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The Mystery at Branch Lake: Agent Sam Carter Book One is a Fall Into These Great Reads pick #99cents

Title: The Mystery at Branch Lake. Agent Sam Carter Book One

Author: D. V. Stone

Genre: Middle-Grade Fantasy & Supernatural Mystery Books

Book Blurb:

Agent Sam Carter of G.A.S.P., or the Government Anti Spector Program, is called away from vacation to the small community of Branch Lake. Someone, or something, is breaking into the summer cabins, and indications are it may not be humans. Join Agent Carter, Sheriff Holly Stone, and Uncle Martin in the sometimes crazy adventure in the mystery of Branch Lake.


Agent Sam Carter placed his helmet over his head and started up his sleek black Harley motorcycle. His long mustache trailed out from under the face mask and fluttered in the wind as he peeled off, leaving a rubber streak on the pavement.

His orders came down just this morning.

“Agent Carter, your vacation has been canceled,” said the voice on the telephone. “Strange things are happening up in the Northern California hills. Houses are being broken into, and only food is taken. You are to assist local law enforcement in determining who or what is responsible.”

Leaving the warm, dry city behind, Sam mulled over the information which Sheriff Holly Stone, his contact in Branch Lake, had emailed him along with photographs of the large footprints left in the moist soil outside the last victim’s cabin. He’d seen prints like this before. This was no hoax.

Each cabin that had been broken into was empty this time of year. They were summer places near Branch Lake, about an hour drive from the coast. The forest around the lake was a prime vacation spot for the lucky few who could afford to spend the summers there in the old-growth forest. Fishing was a major activity, and Sam hoped that he could maybe cast a few lures during downtimes in the investigation.

Zooming up State Route 1 along the Pacific Ocean, he felt like he was still on vacation. My butt won’t think it's vacation after a nine-hour drive, he thought grimly. All things considered, though, he was going to enjoy the ride and settled in, appreciating the changing scenery as he drove north.

He rode the coast highway for as long as possible. The air, with its tang of salt and surf rolling onto the beach, led to hillier terrain. Soon cliffs were being hit by waves. Monoliths out in the Pacific waters shot up spray when breakers crashed into them. Denser forests began to surround him.

Finally, he reached the point where he had to veer west off of Route 1 and into what seemed another world.

Night was beginning to fall, and mist floated over the road. The patches of fog were dense in some places, and Sam needed to slow down. I bet the deer are big up here. Running into one on his bike would surely leave a mark. Just before full dark came on, he pulled into the small village of Frank’s Ford. He parked his bike in front of the only business open. The lights shined out onto the sidewalk and seemed to invite him in.

“Yup,” he said out loud to no one. “I could use a bite to eat.”

Sam tucked his helmet under his arm and headed to the little restaurant, walking stiffly. Opening the door, the smell of burgers and fries made his mouth water. He looked around and noticed a few patrons scattered about. They seemed to be enjoying the simple food.

“Sit anywhere,” called one of the waitresses behind the counter. “I’ll be with you in a minute.”

“Where is your restroom,” Sam called back. He wanted to wash up before eating.

“Around the corner and the second door to the left,” answered the other woman without looking up from her task.

Sam set his helmet down on an empty booth seat, stretched, and sauntered in the direction the waitress had indicated. It felt good to be off his keister. It would be even better to wash the road off of his face and hands.

A few minutes later, and feeling more human, Sam returned to the booth he had claimed and found it occupied. The woman sitting sideways with her feet propped up sipped a cup of coffee. Looking at her uniform, he knew who she was before she said a word. “Holly Stone, I presume.”

“Sheriff Holly Stone,” she replied. “And you must be Carter.”

Sam slipped into the booth “Agent Carter.”

Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):

Grab your e-copy on sale for only 99 cents!

What’s your favorite thing about autumn:

From the colors of the trees to woodsmoke from chimneys, Fall is my favorite season. It’s when I do most of my camping. I love the snap in the morning and evening air and the warmer afternoons.

What inspired you to write this story:

During a Christmas concert, my nephew, at the time about seven or eight, crawled across several laps to plop down beside me. This was our conversation.

Carter: “So, I hear you write books.”

D. V.: “Yes. How may I help you.”

Carter: “I want you to write a book about me. I want to ride a motorcycle and have a long mustache.”

And that’s what happened.

Giveaway –

One lucky reader will win a $75 Amazon gift card

Open internationally.

Runs September 1 – 30

Drawing will be held on October 2.

Author Biography:

D. V. Stone is an award-winning, multi-genre, traditionally and independently published author. She writes books people want to read. Whether romance or fantasy, paranormal, contemporary, or mid-grade, her stories are about the importance of friends and family. About overcoming obstacles most often with humor.

Around the Fire is a popular weekly blog where she introduces both established and new authors giving an insider’s look into their lives and books as well as tidbits about her own life.

Now retired, she is a full-time author and incorporates her life experiences into her books.

A former Emergency Medical Technician, she volunteered in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania. At the same time, she worked as a professional EMT in a women’s state prison. She was the proprietor of a coffee shop, and a small restaurant/ice cream stand in the years that followed. The years following were as a manager in an animal emergency hospital, while her last position was in a human medical office.

When not behind the wheel of 2Hoots—a 41-foot long 13.2 feet high 5th Wheel camper, she rambles around town in Northern New Jersey in a white Camaro. She also loves travel and history.

D.V. is a wife to an amazing husband, mother to one son, and not your average grandma to three beautiful grands. A woman of faith, she believes and trusts in God.

“My greatest pleasures are spending time outside with friends and family, cooking over the open fire, sipping a glass of wine, and reading.”

Hali, her rescue dog, always reminds her to let readers know, “Woof, woof.” Which is loosely translated as support your local animal rescue.”

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1 commento

N. N. Light
N. N. Light
13 set 2023

Thank you, D.V., for sharing your book in our Fall Into These Great Reads Bookathon!

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