Innocent Little Crimes

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Six naïve guests plus revenge served cold equals a recipe for disaster...

Lila Carmichael may be a rich and famous comedienne, but she's hidden her greatest talent from her adoring fans--her ability to simmer, spice and serve a carefully constructed tour de force at a cozy reunion on her private island in the Pacific Northwest.

Six unsuspecting guests have forgotten the innocent little crimes they committed against poor, gullible Lila fifteen ...

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Six naïve guests plus revenge served cold equals a recipe for disaster...

Lila Carmichael may be a rich and famous comedienne, but she's hidden her greatest talent from her adoring fans--her ability to simmer, spice and serve a carefully constructed tour de force at a cozy reunion on her private island in the Pacific Northwest.

Six unsuspecting guests have forgotten the innocent little crimes they committed against poor, gullible Lila fifteen years ago in college. All are teetering on the brink of ruin, hoping the famous Lila will come to their rescue. But their desperation plays them right into her hand.

One by one, Lila's guests are figuratively killed off in a vicious parlor game called Wolves. And revenge turns bittersweet when the weekend is over...and one guest is dead for real.

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Editorial Reviews

Publisher's Weekly Anonymous
Revenge is indeed a dish best served cold in this fast-paced, thrilling story. Lila Carmichael is the Queen of Comedy, a wealthy actress with legions of adoring fans, who capitalizes on her less-than-gorgeous looks and snarky sense of humor. When she invites the former members of her college theater group to her private island for a mini-reunion, initially they’re all thrilled...this is a page-turning thrill-ride that will leave readers holding their breath the whole way through.
Amazon Reviewer Anonymous
The prose is smooth, erudite and imaginative. The author is particularly good at character description and development. I could really picture Lila's eyes punched into her fat, doughy face like raisins. I could feel Della's desperation at not being able to sleep. Jonathan's frustration at his dwindling career was captured vividly. The author seems very knowledgeable about the television and movie businesses, which added to my enjoyment of the excerpt.
Barbara Brooker
I love Susanne Lakin's books. This book is a chilling whodunnit, a book that you can't put down for a moment. As a writer, I am mesmerized by the sheer poetry of Lakin's writing--the imagery which draws you into the characterizations.
What a great treat that the public can share this masterpiece on the Internet.
I think this should be a movie.
Great read.
Catherine Leggitt
The writing is so good it's tempting to stop and savor the sentences. But you can't because the plot keeps you straining toward the resolution. C.S. Lakin loads this book with drama and suspense. Lakin possesses a too-long overlooked creative mind plus an understanding of what makes a story unforgettable. Characters you love to hate, twists and turns when you least expect them, this is a novel to be enjoyed again and again.
Lee Miller
What a ride! A great cast of messed-up characters and a great twist on the Christy novel. Truly a page turner and moving in many ways. Don't miss this!
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781926997858
  • Publisher: Imajin Books
  • Publication date: 9/15/2012
  • Pages: 234
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.49 (d)

Meet the Author

C. S. Lakin writes novels in numerous genres, focusing mostly on contemporary psychological mysteries and allegorical fantasy. Her novel Someone to Blame (contemporary fiction) won the 2009 Zondervan First Novel competition 2009 (published October 2010). Lakin's Gates of Heaven fantasy series for adults (AMG-Living Ink Publishers) features original full-length fairy tales in traditional style. Already in print are the first books in the series, The Wolf of Tebron. The Map across Time, The Land of Darkness, and The Unraveling of Wentwater, with two more to follow.

In addition to her mysteries and fantasy series, she has written the first book in a young adult sci-fi adventure series: Time Sniffers. Her contemporary mystery Innocent Little Crimes made the top one hundred finalists in the 2009 Amazon Breakout Novel Award contest, earning her a Publisher's Weekly review, which stated her book was "a page-turning thrill-ride that will have readers holding their breaths the whole way through."

She recently completed Intended for Harm, an epic family sage that is a contemporary take-off on the biblical story of Jacob and Joseph and is developing a swashbuckling dog memoir in the style of Moby Dick entitled A Dog after God's Own Heart. She lives in Santa Cruz, CA, with her husband Lee, a gigantic lab named Coaltrane, and three persnickety cats. You can connect with her on twitter: @cslakin and @livewritethrive. Or visit her author page on Facebook:

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Customer Reviews

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  • Posted October 24, 2013

    Psychological Depth 'Despite her great success, Lila had become

    Psychological Depth

    'Despite her great success, Lila had become bitter and cruel.' This is the essence of this book which the author refers to as a psychological thriller. She states her aim as wanting to look at the motives and motivation of her characters and in this writer's humble opinion she achieves this.
    At first I wondered about the significance of the prologue, but by the end of the novel I understood. The structure of the book is not linear, and as such it may take a little more careful reading. The characters are introduced through their own chapters. Lila Carmichael, overweight, rich comedian with her assistant Peter. Della Roman is a tortured soul heavily reliant on medication such as valium. Jonathan Levin is a dubious film director with expensive tastes. Dick Ferrol is married to Millie and is in trouble with the law having been issued with a supeona. Davis Gregory is the charmer who bends the rules when it comes to financial deals and is recently engaged to Cynthia.
    They are all invited to a college reunion on Lila's remote private island. The thunderstorm prefigures the clash which will happen later that weekend. The game of volley ball on the beach highlights the competitive nature between Jonathan and Davis. The centrepiece of the novel is the 'destructive game' hosted by Lila exposing all their guilty secrets. Lila also reveals how she has been the destructive force undermining their lives, exacting her revenge.The book then goes back in time to explain about Lila's childhood and her dominating father and acquiescent mother. The way she escaped to college, her talent for learning lines by rote and her role in the play, orchestrated by her guests. After her discovery of their treachery she works in bars and is given her start in comedy. Interspersed with this story is the guests pursuit of Davis on the island. He is to be Lila's prize and the forfeit for putting all their lives back on track.The book ends with what happens to each of the characters after the devastating weekend. Finally ending with Lila's final TV appearance. There is a suggestion that even though she had her revenge it has not made her happy.I have not read enough psychological thrillers to determine if this book suffers from not having a linear structure - Ian McEwans Enduring Love certainly did. However it is well put together and the conclusion is logical and satisfying. There is sufficient detail to make it believable, but not overly technical. This is obviously a writer who is good at what she does and I find her blogs very interesting and useful as well.

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