Today's Special Guest Author is
I am hosting a Deadly Policy Book Discussion and would love to see you over there. You will have the opportunity to interact with Mitzi and ask her any questions you want about her wonderful novel Deadly Policy.
While reading about Mitzi, I couldn't believe how much we have in common. Here's a little more information about her taken directly from her website:
Mitzi grew up in Texas, loving everything about the huge state. From the stark beauty of the desert plains, to the majestic glory of the mountains, to the intense power of the ocean, she’s never had a desire to live anywhere else. Traveling is nice, but there’s no place like Texas!
She was raised in El Paso with her three brothers, and credits her parents, Lewis and Lucretia Rothman, for providing an idyllic childhood. There hasn’t been a sport invented that the family was not involved in, and Mitzi vividly remembers weekends where the family rushed from a gymnastics meet to a football game and then to the golf course, and still somehow fit in chores and meals! Her parents are her true heroes and there aren’t enough words to express her gratitude.
Her family relocated to Houston, but Mitzi moved to San Antonio with her grandmother and landed her first job where she found she had a love for bookkeeping and making numbers work. In 1981 she married her soul mate and best friend, John, and in 1982 their son, John Lewis, was born. Mitzi thoroughly enjoys the moments her husband steps in as her "co-plotter" to add spice to a scene with his unique sense of humor. With the love and support from the two most important men in her life, Mitzi has had the freedom to explore a myriad of interests and that’s when she discovered she loved to write. Before tackling novels, Mitzi wrote several feature articles for Our Ageless Times and a current event article for Builder/Architect.
Don't mess with Millie!
DEADLY POLICY by MITZI KELLY was such a fun read. This is the second book in the Silver Sleuths Mystery series, but it is a stand alone. I have not had the pleasure of reading Classic Revenge, the first book in the series, and I had no problem following the action in Deadly Policy.
What do you get when you have a tenacious 80 year-old bulldog of a mother, Millie Morrow, a 65 year-old timid, soft spoken, genteel woman, Edna Radcliff, and a 45 year-old woman who is the voice of reason, Trish Anderson? You get a team of women on a mission that has a combined total of 190 years of life's experience as well as laugh after laugh.
When it becomes clear that Millie's daughter is being implicated as the inside person at an insurance agency for a rash of car thefts perpetrated on policy holders, Millie and her friends kick into high gear to clear her name. You will follow the funny actions these silver sleuths take to solve the case. This is a lighthearted read that will have you laughing at the interactions of these elderly ladies taking on not only the bad guys but the local police as well.
I thoroughly enjoyed this read and highly recommend it to women of all ages. Especially to those of us over the age of 40. I can only hope that I'm as spunky as these wonderful characters when I reach their age.
Books by Mitzi Kelly:
The tragic accident claiming the life of Susan Wiley had been classified as just that, an accident. Then why is her husband being charged with her murder? The very thought is ludicrous. But Chief of Police Henry Espinoza doesn't agree, refusing to listen to arguments that Sam's neighbors, Trish Anderson, Edna Radcliff and Millie Morrow present regarding his character and the relationship he had with his wife.
Angry at being dismissed so easily, the women resolve to prove Sam's innocence, not only to help their friend, but to show Henry they are not ready for a nursing home just yet. Using the experience, determination, and pigheadedness their combined ages of 193 years afford them, they rush headlong into danger and intrigue, learning something about themselves during the process. They seem to have a knack for this detective stuff!
When a sudden rash of stolen cars brings Millie Morrow's daughter under suspicion for conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, Millie convinces her two best friends, Trish Anderson and Edna Radcliff, to help her find out who is trying to frame Michelle. Knowing the odds are against them that they will be able to discover who the thugs are, Trish and Edna nevertheless go through the motions of investigating, hoping Millie will feel productive in helping her daughter while the police do the real detective work.
But the situation becomes much more serious when a body is found in front of the insurance office Michelle works for. And even though the evidence pointing to an inside job is purely circumstantial, it could still destroy Michelle, something the ladies are determined to prevent. They're going to have to work fast to present a different theory for the police to consider, though, since Millie has once again alienated Henry Espinoza, the chief of police. And she's alienated someone else, too, if the suspicious incidents suddenly plaguing her are anything to go by.
Keeping Millie out of trouble while attempting to clear her daughter's name will take every ounce of skill . . . or luck . . . the amateur sleuths possess.
Deadly Policy Excerpt:
Night had fallen over the quiet neighborhood and a brisk breeze had sprung up, ushering in another cold front. Lights were coming on in the houses and the comforting smell of firewood smoke wafted through the air. Trish shivered, wishing she had brought her coat. She could be sitting in front of her own fireplace, watching television and sipping hot cocoa instead of venturing out in the cold to find a mischievous car that may or may not be parked in its owner’s driveway, and that may or may not have been involved in the damage at Millie’s. Geez . . . she really needed to make more friends and rethink her whole social life.
“Here she comes now,” Edna said as Millie’s front door opened. Then she looked closer. “What is that she’s carrying?”
Trish shrugged. “I don’t know, but it looks like she’s bringing everything but the kitchen sink.”
Millie scrambled into the backseat amid a lot of grunting and groaning, and then something landed on the floorboard with a loud thud. She pulled a pair of dark sunglasses from her purse, slipped them on her nose and leaned back in the seat. “What are we waiting for?” She was wearing a straw gardening hat with purple daisies stitched on the brim, a black sweat suit with black tennis shoes, and from her neck hung a pair of binoculars which looked as if they originated from the Civil War era.
“What’s with the sunglasses?” Trish asked. “And what was that noise?”
“I don’t want Barbara to recognize me if she happens to be outside, and I brought my baseball bat for protection. We don’t know what kind of neighborhood Barbara lives in. And, just in case we need a distraction, I brought my megaphone.”
“Oh, of course.” Trish gave Edna a look that said Millie needs to be committed. Barbara Ferguson lived in an upscale neighborhood not far from the community of Grand River. Millie’s baseball bat probably wouldn’t be necessary. The subdivision was fairly new with a few houses still under construction. Two-story and large one-story structures built with brick, rock and stucco made up the majority of the homes on the street Barbara lived on, and the fresh landscaping of young trees and bushes in the tiny front yards were evidence this area of the subdivision had been only recently completed.
Halfway down the block, Edna said, “Here it is! This one on the right with the tan stucco exterior. Is that Barbara’s car, Millie?” A soft light from the garage reflected off of a silver Mercedes sedan parked in the driveway.
Millie had her nose pressed up to the glass. “Hmm . . . I think so. Pull up a little bit, Trish, and I’ll go check it out.”
Trish bit her lip as she edged closer to the curb right past Barbara’s house. Millie’s plan to investigate Barbara’s car had seemed harebrained when they had discussed it. Now that they were actually sitting in front of Barbara’s house, the plan seemed downright insane. “I don’t think this is such a good idea, Millie. What if someone sees you?”
“That’s why I wore a disguise! Besides, I’ll only be a second.”
Millie pulled her camera out of her purse and opened the car door. Bending low, she started tip-toeing across Barbara’s yard toward the driveway, and that’s when Trish noticed she was also carrying the bat. “I don’t have a good feeling about this.”
Edna sunk low in the seat. “Me, neither.”
They watched Millie make her way to the driveway and then slowly circle the car. When she was standing at the hood, she bent down to look at it closely and then raised her fist in a success gesture. She lowered the bat to the ground and snapped a couple of pictures. Trish glanced quickly at the neighboring houses, hoping the flash had not aroused any suspicions, but everything seemed perfectly fine.
Edna let out a deep breath as Millie headed back toward them. “I’m glad that’s over and we can get out of here,” she whispered.
Trish was about to agree when she saw Millie stop beside Barbara’s mailbox. Her eyes widened as she saw Millie struggling to raise the bat over her head. “Oh, no!” she exclaimed, just as Millie took a swing at the mailbox. Clang! The loud ringing sound reverberated through the still night as Millie hit the ground, the force of her swing knocking her on her rear. Momentarily stunned, Millie shook her head, then she scrambled to her feet, grabbed the bat and rushed to their car.
“What are you waiting for?” she gasped. “Let’s get out of here!” Millie struggled to drag the bat in the car before slamming the door. She was breathing hard and . . . laughing!
Trish noticed a couple of porch lights come on and decided now was not the time to lecture Millie on her behavior. She pressed her foot to the floor and she clamped her lips tight. She rounded the corner, wheels screeching, and then forced her foot to the brake, slowing the car down to the speed limit. Her hands were shaking so badly she couldn’t loosen her grip on the steering wheel. It was a good thing, because had she been able to, she would have reached into the back seat and strangled Millie.
“What were you thinking?” she demanded, turning to glare at Millie. “Do you realize you just damaged government property?”
“Watch where you are going, dear,” Edna said calmly. “We sure don’t want to get in a wreck and have the police arrive.”
Trish turned back around but she cast a quick look Edna. Her friend wasn’t quite as calm as her voice portrayed. Her face was pale and her eyes were opened wide, and her hands were clasped tightly in her lap. She wants to clobber Millie too, Trish thought, comforted by the knowledge that she wasn’t the only one considering murder.
Millie scooted forward and placed her hands on the front seats. She was still chuckling. “Wow! That was fun!”
Edna turned slowly. “Fun? Millie, do you realize you probably just committed a felony?”
“Hogwash! You two need to stop overreacting. Anyway, if it is a felony, I bet Barbara’s is worse. She destroyed my garbage can and my mailbox!”
Trish was dismayed at Millie’s flippant attitude. “This is serious, Millie.”
“I’m not joking, either. I can claim I was emotionally attached to my mailbox and went temporarily insane,” she said, matter-of-factly. “There’s nothing to worry about, girls.”
“Okay, wiseacre,” Trish said sardonically. “And how will you explain temporary insanity when you took the time to grab your bat and drive all the way over here? It sounds like premeditation to me, and probably any jury too.”
Millie leaned back in her seat. “Well, I hadn’t really thought about it from that viewpoint. Maybe we better go home now.”
Don't forget to join us over at the Deadly Policy Book Discussion!