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The Hard Way

The third novel in my Imperiole/McCokendale series, "The Hard Way", will be published in Feburary 2014. I thought you might enjoy reading a synopsis of the plot.

Jimmy Scanlan, Helen McCorkendale’s childhood friend, has just opened January, the most lavish Casino and Hotel Resort on the Las Vegas strip. January is literally an ice palace in the middle of the desert filled with poolside ski slopes, ice rinks and a bar formed entirely of glacial-looking ice. Designed to bring a new level of drama to casino gambling, it is attracting the rich and famous from all over the world.

After attending the gala grand opening, Helen and Mike Imperiole return to New York City and encourage Laurel to create a get-away contest for readers of "Women Now" magazine, offering a stay at the hotel as the grand prize. When the woman who wins, Dawn Chapman, turns up dead after a Sunday afternoon pool party, suspicion falls on Jimmy Scanlon.

Hoping to find the real killer and avoid a scandal that could ruin his fledgling business—something his biggest competitor and former partner Clive Drummond would love to see—Jimmy asks Helen to return to Las Vegas and investigate the crime privately. Helen agrees and asks Laurel to look into Dawn Chapman’s history. The woman, a jewelry store employee from Wisconsin, seems to be ordinary in every way. Was her murder, an unusual double poisoning, random, or maliciously pre-meditated?

As Helen and Laurel investigate and find out about the woman’s secret past, they discover that there may be several people who wanted her dead, including Helen’s friend, Jimmy.


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