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About the Author
A former nurse and health food store owner from the Bay Area, Norma Lehr has four children and five grandchildren. She lives in Auburn, California, in the beautiful Sierra foothills with her husband. Norma is a multi-genre author of short stories, a middle-grade ghost series, and an adult supernatural suspense novel, Dark Maiden (Juno Books, 2007). Timestep to Murder is the first mystery featuring amateur sleuth and retired show dancer, Abby Rollins. The series continues with Deadly Shuffle, also published by Camel Press. For more information, go to www.normalehr.com.
Read an Excerpt
The pool area was deserted. The weather this time of the year didn't beckon many swimmers, only the hearty. She stopped and gazed down into the clear water. A thick blue line painted on the bottom spanned the width of the pool, separating Nevada from California. Before she left here, she made a mental note to swim from one state to the other. Cross that line. Ah hah. She shuddered. That might not be the only line she'd cross at the Cal Neva if she went ahead and entered Melanie's chalet without permission.
Abby cut through the bar and found the others, all except Jan and Dana, having coffee in the restaurant. She hoped the maid had put in the order for Dana. She needed a shot of caffeine to lift her up.
The other women gathered at the table had all changed from their dance togs into casual clothes and, with lowered voices, were discussing the horrible way Melanie had died. "I ordered you a Chai," Renee said, patting the seat next to her. "How's Dana holding up? She looked really bad when she got back."
All eyes turned to Abby. "It's tough for her. Apparently Melanie doesn't have any family. Dana had to make the call to the academy in San Diego and tell them what happened."
Gail stood to leave. "Well, I'm going to do some gambling on the old slot machines. Pulling a handle and letting those colored symbols roll down and across are Zen for me. Negative thoughts fly out of my head, and everything wonderful happens when the red sevens line up."
"Good for you." Blythe folded her napkin into a triangle. "Go meditate." She looked around at the others. "What about our performance? Is it still on? Has anyone spoken to Jan since Melanie …?" Blythe's voice quivered.
Gail nodded. "I spoke to her a while ago, over by the roulette wheel. She says there's no problem. She's expecting reporters to show up soon because bad publicity always brings in a crowd of curiosity seekers. There she is now, and look who's with her, Dana.
Wonder what that's about."
All heads turned. "Maybe she's backing out of the performance," Blythe said.
Renee lifted her chin. "Or she's pulled herself together like the trooper she is and is letting Jan know the show must go on."
Abby hoped Renee was right. It did seem odd to see Dana up at the tables looking fresh-faced after what she'd divulged to Abby earlier.