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Million Dollar Staircase
Is A Piece of Land Worth Dying For?This irresistible Florida mystery opens with a bang and never stops: “Start the boat! We’ve got to get rid of this body.”
That’s Will Harper speaking, ex-journalist, budding detective, and very very good friend, thinking fast when he discovers his girl friend’s the victim of a frame-up. He sees instantly why they can’t go to the cops—the mayor, the city manager, and for all Will knows, every official in town could be in on it.
It’s the latest offensive in a case of municipal bullying that’s busted many a bank account and broken many a heart—something that sounds so boring you could doze off just reading the words: Eminent Domain. But it’s anything but boring when it enters your life as the legal justification for waltzing in and power-grabbing your property-- business, buildings, and all.
It’s just happened to Will’s very good friend Sandy, who’s worked like a demon to build her marina business and now learned the city’s claiming it-- at a fraction of its value --for a big development that just about every fat cat in town has invested in. Sandy’s fighting the play like a hellcat and knows all too well that the murdered man on her boat is someone just like her—a pawn who got in the way. Anyone could have done it. Everyone’s out to get her.
Good thing she has a knight in shining armor who happens to be an ace investigator!
For Florida mystery connoisseurs, the cherry on top is Will’s liveaboard trawler, harking straight back to the grand tradition of marina-living PIs like John D. McDonald’s Travis McGee and Randy Wayne White’s Doc Ford. Fans of classics like those and more recent Florida tales by Wayne Stinnett and Dawn McKenna will be thrilled to discover this tempting tropical series—but so will anyone looking for the kind of private investigator who really cares.
JUSTICE FOR SALE –
TODAY’S SPECIAL: YOUR LIFE
Investigative journalist Will Harper thinks his story’s about Florida’s prison problems. It seems that budget cuts have led to police departments turning to creative schemes to raise money. Grove County’s version involves arresting citizens for minor charges and then driving up their bail when a search of the citizen’s home too conveniently turns up drugs.
But the usual guilty money scheme has been improved upon by a corrupt deputy, Deke Snyder, who’s skimming money from the jail. Once Will finds that out, Deputy Deke sics all his buddies on him–every deputy in the county, it seems–and it looks like even the Gulf of Mexico might not be big enough to hide in!
Now the story’s a lot bigger. Explosive action punctuates author Crosby’s adept use of Will’s magazine article to put human faces on the troubling excesses of the judicial system. When the whole system is corrupt, the danger comes in all forms and from all sides, on land and at sea. The pulse-pounding chase is on!
Those who’ve read Lee Childs’ Killing Floor, Stephen King’s nominee for Best Corrupt Southern Town, will especially appreciate this action-packed page-turner set in an idyllic Florida marina.
WanderLust, Will’s liveaboard trawler, will feel like home to fans of marina-living PIs like John D. McDonald’s Travis McGee and Randy Wayne White’s Doc Ford; and to more recent Florida tales like Wayne Stinnett’s Caribbean Adventure Series and Matthew Rief’s Florida Keys Adventure Series.
MURDER, ARSON, BIG SUGAR,
A toxic algae bloom in Lake Okeechobee that’s as thick as guacamole. A deadly pollutant from a cane field. And an environmentalist dead in a cane field fire. Coincidence?
AND GUACAMOLE TOXIN…
Florida PI Will Harper knows damn well it’s not.
Author David Crosby takes aim at Big Sugar as his fictional hero finds himself in the middle of a decades-long battle between the sugar industry, state politics, and the ailing environment.
There’s lots of local lore in this captivating hard-boiled mystery about corruption in the region known as Sugarland, nicknamed for the booming industry said to hold state politicians firmly in its greedy pockets. And plenty of non-stop action as well.
Wearing his sometime reporter hat, Will takes on an assignment to investigate the algae bloom, but the story becomes personal when he receives a call from Hanna, the woman he’s been dating, panicked because an acquaintance has been found dead in a cane field.
Will has to invoke both his PI and reporter’s instincts while staying calm as Hanna becomes more and more frightened. As the case becomes murkier, he begins to unearth the immense chasm between those who are fighting to protect the environment and those who are intoxicated by money and power.
Will’s least favorite of the latter variety? The heir to a venerable sugar family whose favorite intimidation tactic is arson. An inquisitive PI could get burned.
David Crosby has “Heir to John D. MacDonald” written all over him, as he tackles environmental issues much as his hard-boiled predecessor did. Will Harper will be an automatic favorite for Florida PI fans fans who love MacDonald, not to mention Randy Wayne White, Dawn McKenna, Wayne Stinnett— and a detective who lives on a boat.
The Florida Shuffle
GETTING RICH IN THE REHAB BIZ…
In his fourth hard-boiled action thriller, reporter Will Harper tries to balance true love at last with a heart-breaking opioid epidemic exposé. As always, he gets more than he bargained for when his investigation turns personal—and uncovers a drug ring with connections to Miami gangs, sex trafficking, and murder.
Seems like Will’s got it made. The semi-retired investigative journalist is living the dream aboard his yacht WanderLust with his new live-in girlfriend Callie, a social worker at a rehab center. And, tired of getting beat up on the job, he’s finally whipping himself into shape. But it’s not all Florida coast sunsets, kayak adventures, sweaty bike races, and steak dinners on the boardwalk.
Callie learns her employer has a history of setting clients up in shady sober homes in exchange for financial kickbacks—and one of those homes has lost three of its patients to “accidental” overdoses in the past four months. Turns out it’s just the tip of the iceberg.
When Will takes on a gig investigating one of the deaths, then discovers the center’s director doesn’t exist—it’s on. And then Callie goes missing.
Ever faithful, Will’s hot on her tail, all the while uncovering a crooked ring of pimps and drug pushers masquerading as rehab staff. Suddenly our hero finds himself a player in the fabled—and lucrative—Florida Shuffle. And he’d better move it—or the first woman he’s loved in years will end up dead.
Fans of juicy murder mysteries with compelling male sleuths like those by John D. MacDonald and Randy Wayne White will hit it off with Will—as will fans of crime mysteries by Dawn McKenna, Wayne Stinnett… and anyone who loves seafaring adventures.
THEY CAME TO AMERICA FOR SAFETY.THEY FOUND THEMSELVES ENSLAVED…David Crosby’s fifth hardboiled thriller kicks off with a heartrending discovery : a gritty underbelly of modern-day slavery that’s been operating in reporter Will Harper’s backyard. Will’s informant’s a terrified teenager-- a young Guatemalan immigrant who’s just escaped the elegant compound where she was enslaved as a maid. She’s on the run from hired goons who work for the sugar tycoon who held her captive, at the same time searching for her brother and sister, who’ve been sold as well.All she knows is this—she and her siblings were enslaved by the smugglers they paid to help them enter the country. But Will soon finds that the network includes corrupt farmers, ruthless coyotes, scheming Russian mobsters, and countless henchmen, all of whom sell innocent refugees for back-breaking labor and forced sex work.The timing’s good for a searing expose about slavery in Florida--a local paper’s put Will and his live-in girlfriend Callie on the payroll, allowing them to investigate anything they choose. The new job is just Will’s style: he and Callie can write as much or as little as they want, all while conducting research from Will’s beloved yacht, The WanderLust. But suddenly Will’s mission turns urgent. As he starts to investigate, he stumbles upon the topic of waterborne sex trafficking--and quickly discovers a new meaning for the term “party boat." Soon, he learns that one of the missing siblings is being trafficked aboard a particularly notorious boat--which means that Will has an abrupt, action-packed rescue mission on his hands. If you loved John D. MacDonald, David Crosby’s your man. Fans of action-packed adventures with seafaring sleuths will adore hard boiled reporter/PI Will Harper. And anyone who loves the Florida crime mysteries of Dawn McKenna and Wayne Stinnett will also enjoy this compelling series.
The Happy Widow
MARRIED AND MURDERED—
WHAM, BAM, SCAM YOU, MA’AM…
In his sixth hard boiled action thriller, reporter Will Harper attempts to balance the beginnings of new love with a treacherous fraud investigation. While trying to unmask scammers who target vulnerable elderly Floridians, Will risks angering homicidal con artists who will stop at nothing to extort their hapless victims.
The mystery opens with an exhilarating honeymoon at sea: philanderer Alain Duvalier has whisked his new—wealthy—wife away on a honeymoon cruise. There’s trouble in paradise, though: Duvalier pushes his giddy wife off the cruise ship, then claims the death was a tragic accident. The remorseless widower packs his bags and moves into his late wife’s ritzy Florida condo, with immediate plans to sell off all her assets.
Enter semi-retired journalist Will Harper, who’s just started researching a hard-hitting series on black widows and widowers who seduce aging, wealthy single folks. This project is personal: Will’s newly exclusive girlfriend Bonnie has an elderly uncle who's being isolated and financially controlled by a new, monstrously villainous wife—the infamous Millie Potts.
While brainstorming story ideas aboard his live-in yacht, The Wanderlust, Will gets wind of the honeymoon cruise death and immediately begins tracking Duvalier. Will attempts to juggle his dangerous investigation into Millie’s murky past with an equally risky inquiry into Duvalier’s whereabouts. These scammers are so morally bereft that they’ll swiftly, thoughtlessly kill anyone who stands between them and a bundle of cash. Which is unfortunate, considering that Will, Bonnie, and Callie—Will’s ex girlfriend and current coworker—are all standing in the way.
Any fan of John D. Macdonald will get hooked on David Crosby. Fans of action-packed adventures with seafaring sleuths will love hard boiled reporter/PI Will Harper. And anyone who loves the Florida crime mysteries of Dawn McKenna and Wayne Stinnett will also enjoy this compelling series.
Water, water everywhere--
Deadlier than you’d think!
In Will Harper’s latest hardboiled, action-packed adventure, Floridian families are shocked--and occasionally killed--when their brand-new houses start falling into the earth. The culprit? Lethal sinkholes worsened by climate change. But government officials and one particularly greedy developer keep turning a blind eye.
And as the homeowners suddenly realize their sinkhole-ridden land is worthless, they’re sometimes driven to homicidal behavior...
Will, a semi-retired investigative reporter turned amateur sleuth, is too big-hearted not to get involved. While researching a hard-hitting expose on climate change and the quality of water in Florida, he discovers the deceitful real estate developer is constructing an entire development on top of a massive sinkhole. Whole neighborhoods could slide into the muck!
The developer will stop at nothing to conceal his intricate fraud, but luckily, Will comes equipped with his ever-sharp prose, his commitment to Florida social issues, his beloved trawler, The Wanderlust, and a little help from his friends.
Still, the shoddy real estate cartel’s a behemoth— fortunately for the reader, it won’t be easy!
The adventures of Will Harper will be a boon for seafarers and armchair adventurers alike! Anyone who enjoys the work of John D. McDonald and Wayne Stinnett will find a new favorite sleuth. Fans of Zane Mitchell will also appreciate Will’s tough but caring--and witty!—style.
POACHER, AND A KID IN TROUBLE...
Hotshot Florida journalist Will Harper, known for reporting hard-hitting stories (and for living on a trawler), is quietly doing both those things when cans of worms suddenly explode in all directions.
His story-in-progress seems safe enough, even a bit predictable—it’s about overdevelopment killing Florida culture and wildlife. But when he contacts a wildlife photographer for information, he finds himself listening to a much more compelling yarn than the one he’s working on. The photographer and her assistant recently filmed a mother black bear tragically killed by a poacher in front of her cubs.
And then the poacher, carefully setting his sights on the humans, shot her assistant right in front of her.
Rushing to get help, she returned with the police only to find that both the wounded man and the bear’s corpse had disappeared. With no evidence, the cops declined to investigate
Enter the ever-quixotic investigative reporter—if no one else is going to look into this, Will sure will.
But his investigation is hampered by a new development that’s destroying his domestic peace and quiet. It seems his girlfriend neglected to mention she has a teenage daughter who’s hell on wheels and who’s now been to sent to live with her mom and Will—which means their once-peaceful trawler is now home to squabbling, tension, and teen-age angst.
So while Will is hellbent on trying to track down the missing assistant, he’s also got to keep this teenager from finding a way to get in touch with her psycho biker boyfriend. Watch the exceedingly nimble Will juggle his article on gorgeous (and disappearing) Florida culture, his investigation into the deadly poacher’s ghastly crimes, and his big-hearted attempts to keep the angry teenager from being kidnapped by the so-called “love of her life.”
All in a day’s work for this guy.
Will Harper’s action-packed, gritty, but big-hearted adventures will thrill mystery fans, especially those who love classic Florida mysteries. Fans of Wayne Stinnett, Dawn Lee McKenna, and Christine Kling should stand up and take note. Additionally, fans of John D. McDonald will love author Crosby’s witty prose.
Keeping Us Afloat
David's two week long running conversation with Captain Rick, the boat owner’s representative, turned the trip into something else. As they shared stories, Rick told of his travels and troubles, and David of his decades long effort to bring happiness to his wife Jenny while still leading a fun and exciting life along the way. From poverty to a clash with the law, college to success, living in a plantation house, a synagogue, a houseboat, a log home and a farm, Crosby's candid story of his never ending efforts to fulfill Jenny's dreams fill the long hours of driving the boat. Only after telling the whole story during the two week cruise does David realize that he will never make his wife happy. Only she can do that for herself.
Part travelogue and part memoir, this engaging story of adventure and challenge is filled with the craziness of being a commercial photographer in the 80's and 90's, and of the difficulties of trying to make someone else happy. It's a journey worth taking. The book includes a link to a web site containing photography from the ICW trip and from other stories included in the timeline.