Hello Gentle Readers,
I got a wild hair and decided to do an impromptu book blog tour called “Christmas in July”. Because why not? Nicole was kind enough to allow me to stop in her space.
My name is Jay Mims, and I write lighthearted cozy mysteries centered around quirky detective Dan Landis, his partner Abbey, and the strange cast of characters.
In keeping with the Christmas theme, I thought I’d present an excerpt from the first book in the Dan Landis mystery series, The Five Santas, which has the erstwhile detective slumming it as a security officer for the local department store. Truly, it’s the most wonderful time of the year.
EXCERPT FROM THE FIVE SANTAS
Years of living by his wits had given Dan a sixth sense for trouble. It was the same instinct that kept cops and school teachers alive. Someone was watching him.
Dan glanced around. It didn’t take but a minute, she wasn’t hard to find. The floor should have been empty; the store had barely been open five minutes. She stood over by the unattended jewelry display, smiling. Her red hair shone like a beacon, splashing brightly against the
green of her sweater. It was a Christmas tree sweater, complete with ornaments and lights. The
lights even blinked synchronously, probably to O Tannenbaum. Her smile was
Dan had learned the hard way, never to trust a smiling face. Particularly a
smile attached to a gorgeous red head, one with the air of someone who knew
exactly how attractive she was. Her emerald eyes twinkled with laughter. She winked at him. And then she bolted, her giant matching green knitted purse flopping from side to side
as it bounced off her hip. That purse looked like it could hide a refrigerator. Or a whole lot of jewelry.
Of course, Dan thought, a supremely attractive shoplifter would choose first
thing in the morning to play cat and mouse. It was just his luck. He took off
after her. The lady could move. Dan had a lot of experience running, mostly from other people, but this cutie was booking it. Right for the Emergency Exit. He picked up speed,
ignoring the sheer agony of the blood pounding inside his bruised head. He desperately wished he had gotten some aspirin first.
The redhead hit the Emergency Exit a beat ahead of Dan and the heavy door was just closing when he flung it wide open. Part of him noted on a subconscious level that the fire alarm
hadn’t gone off.
That could be a problem. On the bright side, it wasn’t his problem.
A sexy thief was his problem. Thank God for small favors. The crisp morning air hit him like
a hammer; the sunrise was bright, almost blinding. Dan hated how blistering cold was always so bright and sunny. It was such a tease. With a shock he realized the alley was empty.
Dan listened. There were no running footsteps and the alley had a good yards of space in either direction. No one here except for Dan, some dumpsters, and a whole lot of nothing.
He sighed. She was probably in one of the dumpsters. Maybe behind one of them. On a whim he looked up. No green eyes were staring impishly down at him from the roof. Of course,
there was no ladder nearby, but Dan wouldn’t have been surprised if she could fly.
She’d had that magical, “I can do anything I want” look about her.
He glanced down seeing no manholes, open or otherwise, within sight. Resigned, he headed toward the nearest dumpster.
“How come I always end up in a dumpster?” He asked no one in particular. The dumpster didn’t answer, instead it just looked nasty, tetanus filled, and generally uninviting.
“These pants are dry clean only!” Dan yelled, lashing out with one foot. It wasn’t until his foot connected with the somehow surprisingly solid dumpster that he remembered he was wearing dress shoes, not work boots. As his foot thumped against the metal, pain shot up his leg. Dan hopped up and down, holding his foot.
“Funky butt loving...!” he howled. Then he saw the dead Santa Claus
stuffed behind the dumpster.
“Oh,” he said more calmly, still holding his foot. “That’s not good.”
Jay Mims knows the muffin man. He has inadvertently adopted his neighbor’s cat, who he calls Eartha Kitty, sometimes has a pet lizard named Bob, and shares an apartment with a passive-aggressive Dalek named Steve. He writes books and is far funnier on Facebook then in real life. He is terrible at Twitter. His next book "The Gray Ghost Inn" is due out October 15, 2013. Feel free to email him here.
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-five-santas-jay-mims/1104988019?ean=9780983934103
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