VINNIE HANSEN

VINNIE HANSEN
Now retired after teaching high school English for twenty-seven years, Vinnie Hansen lives in Santa Cruz, California with her husband, artist Daniel S. Friedman, and their very spoiled cat Lola. A Claymore Award finalist, Vinnie has had her short stories appear in Porter Gulch Review, Transfer Literary Magazine, Lake Region Review, phren-Z, Web Mystery Magazine, Crime & Suspense, Alchemy and the Santa Cruz Spectacle. A collection of her short stories was a semi-finalist for the Iowa School Letters Award for Short Fiction. Most recently she won first place in the Santa Cruz Reads Steinbeck http://santacruzreads.org/ fiction contest. She is in the process of updating her Carol Sabala mystery series for re-release by misterio press, while also working on the next installment in the series.

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Rotten Dates Newly divorced and vulnerable, baker/sleuth Carol Sabala resists her friend’s pressure to use a personal ad to enter the dating scene. Two weeks later a woman’s body is found strangled on a riverbank in Santa Cruz. Did the killer use the ads to lure his victim? Hired to investigate by the deceased’s cousin, Carol sees the amateur photographer who discovered the body as a likely suspect. He’s handsome, charming, and definitely on the prowl. Is it for a date with Carol or for his next victim? As she digs deeper into the case, she uncovers one dangerous-but-appealing man after another. Longing for companionship and adventure in her own life, Carol learns the hard way that combining the two can be a risky business.

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Squeezed & Juiced Her first real P.I. case, an ailing mother, and a stalled relationship. As Carol Sabala attempts to juggle the components of her life, they all threaten to crash. Training to be a private eye, Carol wrangles a job to investigate a woman’s will. The more Carol probes the retirement home where the woman died, the more she grasps how easily one could kill an elderly person in such a facility. It is, after all, an expected last address. With Carol’s mother intent on moving to the same retirement home, the stakes are high. Will Carol prevent this facility from being her mother’s final address? Can she keep all the pieces of her life in the air as she enters a world of drug addicts and murder? For those of you who enjoy the grittier female protagonists like Kinsey Milhone or Aimée Leduc, discover how Carol Sabala reacts when squeezed.

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Death with Dessert A dead mother. A missing father. A mysterious man. They all spell trouble for private investigator Carol Sabala. When Carol’s mother dies unexpectedly, Carol is left with no family—only money, grief, and an envelope. Her mother has charged her with a mission: deliver the envelope to her long-lost father. Enroute to Zihuatanejo, Mexico, to track down her father, Carol encounters the alluring Mark Escalante, who snares her in a deadly pursuit of his own.

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One Tough Cookie Carol Sabala’s boss sends the baker and amateur sleuth on a mission: find out who tampered with a teacher’s cookie dough and sickened the faculty. While Carol hones her investigative skills by gathering clues on the campus, a student is found dead on the high school’s stage. Did she fall? Commit suicide? Or did a killer hurl her from the catwalk? When Carol seeks answers, a ruthless stalker comes after her.

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Black Beans & Venom No one wants P.I. Carol Sabala to take the case. Her boss is apprehensive about an illegal investigation in Cuba. Carol's boyfriend worries about her physical safety. But the client is rolling in dough, the office has unpaid bills, and Carol chafes under the mundane tasks assigned to her. In Old Havana, Carol sets off to track down Megan, the client's missing daughter, who is battling metastasizing cancer and running from a sociopathic boyfriend. Struggling in the exotic world of the island, Carol races to find Megan, before the disease or her ex-boyfriend kills her.

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Art, Wine and Bullets An innocent visit to a premiere Santa Cruz gallery turns into a nightmare case for Private Investigator Carol Sabala. The strangled body of the gallery owner offers an opportunity to cement her reputation and to save her employer from insolvency. But precious time spent assisting her photographer boyfriend impedes her investigation while his sudden obsession with photographing her impedes their relationship.   When Carol plunges into an art world offering urban graffiti to paintings of polka-dotted cats, she confronts the age-old questions: What is art? What defines an artist? She also confronts what defines a successful private investigator as she unravels much more than a murder case.

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Murder, Honey When the head chef collapses into baker Carol Sabala’s cookie dough, she is thrust into her first murder investigation. There is no shortage of suspects at Archibald’s, the swanky Santa Cruz restaurant where Carol works. The head chef cut a swath of people who wanted him dead, from ex-lovers to bitter rivals to greedy relatives. Even Carol had plotted his demise!

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