defective? That’s the question freelance writer Micki Demetrius is asked to answer by the
man’s grieving mother, Clarissa White, who refuses to believe his death was an unfortunate
accident. But when the authorities determine it was homicide, Micki is shut out of her
Giving up is easier said than done for Micki. She can’t resist a mystery, and suspicious
characters won’t leave Clarissa alone, from the woman claiming a stake in the victim’s life to a
cagey character who wants his business. As the threat to Clarissa grows, Micki feels compelled
to help her in spite of the danger.
Micki’s three mah jongg pals—Sydney, Marianne and Kat—are drawn into the mystery, but the
retirees have their own challenges. Syd and husband Trip do grandparent duty while their
daughter deals with marital issues. Marianne “finds herself” by writing a one-act play. And Kat
must decide how public to go with her growing friendship with the sheriff. Together, they must
connect the dots in a nefarious web of greed, neglect, secrecy and murder.
Barbara Barrett started reading mysteries when she was pregnant with her first child to keep her mind off things like her changing body and food cravings. When she’d devoured as many Agatha Christies as she could find, she branched out to English village cozies and Ellery Queen.
Later, to avoid a midlife crisis, she began writing fiction at night when she wasn’t at her day job as a human resources analyst for Iowa State Government. After releasing eleven full-length romance novels and one novella, she returned to the cozy mystery genre, using one of her retirement pastimes, the game of mah jongg, as her inspiration. Not only has it been a great social outlet, it has also helped keep her mind active when not writing.
Connect the Dots, the third book in her “Mah Jongg Mystery” series, features four friends who play mah jongg together and share otherwise in each other’s lives. None of the four is based on an actual person. Each is an amalgamation of several mah jongg friends with a lot of Barbara’s imagination thrown in for good measure. The four will continue to appear in future books in the series.
Anticipating the day when she would write her first mystery, she has been a member of the Mystery/Romantic Suspense chapter of Romance Writers of America (Kiss of Death) for over a decade. She credits them with helping her hone her craft. She is also a member of Sisters in Crime and SincIowa.
Barbara is married to the man she met her senior year of college. They have two grown children and eight grandchildren.
Now retired, she is a resident of Florida, although she spends her summers in Iowa, her home state. She earned her B.A. degree in History from the University of Iowa and her Master’s Degree in History from Drake University.
When not in front of her laptop creating her next story, she plays mah jongg, knits and enjoys lunches with friends.