by Elizabeth Wilkerson
It’s been a tumultuous year. Calls for change, inclusion, and anti-racism have been front and center during these turbulent months.
Melanated crime fiction writers have long presented fresh perspectives, characters, and settings in novels often marginalized by mainstream media.
Crime Writers of Color is a new organization of authors who support each other’s works and efforts. We’re a lively group with wide-ranging backgrounds and opinions, yet we share a passion: creating worlds that reflect our experiences and vision as observed through our own lens.
I invite you to check out these upcoming books by CWOC authors. Ranging from cozy to cyber-thriller, the stories present a diverse and colorful universe.
Festive Mayhem by Carolyn Marie Wilkins, S.G. Wong, Elizabeth Wilkerson, Stella Oni, Kia Dennis, Forest Issac Jones, Delia C. Pitts, Myra Jolivet, Jennifer J. Chow, Paige Sleuth
Ten crime writers of color have teamed up to offer you the gift of escape this holiday season. From Christmas crime capers to Thanksgiving thrillers, historical hard-boiled to contemporary cozies, mystery fans of all genres will find something to love in this limited-time collection of exclusive, never-before-published seasonal short stories.
Matthew Henson and the Ice Temple of Harlem by Gary Phillips
Set in the political, artistic and cultural crucible that was the Harlem Renaissance, this novel re-imagines real life North Pole explorer Matthew Henson in the pulp tradition of Doc Savage and Indiana Jones. With the help of his pal Bessie Coleman, America’s first black aviatrix, he contends with Dutch Schultz, numbers boss Queenie St. Clair, and Nikola Tesla whose Death Ray he must keep out of the clutches of a plutocrat planning a coup.
Mimi Lee Reads Between the Lines by Jennifer J. Chow
When a local teacher is found dead, LA’s newest pet groomer Mimi Lee finds herself in a pawful predicament—with her younger sister’s livelihood on the line. Mimi Lee is on top of the world. She has a thriving pet grooming business, the sweetest boyfriend, and a talking cat to boot. When she arrives at the school where her sister Alice works, she’s expecting a fun girls’ night out—but instead finds a teacher slumped over in her car, dead.
Deadly Sacrifice by Stella Oni
When a child’s severed hand is found, DC Toks Ade and DS Philip Dean are put on the case. Thrown into a world of Nigerian traditional customs, ritual sacrifice, and international trafficking, they must find the guilty parties before more children are lost and more limbs are found. A chilling new thriller introducing Detectives Toks Ade, Philip Dean, and investigative author Coretta Davis.
Scavenger by Christopher Chambers
Homeless addict Dickie Cornish is swept off the streets of the Nation’s Capital by a wealthy lawyer to hunt down a teen runaway. Awful truths and double crosses follow in this twist on classic noir and hardboiled crime fiction.
Steal Away by V. M. Burns
When search and rescue worker, Marti Alexander, is sent on a job and discovers the body of her ex-husband, all clues point to her as the murderer. However, there’s more to this murder than meets the eye. Can Detective RJ Franklin see beyond the obvious to catch a killer?
The Ninja’s Blade by Tori Eldridge
Lily Wong?a Chinese-Norwegian modern-day ninja?has more trouble than she was bargaining for when controlling grandparents arrive in Los Angeles from Hong Kong at the same time she goes undercover in the dangerous world of youth sex trafficking. As she hunts for a kidnapped prostitution victim, a missing high school girl, and a sociopathic trafficker, the surviving members of a murderous street gang hunt for her.
What You Don’t Know by Bianca Sloane
It’s Saturday morning. April Fool’s Day to be exact. Malcolm Gilbert is on his way to play golf. His wife, Blair, is headed to the hair salon. That’s the plan anyway. Then the doorbell rings. And their nightmare begins. For the next forty-eight hours, the Gilberts are at the mercy of sadists who unleash a seemingly unending campaign of terror against them. The next time your doorbell rings, will you answer it?
The Cipher by Isabella Maldonado
FBI Special Agent Nina Guerrera escaped a serial killer’s trap at sixteen. Eleven years later, the man who abducted her is determined to reclaim his lost prize, using the internet to invite the public to play along. His coded riddles make him a depraved social media superstar—a cyber-ghost dubbed “the Cipher.” Partnered with the FBI’s preeminent mind hunter, Dr. Jeffrey Wade, Nina tracks the predator across the country, racing to stop a deadly killer as the world watches.
Poetic Justice by Andrea J. Johnson
In this courtroom cozy, a trial stenographer is haunted by a near-drowning from her childhood bully. But when that nemesis appears on her court’s docket, the judge is strangled in the courthouse bathroom. So Victoria teams up with a state trooper to untangle the case, that is, until the prosecutor hangs himself during an election celebration, confirming his guilt. Victoria, however, believes the truth lies in her trial transcript. Can she crack the code and capture the killer?
Mistletoe, Moussaka & Murder by Tina Kashian
When Lucy Berberian signs up for this year’s Polar Bear Plunge at her Jersey Shore town to fundraise for the senior center, she realizes she may have been a bit too brave. Lucy runs into the freezing Atlantic Ocean, then hightails it back to the shore. Just when she thinks the worst is over, a chilly scream alerts everyone to a body lying at the surf. Can Lucy solve the case before her hometown’s holiday is washed out to sea?
Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Be sure to check out our new mystery podcast too with mystery short stories, and first chapters read by local actors. A new episode went up this week.
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases.