My name is Devereaux Sinclair, but everyone calls me Dev. If you would have asked me a year ago what a typical day in my life was like, I would have told you that I get up at six a.m., dress in full makeup and designer suit, drive from my hometown of Shadow Bend, Missouri into Kansas City—a ninety minute commute—and convince high rollers to trust their money to Stramp Investments. But after quitting that job and buying the local dime store, I no longer do any of those things. Now I sleep until eight, wear jeans and a sweatshirt with Devereaux’s Dime Store embroidered across the chest, and sell delectable chocolates and creative gift baskets instead of my soul.
The reason for the big change in my life is my grandmother, Birdie Sinclair. When she started having some memory problems her doctors told me I needed to be around more, and since Gran had dropped everything to take care of me when my parents deserted me, I felt that I had no choice but to return the favor. Turns out, I really like this life a lot better. Although I do miss the six-figure salary.
Never one to take half-measures, I used all my savings and sold off nearly everything I owned (okay, not my sapphire black BMW Z4 or my shoes) to buy, renovate, and stock Devereaux’s Dime Store and Gift Baskets.Unfortunately, just as I was getting my new business off the ground, my old boss was arrested. Turns out, his entire company was a huge Ponzi scheme. Of course, everyone thought I had been in on the fraud, which I wasn’t, but I can understand their suspicions. How in the world could I have not known that Mr. Stramp was cheating our clients?
That scandal finally died down, but before I could relax, the contents of an erotic gift basket I made for my ex-boyfriend’s fiancée was used to murder her. The detective on the case has me pegged as the killer, and since he was one of the many municipal employees that Mr. Stramp defrauded out of their pension funds, he’s determined to pin the homicide on me.Which means I have to find the real murderer before I end up in the prison cell next to my dad. Did I mention my father killed someone while under the influence as he tried to run away after being accused of embezzlement?
However, looking on the bright side, a smoking hot U.S. Marshal has volunteered to help me investigate. He was shot in the line of duty and while he’s recuperating, he’s helping his uncle on his cattle ranch. Now all I have to do is resist the temptation to jump into bed with him—at least until we solve the case of the sex basket and the single dead girl.
LITTLE SHOP OF HOMICIDE, the first in the new Devereaux’s Dime Store mysteries by New York Times bestselling author Denise Swanson debuts March 6, 2012.
** Thanks to the publisher, I have one (1) copy of LITTLE SHOP OF HOMICIDE to give away. Contest open to residents of the US only. Contest ends March 8. Leave a valid-email address with your comment. The book will be shipped directly from the publisher. **
Meet the author
Denise Swanson is a New York Times bestselling. She has written fourteen books in the Scumble River mystery series–the fifteenth will be out September 4, 2012. Little Shop of Homicide begins the Devereaux’s Dime Store mysteries series. Denise lives in Illinois with her husband, composer David Stybr, and their cool black cat Boomerang. Visit Denise at www.DeniseSwanson.com or on Facebook
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