New Fiction in Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine

“A Necessary Ingredient”

Agatha Award Finalist, Best Short Story

Anthony Award Finalist, Best Short Story

Macavity Award Finalist, Best Short Story

Read it here for free for a limited time.

Published by Down & Out Books, 2017

While other contributors to the anthology have hit some major metropolitan areas across the USA—New York, DC, New Orleans, Las Vegas, San Diego, LA—my story “A Necessary Ingredient” takes place in small-town North Carolina. But place still plays a major role in the investigation, with much to reveal about the people who call it home, including the PI at the heart of it, who’s desperately trying not to work so he can have more time to read the classic hard-boiled tales he loves more than anything.

Other contributors include J.L. Abramo, Eric Beetner, Michael Bracken, Meredith Cole, Matt Coyle, Tom Donahue, John Floyd, Gay Kinman, Terrill Lee Lankford, Janice Law, Paul D. Marks, Andrew McAleer, O’Neil De Noux, and Robert J. Randisi.


“Personal favorites were the Nick Ventura story by J.L. Abramo and the almost softboiled but witty PI who isn’t really a PI story by Art Taylor.” — Sons of Spade

Pre-publication Praise

“Tough, taut and terrific. This cross-country collection of sleuthing stories—from the best writers in the private eye biz—is wonderfully written, always surprising, and completely entertaining.” —Hank Phillippi Ryan, Anthony, Agatha and Mary Higgins Clark award winning author of Say No More

“A tantalizing array of stories guaranteed to please fans of PI fiction. High fives all around!” —MWA Grand Master Bill Pronzini

Book categories: Anthologies