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Front Page Murder (A Homefront News Mystery)
by Joyce St. Anthony
About Front Page Murder
Front Page Murder (A Homefront News Mystery)
Historical Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Crooked Lane Books (March 8, 2022)
Hardcover : 304 pages
ISBN-10 : 164385898X
ISBN-13 : 978-1643858982
Digital ASIN : B096WWNSKR
In this World War II-era historical mystery series debut by Joyce St. Anthony, small-town editor Irene Ingram has a nose for news and an eye for clues.
Irene Ingram has written for her father’s newspaper, the Progress Herald, ever since she could grasp a pencil. Now she’s editor in chief, which doesn’t sit well with the men in the newsroom. But proving her journalistic bona fides is the least of Irene’s worries when crime reporter Moe Bauer, on the heels of a hot tip, turns up dead at the foot of his cellar stairs.
An accident? That’s what Police Chief Walt Turner thinks, and Irene is inclined to agree until she finds the note Moe discreetly left on her desk. He was on to a big story, he wrote. The robbery she’d assigned him to cover at Markowicz Hardware turned out to be something far more devious. A Jewish store owner in a small, provincial town, Sam Markowicz received a terrifying message from a stranger. Moe suspected that Sam is being threatened not only for who he is…but for what he knows.
Tenacious Irene senses there’s more to the Markowicz story, which she is all but certain led to Moe’s murder. When she’s not filling up column inches with the usual small-town fare—locals in uniform, victory gardens, and scrap drives—she and her best friend, scrappy secretary Peggy Reardon, search for clues. If they can find the killer, it’ll be a scoop to stop the presses. But if they can’t, Irene and Peggy may face an all-too-literal deadline.
Character Guest Post
My name’s Irene Ingram. I’m the new editor of the Progress Herald. Now you might not have heard of the Herald, but it’s a big deal to the town of Progress, Pennsylvania. The Herald is really Pop’s paper. As soon as the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, he contacted a buddy in the war department and he’s now on a ship heading for the Pacific to cover the war there. He put me in charge before he left, much to the chagrin of certain reporters (and my cousin Donny—a real pain in the patootie) who don’t much like taking orders from a girl. My best friend Peggy helps me keep them in line when she’s not at her desk fielding telephone calls.
Anyway, I’ve been writing for Pop’s newspaper since I first picked up a pencil. I’d been writing all the so-called “Ladies” articles the last couple of years. Believe it or not it’s hard to come up with weekly topics. How many times can I write about the best month to plant peas, or what color you should paint your kitchen? I’m still writing those articles, but now I get to dig into some meatier issues, like gas rationing and reporting on the war. I’m flabbergasted at how close some German submarines get to our shorelines. They’re sinking ships every day—more than two hundred this year and it’s only May! My mother’s not keen on me being editor in chief. She’d prefer it if I did something more ladylike.
Most everyone in town wants to do their part for the war effort. We’re planning to start a Victory Garden in the park in the town square. There’s also a scrap drive coming up. My younger sister, Lily is making the posters for these. She’s only fourteen, but she’s already quite the artist. Even Mayor Young thinks so. Lily’s also wacky for Frank Sinatra, and she was so excited when our new boarder, Katherine, told her she knows him. I’m not buying it. She comes from a poor family in West Virginia. I’ll have to keep an eye on the mysterious Katherine and find out what she’s really up to.
Speaking of mysterious, I sent one of my reporters out the other day to cover something that happened at the local hardware store and I haven’t seen or heard from him since. He’s done it before when he’s chasing what he thinks is a big story. I’ve warned him about disappearing like that. I had to cover the dedication ceremony at Tabor Ironworks myself. The factory had been making parts for automobiles, but with President Roosevelt stopping the production of cars, the Ironworks has begun making nut, bolts, and whatnot for ships and tanks. I met the new vice president of Tabor at the ceremony. He looks a lot like Gary Cooper and he seems to be quite the ladies’ man. I had to tell him more than once that I was engaged.
Well, I’d better get back to work. The war news doesn’t wait. A navy trawler was just sunk by a U-Boat off the coast of Ocracoke Island. It’s been nice chatting with you. We should do this again sometime.
About Joyce St. Anthony
Joyce was a police secretary for ten years and more than once envisioned the demise of certain co-workers, but settled on writing as a way to keep herself out of jail. As Joyce St. Anthony, she is the author of the Homefront News Mysteries. The first in the series, Front Page Murder, will be (or was, depending on the blog date) released on March 8, 2022. Under her own name–Joyce Tremel–she wrote the award winning Brewing Trouble cozy mystery series. She is a native Pittsburgher and lives in the beautiful Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania with her husband and two cats–Hops and Lager.
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