empty to-go cup into the trash next to the elevator, as the doors slid shut on Stan. I frowned at the scene before me. The woman working the desk this morning was little more than a kid, a college student, who worked here part-time. What kind of bully would be talking to her this way?
“I better go help Emily,” I said in a low voice to Ellis, who stared at the sight in the lobby through eyes fit to bug out of his head.
He cleared his throat, and his voice was gravely and low when he replied, “Good luck. You’re gonna need it.”
“Thanks.” I crinkled my nose as I peered at Ellis. He normally ignored the guests as much as possible, and as a result, was never rattled by this type of outburst. I wondered what was up with him, but couldn’t take the time to get to the bottom of the mystery right now. Usually, I loved my work in this beautiful tropical resort, but in this moment I wished I was anywhere else. I forced a smile as bright and cheerful as the lobby to my face as I approached the angry man. I knew the moment Emily spotted me, because her face brightened, in spite of the tears glistening in her eyes.
“May I be of assistance?” I asked in what I hoped was a cheerful tone, but the truth was I was angry enough to pop this guy in the nose for making Emily cry.
“Who the hell are you?” The man hollered. He was a big man, but soft looking. I knew the type all-too-well from working here. Rich, used to getting everything he wants, and unwelcome as a gator on a golf course.
“My name is Millie Wentworth, and I’m the Assistant General Manager of the Gulf Palms. What seems to be the problem, sir?”
“I don’t deal with assistants. Where’s the general manager?” The man demanded, looking over my head as he asked, as if expecting the general manager to appear out of thin air at his command.
“Mr. Clark is off the premises at the moment, but why don’t you let me know what’s happening, and perhaps I can help you.”
Little did the big loudmouth know, even if the GM, Vincent Clark, was here, he’d be hiding in his office right now, after delegating me to deal with the angry guest. Confrontation was not Vince’s jam. My nickname around the resort was ‘the Fixer’, and I took pride in the fact there wasn’t a discontented guest I couldn’t soothe. At least up until now there wasn’t.
The man huffed. “Fine. I’m Eugene Tarkington.”
He paused at this point, as if he expected me to genuflect at the sound of his name.
“Nice to meet you, Mr. Tarkington,” I replied, my professional smile still firmly in place, in spite of the fact I was sticking imaginary pins into my imaginary voodoo doll of Eugene.
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If you like your cozies with a quirky cast of characters, a victim so unlikeable the suspects are too numerous to mention, a gorgeous Gulf Coast beach resort setting, and an adorable rescue corgi, then dive into Penthouse, Pools, & Poison! This is the first book in my Port Sunset Mysteries series.
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Louise Stevens is the pen name of contemporary romance author Donna Simonetta. A lover of mysteries since her discovery of Nancy Drew many years ago, she is thrilled to be writing cozy mysteries now. Being the author of the Port Sunset Mysteries series is the fulfillment of a childhood dream.
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