"Packs a twelve-week writing course into 280 pages."
author of Keep No Secrets
"Intricate and surprising, this is a gripping read." —Kristine Huntley, Booklist
"The two leads, Rita and George, are engaging and believable." —Hallie Ephron, Boston Globe
"Sims orchestrates the action—and occasional comic relief—for maximum impact." —Publishers Weekly
"A rollicking good mystery." —Lori L. Lake, Midwest Book Review
"Your evening read will keep you up 'til dawn." —Whitney Scott, Booklist
"Colorful episodes involving trailer parks and luxury cars." —Kirkus Reviews
"Sims has created one of those heroines who you wouldn't like to be but you'd like as a friend." —Sharon Wheeler, Reviewing the Evidence
"You'll be surprised over and over." —Caroline McCullagh, Mensa Bulletin
"Each of these four stories is a tiny gem." —Neil S. Plakcy, author
"The approach is always positive and well worth the price of admission." —Ellen Hart, award-winning author
"A page-turner from stem to stern." —Kirkus Reviews
"Goes down easy, like a perfect cup of coffee." —Crimespree Magazine
"A fast-paced, atmospheric mystery. Sims shines." —Melinda Bargreen, The Seattle Times
"Spot on dialog and well drawn female characters." —Ryan G. Van Cleave, Scene Magazine
"Byrd is a very likable amateur sleuth and Sims is a really entertaining storyteller." —Andrea L.T. Peterson, Woman's Monthly
"Appealing characters, and a rabbit mascot." —Library Journal
"A nerve-tingling thriller, rich with characterization and humour." —Vancouver BC Public Library
"Hilarious. Lillian is a true original." —Kirkus Reviews
"Unforgettable characters, lovely moments and brilliant dialogue." —The Lesbian Review
"Elizabeth Sims proves herself a true writer's friend." —Jamie Morris, Director, Voice Heart Vision
"Sims' wry commentary on life in Hollywood is dead-on." —Publishers Weekly
"An intelligent thriller." —Jay Strafford, Richmond Times-Dispatch
"You just have to love Rita." —Kirkus Reviews
"Sims is a master of word choice, sentence structure, and plot development." —Mensa Bulletin
"I flat out loved this book." —Sheryl LeSage, Liberty Press
"Much charm and deprecating humor." —Kirkus Reviews
"A nifty little puzzle solved by a most intriguing female detective." —Rex E. Klett, Library Journal
"Don't overlook the work of this excellent and entertaining author." —Denise Pickles, Mary Martin Bookshop
"What more could a reader ask for?" —Cheri Fuller and Nikki Little, Curve Magazine
"The quality of writing and the entertainment value are high." —W Spice
Published 2017 by Spruce Park Press
"Sims propels a plot along at Tom Clancy speed while still using a lovely F. Scott Fitzgerald lushness of language."
—Ryan G. Van Cleave, Scene Magazine
Elnice Coker and her husband Arthur, retired schoolteachers, move from Indiana to the Hollywood Hills in a last-ditch attempt at novelty and happiness. California alone can’t do the trick, but when Elnice befriends her housecleaner, Solita, her life opens up to friendship and intrigue. Elnice teaches Solita English although Solita’s common-law husband, Luis, is against it. The women build a secret, tentative friendship.
Meanwhile, wannabe novelist Jason M is busy writing faulty information into tech manuals for airplane-making machines at a factory in the Valley. One of a swarm of corporate saboteurs scattered around Los Angeles, he’s bossed by a nameless, exacting mentor. But when he begins to have ethical doubts, he discovers it’s harder to get out than it was to get in.
The lure of easy money casts its spell over everybody, and as Elnice and Solita grow closer, they encounter treachery and danger where they least expect it. The saboteurs intertwine, innocent lives hang in the balance, and as Elnice risks everything to dig deeper, she learns the value of rejecting safety—and living life to the max.
"Crimes in a Second Language is a departure from series work for me," Elizabeth says. "This is a stand-alone novel about the relationship between two very different women in contemporary Los Angeles. The story was inspired by my late, great aunt and her relationship with a Mexican-American housecleaner. The story began to take on a life of its own as I wrote it, sprawling into the film business, corporate and industrial espionage, and other, darker issues of urban life."
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