Susan Wittig Albert

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Author: Susan Wittig Albert

As a writer, I work in three genres, mystery, historical fiction, and memoir. My mysteries include the China Bayles Herbal Mysteries and The Darling Dahlias, about a Southern garden club in the 1930s, as well as an eight-book series, the Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter, and the 12-book series that my husband Bill Albert and I coauthored under the pseudonym of Robin Paige. My historical fiction includes THE GENERAL'S WOMEN, a wartime romance about Ike's love affair with Kay Summersby; LOVING ELEANOR, about the intimate friendship of Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok; and A WILDER ROSE, about the mother-daughter team that produced the Little House books. A WILDER ROSE is currently under option for film.

Bill and I live in the Hill Country of Central Texas, where I write, garden, raise chickens, and practice the fiber arts. You can find out more in my two memoirs: TOGETHER, ALONE: A MEMOIR OF MARRIAGE AND PLACE; and AN EXTRAORDINARY YEAR OF ORDINARY DAYS.

Library

The Last Chance Olive Ranch - China Bayles Mystery, #25

The Last Chance Olive Ranch
  • Number: 9780425280034
  • Release: 2017-04-04
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery, * Susp: Cozy Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
  • Buy Now

In this exciting new mystery from New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert, China Bayles fears for her husband’s life as an escaped convict targets him...

Max Mantel, the killer McQuaid put away years ago, has busted out of the Huntsville prison and appears to be headed for Pecan Springs. McQuaid knows there’s only one way to stop the vengeful convict—set a trap with himself as bait.

China wants to stay by her husband’s side and keep him from harm. But McQuaid  insists that she get out of town and go to the Last Chance Olive Ranch, where she’s agreed to teach a workshop on herbs.

When China and her best friend arrive at the ranch, she learns the owner, Maddie Haskell, has her own troubles. She inherited the ranch and olive oil business from the late matriarch, Eliza Butler, but Eliza’s nephew is contesting the will.

While China throws herself into helping Maddie, McQuaid’s plan backfires when Mantel executes a countermove he never saw coming. Now McQuaid’s life is not the only one at stake—and this time may really be his last chance...


Blood Orange - A China Bayles Mystery, #24

Blood Orange
  • Number: 9780425280010
  • Release: 2016-04-05
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery, * Susp: Cozy Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
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In the newest China Bayles Mystery in the New York Times bestselling series, China comes to the aid of a nurse who ends up in the hospital...

It’s mid-April in Pecan Springs, and China is renting her guest cottage to Kelly Kaufman, who needs a temporary place to live as she contends with a very acrimonious divorce from her husband Rich. One nasty point of dispute is her part ownership of the Comanche Creek Brewing Company, which she is refusing to sell.

At the same time, as a nurse employed by a local hospice, Kelly has discovered instances of suspicious practices. Even more disturbing, she suspects that a patient was murdered. Kelly’s knowledge could be dangerous, and she wants to get guidance from China on what to do.

But on her way to China’s house, Kelly is forced off the road and critically injured, putting her in a medically induced coma. Now it’s up to China to determine who wanted her out of the picture. Was it her soon-to-be ex? His new lover—who happens to be the sister of China’s friend Ruby? Or someone connected with the corruption at the hospice?

China owes it to her friend to uncover the truth—but she may be putting her own life at risk...


The Darling Dahlias and the Eleven O'Clock Lady

The Darling Dahlias and the Eleven O'Clock Lady
  • 4 Stars
  • Number: 9780425260623
  • Release: 2015-09-01
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery, * Susp: Cozy Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
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New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert transports readers to the summer of 1934, when a sensational murder shakes up the small Southern town of Darling, Alabama—and pulls in the ladies of the Darling Dahlias’ garden club, who never let the grass grow under their feet when there’s a mystery to solve…

The eleven o’clock lady has always been one of garden club president Liz Lacy’s favorite spring wildflowers. The plant is so named because the white blossoms don’t open until the sun shines directly on them and wakes them up.

But another Eleven O’Clock Lady is never going to wake up again. Rona Jean Hancock—a telephone switchboard operator who earned her nickname because her shift ended at eleven, when her nightlife was just beginning—has been found strangled with her own silk stocking in a very unladylike position.

Gossip sprouts like weeds in a small town, and Rona Jean’s somewhat wild reputation is the topic of much speculation regarding who might have killed her. As the Darling Dahlias begin to sort through Rona Jean’s private affairs, it appears there may be a connection to some skullduggery at the local Civilian Conservation Corps camp. Working at the camp, garden club vice president Ophelia Snow digs around to expose the truth…before a killer pulls up stakes and gets away with murder.

Includes Southern-style Depression-era Recipes


The Darling Dahlias and the Silver Dollar Bush - Darling Dahlias, #5

The Darling Dahlias and the Silver Dollar Bush
  • Number: 9780425260616
  • Release: 2015-09-01
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery, * Susp: Cozy Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
  • Buy Now

The New York Times bestselling author of the China Bayles Mysteries takes readers back to Darling, Alabama, in the spring of 1933—where the women of the Darling Dahlias’ garden club are betting their bottom dollar there’s going to be trouble…

When the local bank suddenly closes, the small town of Darling is caught short on cash. To avoid disaster, town leaders hatch a plan to print Darling Dollars. The “funny money” can serve as temporary currency so the town can function. But when the first printing of the scrip disappears, the Darling Dahlias set out to discover who made an unauthorized withdrawal.

Meanwhile, County Treasurer Verna Tidwell questions whether she can trust the bank’s new vice president, Alvin Duffy—or the feelings he stirs up inside her. And Liz Lacy learns her longtime beau may be forced into a shotgun wedding. Seems other troubles don’t just go away when there’s a crisis. There’ll be no pennies from heaven, but if anyone can balance things out, folks can bank on the Darling Dahlias…

INCLUDES SOUTHERN-STYLE DEPRESSION-ERA RECIPES!


Bittersweet - China Bayles, #23

Bittersweet
  • 3 Stars
  • Number: 9780425255315
  • Release: 2015-04-07
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
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New from the author of Death Come Quickly and Widow's Tears

This Thanksgiving, be grateful for China Bayles—who teams up with an old friend to solve a complex case of theft and murder in a South Texas ranching community…

It’s Thanksgiving in Pecan Springs, and China is planning to visit her mother, Leatha, and her mother’s husband, Sam, who are enthusiastically embarking on a new enterprise—turning their former game ranch into a vacation retreat for birders. She’s also looking forward to catching up with her friend, game warden Mackenzie “Mack” Chambers, who was recently transferred to the area. But Leatha calls with bad news: Sam has had a heart attack.

How will Leatha manage if Sam can’t carry his share? She does have a helper, Sue Ellen Krause. But China discovers that Sue Ellen, who is in the process of leaving her marriage to the assistant foreman at a large trophy game ranch, is in some serious trouble. Before Sue Ellen can tell China the full story, her car veers off a deserted road and she is killed.

Meanwhile, when a local veterinarian is shot in what appears to be a burglary at his clinic, Mack Chambers believes his murder could be related to fawns stolen from a nearby ranch. As Mack follows the trail, China begins to wonder if Sue Ellen’s death may not have been an accident, and if there’s a connection to the stolen animals. But their search for the truth may put their own lives in danger…


Death Come Quickly - China Bayles, #22

Death Come Quickly
  • Stars
  • Number: 9780425255322
  • Release: 2015-04-07
  • Author: Susan Wittig Albert
  • Genre: Suspense
  • Tags: * Susp: Mystery, * Susp: Cozy Mystery
  • Publisher: Berkley
  • Buy Now

Herbalist and ex-lawyer China Bayles is back in New York Times bestselling author Susan Wittig Albert's Death Come Quickly. This time a friend’s murder may be the key to solving a nearly fifteen-year-old cold case…

When China and Ruby’s friend Karen Prior is mugged in a mall parking lot and dies a few days later, China begins to suspect that her friend’s death was not a random assault. Karen was a filmmaker supervising a student documentary about the almost fifteen-year-old murder of a woman named Christine Morris and the acquittal of the man accused of the crime. Is it possible that the same person who killed Christine Morris targeted Karen?

Delving into the cold case, China learns the motive for the first murder may be related to a valuable collection of Mexican art. Enlisting the help of her San Antonio lawyer friend Justine Wyzinski—aka the Whiz—China is determined to track down the murderer. But is she painting herself into a corner from which there’s no escape?


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