Motive for Murder (Paperback)

by Marlene Bateman Sullivan


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Product Description

Meet Erica Coleman: a gifted and quirky private investigator with a penchant for sleuthing and a passion for chocolate.

Erica imagined that her trip to Florida would be a slice of heaven—a chance to get away from it all and catch up with her best friend, Wendy. But a mere day into her idyllic vacation, all hope of fun in the sun is dashed with a shocking discovery: the body of an unknown man on the driveway. A failed second homicide attempt hits even closer to home when Wendy’s fiancé barely survives poisoning. There’s no way to sugarcoat it—a murderer is on the prowl, and no one is above suspicion.

Unsettled by the proximity of foul play, Wendy asks Erica to investigate. Erica is convinced that the near double-murder was no coincidence, so she accepts her friend’s request—with her skill, solving the mystery should be a piece of cake. But as she sifts through mounting evidence, one thing becomes clear: everyone had a reason for wanting both men dead. And as the plot thickens, it appears that Erica may have bitten off more than she can chew . . .

Product Details

  • Size:  6" x 9"
  • Pages:  288
  • Book on CD:  Unabridged

About the Author


It was impossible to relax. Groaning, he swung his legs over the side of the bed before checking his watch for the third time in twenty minutes. He still had a few minutes. Perhaps he ought to call his wife. No, she was too perceptive. Might start asking questions. He’d call later—when it was over.

He paced the floor. Grabbing the remote, he idly flipped through the channels then went through them again—and again. Another check of his watch, and it was time to go. The blinds were already closed, but he turned a table lamp on. It was dusk and he hated coming back to a dark motel room. Digging into a pocket, his fingers touched a cool, hard surface. He fingered the switchblade to reassure himself then pulled out his wallet, making sure his key and the paper he’d tucked in earlier were still there.

Avoiding the front desk clerk, he went out the back way. It felt good to get the stale air out of his lungs. He hated cheap motels. Perhaps after tonight, he wouldn’t have to deal with them anymore. If everything went as planned, that is.

He zipped his jacket against the rain that had begun to fall. He could have taken a cab, but doing so might lead to problems. No, walking was the way to go. He’d chosen a motel that was close by so he set off briskly on foot. Although his hopes were high, his brow was furrowed.

If anyone had been paying attention, they would have seen an older man of medium height with a face not unlike that of a rat. His nose was pointed and his eyes were dark and beady. The heels on his shoes were worn down and his pants faded, the hems frayed.

Having memorized the directions he’d been given, he turned the corner at a preschool. Traffic was light, but he averted his face when anyone drove by. He was getting close. Turning right on Carroll Street, he went down the west sidewalk until he reached 2612. That was it all right. Unkempt shrubbery, tall trees, and a sparse lawn surrounded a dilapidated house with a bright blue door. Swallowing hard, he took a deep breath. It was important not to show that he was anxious or tense. Surely everything would turn out as planned.

He glanced up and down the rain-dampened street. There were a number of cars parked, but there was no one in sight. He crossed the road and was momentarily thrown off when he saw a sign directing him to the side door. He headed in that direction and ten yards away felt an odd sensation—an impact—like someone had poked him hard in the back with a broom handle. Knocked off balance, he tried to turn to see what had hit him but found himself falling forward. Putting out his arms to break his fall, he was aware of pain that was quickly swallowed up by a profound blackness.


by  Carol  -   reviewed on  July 22, 2013

The plot was good but the references to the main character's beauty were way overkill.


by  Shauna  -   reviewed on  July 15, 2013

I am offering a BOOK GIVEAWAY on my blog: (Offer ends 8/1/13) Mystery, murder, poisonings, lies, deceit, twists, turns, OCD's, teen-age angst, family troubles, investigations, and inquisitions... all the things that make a book SO WORTH READING! Marlene writes amazing mysteries! She gives you clue after clue on who might have done it... But she also gives you clue after clue of why that person couldn't have done it.. Leaving you wondering during the entire book... Making you read frantically until the last few pages where she finally pulls a "Sherlock Holmes~ when the great detective gathers all the suspects and points out the guilty one!" This book had such a surprise ending! SO. SO. SO. GOOD! Erica has come to be with her friend, Wendy. But the party takes a twist when Erica finds the body of an unknown man in Wendy's driveway. Plot twists continue when Wendy's soon-to-be fiance, Stephen, says he know the man. And then the plot twists again when someone tries to poison Stephen. Are the two incidents connected? Wendy asks Erica, who is a private investigator, to stay longer and help solve the case. As Erica chases the leads she realizes that everyone at the party had reason to see both men dead.... And leading that list is her friend, Wendy. Oh and wait until you see the full-blown OCD's that Erica has and how other's handle it...very FUN! I SO WANT her to borrow MY CAR and stay at MY HOUSE! Also included are recipes for some very tasty treats like: Eclairs, Twice-Baked Potatoes, Clam Chowder, Pumpkin Chocolate-Chip Cookies and Pollo Guisado! Please take time to read this amazing will LOVE IT :)

I loved this book!!

by  Kelly  -   reviewed on  August 04, 2013

I loved this book. Motive for Murder has a cast of interesting characters, especially Erica, who I thought was hilarious. The book is well written and hard to put down once I started. It has just the right amount of intrigue. It’s also clean, with no profanity and wholesome values) Good story line, exciting. Great characters, twists and an ending that will surprise you.

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