Category Archives: Mystery/Suspense


Welcome, Andrew Eustace Anselmi!

We welcome Andrew Eustace Anselmi to the Highlighted Author this week. We are excited to feature his debut novel, The Autumn Crush. It’s a fast ride of a novel containing a rise to corporate success, heavy politics, action, suspense, and thought-provoking issues raised by immigration and cultural conflicts. Hope you enjoy the feature!

–Jo Grafford, Highlighted Author Co-Hostess

The Autumn Crush

91ysSE8TGtL._SL1500_Guy Bennett was one of America’s post-World War II success stories. Born of Italian immigrants during the Depression, he became a captain of industry, with a skyscraper in New York City and a son in the United States Senate. The applause mutes and friends grow scarce, however, when Guy stands before the court in 1989 accused of the double murder of his business partner, Vito Petrozzini, and Petrozzini’s wife. District Attorney Thomas Straid, still licking his wounds from his senatorial defeat to Guy’s son, believes he has all the evidence that he needs to throw away the key on Guy. The defense spans the globe and reaches back generations in search of an acquittal, unearthing a family secret that reveals the cold and devastating truth. In the end, a diminished yet renewed Bennett family gathers for their annual rite of making wine, which they call The Autumn Crush.

Order now on Amazon.


“For his debut, Anselmi has written an ambitious and downright old-fashioned novel.” —Kirkus Reviews

“In a dramatic novel exploring the cost of assimilation … Anselmi examines grand themes of family, loyalty, wealth, and devotion in a promising plot that reveals the hardships and triumphs of twentieth-century immigrants.” —Clarion Review

“An epic story of pursuing the great American dream … Rich character development and lots of surprises kept me flipping the pages as fast as my eyes could read them.” —Luxury Reading

“Anselmi’s ongoing commentary on racism … may make readers cringe, but it’s a realistic reflection of multicultural America.” —BlueInk Reviews

About the Author

Andrew Eustace Anselmi was born in Livingston, New Jersey in 1965 to a household rooted in first generation Italian-American ways. He has been an attorney in private practice for twenty five years, during which time he has received extensive praise for his work in complex litigation and recognized for his charity. Drawing upon his upbringing, career, and experiences as a husband and father, he has become a novelist. His current project is a trilogy tracking a twentieth century New American family, the Bennetts, through the cultural conflicts and hedonism of the 1980s and 90s. Andrew currently lives in Chester, New Jersey.



Welcome, Anneliese Vandell!

We’re excited to welcome Anneliese Vandell to the Highlighted Author. In her own words, she “…isn’t the kind of woman you want to bring home to your mother. She specializes in writing steamy erotic romance with a twist of suspense, starring alpha males who are handsome, commanding, and fiercely protective of the women they love. When she is not writing, she can most likely be found searching for the perfect New York bagel.” We are featuring her Hush Hush! series this week (books 1-3 are available). Enjoy the feature!

–Jo Grafford, Highlighted Author Co-Hostess

Hush Hush! Book #1

Hush-Hush-Cover-1Fifty Shades of Grey meets Revenge in this tantalizing new series about a young woman who’s willing to do anything in the name of vengeance. 

Something terrible happened to April Morrison when she was eleven years old. When she returns home to New Orleans fourteen years later as “Sophia,” she has only one word on her mind: revenge. She’s got her eye on Charles and Barbara Hawthorne, the crowning jewel of New Orleans’ elite and the ones responsible for turning her life upside down.

Enter Liam Hawthorne, the couple’s successful, strikingly handsome, and irresistibly dominant thirty-two year old son. When Liam makes a provocative proposal, it occurs to April that he may be just the “in” she needs. But what she doesn’t bargain for is Liam’s insatiable—and thrilling—sexual appetite. And as Liam begins to test April’s limits, she realizes that appearances are not what they seem.

Read the first chapter by clicking HERE. Add to your Goodreads TBR list by clicking HERE. Purchase on    AMAZON.

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Welcome, Morgan St. James!

A Note from Morgan

MORGANI call myself an “accidental writer,” because that wasn’t what I started out to be. Okay, I admit, I’ve reinvented myself many times, had many careers, and finally found my calling as a writer.

Back in the late 1970s I was a partner in an interior design studio in the L.A. area. A prestigious magazine at the time, Designers West, approached us about writing an article for them about a unique living room/family room floor we had designed. What exposure! Of course, we said yes.

There was a little problem, though. We were not writers. The photographers came out and took shots of us sitting on packing crates on this beautiful floor which was created from the wood in packing crates. Everything was set to go except our article.

We tried so many approaches, but wound up with piles of crumpled paper. The night before our deadline, we worked on it like demons and still nothing seemed to work. All we could think of was how embarrassing it would be to come up empty-handed. If Designers West had a blank page where our article was supposed to be we would be shunned like yesterday’s garbage!

Finally, after a few glasses of wine, an epiphany hit us. Don’t do a techie article. Do a spoof on a noir mystery. We were on fire and the story came fast and furious. We began it with “We were sitting in our studio drinking tea, when the phone rang.” We proceeded to detail a dangerous search of the waterfront and other fun stuff while actually telling how the floor was designed.The next morning we submitted it and waited for the editor to call us ranting and raving about how awful it was. All of the articles in that magazine were either industry news or “how to.”

Well, she did call, but not with the message we expected. She loved it and wanted us to write more articles for the magazine. My partner was also an actress, and not interested in writing. I was, and went on to write many more articles for them. After that, I wrote articles on all types of topics for various publications. In the mid 90s I began writing fiction with my sister, and now have 11 books in publictin (either written solo or with a co-author), over 600 published articles and don’t’ intend to slow up any time soon.

I learned a lot about the craft of writing and now give workshops on topics that baffled me in the beginning.


My releases this year were the funny crime novels Ripoff, a clever scam to embezzle millions from the Federal prison system, the second edition of the Silver Sisters Mystery, A Corpse in the Soup, written with my real sister Phyllice Bradner, wherein the Silver Sisters track a killer through the world of TV cooking shows, the novelette Getting Even, somewhat of a prequel to Ripoff, and the upcoming Izzy and Me, co-authored with Dennis N. Griffin—Gina Marion’s true story about being the daughter of Izzy Marion, “Hair Stylist to the Stars,” entertainer, and behind closed doors—an abuser..

I think you will enjoy navigating the twists and turns of A Corpse in the Soup. Identical twins, Goldie Silver, are an over-the-hill flower child with a heart of gold who owns the Silver Spoon Antique Shoppe in Juneau, Alaska and her sister Godiva Olivia DuBois, a wealthy, manipulative Beverly Hills widow who writes the syndicated advice to the lovelorn column “Ask G.O.D.” (her initials). They get unwanted help from their 80 year-old mother Flossie and Uncle Sterling, former vaudeville magicians who love to dress in disguise and can’t resist getting into the act by launching their own undercover investigation. Add the battling chefs Caesar Romano, Biff Wellington, Moishe Matsumoto and Toulouse Jankowski, and you have a recipe for murder. The Silver family does not go looking for trouble—it finds them.

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A Corpse In the Soup


Battling Chefs, Twin Sleuths, Old Magicians and MURDER! An award-winning Silver Sisters Mystery

Take several chefs with names like Caesar Romano, Biff Wellington, Moishe Matsumoto and Toulouse Jankowsky, add sleuthing silver-haired Mae West lookalike twins with a nose for trouble who are as different in personality as they are identical in appearance, a couple of octogenarian vaudeville magicians, Waldo the Wonder Dog, and a bunch of quirky characters. Season with jealousy, intrigue, and a ruthless villain. Add ingredients to an “over-the-top” TV cooking tournament and MURDER. A recipe for a fast paced, funny romp through the world of TV chefs in search of a killer.

Available now on AMAZON.

Book Trailer


5 STARS: Reviewed for Midwest Book Review,Christie Tillery French

—This fun mystery romp will keep the reader guessing while enjoying the antics of Goldie and Godiva, along with their quirky family. The characters are amusing and endearing, and even the dog Waldo has his humorous moments. The plot moves along crisply, offering plenty of red herrings, and is twisty enough to provide a good whodunit. A Corpse in the Soup, first of the Silver Sisters Mystery series written by sisters St. James and Bradner, is a refreshing addition to the mystery world 

 5 STARS: It could only happen in L.A., Martha A. Cheves, A Book and a Dish

Someone is sabotaging the cooking show of America’s favorite Chef. Food testers are coming down with food poisoning, the Baked Alaska is blowing up and the paprika is as hot as Hades. But who would do this and why?

When I was young I enjoyed playing the board game “Clue.” What made this game so much fun were the characters. So now I want to introduce you to the characters of A Corpse in the Soup. Let’s see if you can determine “who done it” in this story of colorful characters.

5 STARS: A Good, Funny Read. Reader Views

Take several chefs, add some classy – and less classy – ladies, a couple of well-aged vaudeville actors, a talking dog, a bunch of gofers and miscellaneous Hollywood characters, and add a heaping cup of jealousy, a pinch of intrigue, a smidgen of history. Garnish with incredibly funny names (Sterling Silver, Biff Wellington, Chili Pepper, Justin Thyme, Mr. Manicotti, Caesar Romano…), take a shot at the increasingly popular cooking shows and stir well. What do you get? You get a recipe for an amusing, frothy, yet not lightweight romp. The characters are lovable and believable, even when they leave you shaking your head in wonder over their antics. The story flows well and pulls you in very quickly. Although you might think quite early in the book that you know who the villain is, I would be surprised if you’d truly manage to solve this mystery before the final pages.

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