Franki Amato’s Back in Big Trouble in The Big Easy by Traci Andrighetti

Amaretto Amber“Ciao, y’all. You’ll never guess where I am—in the dressing room at Madame Moiselle’s strip club on Bourbon Street. Why? Well, you remember Glenda O’Brien, my sixty-something ex-stripper landlady?”

“How could they forget me, Miss Franki?” Glenda fluffed her apple-pastied breasts in her Stripper Snow White shirt. “I’m a lady legend down here in New Orleans.” She pulled a sewing needle from a bosom-shaped pincushion. “Now face forward so I can finish your costume.”

“Oh.” I turned back toward the mirror. “So Glenda’s sewing me into a costume, but Marilyn Monroe at JFK’s birthday I am not. Thanks to a run-in with a raging Russian during a bikini wax, I look more like a Mardi Gras tiger with mange.”

“That babushka’s got a bad attitude.” Glenda stuck the needle into the tiger-striped fabric at my bottom. “But tell them about Amber, sugar.”

“Okay.” I cast a cagey look at my backside. “Amber is a young woman who used to strip at Madame Moiselle’s. The manager found her onstage, but she definitely wasn’t dancing. Instead, she was dead in a claw-foot bathtub surrounded by a candle, some incense, and a bottle of amaretto. But that’s not the weird part.”

“Bestill your booty, sugar.” Glenda brandished a pair of scissors at my behind.

I gave her a pre-pounce glare while she clipped her sewing thread. “As I was saying, the crazy thing is that before she was killed, Amber stole a necklace made from a piece of the missing Amber Room— a priceless work of art that the Nazis took from Russia during World War II.”

“And that necklace belonged to one of my squirrel friends, Carnie Vaul.” Glenda pressed the Velcro closures at my hip.

“In case you’re not up on drag queen discourse,” I said, eyeing the Velcro, “squirrel friends are men who hide their nuts. And Carnie doesn’t just hide her nuts, she is nuts. In fact, if she hadn’t hired me to find her necklace and Amber’s killer, I’d suspect her of killing that poor girl.”

Glenda handed me a pair of purple-and-gold platform pumps emblazoned with the LSU tiger. “She’s a little tense, but it’s hard being a queen. Just ask Elizabeth Windsor.”

I smirked and began to work my foot into one of the six-inch shoes. “Anyway, Glenda’s my consultant on Amber’s case, and we have a lengthy list of suspects. Besides the raging Russian, there’s the club manager, a Texas oil baron, a stripper named Saddle, and a pimp-turned preacher. So, we’re setting a trap for the killer by billing me as Amber’s cousin, Tiger Eye, in tonight’s strip revue at Madame Moiselle’s.”

I grabbed Glenda’s shoulder for support as I climbed into the other shoe, and I saw a gleam in her eye. “Why are you looking at me like that? What have you done?”

“Coming to the stage,” the club DJ boomed over the sound system, “Tiger Eye, the late, great Amber’s porn star cousin.”

“Porn star?!” I spun around on Glenda like a wild animal on the hunt.

“Go catch the tiger by the tail, Miss Franki.” She shoved me onto the stage.

I stumbled into the spotlight and caught sight of a tail she’d sewn onto my costume, and I had a sneaking suspicion that tiger she was talking about was me.

Amaretto Amber is the third book in the Franki Amato mystery series, published by Gemma Halliday Publishing, June 2016.

Private investigator Franki Amato has just turned thirty, and she feels anything but festive. For starters, she can’t have cake because she’s given up sweets, and one of her teeth is torturing her. To add insult to birthday injury, she has to investigate a surreal strip club homicide—with her sixtyish ex-stripper landlady. Then her Sicilian grandma crashes the New Orleans non-party and insists that she steal a lemon to land a husband. Unfortunately for Franki, the man she has in mind has his mind somewhere else, and their relationship seems to have soured. Adding to her troubles, she has to figure out what a missing amber pendant and a mysterious amaretto bottle have to do with the murder, not to mention why she’s being followed. When a second dancer goes down and a third is threatened, Franki turns to a weird witch to crack the case and cancel a curse before someone blows out her candles for good.

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About the author
Traci Andrighetti is the national bestselling author of the Franki Amato mysteries and the Danger Cove Hair Salon mysteries. In her previous life, she was an award-winning literary translator and a Lecturer of Italian at the University of Texas at Austin, where she earned a PhD in Applied Linguistics. But then she got wise and ditched that academic stuff for a life of crime—writing, that is.

If she’s not busy working on A Poison Manicure and Peach Liqueur, the forthcoming novels in her two series, then she’s probably still celebrating the news that Deadly Dye and a Soy Chai, the debut mystery in her Danger Cove Hair Salon series, is a finalist for the 2016 Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense.

To keep in touch with Traci, be sure to sign up for her newsletter at her or on her Facebook page.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a print copy of Amaretto Amber. US entries, please. Five lucky winners will be selected. The giveaway will end August 5, 2016 at 12 AM (midnight) EST. Good luck everyone!

All comments are welcomed.

66 responses to “Franki Amato’s Back in Big Trouble in The Big Easy by Traci Andrighetti

  1. Connie Dellechiaie

    Thank you for the chance.

  2. Lynne Moody

    Wow sounds like a Great read 🙂 Love this series so much. Would love to have a paperback ! When I get a new paperback in my hands I get a big smile on my face 🙂 This would even be better with one of favorite Authors !! Thank you for a chance to win !

  3. Doward Wilson

    Sounds like a fun read. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  4. Jill Broussard

    I’ve read Traci’s other books…they’re great! Looking forward to reading this one too! Thankyou for the opportunity!

  5. Congratulations on being a finalist. Your books sound great. I will be putting them on my tbr. Thanks for the chance.

  6. Gail Arnold

    This sounds like a funny and unique series. Would love to win.

  7. Barbara Hackel

    I loved this book! ❤ ❤ Franki puts up with so much! The Nona "convention" and sleeping in the bathtub put her up for Sainthood! Don't put me in today's drawing Dru, but thanks for a fun read today. Thanks to Traci for her generosity. 🙂

  8. So many books to read. Yum!

  9. Linda Herold

    Thanks for giving us a chance to win this. The book sounds good and I love the colorful cover!

    • Hi, Linda. The designer is Lyndsey Lewellyn. Gemma emailed her my very vague description of various elements in the book, and she produced this awesome cover on the first try—and it’s even better than I had imagined the murder scene. So talented!

  10. elainehroberson

    Another new-to-me author to try. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  11. a new-to-me author and series….very exciting!! thank you for the chance!!

  12. Traci’s books are enjoyable. Thanks for this wonderful giveaway.

  13. Kathleen Costa

    I love Lemoncello Yellow, continuing to work my way through the rest of Franki’s marvelous adventures, and really looking forward to this new story! Traci? You are a favorite writer. I enjoy the humor in your stories…Franki is a great character! Fingers crossed!

  14. Celia Fowler

    Sounds like a great story, and I love New Orleans. I have not read any of the books in this series, but thank you Dru for putting it on my radar!

    • Celia, New Orleans is one of my favorite cities, and I’ve been told that it’s a “character” in my books. Those who know New Orleans know that it’s definitely a character. 😉

  15. The landlady is marvelous!

    • Thanks, Elizabeth. Glenda was inspired by a chance encounter with some strippers on Bourbon Street. It was nine o’clock in the morning, and I needed a bathroom badly, but everything was closed. A man who was hosing down the sidewalk offered to let me use his—inside a notorious strip club! My friends were upset when I agreed, but desperate times called for desperate measures. It turned out that the bathroom was an open toilet (no walled-off stall) inside the strippers’ dressing room. I walked in and stopped abruptly when I saw them standing there in various stages of undress, so one of them said, “Toilet’s over there, honey.” Then a woman entered with a bucket of fried chicken, and they attacked it like sharks at a feeding frenzy. I decided not to use the “bathroom,” after all. Anyway, for some crazy reason, Glenda was born from that one-minute encounter.

      • rosemary pfeiffer

        that is an amazing (and funny) story of how this book came to be ! now reading it will be really fun knowing this thanks for the chance.

  16. I love this series!

  17. Great another great writer keep up the good writing…

  18. This is a new author to me and it sounds like a really fun read. Definitely adding to my TBR list. Can’t wait to read.

  19. Cynthia E. Blain

    It never ceases to amaze me about the wonderful careers that so many authors have had prior to writing or even while writing. All of their knowledge and vast experience obviously comes into play when they put pen to paper, or get their fingers on the keyboard of their computer. And all of this is for us, the readers. I am so grateful to all of the writers of mystery, suspense, and cozy mystery writers in particular, for keeping me entertained constantly with the greatest books to have gotten me through a lot of not so perfect health days when I needed to find diversion, and I certainly did.

    Thank you for including me into the giveaway.

    Cynthia B

    • Hi Cynthia! There are so many books on the market these days that most of us authors still work our day jobs and write on the side, which is both good and bad. But all of us share one thing in common: we profoundly appreciate each and every one of you readers. So, thank you for reading, and I hope your health woes are behind you!

  20. Lisa Hagenbucher

    This sounds good! Thanks for the chance to win!

  21. Going to New Orleans is on my bucket list. At least I can imagine what it will be like through reading your book.

    • Hi! I use as many real sites, shops, restaurants, and bars in New Orleans as possible. There are so many weird, wild, and wonderful places there that just lend themselves to fiction!

  22. A “weird witch” – sounds like a fun read!

  23. Yes please Dru, I’d love to win this book.

  24. I’m so glad to see Dru & Traci together! Congrats on making it as a finalist n the Du Maurier Award. I love both series, but Franki (& her NOLA) are my favorites. Keep writing because I love your work so much.

    • Dru Ann’s blog is my absolute favorite! It’s fun to have your characters come out of your books and interact somewhere else, and there’s nowhere else I’d rather see them do it. As for my writing, thanks for being such a champion of me and my work. I’ve slowed down a little lately, but I’m getting back on track!

  25. Love Frankie and Glenda! This is such a fun series. I would love to win a print copy of Amaretto Amber. Thanks for the chance!

  26. I am loving Franki and all her gang! Just starting Rosolio Red. Thank you for the fun new series!

  27. Peggy Hyndman

    Amaretto Amber sounds like a fun read. Thank you for the chance to win a copy.

  28. Barb Bristol Wiesmann

    Another new to me series to fall in love with!

  29. Always wanted to read this series. Glad for the chance to preview Franki and her gang. Thanks for the chance to win.

  30. I’ve seen this series mentioned before but I have not read it yet. I must get started on it. Sounds great!

  31. Sounds like a great read.

  32. Looks like a Great Book Thanks for the chance to win I Love Cozy Mysteries