Our theme for this issue of MYSTERY, CRIME, AND MAYHEM is Library Cases. We explore the idea that stories take place not only between the covers of books, but also in the places where books are kept.

When my three kids were grade-school-age, they enjoyed activities offered by the local library summer program. One August afternoon, all four us spent a couple of hours with live, slithering reptiles. All went well.

In my story, though, I imagine things going very, very wrong for the librarian, my fictional mom, and her son in “Snakes in the Stacks.”

Current issue of Mystery, Crime, and Mayhem quarterly magazine

This issue of MCM is a collection of cozy stories by the syndicate. We’ll make you giggle, shake your head, or at the very least, think about libraries in a new way.

Library Cases is available as an ebook from most online booksellers and in paperback from Amazon. To get your copy of the magazine, click on the cover above or follow this universal link to your favorite retailer.

In this issue, you’ll find ten entertaining tales plus an intriguing essay:

“Snakes in the Stacks” by Diana Deverell

“The Book Cipher” by Cate Martin

“The Overdue Burrower” by Robert Jeschonek

“A Lucky Man” by Annie Reed

“Murder by Manga” by Chris Chan

“The Dangers of Tinkering with History” by Kari Kilgore

“The Little Library Thief” by Scott William Carter

“Because of Louisa” by Joslyn Chase

“A Rose By Any Other Name” by Leah R Cutter

“CSI: Song Dynasty China” – an essay by Chris Chan


My latest short story “Under the Influence of Elmore Leonard” is in UNLIKELY PARTNERS, the summer 2023 issue of Thrill Ride – The Magazine. I loved writing my story and I enjoyed reading the nine other tales of thriller adventure and mayhem. You’ll have a good time with this anthology!


Click on the graphic above or follow this universal link to your favorite online retailer to buy your copy.


Unlikely Partners, the next issue of THRILL RIDE magazine will be released on June 21, 2023. You’ll enjoy ten tales in which the driving characters are thrown together by chance, assignment, or circumstance. Driven apart by skills, personality, or they just don’t trust each other. Until their lives are on the line and their only options are to cooperate—or die.

Unlikely Partners, Issue #2 of Thrill Ride - The Magazine


My contribution, “Under the Influence of Elmore Leonard”, builds on a five-day assignment I had during the Cold War. I was tasked to handle routine tasks for a senior Foreign Service Officer at an international conference on cooperation and security in Europe.

For this story, I moved the action to West Berlin, added some problematic characters, and let my heroine deal with them. Living out my fantasies is her job. Of course, she headed straight for thriller territory.

Click on the cover above or follow this link to your favorite online bookseller to pre-order your copy of Unlikely Partners and have it sent to you on June 21, the first day of summer.

COMING IN AUGUST: MYSTERY, CRIME, AND MAYHEM Issue # 15 releases on August 15. The theme is Library Cases and my short story, “Snakes in the Stacks”, shares space with eight more stories and an essay,  themed as Library Cases. I’ll post more information as it becomes available.