The Liz Adams Mystery Series



Will P.I. Liz and her truth-sniffing dog Duke get to the bottom of things

 before the damage is irreparable? 


Charleston Conundrum

A Liz Adams Mystery Book 1

by Stacy Wilder

Genre: Cozy Mystery 


A Cozy Mystery With a Twist...

Liz Adams never imagined when she moved to Charleston with her truth sniffing Labrador retriever, Duke, that she would use her skills as a private investigator to avoid winding up on Death Row.

Liz’s life is upended when her best friend, Peg, is murdered and she becomes a suspect.Liz’s gun was the murder weapon. Tensions flare between Liz and the cops as she rises to the top of their suspect list.

At the request of Peg’s father, Liz agrees to take on the investigation. Riding a roller coaster of emotions, Liz uncovers many secrets Peg kept from her despite their being best friends. The suspects include a cast of characters: the ex-husband, the boyfriend, a coworker, several neighbors, and family members.

Charleston Conundrum takes the reader from Charleston, South Carolina, to Paris and back in the emotional unraveling of Peg’s life and death to a killer ending.


Duke’s baritone bark rang in my ears. Sirens screeched. I jerked upright. The neon lights on my bedside clock pulsed four fifty-two. Heart hammering, I emerged from the warm cocoon of blankets atop my four-poster bed. The jolt of cold tile on my feet lifted a portion of the fog created by last night’s

third glass of wine.

“What’s the matter, boy?” Red lights beaconed through the front bay windows. My sixth sense kicked in, and the hairs on my arm responded. I grabbed Duke’s leather collar and edged past his ninety-pound muscled body to peer through the beveled glass of my front door.

My stomach dropped. Police cars swarmed my neighbor’s house.

My neighbor, Peg, and I had become fast friends shortly after I moved here. Just six hours ago, we’d polished off her stash of merlot. The good stuff … that she’d bought at a charity auction … for three times the normal price.

I couldn’t imagine why every emergency crew in Charleston was parked in front of her home. I ran my fingers through my hair in disbelief. “What the hell is going on?”

After slipping into my robe, I left Duke inside and marched toward the red lights and swarm of emergency personnel. Each step felt heavy, and leaden. My gut clenched tighter, and tighter, and I wiped beads of perspiration off the back of my neck. The yellow tape stretched across the sidewalk leading to her front door screamed “crime scene.” Streetlamps glowed in the morning mist, and the combination of pulsating red and orange lights gave off an eerie glow. Neighbors trickled from their homes and formed a small crowd. I scanned the faces but couldn’t find Peg. Picking up the pace, I headed toward Cassie, the sixty-year-old widow, who lived next door to Peg.

“Cassie, what happened? Where’s Peg?”

“I don’t know.” She shook her head.

My legs trembled, and I had a sinking feeling in my stomach. “What happened?” I repeated. “Why are the cops here?”

“I don’t know.” Her voice rose a few decibels. “Last night I thought I heard a loud pop, like a firecracker, but I’m not sure. I fell asleep with the television on. Went to the kitchen for a glass of water. Turned off the television and crawled back in bed. The next thing I heard was the sirens.”

“What time was that?” The most likely neighbors to have any information were Cassie and Lou, Peg’s other neighbor and business partner. Peg and Lou owned an interior design firm.

“Around two,” she replied.

I’m not popular with most of the Charleston police force, and that was an understatement. I challenged their good ole’ boy club. Even though I owned a Labrador, I operated more like a bulldog. What most of them resented, second to my track record, was my ability to navigate through the Charleston elite. I relied on Peg’s friends and connections often.

I dreaded trying to drag information out of the cops.

Matt walked up adjusting his holster. The ginger-colored cowlick he sported on top of his head made him look like he’d just rolled out of bed. Matt was one of the few members of the Charleston police force who was actually friendly toward me. Peg had nicknamed him Howdy Doody.

“Howdy, Liz.”

“What happened, Matt? Where’s Peg?”

Matt gazed at the ground. “I’m sorry, Liz. She’s dead.”

That was the last thing I remembered before my world went black.

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Carmel Conundrum

A Liz Adams Mystery Book 2


Stolen identities, a cult, a kidnapping, an attempted murder, and a budding romance . . .

Join Private Investigator Liz Adams, and her lie-detecting Labrador, Duke, in the scenic town of Carmel By-the-Sea, as the pair investigate the mystery of stolen identities. Complications arise when Liz becomes romantically entangled with her hot new client, Brad.

Enter Apollo, a charismatic cult leader, whose mission to save the homeless has a dark twist. Why does he continue to trespass on Liz’s property? She’s compelled to uncover the answer.

Tensions mount, as the stakes become a matter of life and death. Will Liz and Duke solve both mysteries before the damage is irreparable?

Travel with Liz from Charleston, SC to Carmel, CA, and back to discover the astounding truth.

As I licked my lips, I had to admit I was intrigued. I’d investigated plenty of insurance scams. This would be my first identity theft case. I could pull in experts. Yes, I was supposed to be on vacation, but the challenge was enticing.

Brad massaged his forehead with his fingertips. “Do you know someone who can solve this mess?”

“Before I answer, I do have a few more questions.” My pulse quickened. “Do you have a time frame in mind?”

“I’d like to wrap this up in two weeks.”

I licked my lips and continued, “How much access will the investigator have to records and the employees?”

Brad responded, “As much as they need. This is important to me.”

“Hmm, it’s not my area of expertise, but I can bring in help as needed…” I locked eyes with Brad. “What do you think about me taking the lead on the investigation?”

“You’re supposed to be taking a break.”

“I can do that later. I know how much this means to you.”

Brad hesitated. “Tim?”

“Up to you, boss,” he replied.

Grinning dimple to dimple, Brad stood and placed a hand on my shoulder. “It’s a huge relief knowing you’re on the case.”

“When can I start?”

Brad responded. “As soon as you’d like. We can set you up in Tim’s office with a company laptop so you can access the personnel files.”

I shrugged. “Well then, Tim, show me the way.” As I looked back over my shoulder at Brad, I said, “I’ll send you a proposal. You’re not getting off cheap.” I winked.

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Stacy writes mysteries, children’s stories, short stories, and poetry. Her mission is to deliver a delightful story to readers of all ages while benefiting a larger community. She donates a portion of the proceeds from the sales of her books to causes that support wildlife conservation, and the homeless, both people and pets.

As well as writing, Stacy is passionate about her faith, family, Labradors, the causes that she supports, the beach, art, and reading books.

She and her husband live in Houston, Texas, with a totally spoiled Labrador retriever, Eve.

You can find Stacy’s website at

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  1. I love that the dog is on the covers. They looks so intriguing.

  2. A "truth sniffing Labrador retriever" sounds like fun.

  3. What a lovely book with nice characters.


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