It’s a tradition around here that Louise and her doppelganger, Donna Simonetta, visit me on their books’ release day and it’s always a supreme pleasure for me.
So, let’s get to it….. here’s Louise and the Port Sunset gang!
Smuggling, social media sensations, and shootings…just another summer in Port Sunset
Solving mysteries with my fun-loving grandmother Lulu, her friends, and Spud the corgi is my side hustle. By day I’m Millie Wentworth the assistant general manager of the swanky Gulf Palms Resort, so you wouldn’t think sleuthing would be in my skill set. But lately it has been, and since summer is our busy season in Port Sunset I’d hoped it would be murder-free. Is that too much to ask?
Apparently so, because when social influencer Merry Marissa’s yacht cruises into town, we’re suddenly up to our necks in smuggling, stalkers, and slaughter. I have more suspects than the Tipsy Turtle has mai tais. And I’m without my sleuthing team, because Lulu’s Crew are busy going viral to raise money for animal charities.
Can I unravel the mystery and find the killer before Lulu’s Crew and I become the next victims?
“I’m no expert, but I don’t think that’s how you do downward dog. What the
ever-loving fudge is she doing?” I watched a woman in a bikini roughly the size of four microchips strung together with dental floss as she posed on all fours on the beach.
“In all fairness it is a doggy position. Just not the yoga one,” Lulu said.
I swatted my grandmother’s arm. “Not helping, Lulu.”
“She’s been doing this the whole time, and whatever it is, it is not yoga.” My BFF Nell was attempting to lead a yoga practice for guests of the Gulf Palms Resort and Spa on the gorgeous Gulf Coast of Florida. “I’m not even sure she’s a hotel guest. She’s being very disruptive. I had to stop the class because people were getting so upset. Can you get her to stop sometime before my morning yoga practice is over?”
Nell was right, as the Assistant General Manager of the hotel, it was on me to put an end to this woman’s shenanigans. I pasted on my best professional smile and walked across the powdery white sand. “Excuse me––”
The woman looked directly at the smartphone she had positioned on a tripod with a professional-looking light ring to film whatever the heck it was she was doing. She beamed at the camera and said, “Sorry Merry Maniacs, but my public is interrupting. I’ll be right back to you, my lovelies.” She flashed a peace sign at the camera with a roguish wink and then crawled over to turn off the video recording. She stood up, flicked her long, expertly waved brown hair over her shoulder, put her hands on her hips, and glared at me. “Just who the f–––”
“Hello,” I interrupted before she could utter a very un-yoga-friendly word. Internally my professional smile might’ve wavered, but I kept it on my face as I stepped toward her with my hand extended. She scowled at my hand as if I were offering her rotten fish. I lowered my hand but responded pleasantly. “I’m Millie Wentworth, the Assistant General Manager of the Gulf Palms Resort and Spa. And you are?”
Her big brown eyes widened and I noticed even on the beach she had full make-up on and false eyelashes luxuriant enough that a breeze might’ve wafted by my face as she blinked at me. “Don’t you know who I am? I’m Merry Marissa.”
The name Merry Marissa meant nothing to me, in spite of her pronouncement of it as if she were telling me she was the Queen of England. “Ms. Marissa––”
“Not Ms. Marissa,” she snapped. “My name is Marrisa Merriweather. Merry Marissa is my social media handle. My brand. M-E-R-R-Y. Because I’m so fun-loving.”
At the moment, she didn’t seem fun-loving so much as cheesed off, but I let it slide.
Lulu cocked her head and looked at the woman. “I’ve seen Merry Marissa online before. I didn’t recognize you.” She turned to me and added, “She’s a big-time social influencer.
Merry Marissa nodded. “The old lady is right. I am big time.” She looked my grandmother up and down and her jaw dropped when she got to Lulu’s white bobbed hair, currently streaked with a lovely shade of aqua. “You are obviously one well-informed person. And I love the hair! Don’t tell me you got it done in this podunk town.”
“I did.” Lulu jerked her thumb over her should at the historic pink resort where I worked. “At the Tranquility Spa and Salon in the hotel.”
“I’ll have to check it out. Keeping up my appearance is very important to my brand.”
Nell cleared her throat, and I jolted as I realized how off track our conversation had gotten. “I’m sorry, Ms. Merriweather, but Nell is leading a yoga practice for guests of the hotel, so I’m going to have to ask you to film elsewhere.”
She shook her head and snapped. “No way.”
“I’m sorry, what?” I asked.
“I’m trying to film myself attending the yoga class for my followers. Show them how ‘spiritual’ I can be.” Marissa made air quotes around the word spiritual and then snorted while she rolled her eyes.
“Yes, but these people are paying guests at our resort and actually participating in the practice, not just posing for pictures. And you are recording our guests for public display without their permission. I’m afraid I must insist you delete the video and move on, Ms. Merriweather.”
Get your copy here:
And if you prefer print copies, click this link: PRINT
Louise Stevens is the author of the Port Sunset Mysteries series. A lover of mysteries since her discovery of Nancy Drew many years ago, she is thrilled to be writing cozy mysteries now. She lives in Maryland with her husband, who also loves a good mystery, in a house packed with books.
Louise Stevens is the pen name of contemporary romance author Donna Simonetta
Connect with Louise here:
And check out the first two books in the series:
When the obnoxious guest in the penthouse is poisoned beside his private pool, my daily planner is turned upside down. I’m Millie Wentworth, Assistant General Manager of the swanky Gulf Palms Resort and Spa and solving the murder shouldn’t be my job, but the only food found near the body is a charcuterie board sent to the victim by yours truly.
The Port Sunset Police are looking my way until a shocking revelation shifts their attention to a friend. Suddenly, cracking the case moves to the top of my to-do list and it’s up to me to find the real killer and clear my friend’s name.
Uncovering the truth should be a breeze with me, my pink-haired grandmother, her rescue corgi, and her crew of fun-loving septuagenarian beach bunnies on the case. What could possibly go wrong?
****COZY MYSTERY OF THE YEAR FINALIST, N.N. Light’s Annual Book Awards****
“Get ready to curl up with your next favorite book!” USA Today Best-selling Author Claire Marti
“…one of the best cozy mysteries I’ve ever read.” N.N. Light’s Book Heaven
“…you won’t want this rollicking romp to end.” 5-Star Amazon Review
I’m Millie Wentworth and I never thought I’d be involved in another murder, but here I am smack dab in the middle of a crime wave at the swanky resort where I’m Assistant General Manager. It started with a major diamond heist and ended with a dead body on the beach.
When one of my grandmother Lulu’s group of fun-loving septuagenarian friends is a prime suspect it’s time for Lulu’s Crew, Spud the corgi, and me, to get sleuthing and uncover the real criminals.
And because dodging mobsters, international jewel thieves, and solving crimes isn’t stressful enough, my hypercritical parents are in town too. My mother doesn’t approve of Lulu and me in the best of times, and these are decidedly not the best of times. Plus she’s already planning my imaginary wedding to my kinda-sorta boyfriend Scott.
All I need to do is catch a murderer plus a jewel thief and survive my parents’ visit. No problem, right?
See the entire series here: PORT SUNSET MYSTERIES