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Free Mystery Feature January 2022 | Ring Girl: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Ring Girl Kira Brightwell cover

Enemies since high school… Kira and Trevor never expected to end up solving cases together.

Trevor knows that Kira does most of the solving, but he likes to think his raw charm and charisma count for something

And when the opportunity to prove himself as more than a stunningly handsome sidekick falls into his lap in the form of a beautiful client, how can he possibly refuse?

A short story misadventure of Kira and Trevor from the Kira Brightwell mystery series by Jacquelyn Smith.

Now you can read it for free on this site for one month only. This short story also comes in ebook and paperback format–both on its own, and as part of the Fourth Strike Kira Brightwell Collection.


Ring Girl: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Jacquelyn Smith

Amazing the difference a few months can make.

Trevor Wright shook his head to himself as he dried the sweat from his face and neck with a fluffy towel, stitched with the emblem of the La Valentia Golf Club in gold thread. He inhaled the faint scent of fabric softener before looking up to wave his tennis racket at Craig Masterson in farewell.

Despite its name, the golf club was really more of a country club, with a full set of amenities, including a tennis court, pool, and spa area in addition to the sprawling golf green. Only the wealthiest citizens of the suburban California town owned permanent memberships there, Trevor’s father among them.

Trevor suspected Craig was happy to make his escape to the locker room. If their match had taken place at the beginning of the year, Craig would be paying up by now to cover his loss.

Back then, Trevor had gambled on just about anything as a matter of course. Tennis matches, golf rounds, sports games on TV…

Private poker games.

It was the latter that had gotten him into trouble. With nothing else to keep him occupied in the years since graduating from high school, Trevor had gotten his thrills from his wins and losses.

His friends didn’t mind placing reasonable bets with him away from the poker table. But most of them had a family or career to keep their own gambling in check.

Trevor had no such boundaries. He was the indolent son of a wealthy real estate magnate. His father was hardly ever around. He was always at the office or flying off to make one deal or another in his private jet while Trevor and his teenage sister stayed at home. Trevor knew he could fritter away his considerable monthly allowance without any consequences.

…Until things had gone too far. Continue reading →

Posted by Jacquelyn in Free Mystery Feature, 0 comments

Mackenzie Quinn has arrived!

Well, Kira’s Canadian cousin is finally on the case. (Two cases, actually.) I’ve released two short novel adventures in the series, and I’m currently working on the first full-length novel, which takes place roughly three months after the second short. Both of these (mis)adventures were a lot of fun to write, and feature some quirky, small-town characters–plus, several cats. (And one adorable Chihuahua-Pomeranian, lol.)

The first short, Death Clause, tells the story of Zee’s unplanned return to her hometown, and is available to purchase from pretty much every ebook retailer and directly from this website. (It’s also available in paperback.) By Book or by Crook takes place a few weeks later, and is a newsletter exclusive. Continue reading →

Posted by Jacquelyn in Writing/Publishing Updates, 0 comments

Free Mystery Feature October 2021 | Puncher’s Chance: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Puncher's Chance Kira Brightwell coverLocal hero and problem solver for hire, Kira Brightwell finds herself on the run. Again.

Her running shoes pound the crowded sidewalk. A trickle of sweat slithers down her back in the California heat. And the damp remains of scrambled egg spatter the front of her favorite Nine Inch Nails T-shirt.

The egg stain earns her a few looks from passers-by. That and her breakneck pace.

Kira’s quarry remains two blocks ahead of her. She needs to haul ass if she wants to catch him.

…Because when a bad guy messes with her favorite shirt, the case gets personal.

A stand-alone misadventure story from the Kira Brightwell mystery series by Jacquelyn Smith.

Now, you can read it for free on this site for one month only. This short story also comes in ebook and paperback format–both on its own, and as part of the Third Round Kira Brightwell Collection.

Get the ebook at:


Buy ebook direct from the author

Paperback available at:


Puncher’s Chance: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Jacquelyn Smith

This story will be available for free for one month only, which is now over. The next free story will be posted on January 1st. You can keep an eye out for it here.

Posted by Jacquelyn in Free Mystery Feature, 0 comments

Kickstart Your Collection: Kira Brightwell deals, plus a new mystery series on the way

Update: This promotion is now over.

So I recently set up a deal on the first four Kira Brightwell novels, as well as the first four collections as a summer sale. Split Decision (Kira Brightwell Book 1) is currently available for free, Black and Blue (Book 2) is $0.99, Low Blow (Book 3) is $2.99, and Game Plan (Book 4) is $3.99. (The rest of the novels in the series are available for $4.99 each. You can find a complete listing here.) You can find links to all the various ebook retailers by clicking the link for each title, or you can add all four of the books to your cart at once and purchase them directly from me for $7.97 USD.

Continue reading →

Posted by Jacquelyn in Writing/Publishing Updates, 0 comments

Free Mystery Feature July 2021 | Seeing Stars: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Seeing Stars Kira Brightwell coverKira Brightwell might not wear a badge. But she still enjoys the challenge when she unravels a difficult case.

The case of Taylor Christie proves no exception. The social media starlet prepares to shoot a video, when things go wrong. Horribly wrong. With an entire crowd in attendance.

And more than Kira knows stands between her and the truth about what happened.

A twisting, stand-alone story from the Kira Brightwell mystery series by Jacquelyn Smith. If you love a clever detective, who plays by her own rules, grab this book.

Now, you can read it for free on this site for one month only. This short story also comes in ebook and paperback format–both on its own, and as part of the Third Round Kira Brightwell Collection.

Get the ebook at:


Buy ebook direct from the author

Paperback available at:


Seeing Stars: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Jacquelyn Smith

This story will be available for free for one month only, which is now over. The next free story will be posted on October 1st. You can find the most recent mystery feature here.

Posted by Jacquelyn in Free Mystery Feature, 0 comments

Kira collection updates, recommendations from lockdown, plus a crazy cat story

I’m not going to lie. 2021 started off rough for me. (Like it did for so many people.) Insomnia, mental health issues, jackhammers… It was not a good time.

But now it’s June somehow, and things have turned around. The jackhammers have left the building, and I’m finally sleeping again. (Yay!) More importantly, I’m finally getting some work done.

It’s a little early to talk about, but I do have a new mystery project in the works… And I’ve been hard at work designing and formatting the paperback versions of the latest Kira Brightwell collections that came out late 2020/early 2021. The sticking point has been the cover design, which I’ve had to completely re-think on the collection front, but it’s finally coming together:


First Blood Kira Brightwell cover Second Warning Kira Brightwell cover Third Round Kira Brightwell cover Fourth Strike Kira Brightwell cover Down in the Fifth Kira Brightwell cover Six Stitches Kira Brightwell cover


I’ve also been enjoying some mystery-based lockdown entertainment, which I can happily recommend. Continue reading →

Posted by Jacquelyn in Writing/Publishing Updates, 0 comments

Free Mystery Feature April 2021 | On the Card: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

What is the Free Mystery Feature?

So roughly a year ago, I started posting one of my short stories for free each month, over on my multi-genre website. Each story was available for one month only, before it was taken down, and another one was posted in its place. (Inspired by insanely prolific author, Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s Free Fiction Mondays feature.)

These stories were a mix of my mystery and fantasy work. (Mostly fantasy, since I’ve written a lot more of it at this point.) After some thought, I’ve decided it makes more sense to break these stories out onto my genre-specific websites instead.

What does this mean? Well, this site now has a blog feature, which it didn’t have before, so I’ll probably be posting updates on my mystery writing here going forward, with my multi-genre site acting more as a roundup for all my writing news. More importantly, it means this feature will only include mystery stories. As I said, I don’t have as many mystery stories as I do fantasy. So to keep this feature running for a decent amount of time, I’m going to post a free mystery story for one month of each quarter (which is roughly the same, if not somewhat better than the rate I was posting them on my multi-genre site before). Bottom line, there will be one mystery story available for free during the months of April, July, October, and January.

(Side Note: If you also happen to enjoy reading fantasy, you can check out my Free Fantasy Feature. And yes, this means that during those months listed above I’ll have two free stories available–one mystery and one fantasy.)

Make sense? Let’s kick things off with some birthday hijinks!


On the Card Kira Brightwell coverKira Brightwell needs to pay.

A problem solver for hire and local hero in her own right, Kira never sought any acclaim for her actions. She only wants to track down the man who abducted her three years ago. And maybe celebrate her birthday with some ice cream cake.

But even an unintentional path to prominence comes with collateral damage.

…And some people can never forgive and forget.

A fast-paced, stand-alone story from the Kira Brightwell mystery series by Jacquelyn Smith.

Now, you can read it for free on this site for one month only. This short story also comes in ebook and paperback format–both on its own, and as part of the Second Warning Kira Brightwell Collection.

Get the ebook at:


Buy ebook direct from the author

Paperback available at:


On the Card: A Kira Brightwell Short Story

Jacquelyn Smith

This story will be available for free for one month only, which is now over. The next free story will be posted on July 1st. You can find the most recent mystery feature here.

Posted by Jacquelyn in Free Mystery Feature