More by Lori Armstrong
Welcome to my world—Julie Collins, harbinger of doom and a sucker for lost causes.
So when the body of a sixteen-year-old white girl surfaces and the death details are alarmingly similar to my brother’s murder, Kevin Wells—my best pal and local PI—admits he’d been hired to find the missing kid before she turned up dead.
I’m roped into helping Kevin tie up loose ends regarding the girl’s disappearance…and that’s when things begin to unravel. Lies are revealed. Bullets start flying. Yet nothing—not even death threats—will stop me from digging for the truth and finding the justice for this girl that my brother was denied.
But the killer is willing to kill again to make sure these secrets stay buried. And this time, I’m in the crosshairs.
Simple, right? Find kid, collect fat fee, and celebrate my superior PI skills with the dangerously sexy MC overlord. Except…Martinez neglected to mention a few crucial details. Like the girl’s father is the foreman on the controversial new Indian casino under construction, and the girl’s mother works at a rival Deadwood gaming hall run by an East Coast crime family.
After bullets start whizzing at me, I’m in Martinez’s face, demanding answers. Turns out plenty of people are determined to stop the casino from opening, including competitors, local ranchers, and a Lakota holy group.
As the violence escalates and the bodies pile up, everything around me begins to tumble like a house of cards. My search for a missing girl puts me on the wrong side of tribal politics and at odds with everyone—Kevin, Martinez, and even my father.
In a fight for my life after I attract the killer’s attention, I realize no place is safe…not even hallowed ground.
My partner and I witnessed a fatality during a routine surveillance case—a case that took a bizarre turn when we questioned the victim’s wife about the mysterious hole that had caused the accident. The widow admitted that hunters had discovered human remains and rather than alerting the authorities, she and her late husband just…reburied the bones. The out-of-sight –out-of-mind approach is never a smart option, particularly when it’s oh…illegal, and especially now that the bones in the hole have vanished.
Who was buried there? And how long ago?
Local, state and tribal authorities want answers. My overworked former boss at the Bear Butte County Sheriff’s office hires our PI agency to separate facts from speculation. I bury myself in the investigation because it leaves me little time to obsess about the screwed-up situation in my personal life—why Martinez asked me to go undercover in his strip club as a bartender…and why in the hell I agreed.
I never imagined this new case would cause total chaos in my world, creating new enemies, opening old wounds with my father, reviving disputes with my half-brother’s Lakota family, and generating dangerous employee rivalries.
But the information I uncover leads me back to my brother’s unsolved murder…and I finally come face to face with his killer.
While local business owners support the pipeline, Hawley’s presence riles the landowners, and Mercy is torn. After ugly threats and multiple altercations escalate tensions in the county, Mercy discovers Hawley’s brutally mutilated body in the bar parking lot. When it appears Sheriff Dawson cares more about campaigning for reelection than investigating the case, Mercy vows to find Jason Hawley’s killer—even if she has to run against Dawson for sheriff to ensure justice is served.
But Mercy soon learns her former military pal had plenty of secrets. Her search for the truth brings unwanted exposure to the county’s dark side and risks deadly repercussions for the entire community.
The body of a teenage Indian boy found on land belonging to the Gunderson ranch is just the beginning. When a second teen is killed, the crime moves even closer to home for Mercy. The Iraq veteran is no stranger to death, but these murders are deeply personal, recalling all too clearly a childhood marred by violence and tragedy. The local sheriff seems strangely apathetic, so Mercy throws herself into an investigation that is driven by a desire for justice . . . and retribution. But as she digs up the truth behind the shocking crimes, she uncovers dark and dangerous secrets involving those she loves. Now she must race to stop a killer before everything she’s fought for is destroyed forever.
Valentine’s Day is for suckers…
In Dead Flowers, cynical PI Julie Collins trails cheating lovers, which leads to questions about her relationship with Tony Martinez.
A hobby turns deadly…
In Baited, it’s been a long, hot, summer for PI Julie Collins. With her partner Kevin off on assignment, she’s lured into taking a case involving a missing fisherman. Nothing about the man’s disappearance is as it seems. Although Julie is no stranger to the dark currents that churn below the surface, can she count on her friend Jimmer, and her lover Tony Martinez, to keep her from getting in too deep?
BONUS! This digital edition also includes two bonus short stories, Praying to the Porcelain God, originally published in the Who Died In Here? anthology in 2004, and the never before published short piece, It Won’t Hurt.
Torn between her duties to the FBI and her need to keep her loved ones safe, former black-ops army sniper Mercy Gunderson must unleash the cold, dark, merciless killer inside her and become the predator . . . rather than the prey.
Newly minted agent Mercy Gunderson is back and ready for action— unfortunately, she’s stuck doing paperwork in an overheated government office building. But she gets more than she bargained for when she’s thrown into her first FBI murder case, working with the tribal police on the Eagle River Reservation, where the victim is the teenage niece of the recently elected tribal president. When another gruesome killing occurs during the early stages of the investigation, Mercy and fellow FBI agent Shay Turnbull are at odds about whether the crimes are connected.
Due to job confidentiality, Mercy can’t discuss her misgivings about the baffling cases with her boyfriend, Eagle River County sheriff Mason Dawson, and the couple’s home on the ranch descends into chaos when Dawson’s eleven-year-old son Lex is sent to live with them. While Mercy struggles to find a balance, hidden political agendas and old family vendettas turn ugly, masking motives and causing a rift among the tribal police, the tribal council, and the FBI. Soon, however, Mercy realizes that the deranged killer is still at large—and is playing a dangerous game with his sights set on Mercy as his next victim.
Originally published in LOVE IS MURDER (2013),
edited by #1 New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown.
In this Thriller Short, award-winning author Lori Armstrong’s protagonist, FBI special agent Mercy Gunderson, is hoping for a quiet date at the local casino. But getting a night off isn’t so easy when you’re trained to spot the unusual, like a thief prowling for wallets and purses. Unable to look away, Gunderson follows the thief outside for what she hopes will be a quick arrest, but it doesn’t turn out to be quite so simple…Don’t miss any of these Thriller Shorts from Love Is Murder:Diamond Drop by Roxanne St. ClaireCold Moonlight by Carla NeggersPoisoned by Beverly BartonSpeechless by Robert BrowneLockdown by Andrea KaneSpider’s Tango by William SimonNight Heat by Laura GriffinB.A.D. Mission by Sherrilyn KenyonDeadly Fixation by Dianna LoveHot Note by Patricia RosemoorLast Shot by Jon Land & Jeff AyersGrave Danger by Heather GrahamWithout Mercy by Mariah StewartEven Steven by D.P. LyleDying to Score by Cindy GerardThe Number of Man by J.T. EllisonHard Drive by Bill FloydAfter Hours by William BernhardtBlood In, Blood Out by Brenda NovakWed to Death by Vicki HinzeThe Honeymoon by Julie KennerExecution Dock by James MacomberIn Atlantis by Alexandra SokoloffBreak Even by Pamela CallowDirty Down Low by Debra WebbBroken Hallelujah by Toni McGee CauseyHolding Mercy by Lori ArmstrongVacation Interrupted by Allison BrennanI Heard a Romantic Story by Lee Child