Molly Pitcher look-alike found dead at memorial to Revolutionary War hero

CARLISLE, Pa. — Sunbury Press has released Darkness at First Light, J M West’s third novel in the Carlisle Crime Cases series.

dafl_fcIn Darkness at First Light, Carlisle Homicide Detectives Christopher Snow and Erin ‘Mac’ McCoy discover an unidentified body, dressed like Molly Pitcher’s statue, lashed to the cannon in front of the folk hero’s gravesite. While at the macabre scene, Mac receives a call from Chief March assigning her and K-9 Officer Shadow to an Amber Alert kidnapping. In the process, the CPD IT guru discovers the girl online on a pay-for-porn site, which brings the FBI on board. The trail leads to the Revolutionary War reenactors’ encampment at Valley Forge. As the detectives track ‘Molly Pitcher’s’ elusive killer and Emma’s obsessed kidnapper, the media dog their movements to get the scoop on the sensational trial that follows.

When Mac receives enigmatic, threatening jingles, she risks her life on a solo investigation. As a result, sparks fly as tempers flare at CPD. As the pressure builds, the danger increases! Can Snow and McCoy’s marriage endure the stress of double cases and an infant at home? Can the detectives corral the criminals before they destroy more lives?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Darkness at First Light
is the third in the Carlisle Crime Casesseries of murder mysteries featuring Homicide detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy by Jody McGibney West, pseudonym for Joan M. West, Professor Emerita of English Studies at Harrisburg Area Community College, The Gettysburg Campus. She also taught at Messiah College and Shippensburg University as an adjunct and served as Assistant Director of the Learning Center (SU). She is a member of Sisters in Crime. She has previously published poetry and Glory in the Flower,her debut novel. It depicts four coeds who meet during the turbulent sixties.

She and her husband live near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. They have two sons and two grandsons. In her spare time, West volunteers at the Bookery—Bosler Memorial Library’s used bookstore, participates in the Litwits Book group, and reads voraciously.

molly3EXCERPT:
Death casts a pall of absolute darkness—solid and devoid of sense or sensation, a psyche or any other living trait, a shock nearly beyond human comprehension—and certainly far from the realm of daily conversation—unless it’s somebody else’s. But the abandoned shell tells much, as Dr. Haili Chen, Cumberland County coroner and Fire Marshal Lane Rusk hovered, waiting for a scrim of light to illume the stark scene before them. Rusk’s assistant, Russell Garrett, lumbered among crowded markers carrying a tripod and camera, kicking clumps of dirty snow from his path.

Approaching sirens howled in the distance.

A female corpse dressed in eighteenth-century garb, skirt and legs partially burned, was lashed to the cannon in front of Molly Pitcher’s monument in the Old Carlisle Cemetery enclosed by a limestone wall at the corner of South Bedford and East South Street. In the east, a dove grey ribbon of light exposed a disturbing scene.

The previous night’s downpour had swept the victim’s cap to the ground, freeing limp, mouse-brown curls that hugged the cannon. Eyes—wide pools matching the gray sky—gazed into the void, her face a mask of surprise and terror. Fine crow’s feet, a mole beside her left eyebrow and a wide mouth pulled in a death grimace. A stout, stumpy handle protruded from her chest. Beneath the barrel, her legs and hands were lashed together.

Rusk circled the corpse, examining the scene with a perplexed frown, heavy eyebrows drawn; his mustache quivered as he nosed the charred shreds of burned cloth, bodily fluids and decaying flesh. He scraped a sample from the leg and cut a scrap of the skirt to test. The woman had a decent build, as the wet, coarse homespun clung to her body; she wore no underwear.

“Where’s Detective Snow?” he inquired of Dr. Chen to break the dreadful silence where winter ruled, despite the calendar marking March. A silent cloak of white fog hovered where sounds echoed eerily. Chills shimmied through Rusk’s open coat; he shivered and zipped it.

“On his way.” She consulted her watch, set her leather bag on a nearby stone marker, with an apology to the deceased. She unsnapped it and extracted her thermometer from the inside flap where each sterile instrument was tucked into its own pocket.

“TOD?” He tried again, assuming she’d estimate.

“Hard to say without a liver temp.”

Darkness at First Light: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery
Authored by J M West
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
292 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066485
ISBN-10: 1620066483
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths

Coming Soon on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Darkness-at-First-Light-…

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Nude body found in Letort Spring near Carlisle, Cumberland County, PA

CARLISLE, Pa.Sunbury Press has released J. M. West’s second installment of the Carlisle Crime CasesCourting Doubt and Darkness – A Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy Mystery.

About the Book:
cdad_fcIn the second Carlisle Crimes Case, Courting Doubt and Darkness, Homicide Detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy tail a killer who stymies the police with multiple MO’s. While McCoy testifies at the trial of sisters who kidnapped her in Dying for Vengeance, Snow and Savage recover a  nude body from the Letort Spring. While tracking sparse clues, another killing surfaces  that rings alarms: the victims were connected. The chase leads to an active Marcellus oil rig. As police tangle with hostile suspects, they are courting doubt and darkness, leaving the comfort of Carlisle to the wilds of the Raccoon Mountain. When eight-month pregnant McCoy joins the case, she discovers her Native American relatives are involved. Then she stumbles into the killer’s path!  Join them on their journey!

Excerpt:
Carlisle Police Department’s Senior Detective Christopher Snow hammered the Wrangler’s brakes to avoid blowing through the red light on R 15 south of Lewisburg. “Shit!” Glancing in his rear view and side mirrors for any flashing lights and cocking his head to catch a siren’s whine, he huffed a sigh when none materialized. Oh, he could flash his shield, but that wasn’t setting much of an example.

The recorder on the seat beside him shifted. Snow picked it up, leaned over to open the glove box and tossed it in. His thumbs drummed the steering wheel, waiting impatiently for green while traffic piled up behind him. Unease gripped his gut, and experience had taught him to pay attention. “What spooked that woman during our interview?” he mumbled. “What had she gained from her husband’s death? Her inheritance seemed typical.” The query about her job caused her to break eye contact and cross her arms defensively across her chest. “Why? Because she knows more than she’s telling.” He talked to himself a lot since he’d ordered his wife and partner, Detective Erin McCoy, who usually accompanied him, to man the war room and feed him information when he needed it. “Damn it, woman, why can’t you follow orders?” He had also assigned his former partner Reese Savage to assist Mac, since the Chief relegated him to desk duty.

Neither answered the phone in Conference One when he called for a background check on Greer. CPD had consolidated the case files, data, listed info on white boards on their homicide and two other related ones—at the RV parked along the Susquehanna near Winfield and the Safety Coordinator’s body at the West Enterprises’ Williamsport well.

Worry forced him to accelerate. He dialed HQ again and left a terse message for both. “I need to know what I’m up against!” Part of the Marcellus Shale zone beneath Penn’s Woods, West Enterprises’active well was ‘fracking,’ or shattering the shale with millions of gallons of water, sand and over 500 chemicals miles underneath the surface to free the natural gas and oil, which then flowed to the surface through the horizontal pipes and up the vertical well, to be delivered to consumers.

He dialed Mac’s cell. It went to voicemail. “This is important; neither you nor Savage are at HQ working this case? Where the hell are you?” He snapped the clamshell shut. “You’re both insubordinate, so you’d better have a damn good explanation for your absence!” When his cell chirped, he checked the caller: HQ. “About damn time.”

Snow hit talk. “Hello? Where the hell have you two been?”

Savage explained that they’d gone to BWI to arrest Abigail Benedict for the murder of Mindy Murphy. Then he put Mac on speakerphone to summarize Sienna Greer’s arrest record, which included a DV incident, several DUIs and a road rage incident.

“Chris, where are you exactly?” Erin asked.

He dialed back his anger and gazed at the water. “About twelve miles south of Lewisburg.” The river, a beautiful silvery ribbon slipping downstream, the sun playing upon the waves. Silver and gold reflections darted back and forth, refracted into a thousand dancing crosses of light. What he wouldn’t give to spend a few hours…

While the Susquehanna distracted him, a blue semi barreled out of nowhere, bearing down on him, gaining ground quickly. Though there was room to pass, the trucker just mowed down the highway toward his Jeep. He checked the rear-view mirror as the cab loomed into view. Too late, he floored his accelerator as he veered into the outside lane, the truck following.

Suddenly, squealing breaks and metal smacking metal followed, crunching and what sounded like dragging. His last conscious thought was Mac yelling into the phone. “Describe your location!”

About the Author:
JMWCourting Doubt and Darkness
is the second in the Carlisle Crime Cases series of murder/mysteries featuring Homicide detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy by Jody McGibney West, pseudonym for Joan M. West, Professor Emerita of English Studies at Harrisburg Area Community College, The Gettysburg Campus. She also taught at Messiah College and Shippensburg University as an adjunct and served as Assistant Director of the Learning Center (SU). She has previously published poetry andGlory in the Flower, her debut novel. It depicts four coeds who meet during the turbulent sixties.

She and her husband live near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. They have two sons and two grandsons. In her spare time, West volunteers at the Bookery—Bosler Memorial Library’s used bookstore, participates in the Litwits Book group, and reads voraciously.

Courting Doubt and Darkness: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery
Authored by J. M. West
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
372 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065488
ISBN-10: 1620065487
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Police Procedural

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Courting-Doubt-and-Darkn…

BOOKSIGNING EVENT:

Joan West will be appearing at the Sunbury Press Store ar 50 West Main Street in Mechanicsburg, PA along with author Catherine Jordan (the Bookseller’s Secret) on Friday, February 6th from 6 pm to 9PM.  The authors will read from their books at 8 PM.

Serial killer on the loose in the Cumberland Valley

CARLISLE, Pa.Sunbury Press has released J. M. West’s first novel in the Carlisle Crime Cases series, Dying for Vengeance: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery.

dfv_fcAbout the Book:
Carlisle Homicide Detective Erin McCoy battles the jitters as the first woman in Homicide partnered with Senior Detective Christopher Snow. On their first case, they track a serial killer who’s stalking family members embroiled in an inheritance dispute. The perp dispatches his victims with toxic chemicals. As the detectives chase clues and connect the related victims, their mutual attraction blooms while she nurses him after a shooting incident. But sparks fly when FBI Special Agent Howard offers McCoy a job if she’ll train at Quantico. McCoy returns to Carlisle when she learns she has a rival for Snow’s affections.

Snow’s former partner, Reese Savage, returns to the CPD from Middle-East deployments expecting to resume their bachelor ways. Savage’s ire results in a PTSD spike while he’s tailing a suspect. In the interim, Chief March reassigns McCoy to the K9 Unit. When Mac becomes a target, she learns that she needs Chris to shove and shock her into life.

 

Carlisle Crime Cases series

Carlisle Crime Cases series

Dying for Vengeance is Jody McGibney West’s first murder mystery/romance featuring Detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy in The Carlisle Crime Cases Series. Interested reader may wish to backtrack and meet the Flowers family in her debut novel,Glory in the Flower.

Excerpt:
Relieved to be finished testifying in a local Domestic Violence case, Detective Erin “Mac” McCoy navigated the courthouse stairs. Clambering down concrete steps, wearing spike heels and a bulky quilted jacket while lugging a purse and briefcase, she longed to change into sweats and chill. The defendant and a few suits were clustered near the famed, charismatic defense attorney Antony Karagianis. His dark, wavy hair and distinctive silver sideburns framed telegenic blue eyes. She skirted the staged tableau. Karagianis nodded as she passed but turned to the cameras to explain why his client had been acquitted, despite slashing his wife and threatening his two kids. At the bottom of the steps, a reporter cornered the defense attorney for a sound bite, sticking the microphone in his face.

“I feel like Sisyphus,” Erin muttered, anger surging at the uphill battle with DV; usually the perp was acquitted—or not even tried because the victim refused to press charges. Hiking to her silver Honda Accord a block down West High, Erin fished for her keys and unlocked the door. A woman across the street, with wavy chestnut hair and oversized sunglasses, stood by a mud-brown Dodge Charger parked at the curb, her hands hidden behind her back.

The acquitted sauntered toward them. A thin navy suit, white shirt, and tie failed to hide the dragon tat on his neck. His long dark hair had been washed and gelled back off his face, his mustache and soul patch shaved for the trial. Seeing the woman wiped the satisfied smirk off his face. He rushed to confront her. “You bitch, you filed charges against me! I warned you!” His meaty hands latched onto her neck, squeezing; his body pinned hers against the vehicle. Before Erin could cross the street to intervene, the woman’s right hand came between the couple. A loud pop, then blood and matter spurted from the exit wound. Cordite filled the air. The dead man kept his balance for a few seconds, and then crumpled to the ground, shot through the heart. The gun clattered to the macadam.

About the Author:
Dying for Vengeance
is the first in the Carlisle Crime Cases series of murder/mysteries featuring Homicide detectives Christopher Snow and Erin McCoy by Jody McGibney West, pseudonym for Joan M. West, Professor Emerita of English Studies at Harrisburg Area Community College, The Gettysburg Campus. She also taught at Messiah College and Shippensburg University as an adjunct and served as Assistant Director of the Learning Center (SU). She has previously published poetry and Glory in the Flower, her debut novel. It depicts four coeds who meet during the turbulent sixties.

She and her husband live near Carlisle, Pennsylvania. They have two sons and two grandsons. In her spare time, West volunteers at the Bookery—Bosler Memorial Library’s used bookstore, participates in the Litwits Book group, and reads voraciously.

Dying for Vengeance: A Christopher Snow & Erin McCoy Mystery
Authored by J. M. West
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
394 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620064825
ISBN-10: 1620064820
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Police Procedural

Also available on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Dying-for-Vengeance-9781…

Sunbury Press bookstore to open February 1 in Mechanicsburg

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. — Sunbury Press, the book publisher of trade paperbacks and eBooks located at 50 West Main Street, Mechanicsburg (www.sunburypress.com), is celebrating its tenth year in business in 2014. Sunbury’s books feature established and emerging authors in many fiction and nonfiction categories and are sold through leading booksellers worldwide.

Standing room only...

Standing room only…

“2013 was our best year ever,” said co-owner Lawrence Knorr. “Our sales topped all prior years and we exhibited at Book Expo America in New York City. We also held several great events at our Mechanicsburg office.”

Sunbury Press has grown rapidly over the years and now publishes, on average, 70 books a year, having over 200 titles and 120 authors under management.

“We are a traditional press, not a vanity press,” explained co-owner Tammi Knorr. “We receive over 1,000 manuscript proposals a year and select only the best for publication. We do not charge our authors to publish. Instead, we invest in the manuscript by editing, designing and formatting it into a high quality finished product at our expense. We then pay our authors royalties on the sales.”

Some of Sunbury Press’s best-selling titles include “Pit Bulls” by Anthony Julien, a compilation of historic photos of pit bulls with

Pit Bulls

Pit Bulls

their families, the “Keystone Tombstones” series by Joe Farrell and Joe Farley, documenting the lives and graves of famous people buried in Pennsylvania, Mike Campbell’s “Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last,” revealing the fate of the aviatrix, lost in the South Pacific,” and Ernie Marshall’s “That Night at Surigao,” recording the last engagement between battleships in World War 2. In addition to local, regional and world history, the company publishes historical fiction, action adventure, murder mysteries, horror, literary fiction, children’s, self-help, sports and etc.

The Knorrs have decided to up the ante in 2014, converting their office, which had been a showroom and event space, into a full-fledged Sunbury Press bookstore.

“We had a lot of success with our author events – especially on First Fridays,” said Lawrence. “We had people standing out on the sidewalk trying to hear our authors who were presenting inside. While the vast majority of our sales are online and through bookstores around the world, we have had a number of local people who just want to stop in to buy our books. Our books sold well at our events, so we’ve invested in shelves and fixtures and will be offering all of our titles all of the time at our 50 West Main Street location.”

The new Sunbury Press retail store opens February 1st. Store hours are Tuesday thru Friday 10-5 and Saturday from 9 to 2.

ktcw_pub“We will also be holding events on most First Fridays,” said Tammi. “Those Fridays, we’ll stay open until 10 pm.”

Sunbury Press will be offering special deals available only to walk-in customers, such as bargain books and buy-one-get-one free offers. There will also be a limited number of used books not published by Sunbury Press.

For more information, please see www.sunburypress.com, or on Facebook athttps://www.facebook.com/pages/Sunbury-Press-Books/143239….