Books by Alison Preston

Blue Vengeance

In the spring of 1964 troubled teenager Cookie Blue dies in the Red River. Cookie’s younger brother, Danny holds Miss Hartley, her despised gym teacher, responsible.

Blue Vengeance follows Danny through a Winnipeg summer and fall, as he secretly plots to kill her with a well-chosen stone and a slingshot.

Janine Sénécal, a girl who had been Cookie’s friend, and who harbours her share of secrets, insinuates herself into his plans as his accomplice.

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The Girl in the Wall by Alison Preston

The Girl in the Wall

After leaving the Winnipeg Police force, former Inspector Frank Foote has gone into home renovations. Tearing down a wall in his Norwood Flats neighbourhood, he and his partner come across the skeleton of a young female. They alert the police, but Frank doesn’t tell them about the photograph he found with the remains. He may be retired, but his investigative instincts are intact. On the trail to uncover the girl’s identity Frank is drawn back into the past and into the world of the unusual Mrs. Mortimer, who’d lived nearby. She’d had a short-lived business in the 1960’s taking photographs of the recently deceased for their families. Frank finds himself hoping that she isn’t involved.

But what are the odds?

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Sunny Dreams by Alison Preston

Sunny Dreams

On a spring morning in 1925 Sunny Palmer is kidnapped in broad daylight from her baby carriage in Picardy’s restaurant in downtown Winnipeg. Despite a police dragnet and a handsome reward offer, months pass with no word, and eventually the search is called off. But eleven years later, the appearance of two drifters suddenly reopens the case.

The story takes place in the Norwood Flats section of Winnipeg, the same setting as Preston’s previous novels. This time, though, the action takes place mostly in the Depression year 1936, and we meet the grandfather and father of Frank Foote, the detective who has played a pivotal role in Preston’s previous books.

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Cherry Bites by Alison Preston

Cherry Bites

On a summer afternoon in 1954 a four-year-old girl, Cherry Ring, bites her baby brother Pete on the cheek. Hard. He needs a skin graft to repair the damage and is scarred for life. Cherry knows what she has done is wrong and she really is sorry. But sorry isn’t good enough. The bite marks the beginning of a troubled relationship between the two that lasts a lifetime.

Her brother completely ignores her, and Cherry can’t find her way into her mother’s affections either. Her father is the only one who seems able to love her. When Cherry is in university her mother moves away, taking Pete with her. She finally starts to feel as though her life is going somewhere.

But in the summer of 1995 disturbing incidents begin to occur, and she realizes she has not managed to leave her past behind. She enlists the help of Inspector Frank Foote, who lives in her Norwood Flats neighbourhood, and whom readers will recognize from Preston’s previous books.

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The Geranium Girls

A letter carrier named Beryl Kyte, out for a walk on a beautiful spring morning, trips over a body in the woods of a park near her home. The dead woman has mushrooms sprouting in her mouth. A badly shaken Beryl is questioned and escorted home by the police. Soon another body turns up and then another. As she follows the horrific details in the Winnipeg Free Press Beryl thinks she sees a pattern emerging. She hadn’t been of much help to the police in the case of the first dead woman – she’d only tripped over the body – but when strange events begin happening around her own home, she wishes they, especially Frank Foote, the cop from her neighbourhood, could be of some help to her.

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The Rain Barrel Baby by Alison Preston

The Rain Barrel Baby

Frank Foote’s quiet neighbourhood is greening into summer when a dead baby is discovered in his neighbour’s rain barrel. Frank is a cop, and he’s seen a lot of crime scenes, but this one is a little too close to home.

Meanwhile, Gus Olsen, who made the gruesome discovery, is worried about a mysterious woman who has been cruising the neighbourhood in her Lincoln Town Car. He’s been meaning to talk to Frank about her, but there never seems to be a chance. Frank has his hands full, taking care of his three children while their mother dries out in a treatment centre.

He is a good father, he tries to be a good husband, and he hopes he is a good cop, but Frank has old secrets that he is ashamed of. When Ivy Grace resurfaces after a long absence, one thing is certain: before this summer ends, Frank will have to confront his past.

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A Blue and Golden Year by Alison Preston

A Blue and Golden Year

When Kenneth spots maggots feeding in a dumpster behind a 7-Eleven, he knows a crime has been committed. Why, and by whom are the questions unravelled through changes of season and setting in A Blue and Golden Year.

The story alternates between a Canadian prairie city and a coastal town in Mexico. In Canada, tightly wound Audrey Laird wants to change her disastrous relationship with Lillian, her ne’er-do-well sister. She is also interested that her old flame, Detective Frank Foote, has checked his wife into rehab. Lillian is concerned with the whereabouts of her drug-dealing boyfriend, Iggy. A corpse has been discovered in his apartment and it isn’t his.

In Mexico, Iris, the love of Iggy’s life, runs the Pink Lady bar, where she tries to ignore the antics of Honey, her cocktail waitress. Above it all, in his house on the hill is wealthy, evil Ernest, Iris’s business partner and keeper of Honey. How many people want this man dead? In the search for answers, not everyone survives.

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Alison Preston author

Alison Preston was born and raised in Winnipeg. After trying out Calgary, London, Ontario and Vancouver, B.C. she returned to her hometown, where she currently resides. She is a graduate of the University of Winnipeg and was a letter carrier for 28 years. Alison has written seven novels, the first published by Turnstone Press, the other six by Signature Editions. Her last book, The Girl in the Wall, won the Margaret Laurence Award for fiction in 2012. Her most recent, Blue Vengeance, was published in October of 2014.