Tuesday, November 15, 2022



When Georgette's old friend, Helen comes back to Sunnydale, the town begins to sizzle. Is Helen attracted to Hawthorne Biggs, Georgette's new beau or is Georgette just imagining things? But when Helen goes missing, all seems lost. Will they find Helen dead? Does Hawthorne truly have Georgette's best interests at heart? Hotter Than Helen is psychological women's suspense that reads like the sharp edge of a dagger.

 Book Details:
Title: Hotter Than Helen
Author: Susan Wingate
Series: Bobby’s Diner mystery series, book 2
Genre: Mystery/Thriller/Psychological Women’s Suspense
Publisher: Wild Rose Press (November 16, 2022)
Print length: 201 pages


A few of your favorite things: my dog Joey, the woods where I live, the moon in all its phases, a juicy peach, deer, raccoon, birds, and, of course, chocolate.
Things you need to throw out: all my stained and holey shirts, old cans of Drano that have been in my cupboards for years and are now rusted, old boxes of food that have well surpassed their freshness dates.

Things you need in order to write: my dog Joey, my couch, a cup of tea at the ready, my laptop, and my ottoman.
Things that hamper your writing: my dog Joey because he’s so flipping cute and demands my attention all day long, and my bladder because of so many cups of tea, deer because they stare in the windows and beg for food, and raccoons who do the same thing but who are noisier and bang around on the front door!

Things you love about writing: what’s there not to love? Everything. I love everything about writing.
Things you hate about writing: absolutely nothing.

Favorite smell: Thanksgiving Day.
Something that makes you hold your nose: propane gas when the tanks are running low.

Something you wish you could do: I wish I could fly. Planes, sure but without any aid, like birds.
Something you wish you’d never learned to do: sew. I loathe sewing. My ex-husband once asked me to sew a button that had fallen off back onto a shirt. I sewed it on. He took it to the bedroom to get dressed, then he returned, and said, “You sewed it onto the inside of the shirt.” I sort of imploded.

People you consider as heroes: Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Nelson Mandela, Abraham Lincoln, and Kurt Vonnegut.
People with a big L on their foreheads: murderers and liars. Cheaters and thieves. Inciters of hate and violence. Fakes who talk trash about you. 

Last best thing you ate: a peach.

Last thing you regret eating: anything with wheat gluten. Ouch. Oh man, big ouch there.

Things you always put in your books: deer and companion pets. Nature scenes. Bad men and good women.
Things you never put in your books: erotica. I mean, why? What’s the point? I have opinions.

Things to say to an author: your last book changed my life and made me a better person.
Things to say to an author if you want to be fictionally killed off in their next book: where did you learn to write? Prison camp? Do you understand what the concepts of subject and verb? Why don’t you edit? Editing is good. G-o-o-d.

Favorite places you’ve been: anywhere in France.
Places you never want to go to again: the DMV—Dept. of Motor Vehicles. Not the demilitarized zone. 😊

Favorite books: literary fiction, mainstream fiction, literary thrillers/mysteries, women’s fiction.
Books you would ban: erotica and a lot of science fiction/fantasy.

Favorite things to do: drink that first cup of tea.
Things you’d run through a fire wearing gasoline pants to get out of doing: getting a mammogram. I know. I know. Still . . .

The last thing you did for the first time: got a rooster and then chickens for the rooster.
Something you’ll never do again: get chickens. They’re sweet, but they’re a bunch of work. I miss my rooster. It’s a story all on its own.


Chapter 1

Sunnydale, Arizona, 2009

Steel shackles jangled at his ankles, sounding much like the ghost of Christmas future when he shuffled to a stop on the cold travertine floor. Cabling, the kind used on bicycle locks, wrapped around his thin waist and angled off in a Y, snaring each of his wrists. He held his arms close to his stomach, monk-style as if praying, but unlike a monk, he held his head high, not down.

At a thick, red mahogany podium, the orange-clad prisoner stood next to a smaller-framed bailiff. The bailiff’s hand cupped the man’s elbow when someone called out, “All rise. The Honorable Judge Lindon.” The bailiff stepped back to the right, but the prisoner’s eyes shifted left where his lawyer stepped up. The packed courtroom stood almost in unison.

Everyone watched as the judge walked in from a door along the courtroom wall where his desk sat. Sidling behind the wide bench, a dense desk spanned no less than eight feet long and three feet wide of the same rich mahogany as the podium where the orange-clad man stood.

The judge sat, pausing midway down to eye the prisoner over his black-rimmed reading glasses, sitting slowly before lifting the docket in front of him and reading from the papers.

He looked pissed.

Once settled, he slid his black leather and wood chair under the bench. Everyone else in the courtroom sat. Everyone except, of course, the prisoner and his lawyer.
The judge wasted no time. “Your sentence, sir . . . in light of this . . .” he hesitated briefly, rolling his hand in a circle as he spoke, then continued, “. . . this new information and these errors,” he glared at the lawyer, “in allowing this new information from reaching the court at the time of your trial.” The judge kept a hard scowl as he looked between both men but mostly at the man’s attorney. “I have no other reasonable choice than to reduce said sentence to a lesser term, no more than two years beginning today.” He slammed his gavel so abruptly he made the stumpy, tightly-combed, gray-haired court recorder jump. She looked up suddenly but went back to typing.


Susan Wingate writes about big trouble in small towns. She lives with her husband on an island off the coast of Washington State where, against State laws, she feeds the wildlife because she wants them to follow her. Her ukulele playing is, "Coming along," as her Sitto used to say.
Susan's eight-time award-winning novel, How the Deer Moon Hungers was chosen by The International Pulpwood Queens and Timber Guys Book Club as their October 2022 Official Book Selection of the Month.

Susan has an insatiable appetite for online word games and puzzles. She thinks it might be obsessive-compulsive but is fine with that.

Susan’s poetry, short stories, and essays have been published in journals such as the Virginia Quarterly Review, the Superstition Review, and Suspense Magazine, as well as several others.
Susan is represented by Chip MacGregor and is a proud member of PENAmerica, Int'l Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, and Women's Fiction Writers Association.

The first book in the Bobby’s Diner Series is Bobby’s Diner

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