Brett Kavanaugh is a tattoo artist and owner of The Painted Lady, catering to high-profile clients in Las Vegas. But in her free time, she does a little investigating too - because murder really gets under her skin. . . .
When a girl makes an appointment to get devotion ink with the name of her fiancé embedded in a heart, Brett takes the job, but the girl never shows. The next thing Brett knows, the police are looking for her mysterious client and the name she wanted on the tattoo isn't the name of her fiancé.
An alliance with an unlikely partner leads Brett to a dead body, a suave Englishman, and an Elvis karaoke bar. And who is the tattooed stranger stalking her? Brett draws lines between the clues, unwittingly putting herself in danger. But she intends to see justice done, since death, like a tattoo, is permanent. . . .
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Praise for "The Missing Ink"
"'The Missing Ink' is edgier than the usual cozy; however, this series should have broad appeal with a main character that is both likable and down-to-earth and will have readers returning for more."
"Ms. Olson has penned a winner in her new Tattoo Shop mystery series. Brett is a likable, albeit unusual heroine. I'm looking forward to seeing more of her and her zany cohorts in future books. Give 'THE MISSING INK' a try if you're a fan of character-driven mysteries or Vegas-set stories.
"This one has it all with edgy characters and a tight plot."
- Mystery Scene Magazine
"It's fun to dive into a murder mystery every so often and even more fun to do so when you're interested in ink and the main character is an artist. It's refreshing to read a work of fiction that is centered around the modern tattoo industry and just doesn't use tattoos as clues or signifiers on a character's body. . . . Ms. Olson has created a character that is believable and entertaining."
"A terrific mystery, with a memorable lead character who knows her way around tattooing instruments and Las Vegas's craziness equally well . . . plot points that surprise and make perfect sense."
"A fast-moving tale with quirky but affectionately portrayed characters. The tension is kept at a high pitch."
- Romantic Times, 4 stars
"Ms. Olson walks readers through a multiple murder mystery, supplying clues at a steady pace. 'The Missing Ink' is suspenseful, entertaining from the start, and has a touch of romance that nicely rounds out the story."
"The Painted Lady, a tattoo shop in contemporary Las Vegas, and its owner, artist turned tattooist Brett Kavanaugh, are central to this pleasantly jargon-free themed mystery from Olson (the Annie Seymour mysteries). When a woman requests a devotion tattoo from Brett and then vanishes, her disappearance is quickly linked to a series of murders involving tattooing equipment and rival shop Murder Ink. Brett's police detective brother, Tim, requests her expertise, and a murder at an engagingly excessive fictional hotel leads to Brett meeting its mysteriously handsome manager, Simon Chase, providing a solid base for further sleuthing and romance. Readers need not be conversant with 'street flash' or other industry terms to enjoy the setting and follow Brett down a trail of needles and gloves to the dramatic finale."
"A winner . . . crisp dialogue, a red-hot setting, and a smart, sassy tattooed protagonist. Viva Las Vegas!"
- Susan McBride, author of the Debutante Dropout Mysteries
"Karen Olson has launched a delightful new series with 'The Missing Ink,' featuring tattooist Brett Kavanaugh. Brett is proud that she makes grown men cry. She also makes grown women laugh. I look forward to more adventures for this Las Vegas needle artist."
- Elaine Viets, author of "Killer Cuts"