Lou Tanner, P.I. – A Tempting Morsal

Just for you – a sampling from the upcoming, debut story in the exciting new anthology:

NEXT STOP ON THE NUMBER 13 (working title)

anticipated early Spring 2019.


Introducing Lou Tanner, Private Investigator: Gal Gumshoe, Lady PI, Shamus of the Female Sort.  Enjoy.  And, if you’re intrigued, not only will I keep you up to date on the anthology, I’ll be dropping hints about this year’s full release of Diesel and Steam Detective: featuring the first full novel of Lou Tanner, PI.


Myrna as Lou
My hero: Mrs. Nick Charles (Myrna Loy) & my image of Lillian Lucille (Lou) Collington Tanner.




The Yankee Volcano Streamliner

Near Council Bluffs, Iowa – Westbound #1

His hand clamped down on my mouth.  Son of a bitch.  I knew who it was.  But damn it: he was earlier than I expected and shame on me for that.  This is what I get for amateur assumptions.  Chapter 2: Assume makes an Ass out of U and Me.

I could smell his sweaty skin and cheap cologne.  I guess the Nazis don’t pay mad scientists very well.  I opened my eyes to a .38 muzzle.  Chapter 17: Guns and Their Manufacturers.  That heater was either a Smith & Wesson .38 Special Model 10 or a .38 Colt Short Pistol.  Deadly, either way.

His eyes were desperate – maybe the rest of him was too – enough to pull the trigger?

Extra, extra – read all about it: Someone’s getting hurt and it damn well wasn’t going to be me.


Last week

San Francisco, California

The Government Bruno was looking around my office with the same unimpressed expression I used most mornings.  Office?  Yeah, I need to work on the place – not much of a front for my new business.  Desk, two chairs, diploma and license, and a picture of the folks.  That’s all I’ve got going for now.  Not even an assistant outside to make things feel legit.

Or to stop intruders.

“Treasury or State Department?”  I didn’t look too much at him, as if he was another fly in the room.  I stooped to pick up the paper shoved under my door.  August 28th, 1934.  ‘Hitler consolidates power, threatens Europe,’ read the headline.  What else was new?

“Where’s the shamus?” he asked.

I didn’t bother saying anything – just thumbed his attention over to the words on my window: Lou Tanner, Private Investigations.  Then I turned the thumb to me.

He glared at me with disbelieving eyes, out from under that government issued fedora and over the upturned collar of that government issued fogger.  Government issued tie and suit too.  Smirk issued in the halls of Washington DC.  The badge he flashed me, before bothering to introduce himself, confirmed it.  I love being right.

“Mason.  Treasury.  You’re the private dick they sent me to?”  I guess he thought his language might offend me or shock me somehow.  “Figures,” he mumbled.

I nodded again as I took off a little chapeaux I snagged on Madison Avenue – not typical gumshoe attire.  I knew I was overdressed for the job.

Lou Tanner?” he asked.

Removing gloves can be a great stalling tactic when you want to look someone over.  Yup – there’s the tell-tale bulge of a government issued Roscoe under his arm.  Chapter 5: Know your enemies, even if they’re your friends.

“You don’t talk much for a PI.  Hell, you don’t talk much for a woman …”

“You talk too much for a G-man without an appointment.”  I shifted my hip and sat partially on my desk, then folded my arms across my chest.


Want more: keep an eye on this blog.



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