Thursday teaser: Web of Deceit


You could WIN a free e-copy of Web of Deceit. Find out how at the end of the excerpt.

WebOfDeceitI’d never heard of Gordon Sandalwood until he walked up to my booth at State Bar & Grill and slid into the seat across from me.

“This table’s taken, bub,” I said. I had been enjoying my lunch while I read The Denver Post – four years after the war and there was still trouble in Germany – and I wasn’t in the mood to be disturbed. Reminders of the war tended to leave me with a foul disposition.

“Dewey Webb?” he asked, but it wasn’t a question. He knew who I was.

I leaned back and contemplated him. He was neat and tidy, in a gray suit and a white shirt with blue stripes, a blue tie and a gray wool trilby hat. A gray tweed overcoat was draped over one arm. I’m sure people instinctively called him ‘Sir.’ ”

“Okay, you know my name,” I finally said. I wasn’t going to say ‘Sir.’ I hadn’t done that since I was in the Marines. “How about telling me yours?”

“Gordon Sandalwood.”

He took off his hat and set it and the overcoat on the seat next to him, then reached a thin hand across the table. I waited just long enough so he’d know I was still annoyed that he was interrupting me, then firmly shook the hand.

“Okay.” I pointed a finger at him. “Now I know who you are. What do you want?”

“I need a moment of your time, Mr. Webb,” he said.

I gestured at my hot roast beef sandwich. “Can’t it wait?”

He sighed heavily. “You’re a private investigator, and I need your help.”

“Why not come to my office?” After the war, I’d been an investigator for a law firm, but a year ago, I’d gone out on my own. I had a place on Sherman Street in an old Victorian house that had been converted to offices. It wasn’t much, but it was private, and it was where I should be conducting business.

He shook his head as he took out a Chesterfield and lit it. He blew smoke off to the side, then said, “I did. Twice. I got as far as your door, but couldn’t bring myself to go in. The second time, I ran into you in the hallway, but I didn’t say anything.”

I gave him a good once-over. “I remember you. It was last week, right?” He’d been dressed in brown that time, from his shoes to his hat. I wondered if he was always perfectly color-coordinated.

He nodded. “Then today, I’d finally screwed up my courage to talk to you, but when I got to your office, you were just leaving. So I followed you here.”

I folded up my paper and pushed it aside. The article about Ted Williams winning the AL MVP would have to wait. “It must be something important if it couldn’t wait any longer.”

“It is.” His face twisted up with a pained expression. “It’s not easy to ask for help.”

“But you’re here, so shoot.”

“It’s my wife.”

I folded my arms, beginning to lose patience with him. “I’m listening.”

About Web of Deceit


Web of Deceit is the first Dewey Webb mystery. Book 2, Murder in Fashion, is now available on Amazon. Check it out!

It’s 1949. World War II is over, but it has a way of haunting people for years to come.

Gordon Sandalwood suspects his wife Edith is hiding something from him, and he asks Denver private investigator Dewey Webb to find out what. Dewey, toughened by his own war experiences, reluctantly takes the case, certain it will lead to nothing. But when he sees Edith rendezvous with a mysterious man, Dewey realizes his assumptions might be wrong. As he digs deeper to identify the stranger, he turns up secrets that reach back into the war, and as he unravels a web of deceit, he discovers who has the most to gain, and the most to lose.

A hard-boiled, historical mystery that’s great for fans who love a traditional detective crime story with a noir flavor, but without a lot of sex or swearing.

Get it on Amazon.

How to win a free e-copy

Renée Pawlish will choose three winners from those who leave a comment, below, answering this question:

Why do you love detective stories?

About the author

Renee PawlishRenée Pawlish is the award-winning author of the bestselling Reed Ferguson mystery series, horror bestseller Nephilim Genesis of Evil, The Noah Winters YA Adventure series, middle-grade historical novel This War We’re In, Take Five, a short story collection, and The Sallie House: Exposing the Beast Within, a nonfiction account of a haunted house investigation.

Read her full bio on her BestSelling Reads Author page.

Also visit Renée’s



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