Mesdames on the Move: November 2020

What a Busy Month, Dear Readers!

As if October wasn’t exciting enough with the first month of our Zoom Book Happy November CatLaunch Marathon and the launch of A Grave Diagnosis anthology on Halloween, November just might be even busier. 

Our authors just keep writing books and stories and winning awards! This month we continue our Zoom  Book Launch Marathon and officially welcome a new member, Melissa Yi, (also writing under Melissa Yuan-Innes} to our Mesdames’ collective.

Deadlines are also coming up for the Crime Writers of Canada Awards of Excellence and the Light Fiction Bony Blithe Award.

Welcome to our new Mme, Melissa Yi!

Melissa Yi

Melissa Yi

Melissa Yi is an emergency physician and award-winning writer.

The Globe and Mail hailed Human Remains, one of her Hope Sze novel series, as one of the best Canadian suspense novels to read at the cottage, “a scarier-than-ever murder mystery.” Human Remains was also  the #1 mystery recommendation of CBC Books’ Holiday Gift Guide, followed by Maureen Jennings and Louise Penny.

Melissa was shortlisted for the CWC Award of Excellence (formerly the Arthur Ellis Award) for Best Short Story. She was also a finalist for the prestigious  Derringer Award,  awarded annually by the Short Mystery Fiction Society.  Her stories have been published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Jewish Noir, and Montreal Noir, and will soon appear in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. Under the name Melissa Yuan-Innes, she also writes medical humour and award-winning speculative fiction.

Meet Melissa on November 28th at the Mesdames’ three-woman book event , together with Mmes Lisa de Nikolits and Caro Soles, where she launches her new novel,  Scorpion Scheme.

The Mesdames of Mayhem Zoom Book Launch Marathon Continues!

Death by AssociationNovember 7th at 2 PM Madona Skaff‘s new book Death by Association, Book 2 of the Naya Investigates series.

Madona Skaff

Madona Skaff








Computer expert and former marathon runner Naya, struggles to recover from a serious multiple sclerosis attack, and settles into a routine of daily workouts at the gym. Frustrated by her lack of progress, she’s in no mood for wheelchair bound Larson Rask and his endless prying questions.

Noticing that his legs still look muscular, Naya guesses that he’s only been in the chair for a short time. She puts aside her annoyance to patiently listen to him. To her horror, a police Tactical Unit raids the gym and arrests Larson Rask – on three counts of murder. Was he grooming her to be victim number four?

Reluctantly she’s drawn into the world of sleuthing – tracking a ruthless serial killer who will stop at nothing to stay free.

Available from: Renaissance Press and Amazon.


Why the Rock FallsOnly the November 14th Zoom launch is postponedJayne Barnard‘s new book Why The Rock Falls, Dundurn Press, third in the Falls Mysteries series, will be available through Amazon and Dundurn Press on November 14.

Jayne Barnard

Jayne Barnard








After a clash between entrenched oil interests and liberal Hollywood insiders, only two boys, Michael Matheson and Tyrone Caine, remain friends. But soon one member of the rival groups is dead and two more are missing in the Alberta wilds. Ex-cop Lacey McCrae joins the search-and-rescue operation. As thunder rolls over the Ghost Wilderness, a new development sends her on a risky trek up an unstable mountainside, hunting a murderer who is bent on killing again.

“A taut, high-stakes thriller that is deeply personal, internal, and psychological.””, Foreword Reviews

“Beneath the many mysteries of Barnard’s character-driven debut are enduring questions about the complexities of life and the choices people make.”, Kirkus Reviews

Available from:  Dundurn Press and Amazon.

November 21st at 1:00 PM, Rosemary Aubert’s latest book, The Light in Trieste (Carrick Publishing), and Blair Keetch’s story “Deadly Cargo” in Heartbreaks and Half-truths, 22 Stories of Mystery and Suspense, Superior Shores Press.

The Light in Trieste

Rosemary Aubert

Rosemary Aubert









The Light in Trieste is a novel of international intrigue that spans three centuries. It’s a tale about illegal immigration: the story of an empress, a refugee and a prostitute, three desperate women in three different time periods, each attempting to use the same stolen antique scientific instrument to bribe her way into a new life in America. It’s a work of fiction based on true events in the past of a remarkable city.

Blair Keech has a story “Deadly Cargo” in Heartbreaks and Half-truths.

Blair Keetch

Blair Keetch

Heartbreaks and Halr-truths









Praise for Heartbreaks and Half-truths

“This book is a real orthopedic workout. There are stories that will shiver your spine, tickle your funny bone, and, in a few cases, drop your jaw.”—Robert Lopresti, author of Shanks on Crime and winner of the Derringer and Black Orchid Novella Awards.

“A stellar collection of short stories where the reader is in constant quandary. Insofar as you wish to linger on the ending of one delightful gem of a tale there is also the urge to dive into the next and to stay up into the small hours. I stayed up.”—Kevin Thornton, seven-time Arthur Ellis Awards finalist.

November 28th at 3:00 PM a terrific trio of Lisa de NikolitsThe Rage Room, Caro SolesDancing With Chairs in the Music House and new Mme, Melissa Yi’s’ Scorpion Scheme.

The Rage Room

Lisa de Nikolits

Lisa de Nikolits










What if you made the worst mistake of your life and got the chance to fix it? Only you made it so much worse? From the incomparable crafter of nine cross-genre works of fiction, Lisa de Nikolits expands her horizons to pen a grab- you-by-the-throat, feminist speculative-fiction thriller in the style of Groundhog Day meets The Matrix.

Praise for The Rage Room: “In her latest captivating book, Lisa de Nikolits proffers not only a roller coaster of entertainment but also, sharp political commentary in complicated times. The Rage Room is an intricately woven dystopian world, rich in strong female characters who easily whisk readers to a world of futuristic follies. Move over George Orwell—De Nikolits shows us how the future can be scary, exciting, and above all, female.”

—Kelly S. Thompson, national bestselling author of Girls Need Not Apply: Field Notes from the Forces.


Dancing with Chairs in the Music House

Caro Soles

Caro Soles









Precocious ten-year-old Vanessa Dudley-Morris knows lots of secrets. In 1949 when she and her family are forced to move into two rooms on the second floor of 519 Jarvis Street in Toronto, a genteel but somewhat rundown rooming house owned by a reclusive pianist, she learns a lot more. Despite the family’s drastically reduced circumstances, her parents struggle to keep up their old standards. Threatened by blindness due to an eye condition, Vanessa is kept at home, tutored by an erratic succession of eccentrics, some with questionable credentials. Consequently, she spends a lot of time alone, wandering the dim corridors of the old house, silently listening at doors and watching the odd characters who live there. She becomes fascinated by a mother and son who move into a room on the third floor. Eventually, she agrees to take secret notes from the son to his mysterious friend at her church, unwittingly unleashing a chain of events that leads to tragedy.

Note: Inanna Book Launch for Rage Room and Caro Soles for Dancing with the Chairs in the Music House

Lisa DeNikolits and Caro Soles  also have an Inanna book launch on November 19th at 5 PM EST.

Here is the link to register:


Scorpion Scheme

Melissa Yi







Dr. Hope Sze doesn’t need a free trip to Egypt. She can’t afford the flight to Cairo, or the cruise down the Nile, so she’d keep studying in Canada—except her fiancé, Dr. John Tucker, yearns to patrol the pyramids and confront the curse on King Tutankhamun’s tomb. So when a company offers them both a free stay in Cairo in exchange for a month’s work in an emergency department, Tucker lobbies for a pre-honeymoon in the Valley of Kings and Queens, investigating the windswept temple of Hatshepsut, or scuba diving in the Red Sea.

Hope launches into her first mystery based in a birthplace of human civilization. Where the evil god Set battled righteous Horus and Isis in an 80-year war.  Where Antony fell in love with Cleopatra. Where Hope and Tucker must outwit, or fall prey, to a ruthless criminal mastermind.

Kudos and Congratulations

Crime WaveCrime Wave, the first anthology by the Canada West Chapter of SinC, was released on October 29th. It features a foreword by Melodie Campbell and a story by Jayne Barnard.

Melodie Campbell

Melodie Campbell

Jayne Barnard

Jayne Barnard








Come Catch the Wave of Western Canadian Crime Fiction with Crime Wave, the first anthology from members of the Canada West Chapter of Sisters in Crime. Crimes at sea, in coastal villages, in wind-tossed Prairie fields, on icy mountains, in valleys that, instead of offering shelter, trap their residents in fear. The mysteries unfurl in the cold of a Yukon winter night, on a boutique cruise ship, along the Pacific coast and in the BC interior, in a dying Alberta town as winter closes in and in a historical Saskatchewan farming community in the heat of summer. They’re investigated by an amateur sleuth who’s smarter than the local police detective, a freezing cross-country skier, the desperate owners of a struggling B&B, a timid teenage girl, a young RCMP officer, a cruise-ship entertainer, and a senior combating both dementia and murder. The eight mystery stories in Crime Wave range from thrilling, to wistful, to laugh-out-loud funny.”

Sylvia Maultash Warsh

Sylvia Warsh

Sylvia Warsh’s story, ”Flamingo Nights”, was accepted for the 2020 BOULD anthology, a collection of offbeat crime stories to be published shortly.







Malice Domestic’s anthology, Mystery Most Edible, won the 2020 Anthony Award for Best Anthology. Rosemary McCracken’s story, “Dining Out”, is part of this anthology of criminally tasty tales.

Mystery Most Edible

Rosemary McCracken

Rosemary McCracken










Congratulations! Therese Greenwood won the Alberta Arts Council Wood Buffalo Award of Excellence (a “Buffy”) for achievement in the Literary Arts.

Therese Greenwood

Therese Greenwood

Uncharted Waters

Rosemary McCracken’s new Pat Tierney mystery, Uncharted Waters, got a warm review from Jack Batten in the Toronto Star. Check out Rosemary’s website for Jack Batten’s full review.

Rosemary McCracken







Rosemary is also the guest featured on Kevin Tipple’s blog, Kevin’s Corner. He is the Vice President of the Short Mystery Fiction Society. Check out her blogpost on “Money, the root of all evil”. And “One Sleuth’s Bottomline” on Kevin’s blog.



November is the month of NaNoWriMo. If you are a member of the Toronto Sisters in Crime (SinC) chapter and participating this year, the chapter will offer a support group if five or more writers are interested. To join the support group, please email: ‘’

(Image courtesy of NaNoWriMo)

CWC Awards of Excellence

Submissions are open for The Crime Writers of Canada Awards of Excellence. Deadline for Published Categories is 15 December 2020


Bloody Words Mini-con 2019

Bloody Words Mini-Con 2019

Looking for some laughs, or at least smiles, in this time of pandemic?

Well, you’re in luck. Our favourite skelington, Bony Blithe, is back and looking for submissions to the 2021 Bloody Words Light Mystery Award (aka the Bony Blithe Award).

If you’re on the Bloody Words/Bony Blithe email list, watch for the submission rules coming soon to your email box. Or you can just visit the website to see the 2021 Submission Rules.

Deadline is December 18, 2020.



This entry was posted in Anthologies, Awards/Achievements, books. Bookmark the permalink.

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