"I've been married so many times, they should revoke my license," says NY model, and reluctant pilot Lalla Bains.
Running her dad’s Crop-Dusting business in Modesto, California she’s hoping to dodge the inevitable fortieth birthday party. But when her trophy red ‘58 Cadillac is found tail-fins up in a nearby lake, the police ask why a widowed piano teacher, who couldn’t possibly see beyond the hood ornament, was found strapped in the driver’s seat. Reeling from an interrogation with local homicide, Lalla is determined to extricate herself as a suspect in this strange murder case. Unfortunately, drug running pilots, a cross-dressing convict, a crazy Chihuahua, and the dead woman’s hunky nephew throw enough road blocks to keep Lalla neck deep in an investigation that links her family to a twenty-year old murder only she can solve.
Wise-cracking detectives--from the rank amateurs who somehow stumble into the practice of investigating, to the licensed professionals with their fancy gizmos and snazzy Yellow Pages listings--are a dime a dozen in mystery novels... but a wise-cracking, ex-fashion-model, crop-dusting sleuth? That puts a quirky new spin on the genre, in R.P. Dahlke’s peppy debut, A Dead Red Cadillac. A Dead Red Cadillac may be Dahlke’s first published work, but it doesn’t read that way; the author is assured in her storytelling, crafting a witty, breezy, and thoroughly-entertaining lark peppered with interesting characters in a unique setting... and even tossing in some (much-appreciated) surprising twists along the way.
The Literate Kitty Blog spot 1/21/12
“Ex model and motorhead, Lalla Bains, pilots us through a murder investigation with more twists and turns than the coast highway and with an ending more satisfying than the purr of a perfectly tuned ’58 Cadillac.” Lesley Diehl, author of A Deadly Draught, Mainly Murder Press; Dumpster Dying, Oak Tree Press
“Fresh and fun! With its engaging, down-on-her-luck sleuth, homicidal Caddy and a decades-old mystery, R.P. Dahlke’s promising debut, A DEAD RED CADILLAC, will keep you turning those pages and guessing wrong right up to its surprising conclusion.” Kris Neri, Lefty Award-nominated author of REVENGE FOR OLD TIMES’ SAKE
“Fast paced and fun with an outwardly tough but inwardly vulnerable lady-pilot, drug smuggling and plenty of eccentric characters.” Rhys Bowen, award-winning author of the Molly Murphy and Royal Spyness mysteries. Bless the Bride, March 2011