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Listen to, author, Venita Louise, sing 'The Nearness of You', portraying the character, Hazel Thompson. Hazel is a waitress, aspiring singer, and ball of fire, intent on stealing Tom away from Olivia...that is, until she meets the musician of her dreams.

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Dead on the Money is now available in audio!



Initials for Murder

Everyone dies.

No one knew that better. He had seen first hand the unyielding power of the reaper’s will. It wasn’t the reaper who tugged at him now, however. It was the deadly toxin that was being rapidly absorbed into his digestive tract. The cold wind flattened his pant legs against his shins. An icy ache rankled his teeth. He jerked the edges of his coat tightly around his middle. His heart battered a rabbit-quick rhythm against his chest. Pain ripped up through his abdomen and brought him to a stand still.
With panic stricken eyes, he looked around for help. 


He couldn’t remember where he was or why he was there. There was one thing he could remember, though. He thought of his life before it went cold and empty, before Martha died. She was warm with the comfort and feeling of home. They had lived simply, with little need for material things, and they were happy that way.

It was the tumor that took her from him. A tiny, unreachable, ticking bomb he was powerless to defuse. Oh, how he longed to see her smile, to touch her hand. One gaze, one last touch.

Suddenly, he heard her calling to him. He stopped and listened. She called again. She was just across the street. All he had to do was cross over and he could be


In the Rough

The printer whirred, as it reproduced the screen image. Beckard snagged it and walked across the floor of the small apartment. He sat down at the white wicker dining set and inspected the documents on the table, driver's license, dental records, passport and a tattered looking birth certificate. It wouldn't be long now; he would be enjoying a new life and a new identity.


The knock at the door was barely audible.
"Where the hell have you been?" Beckard asked impatiently. There was a moment of silence as he held open the door.
"I was doing what you told me to do," Benjamin answered, stepping into the room.
"I don't remember telling you to disconnect your phone, or to quit your job, for that matter," Beckard said. “It makes you look suspicious to quit after only two months.”
"Look, I got paranoid; I don't want to go to jail over this."
"So, you drop by my apartment when you know I'm under surveillance? Smart move, Ben."
Benjamin’s head jerked around, as if he was expecting to see a couple of agents break through the door to sweep him off to some fat creep lockup tank.
"Okay, you’re right, this was a stupid idea, but I can't stop thinkin' about Eve. I feel like we’ve betrayed her."
"That feeling will go away when you have that large chunk of cash in your pocket. Remember? That's why we did this in the first place."
Benjamin stared into Beckard’s eyes and shifted his weight from foot to foot like a captured animal.
"Look, I've been thinking,” Benjamin, offered. “Maybe Eve doesn't have to disappear. I know it's chancy, but I was hoping maybe you could just let her go be with her sister. I mean maybe…"
"Are you nuts?" Beckard put his hand on Benjamin's shoulder, squeezing hard enough to make him wince. "Don't wimp out on me now. Not when we're so close to the finish line. We've planned this for months, and don't forget how much you're involved. You even planted the tracer on her car for God's sake!" Beckard eased his grip. "Okay?” His voice lowered. "If we can keep her from finding out, then maybe we can let her go, but you have to think of the plan first."



Dead on the Money

Dead on the Money, picks up where Initials For Murder, left off, ensnaring Tom and Olivia in yet another dangerous and thrilling adventure.

 Tom Trask is basking in the glow of his recent engagement to H. Olivia Tully, but without warning, his elation turns to shattering danger when a ruthless convict shows up and begins to stalk them. He is believed to be the son of a bank robber who, Uncle Charlie, in his prior police years, sent up the river.


 Olivia has learned just enough about police investigation from Tom, to teeter-totter between being a public nuisance and a threat to herself. She unwittingly sets a series of events into motion, which puts Uncle Charlie in grave danger.  Now it is up to Tom to untangle the mystery surrounding this shadowy stalker, and he is forced to set out on an unplanned trip up to Half-Moon Bay.

 Why does Tom’s heart clench at the thought of leaving Olivia alone in Los Angeles? It could be that he is well aware of Olivia’s tendency to dabble in her own brand of investigation. A tendency that always leads her to trouble with a capital T.

 Tom must race to find the ruthless adversary before he can silence Uncle Charlie, and return to Los Angeles before Olivia’s overblown curiosity kills the proverbial cat.


Mix Nuts

The Beals live in a upper middle class neighborhood in the mid 1960's. Frank is a jingle writer who is having more than a little trouble coming up with a shoe polish jingle. Trying to keep up with the neighbor's expensive tastes is a full time job in itself. But when Frank butts heads with a Voodoo practicing Brazilian gardener, he gets much more than he bargains for, especially when he is distracted by all the spells flying back and forth, with a force strong enough to turn his wife into a love-starved siren and his children into well-behaved angels.


Frank felt an apologetic grin tug the corner of his mouth. “You know what I mean,” he whispered as he closed the space between them and continued to plant hot kisses down her throat. “Frank, do you think I’m old?” He kissed his way up to her ear knowing when he arrived he had to be very careful with his words. But he didn’t want to use words. He wanted to show her that she excited him just as much now as she did eighteen years ago when they were making out at the drive in movies. He smiled, cupped her face in his hands and put his mouth on hers. Embers that had merely glowed in his gut jumped into flames. His kisses went from sweet to searing, and he gathered her close hoping to evoke the same feelings in her.