Guest Post: Lois Winston

My name is Anastasia Pollack. Once upon a time I lived the American dream—a loving husband and two great kids, a home in an upscale town with an excellent school system, and a job I loved, working as the crafts editor for a women’s magazine. Life was perfect.

Until it wasn’t.

My husband had told me he was off on a business trip to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. However, unbeknownst to me, his trusting wife, he’d flown to Las Vegas, where he proceeded to drop dead at the craps table. sleuthing women 3-D.2But that wasn’t the worst of it. After he died, I discovered Karl’s well-closeted gambling addiction. He’d not only blown through all our savings, he’d cashed in his life insurance policy, taken out a second mortgage on the house, maxed out our credit cards, drained the kids’ college funds, and borrowed fifty grand from the mob.

Ladies, a word of warning: Don’t be like me. Too late I realized that abdicating all financial responsibility to my not-so-dearly departed was the worst mistake of my life. I’m now up the wazoo in debt, have a Mafia loan shark threatening me, and—to add insult to injury—I’m stuck with my semi-invalid communist mother-in-law and her nasty devil dog. Permanently. Or at least ‘til death do us part. With the way my luck has gone lately, she’ll outlive me by decades.

And did I mention that when I went back to work after the funeral, I discovered a dead body in my office? Guess who the cops are looking at as Suspect Numero Uno? How lucky can a girl get?


USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, children’s chapter books, and nonfiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Kirkus Reviews dubbed her critically acclaimed Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” In addition, Lois is an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry. Visit Lois/Emma at and Anastasia at the Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers blog, Follow her on Pinterest at, and onTwitter at Sign up for her newsletter at


Find out in author Lois Winston’s Assault With a Deadly Glue Gun, one of the books featured in Sleuthing Women: 10 First-in-Series Mysteries, a collection of full-length mysteries featuring murder and assorted mayhem by ten critically acclaimed, award-winning, and bestselling authors. Each novel in the set is the first book in an established multi-book series—a total of over 3,000 pages of reading pleasure for lovers of amateur sleuth, caper, and cozy mysteries, with a combined total of over 1700 reviews on Amazon, averaging 4 stars. Titles include:

Assault With a Deadly Glue Gun, an Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery by Lois Winston—Working mom Anastasia is clueless about her husband’s gambling addiction until he permanently cashes in his chips and her comfortable middle-class life craps out. He leaves her with staggering debt, his communist mother, and a loan shark demanding $50,000. Then she’s accused of murder…

Murder Among Neighbors, a Kate Austen Suburban Mystery by Jonnie Jacobs — When Kate Austen’s socialite neighbor, Pepper Livingston, is murdered, Kate becomes involved in a sea of steamy secrets that bring her face to face with shocking truths—and handsome detective Michael Stone.

Skeleton in a Dead Space, a Kelly O’Connell Mystery by Judy Alter—Real estate isn’t a dangerous profession until Kelly O’Connell stumbles over a skeleton and runs into serial killers and cold-blooded murderers in a home being renovated in Fort Worth. Kelly barges through life trying to keep from angering her policeman boyfriend Mike and protect her two young daughters.

In for a Penny, a Cleopatra Jones Mystery by Maggie Toussaint—Accountant Cleo faces an unwanted hazard when her golf ball lands on a dead banker. The cops think her BFF shot him, so Cleo sets out to prove them wrong. She ventures into the dating world, wrangles her teens, adopts the victim’s dog, and tries to rein in her mom…until the killer puts a target on Cleo’s back.

The Hydrogen Murder, a Periodic Table Mystery by Camille Minichino—A retired physicist returns to her hometown of Revere, Massachusetts and moves into an apartment above her friends’ funeral home. When she signs on to help the Police Department with a science-related homicide, she doesn’t realize she may have hundreds of cases ahead of her.

Retirement Can Be Murder, A Baby Boomer Mystery by Susan Santangelo—Carol Andrews dreads her husband Jim’s upcoming retirement more than a root canal without Novocain. She can’t imagine anything worse than having an at-home husband with time on his hands and nothing to fill it—until Jim is suspected of murdering his retirement coach.

Dead Air, A Talk Radio Mystery by Mary Kennedy—Psychologist Maggie Walsh moves from NY to Florida to become the host of WYME’s On the Couch with Maggie Walsh. When her guest, New Age prophet Guru Sanjay Gingii, turns up dead, her new roommate Lark becomes the prime suspect. Maggie must prove Lark innocent while dealing with a killer who needs more than just therapy.

A Dead Red Cadillac, A Dead Red Mystery by RP Dahlke—When her vintage Cadillac is found tail-fins up in a nearby lake, the police ask aero-ag pilot Lalla Bains why an elderly widowed piano teacher is found strapped in the driver’s seat. Lalla confronts suspects, informants, cross-dressers, drug-running crop dusters, and a crazy Chihuahua on her quest to find the killer.

Murder is a Family Business, an Alvarez Family Murder Mystery by Heather Haven—Just because a man cheats on his wife and makes Danny DeVito look tall, dark and handsome, is that any reason to kill him? The reluctant and quirky PI, Lee Alvarez, has her work cut out for her when the man is murdered on her watch. Of all the nerve.

Murder, Honey, a Carol Sabala Mystery by Vinnie Hansen—When the head chef collapses into baker Carol Sabala’s cookie dough, she is thrust into her first murder investigation. Suspects abound at Archibald’s, the swanky Santa Cruz restaurant where Carol works. The head chef cut a swath of people who wanted him dead from ex-lovers to bitter rivals to greedy relatives.

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17 thoughts on “Guest Post: Lois Winston”

  1. Thank you for visiting with us Lois. What a wonderful introduction to Anastasia. She is a delightful character. The boxed set sounds too good to pass up. All my favorite authors in one set. Yummy.


  2. Thank you, Mary, Kait, and Sue! Sleuthing Women is a great way to get to know some fabulous sleuths and their authors if you don’t already know them (and all 10 books are only 99 cents right now)


  3. Thanks for “stopping by,” and what a great introduction to your character. The “Sleuthing Women: 10 First-in-Series Mysteries” is just too good to pass up. I have read some but not all of the books, but I like to keep my “e-reader” full of things to read just in case I am kidnapped by Martians, and they take me to a far off spot with no WiFi to get more books. (or I have to wait to pick up someone after an “event”)


    1. 3 no 7 (interesting user name!), I know what you mean. My Kindle app is chock full of unread books yet I keep buying more. I do hope the Martians have wi-fi, though. They may have some great authors up there that you’d like to read.

      Pamela, so glad you enjoyed the excerpt!


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