Authors Showcase: A Dead Red Alibi by R. P. Dahlke


The Book: A Dead Red Alibi

The Author: R. P. Dahlke

The Story: A successful, but reclusive young artist with a secret life.

A wannabe lawman and his dotty gun-toting granddad.

An abandoned mine pit, a curious dad and the local police chief found with him.

When Lalla and her dad take a trip to Arizona to inspect her new property, Dad disappears. But when Lalla enlists the help of a local tracker she’s relieved to find him unharmed, but in the bottom of a mine pit.

Unfortunately, he’s got company–a local police chief, and it looks like he’s been murdered. Then too, a young woman artist living nearby has also been murdered. What’re the chances that these two murders are going to be related?

Well, if you’re Lalla Bains, you don’t guess, you start looking for the killer!

About R. P. Dahlke:

R. P. Dahlke
R. P. Dahlke

I sort of fell into the job of running a crop-dusting business when my dad decided he’d rather go on a cruise than take another season of lazy pilots, missing flaggers, testy farmers and horrific hours. After two years at the helm, I handed him back the keys and fled to a city without any of the above. And no, I was never a crop-duster.

My Lalla Bains series is about a tall, blond and beautiful ex-model turned crop-duster who, to quote Lalla Bains, has “been married so many times they oughta revoke my license.” Lalla is no Danielle Steele character & she’s not afraid of chipping her manicure. Scratch that, the girl doesn’t have time for a manicure what with herding a bunch of recalcitrant pilots and juggling work orders just to keep her father’s flagging business alive.

My romantic sailing Mystery Trilogy start with A Dangerous Harbor, and continues with Hurricane Hole (2014). Both now up on Kindle and if you liked my Lalla Bains series, I know you’ll love this book: More romance, more suspense, an exotic location with nastier bad guys and a bald parrot!

Review by Grady Harp: R.P. Dahlke grew up living the crop-dusting life in Modesto, California in the San Joaquin Valley. Her father owned and operated his own Aero Ag business for over thirty years. Today, her son has taken up the torch and flies crop-dusters in the same area. Dahlke is glad to write about it … but not live it. She currently lives in Tucson, Arizona where she writes her very popular novels. She is a member of Sisters in Crime (the first president of the Cochise County chapter as well as the National chapter), Mystery Writers of America, The Society of Southwestern Authors, and the first president of the Cochise County Chapter of Sisters in Crime. She has six books to her credit, of which this is the fourth in the series of the Dead Red Mysteries.

And so we meet up with our favorite heroine Lalla Bains, tall, blond and beautiful ex-model turned crop-duster from Modesto, California all the way in Wishbone, Arizona: `I wasn’t supposed to be in Wishbone, Arizona, fearfully scouring the desert for my missing father. I was supposed to be on my honeymoon, married at last to my sweetie, Sheriff Caleb Stone.’ That is the manner in which Dahlke has mastered the mystery genre – twists and turns with a huge dollop of humor and fun despite the evil derring-do of her encountered characters. Lalla finds her father in a mine pit atop a corpse who happens to be the local police chief. And as always with Dahlke’s stories other coincidental deaths occur – this time a young woman artist – and Lalla is convinced the two murders are connected. The altar deserting Caleb arrives (much to Lalla’s consternation) and ends up assisting Lalla in the investigation of the two murders. This is enough of a synopsis to lead any reader (especially if already a RP Dahlke fan) to grab this speedy read and escape reality for Dahlke’s far more preposterous and entertaining world.

Dahlke is a polished storyteller, having that innate sense of the need for humor inserted into her mysteries that helps not only propel them along, but also keeps our attention during the rest stops. And while producing suspense about a very complicated crime she lets her story breathe with relationships – family, friends, loves – that allows us to build faith in the somewhat quirky character of Lalla Bains, a trait that practically guarantees that readers will follow the other books in this Dead Red Mysteries series. This is a very strong, immensely satisfying, idiosyncratic and entertaining mystery novel. Highly Recommended.

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