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Meet Tule Publishing’s First 10 Mystery Authors as Part of our #Tule10 Anniversary!

Tule Publishing has hit a milestone 10 years and we’re celebrating all month long with showcasing some of our first 10’s! Learn more about our first 10 authors, meet our first 10 cowboys, and maybe find yourself wrapped up dreaming of the holidays with our first 10 Christmas stories!

We are so thankful for each of you for continuing to put your faith in us to continue bringing you amazing reads. You are a crucial part to our success and we couldn’t have made it to our 10th anniversary without you! We hope you stick around all month for more celebratory blogs and are looking forward to another 10 years – cheers!

Meet Tule Publishing’s First 10 Mystery Authors

Meet CJ Carmichael

CJ Carmichael headshot

USA Today Bestselling author C. J. Carmichael has written over 45 novels in her favorite genres of romance and mystery. She has been nominated twice for the Romance Writers of America RITA Award, as well as RT Bookclub’s Career Achievement in Romantic Suspense award, and the Bookseller’s Best honor.

She gave up the thrills of income tax forms and double entry book-keeping in 1998 when she sold her first book to Harlequin Superromance. Since then she has published over 35 novels with Harlequin and is currently working on a series of western romances with Tule Publishing. In addition C. J. Carmichael has published several cozy mystery series as an Indie author.

When not writing C. J. enjoys family time with her grown daughters and her husband. Family dinners are great. Even better are the times they spend hiking in the Rocky Mountains around their home in Calgary, and relaxing at their cottage on Flathead Lake, Montana. Visit C.J.’s website at http://CJCarmichael.com

Meet Jane Graves

New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Jane Graves has written twenty-two contemporary romance novels. She has received Romance Writers of America’s RITA Award, the romance industry’s highest honor, and is the recipient of two National Readers’ Choice Awards, the Booksellers’ Best Award, and the Golden Quill, among others. Her books have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

Jane lives in the Dallas area with her husband, a highly organized engineer who keeps their lives in order because one of them has to. Her hobbies include daydreaming, avoiding exercise, and drinking cheap wine.



Meet Leslie Marshman

Award-winning suspense author Leslie Marshman is (finally) putting her psychology degree to good use, getting inside the heads of her characters and figuring out what makes them tick. She writes novels that feature kick-ass heroines, the heroes who love them, and the bad guys who fear them.

Leslie called Denver home until she married a Texan without reading the fine print. Now she lives halfway between Houston and Galveston and has learned to embrace the humidity. Her household includes two miniature poodles named Harley and Davidson, and a three-legged box turtle named Stumpy.

If she’s not at her computer making things up, you’ll probably find her camping at a lake, a fishing pole in one hand and a book in the other.

Meet Nancy Robards Thompson

Award-winning and USA Today bestselling author Nancy Robards Thompson has worked as a newspaper reporter, television show stand-in, production and casting assistant for movies, and in fashion and public relations. She started writing fiction seriously in 1997. Five years and four completed manuscripts later, she won the Romance Writers of America’s Golden Heart award for unpublished writers and sold her first book the following year. Since then, Nancy has sold 30 books and found her calling doing what she loves most – writing romance and women’s fiction full-time.




Meet Candace Havens

Bestselling and award-winning author Candace Havens has had more than thirty novels published. She is one of the nation’s leading entertainment journalists and has interviewed countless celebrities from George Clooney to Chris Pratt. She does film reviews on Hawkeye in the Morning on 96.3 KSCS.






Meet Katherine Cowley

Katherine Cowley’s debut novel, The Secret Life of Miss Mary Bennet, was nominated for the Mary Higgins Clark Award. Her Mary Bennet spy series continues with the novels The True Confessions of a London Spy and The Lady’s Guide to Death and Deception.

Katherine loves history, chocolate, traveling, and playing the piano, and she has taught writing classes at Western Michigan University. She lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan, with her husband and three daughters.






Meet H L Marsay

H L Marsay always loved detective stories and promised herself that one day, she would write one too. She is lucky enough to live in York, a city full of history and mystery. When not writing, the five men in her life keep her busy – two sons, two dogs and one husband.










Meet Winter Austin

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name.

A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers.

When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them. She is the author of multiple novels.

Meet Melinda Di Lorenzo

Melinda is an Amazon bestselling author, whose additional work includes titles for The Wild Rose Press, Amazon Encore, and Harlequin. She writes in a range of romance genres, from heart pounding heat, to nail biting suspense, to gutsy adventure.

Melinda lives on the beautiful coast of British Columbia, Canada, with her amazing and quirky daughters and her handsome hero of a husband. When she’s not writing, she can be found curled up with (someone else’s) good book, on the running trail, or at the soccer pitch.




Meet Kaz Delaney

Headshot of Kaz Delaney

Award winning YA & children’s author, Kaz Delaney, and her alter ego, have currently sold 73 titles between them over a 26 year career.

Her books have won many awards, among them the prestigious Aurealis Award for best paranormal and ARRA (Australian Romance Readers Association) awards. Her novel ‘Dead, Actually’ (Allen & Unwin) was nominated for a Davitt Award, (Best crime novel, Sisters In Crime) in the YA section.   Dividing her time between teaching and writing, Kaz formerly tutored Creative Writing for CSU’s Enrichment Program as well as teaching and creating courses for the Australian College of Journalism.

Having always had a love of cozy mysteries, Kaz is having so much fun writing her Hart of Texas Mystery Series for Tule Publishing, that she worries it’s not legal!

With their family grown and gone, Kaz lives with her wonderful husband at beautiful Lake Macquarie, Australia, a place she describes as a strip of land between the ocean and lake.  Like Rosie, Kaz loves to bake and grow vegetables and unlike Rosie, manages to make a mess of every crochet task she undertakes.

. . . . . . . . . .

Thanks for stopping by to meet the first 10 mystery authors of Tule Publishing! Here’s to a great year of #Tule10!

Tule Author Q&A: Winter Austin was inspired by a song!

Winter Austin stopped by the Tule blog to discuss the third book in the Benoit and Dayne Mystery series, Straight for the Kill!

Where did you get the inspiration for Straight for the Kill?

This one came from listening to a new to me duo called Neoni and a few of their songs stirred up some scenes in my head while driving home from one of my many trips to Iowa City for check ups on my eyes. I can’t reveal what scenes those were because it would ruin the book. The title took a bit to decide on, and it was there before I figured out how to work it in. The overall plot has been around since Elizabeth and her characterization were birthed.


How have your characters Elizabeth and Lila changed throughout the course of the Benoit and Dayne Mystery series? 

In increments. Both are older and have some set ways, but that’s the beauty of being an author and these are fictional people, you can change them.

Elizabeth is more jaded than she was when we first meet her. She’s always been a go-getter, but doing the job as sheriff, she’s shifted into being more of jump to conclusions first and work her way out of it. This is going to get her into trouble at some point.

Lila, after the events of Hush, My Darling, has learned to work through her trauma and is more levelheaded than she was when we first met her. She’s taken on more of a leadership role than she ever imagined. She’s also trying to navigate her life with a stable relationship, something that is a foreign concept for her.


Why did you choose the setting of Eckardt County for this series? Can you paint a picture of the town for us?

Juniper, the main town in Eckardt County, is a combination of many of the places here in Southeast Iowa. Towns and rural areas that I grew up around, spent a lot of time in, and live near and in now. Many of the establishments reflect local businesses or places that once existed. As for Eckardt County itself, it is like Juniper, a large conglomeration of the counties in Southeast Iowa. I had written a series previously set in my area of Iowa, which made it easier to write because I could give the nuances and visual feel of what my world looks like without having to spend any time researching. Coming back to Southeast Iowa for another series felt right.


If you could spend the day with Elizabeth or Lila, who would you choose and what would you do?

Probably Elizabeth. I’m such a dog person and having a Border like Bentley to love on would just make my day since she goes everywhere with Elizabeth. Then there’s Elizabeth’s sister Marnie who totally intrigues me, and I’m her creator. Course wherever Elizabeth is, Lila is sure to show up. In the end I’d probably spend time in Elizabeth’s office swapping stories.


What are you currently reading?

Fellow Iowan, Stacy Green’s book The Trapped Ones. I’m also reading through fellow Tule author Katherine Cowley’s book, The Secret Life of Miss Mary Bennet. And for my SinC Iowa Chapter we’re going through The Linchpin Writer: Crafting Your Novel’s Key Moments by John Matthew Fox as our craft novel for this year.


About the Author

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name.

A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers.

When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them.

She is the author of multiple novels.

Tule Publishing January 2023 Releases

Read more about our new releases for January!

GIVEAWAY: We will pick ONE winner to receive a digital book of their choice from the January releases. Comment down below saying which book you’re looking most forward to reading! Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY. The winner will be randomly selected at the end of the month.


Homecoming and Homicide by Jody Holford (American Heart)

Release Date: January 10, 2023

The Wannabe Sleuth, Book 2

She doesn’t remember high school being so complicated…or as deadly.

Rainbow Falls newcomer Annie Abbott is finally feeling settled in town with her veterinarian boyfriend and their two curious kittens. The local high school is raising money for their drama program and, eager to help, Annie volunteers for the carnival’s photo booth, using her graphic design skills to create fun backdrops and mentor a group of students. The only dark cloud is a run in with an unpleasant teacher who’s critical of her teenage neighbor, Tate, and his girlfriend.

On the night of the carnival, Annie discovers the not-so-nice teacher dead. She and her motley crew of murder club sleuths leap into action to help clear her own name along with Tate’s. Luckily for both of them, there are plenty of suspects who had it out for the victim. Complicating Annie’s illicit investigation further? A mystery stalker with a vendetta against her.

As Annie and her friends chase clues, it’s becoming increasingly clear that not everyone is happy with her decision to make Rainbow Falls her home.

The Texas Cowboy’s Lady by Debra Holt (Texas Born)

Release Date: January 12, 2023

Texas Heritage, Book 2

Which shines brighter: Hollywood lights or the Texas stars?

Laurel Burkitt, who owns half of the mega-ranching empire known as the Aces High, shook the Texas dirt off her stilettos a long time ago. She’s all about high fashion, sleek cars, and adding movie awards to her shelves. No dark-eyed, sexy, hard-driving, country-living cowboy is going to rope her into being his country darlin’…as long as her brain keeps control over the traitorous yearnings of her heart.

Jaxson Hawkes, foreman of the Aces High, was born to the saddle and to being a cowboy all his days. So it took him a while to finally bare his soul to the spitfire he grew up adoring. He expected Laurel to choose between him and Texas and her dream of California gold. Her choice broke his heart.

Now Laurel’s back and her ideas of merging California with Texas aren’t sitting too well with Jaxson. There’s a showdown coming between them, and when the dust clears, will he send her packing on that shiny plane once and for all? Or will the lady claim the cowboy’s heart for good?

The Year of Cecily by Lisa Lin (American Heart)

Release Date: January 17, 2023

From Sunset Park, With Love, Book 1

This is the year of Cecily Chang.

San Francisco attorney Cecily Chang is ready to tackle the New Year head on, so she creates a list of resolutions guaranteed to reboot her life—right after her dutiful visit home to Sunset Park, Brooklyn, for the Lunar New Year. Cecily prepares to face her critical, meddling mother, nosy relatives, and the chaos and drama family togetherness brings. At least the food will be delicious. This holiday, Cecily vows to remain calm—as long as she doesn’t see him.

Jeffrey Lee deeply regrets how he ended things with Cecily ten years ago, but he felt it was best for her at the time. When he runs into her again during the New Year, he sees it as a sign. Now a successful screenwriter, Jeffrey is determined to win back Cecily’s heart.

But Cecily doesn’t believe in signs or second chances and embraces her new resolutions. This time, Jeffrey won’t give up—and he’s convinced he can write them a new Hollywood happy ending.

A Mantra for Miss Perfect by Sapna Srinivasan (American Heart)

Release Date: January 19, 2023

The Sood Family, Book 3

She has everything…except what she wants most.

Sahana Sood is beautiful, brilliant, and inches away from making junior partner at her downtown Seattle law firm. Ever the dutiful daughter, she’s lauded as Miss Perfect in her large Indian family and community. But Sahana is barely hiding her panic because, despite her best efforts and too many blind dates to count, she’s now thirty-two and has never come close to finding Mr. Perfect. Rumors are spreading—Sahana’s unlucky in love.

With marriage pressure mounting, Sahana buries herself in work. She’s confident she’ll close the acquisition deal for the Wilding Inn for her firm’s major client, but hits a snag. The handsome owner Ryan Mehra refuses to sell. He doesn’t need the money, the inn is a testament to his late parents’ love and he’d rather continue their legacy.

Sahana heads to the historic inn determined to not lose this deal. But the sparks that fly when she meets Ryan, who just might be more stubborn and driven than she is, soon have her worrying that instead of landing her partnership, she might lose her heart.

These childhood friends turned rivals may have more in common than they thought. Let the reindeer games begin…

Charming the Billionaire Cowboy by Kris Bock (Texas Born)

Release Date: January 23, 2023

The Accidental Billionaire Cowboys, Book 2

For the first time, his cowboy charms seem to backfire…

With his Texas ranching family’s lottery win, TC Tomlinson is finally able to build a ranch with alternative livestock. TC has a lot to prove, starting with his new ostrich herd, so when he catches a beauty scooping up an escaped baby bird, TC chases her down, assuming she wants to meet him for his money.

When Hallie Armstrong sees the injured baby ostrich, she jumps into professional mode. A former vet tech, she’s moved to Last Stand to work at her aunt’s wildlife rescue and heal from an attack. She’s skittish of the handsome cowboy, but when he starts to flirt, she decides two can play at this game—the rescue needs fundraising, and TC is an eligible bachelor.

As they brainstorm ideas for a bachelor auction and work to solve the mystery of local sheep attacks, TC finds himself falling for the feisty cowgirl. But when he learns she’s still in danger, his protective instincts threaten to drive Hallie away. Can TC convince Hallie she can have her independence and him too?

An Unsuitable Boy by Sinclair Jayne Sawhney (American Heart)

Release Date: January 24, 2023

Misguided Masala Matchmaker, Book 3

She’s done playing by the rules. He never has.

As the oldest sibling, OBGYN Asha Kapoor has always been the perfect daughter and role model. But when her traditionally arranged marriage implodes days before the ceremony, Asha feels lost and humiliated. At nearly thirty-seven, she knows her dream of having her own children is slipping away, but she has no Plan B for her life. Then Dhruv Narula rescues her from a kitchen fire, and something wild in Asha awakens. Dhruv is everything she’s not—sexy, fearless, unbound by tradition, and completely irresistible.

Former soldier and now firefighter Dhruv isn’t expecting a hero’s welcome home. Though he’s proud of his life and career choices, he never once gained his exacting father’s approval or the respect of his tight Indian community. While Dhruv stopped caring what anyone thought years ago, even he hesitates to hurtle into a scorching secret relationship with the woman he always fantasized about—the brilliant jewel-of-society Asha Kapoor.

Asha and Dhruv know they’re completely wrong for each other. So then why does it feel so right?

Straight for the Kill by Winter Austin (Tule Mystery)

Release Date: January 26, 2023

Benoit and Dayne Mystery, Book 3

Déjà vu brings a chill in the case that will make or break more than just her career.

Sheriff Elizabeth Benoit’s worst nightmare returns when her deputies discover a young woman killed in the same circumstances as a death from 25 years earlier. That previous victim was Elizabeth’s best friend and Deputy Kyle Lundquist’s older sister. Elizabeth has spent a quarter of a century trying to nail the crooked ex-sheriff she knows is involved up to his elbows in this unresolved crime. She has a thick file of clues, but it’s going to take irrefutable proof to put both cases to bed.

Deputy Detective Lila Dayne draws on all her investigative skills, but still she can’t pin down their main suspect. Then prominent members of the community begin to disappear—clearly, there’s a bigger vendetta at play. Despite the legal consequences of being too close to the case, Elizabeth can’t keep away now.

When Elizabeth’s sister goes missing, it’s a no-holds-barred race against time in the showdown that’s been brewing in Eckardt County for decades.

My Montana Valentine by Elsa Winckler (Montana Born)

Release Date: January 30, 2023

The Millers of Marietta, Book 1

He doesn’t believe in happy endings…

Saddled with the impossible task of finding a feel-good story, journalist Aiden O’Sullivan reluctantly accepts his godmother’s invitation to visit Marietta, Montana, to experience the small town’s Valentine’s Day celebration. Upon his arrival, a minor ankle injury lands him in the ER of the local hospital when his godmother insists a doctor should examine it.

After her parents’ untimely deaths, Dr. Vivian Miller moved from Sacramento to Marietta with her siblings. Apart from the freezing cold and rampant gossiping, life in town is uneventful. Until a music teacher at the local high school brings her godson to the ER. Vivian has a soft spot for children and hurries to help, only to find the “godson” is an opinionated, rude journalist with no visible injury to his foot.

Vivian has no time for journalists, even the drop-dead gorgeous kind. Aiden isn’t in town for long, but he quickly becomes involved in the lovely doctor’s problems, something he’s sworn will never happen again. Will these two strangers end up finding a home together at the foot of Copper Mountain?

Winter’s Haunting Pledge by Leigh Ann Edwards (Muse)

Release Date: January 31, 2023

Maidens of the Mystical Stones, Book 2

By winter’s end, will she survive the sworn pledge or be forever haunted?

Newlywed, Rhianwyn Mulryan is blissfully happy. But a magical pact she made with three close friends foretells the impending end of her enchanted life. Over the next year, as the seasons change, the women will exchange lives. With the first transformation, Rhianwyn will experience her friend Selena’s life as a harlot where she’ll need to fend off the cruel brothel owner and evade a mysterious murderer. Worse still, until she’s herself again, Rhianwyn must battle the powerful attraction to her husband, Broccan—or risk destroying everything she loves most.

Celebrated knight Sir Broccan Mulryan is unexpectedly content in his harmonious life with his beautiful wife. But jealous rivalries and disturbing visits from his past force a dangerous journey to another kingdom. Upon returning, Broccan is distressed to find his beloved Rhianwyn completely changed. Not only that, but he’s suddenly absurdly attracted to her best friend, a harlot.

As winter’s chill descends, the fires of friendship and romance flicker. Can true love weather the season? Or will the magical spell destroy them all?

Tule Author Q&A: Winter Austin listens to crime podcasts!

Winter Austin stopped by the Tule blog to discuss the second book in the Benoit and Dayne Mystery series, Hush, My Darling!


Where did you get the inspiration for Hush, My Darling?

Hush, My Darling came about with a tickling of an idea when I was writing The Killer in Me. Lila’s tragic past would come out and as I got to know her better and write more about her, the threads began to weave into the pattern I needed for the story. The hard part for me was not knowing who the actual attacker/killer was, I fought with this plot point until I was more than halfway through. I had hashed out ideas with Julie, my editor, when we had a Zoom meet going over editing details on The Killer in Me, and I had a general concept of what the antagonist was, but not who.

I also spend a lot of time listening to true crime podcasts, my two favorites being CrimeJunkie and Anatomy of Murder, both fed in for the filler points. I draw a lot of inspiration from something that has actually happened, or a little thread from something I’ve read, and I just roll with it, make it my own. But Hush was not an easy book to write, several times I had to stop and backtrack, remove huge chunks of the story and restart from another point because I was either forcing the characters to my will, or rushing ahead in the story. In the end, I really feared the editing process would take longer because we would have to rework the whole book. As it turned out, Julie assured me, I had it, and we just had minor tweaks to get to the final product.

Can you share a fun fact about your two protagonists, Elizabeth and Lila, to help readers get to know them better?

Elizabeth, despite never having had children, is a mother-hen. She cares deeply for those under her charge to the point that she’ll cause harm to herself before she’d allow any to those she loves or cares about. This is a point she struggles with as a leader, as the sheriff, she wants her people to be open and friendly with her, but it gets in the way of her having to lay down the law or rules when broken. Yet, she has no qualms about bringing down the hammer to those who break the law.

Lila is still an enigma. It stems from her upbringing, Chicagoans are tough nuts to crack, and she’s no exception. We get to know her a little better in Hush, My Darling, but she’s dealt more blows that are going to change her in ways I’ve yet to discover. Lila is the Rubik’s Cube I hope I don’t ever solve, because she’s going to make for some very interesting future stories.


Are your characters set before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go? What did that development process look like for Hush, My Darling?

For the most part, since we’re now into book 2 of this series, the main characters are set. There will always be new characters added, which happened here, and eventually characters will leave, but the main ones are set. However, a secondary character has now taken center stage with Elizabeth and Lila. The medical examiner/family doctor Olivia Remington-Thorpe has joined the cadre and I’m going to enjoy giving the readers more of her story.

I’m such a pantser/organic writer. I start with a concept and let the characters take me. I try to develop, but most of that is stuff that I play out in my head. I don’t like to write down things as it gives me the perception of it being in stone. I visualize a future scene and I write towards that. Once I have reached that one, it’s on to the next scene. Knowing the ending—which is a must in mystery/suspense/thrillers—helps me create scenes to work toward. This is one genre where you literally write the story backwards.

And Hush was a hot mess because I had no idea what the ending looked like, because I didn’t know who my killer was until halfway through. Once that fell into place, BAM! Story flow. There are a lot of authors who would hate my process, but I’m not them and they are not me. I have to juggle a lot of outside forces—job changes, family obligations, out of the blue interruptions, a pandemic, editing on previously written books, and trying to finish a college degree—and the stressors finally made me lay down new rules for myself. I do love my drive time going to and coming home from work. With certain music playing, I can let my mind story dream. Just wish I wasn’t so exhausted when I get home I can write things down, but the downtime is great for letting ideas simmer, they gain more flavor that way.


Where and when do you get most of your writing done?

Usually weekends, most mornings before work, and some evenings after work, and if I’m really hot and heavy on the story, during my hour lunch breaks. If we’re traveling to cattle shows or now catching those college football or basketball games, I write while my husband drives. I spent a good deal of my time this past summer hanging out in the hotel instead of the hot cattle barn getting work done on my book. I try to handwrite when I’m dealing with writer’s block, but for the most part, I’ve got to have all my toys that are on my laptop. That whole visual/audio thing is a must, I need my Pinterest board of character models, and my go-to music, YouTube music and Audiomachine albums do wonders for scene moods.


What are you currently reading?

I have begun to re-read the Guild Hunter series by Nalini Singh from the beginning. I love, love that paranormal/urban fantasy series and her style of writing. Between books I’ll re-read her psychological thrillers A Madness of Sunshine, and Quiet in Her Bones. And sprinkle in some of my fellow Tule Mystery author’s books. I’m way behind on some of them. 😊


About the Author

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name.

A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers.

When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them.

She is the author of multiple novels.

Tule Publishing January 2022 Releases

Happy New Year! Read more about our new releases for January.

GIVEAWAY: We will pick ONE winner to receive a digital book of their choice from the January releases. Comment down below saying which book you’re looking most forward to reading! Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY. The winner will be randomly selected at the end of the month.


Doctor in the Outback by Nicole Flockton (Holiday)

Release Date: January 11, 2022

Welcome to Bunya Junction, Book 3

Can she find the courage to love again?

With running the busy small-town hospital at Waratah River and setting up a foundation to help others achieve their dreams like he has, Dr. Scott Carruthers has his plate full. So when a beautiful specialist obstetrician is employed to ease his workload, his inconvenient attraction toward her is a complication he doesn’t need.

Dr. Franceen Lewis arrived at Waratah River Hospital to start her life over. After a tragic loss and the resulting breakdown of her unsuitable marriage, she’s ready to focus on her career and help those who need her. Working with Scott challenges her not only professionally, but personally. Getting involved with another man is not on her to-do list, but Scott shows her again and again that not all men are as shallow and unreliable as her ex.

The longer they work together, the harder they fall…but can Franceen really put the past behind her and reach for the happiness she deserves?

Breaking the Cowboy’s Rules by Sinclair Jayne (Montana Born)

Release Date: January 13, 2022

Montana Rodeo Brides, Book 3

It’s time to take advantage of his player reputation…

Pro rodeo bronc and bull rider Bodhi Ballantyne is always upping the stakes. This year he’s been hiding a secret, and when he and his cousins come home to Marietta, Montana, for the Copper Mountain Rodeo and learn their granddad is contemplating selling his legacy ranch, Bodhi challenges his cousins to a game to save their futures. To stay in the game, they’ll each need a bride by the end of the rodeo.

Nico Steel is on the run from her family, her fortune, and her unwitting role in the corporate scandal of a generation. After cooperating with the FBI and the New York state attorney’s office to right the wrongs, she drives across the country, desperate for peace and reinvention. One impulsive stop at a saloon along with a dance with a sexier-than-sin cowboy and suddenly Nico’s learning to shoot whiskey and agreeing to be a stranger’s fake fiancée for the week.

They’re both players, so it’s a win-win—unless one of them loses their heart.

Scammer Girl by Michelle Dayton (American Heart)

Release Date: January 18, 2022

Tech-nically Love, Book 2

Technology complicates everything, including love.

Five years ago, Jo Harper did a bad thing. Dumped, injured, and in crippling debt, Jo did what any desperate woman with a PhD in psychology and above-average computer skills would: become an elite, undetectable online romance scammer. Now Jo and her team of four young women bring in enough cash to keep them securely afloat. Their targets? Married cheaters.

Jamie March, Bay Area royalty known as “The Conscience of Silicon Valley,” hates every aspect of online crime, especially those who defraud people. And when it appears that his brother is the victim of a sophisticated romance scam, he can’t stand idly by.

What’s weird though, is that when Jo and Jamie meet…they don’t hate one another. Not at all. He makes her laugh and feel alive again. She challenges his intellect like no other. But they can’t trust one another, right? And you can’t fall in love with someone you don’t trust—or can you?

Can’t Go Home by Melinda Di Lorenzo (Tule Mystery)

Release Date: January 20, 2022

Trinity Calhoun Mystery, Book 1

“Do you remember Savannah?”

How could she forget? Two decades ago, Trinity Calhoun‘s best friend—18-year-old Savannah Stuart—went missing. Just weeks later, Savannah’s body was found brutally slain outside the mountain town. With no suspects or leads, the local authorities dismissed the murder as a tragic one-off, likely perpetrated by a tourist. But Trinity wasn’t convinced.

Determined to do better for other victims, she left town and settled in Vancouver, rising through the ranks to become a detective. She’s never looked back. But now, an unexpected phone call from her former lover has her barreling down the highway to face the past.

Another young woman has disappeared under eerily similar circumstances. Allegedly. But the local police are disinterested. Trinity’s ex has a tenuous—at best—hold on his mental and physical health. And Savannah’s secretive and handsome brother is in town, asking an awful lot of questions.

Trinity’s focus is clouded. Maybe her judgment, too. As she wades through her past, she needs to answer a potentially life-threatening question: is there a dangerous, repeat criminal on the loose, or is she just desperate for closure?

Cowgirl in Love by Jamie Dallas (Montana Born)

Release Date: January 24, 2022

The Hartman Brothers, Book 3

She has a lot to prove and won’t get distracted by a cowboy again…

Barrel racer Ella James Sanders has one goal for her breakout year in Pro Rodeo—to make it to the National Finals Rodeo and prove to her hometown that she’s more than a girl raised on the wrong side of town. But her dream quickly crashes when an accident injures her and her horse, ending her rodeo season and leaving her in the care of the man who carelessly broke her heart years ago.

Cowboy and veterinarian Ty Hartman knows what it’s like to be rejected by those close to him. Ty’s loved Ella since high school, but she’s rejected him twice so he’s resolved to keep his distance and protect his heart…until an accident forces Ella and her horse into his life and he can’t step aside. As he cares for the feisty cowgirl, he feels himself falling for her again.

Can he convince this cowgirl that not only is he a man she can trust, but that he’s also a man she could love?

Once a Cowboy by Justine Davis (Texas Born)

Release Date: January 25, 2022

The Raffertys of Last Stand, Book 3

He’s a cowboy through and through…

Rylan Rafferty was a cowboy long before interest in his leatherworking artistry and saddle making for the rich and famous catapulted him to national fame. He values his privacy, so when a popular Texas magazine wants to feature him, his first inclination is to run. His military father who died in combat when Rylan was a teen was the artist, not him. But then he meets the photographer, and Rylan suddenly no longer wants to bury himself in his work.

Kaitlyn Miller values three things above all else—the memory of her father, her photography, and the mentor who first handed her a camera. Her beautiful but flawed mother may have chipped away at her self-esteem as a child, but Kaitlyn has confidence in her work. So she’s thrilled to be back home in Texas for her first big break—a photo shoot of a local Last Stand artist.

When plain Kaitlyn collides with gorgeous Rylan, unexpected sparks fly. But can he convince her that her generous heart and artist’s eye make her more than beautiful to him?

Hush, My Darling by Winter Austin (Tule Mystery)

Release Date: January 27, 2022

Benoit and Dayne Mystery, Book 2

Sometimes, the past starts to bleed into the future…

Dark memories haunt Eckardt County Deputy Lila Dayne. Two years ago, she survived a serial killer’s attempt to add her to his growing list of victims in Chicagoland, but the fight cost her more than just time lost to surgeries and rehab. Now she’s finally beginning to connect with the people in this small section of southeast Iowa, even if she can still sense him watching her.

Sheriff Elizabeth Benoit has her sights on bringing down Eckardt County’s corruption when two bodies surface, both bearing striking similarities to the serial killer victims discovered along I-80—and one delivers a personal message for her department. Lila spirals out of control under the pressure, pushing everyone out of her life.

As Elizabeth and her deputies try to bring Lila back into the fold, the killer closes in, marking his next victim. Lila must shake free of her fears and trust those who have supported her—or the killer will finish what he started.

Tule Author Q&A: Winter Austin loves writing about strong women!

Winter Austin stopped by the Tule blog to discuss the first book in her Benoit and Dayne Mystery series, The Killer in Me!


Where did you get the inspiration for The Killer in Me?

The Killer in Me started out as an idea about corruption in a small town sheriff’s department. It was originally supposed to be set in Louisiana, but I enjoyed writing the setting in my home state of Iowa when I came back here. It’s unique in the fact that there are so few books out there set in Iowa. And we have plenty of the “good ole boy” network that goes on here that my plot of family-feuds and law enforcement corruption is real enough. Elizabeth Benoit had a slight name change to be who she is, but she’s always been the sheriff who took over with the intent of disrupting that good ole boy system.


Assorted Books on ShelfWhat kind of research did you need to do for this story?

I have a full bookshelf of research books on police procedure and autopsy stuff. I belong to a few crime writers’ groups so if I needed something answered I couldn’t find on my own, I have that outlet. But my biggest research came from the connections I have. A long-time friend of mine is an LEO with a local police department, he keeps me as straight and narrow as I can get. For emergency medical situations I tapped the shoulder of a friend who is a veteran and a former Critical Care EMS.

The Killer in Me is my tenth novel in a long line of other books that have military and police characters. I will tap into what I’ve learned in the past to reduce the length of time I need to research. But it really helps to have people who are in the field who can read and help correct you.


Elizabeth Benoit is such a strong female character. Where did you draw inspiration for her? How do you relate to her?

I have a thing for writing strong women, it’s kinda my signature. In fact, my best friend gave me a bracelet that is Morse Code for Kick-Ass because that’s how she sees me.

It’s taken me a long time to grow comfortable in my mindset and be who I really am, believe me that is hard when you’re an Introvert. I was the girl who said enough is enough when the boys were the ones getting to do all the fun things, and stood my ground with them, earning their respect. Exclusion is not part of my language and I’ll be in your face if you pull it on me. What I write about with what Elizabeth, and Lila Dayne, experience are the same things I see and have dealt with during my life.

Elizabeth is every woman I have ever encountered; from military wives and servicewomen to the lady running her own business in a market that is dominated by men. She’s the rancher and farmer who knew when it was time to stand by her man, and when it was time to take the reins and lead. She’s my daughter, who has stood toe to toe with arrogant adults and put them in their place and is paving her way through the world to her own tune.

This is who Elizabeth is for me.


What was your favorite scene to write and why?

I liked writing a lot of the scenes between Elizabeth and her ex-husband, Joel, or Elizabeth with Deputy Rafe Fontaine. Also, those scenes between Lila and Deputy Kyle Lundquist. While this isn’t a novel for romance purposes, you can’t have characters interacting without some kind of romantic elements. But I really liked the ones with Elizabeth and Lila together, showing their dynamics and how Elizabeth becomes sort of a mentor to Lila, despite the fact that Lila has the law enforcement experience.


The best scene between them is when they first meet:

Lila Dayne stood at parade rest, the deep-seated training instinctual, while the woman who held her future in her hands perused the dossier at her leisure. Off in the corner on a chair better suited for the dump, a red and white border collie watched her. Trying to ignore those brown orbs boring holes into her soul, Lila stared at the bare wood paneling above the sheriff’s head. 

Knock, knock, the seventies were calling.

Sheriff Elizabeth Benoit was not what Lila expected. To have a woman sheriff was rare in this country, rarer still in a rural community like Juniper, Iowa. It mattered little to Lila. She needed this job. This deputy position with the Eckardt County department was about as perfect as she could get.

“You have an impressive résumé, Ms. Dayne.” The older woman’s gaze lifted to meet Lila’s. “It would seem taking this deputy position would be a step down from what you were doing in Chicago.”


“You worked in one of the roughest precincts, did a stint with a few narcotics task forces, trained with SWAT, and the coup de grace, you passed your detective exam and worked one year in homicide. So, why come here?”

Because this place gave her the promise of a new start she sorely needed. “Ma’am, if I may, I’m still not comfortable discussing certain private matters.”

Steepling her hands, the sheriff folded her fingers together as she rocked back in her chair. Those piercing dark brown eyes, so like her canine companion’s, roved over Lila, seeming to pick apart the elements that made her whole and find the parts that were missing. Never one to back down, Lila did her own scrutinizing.

Elizabeth Benoit was a tall woman, standing a good five inches over Lila, with rich brown hair that skimmed her shoulders. A gold star glinted over the left pocket of her desert tan uniform top, declaring to all she was top of the food chain. Except for some bits of leaves clinging to her hair and shirt, she was put together with near military precision. A tidbit of knowledge Lila tucked away for future reference.

“For the sake of an argument, I won’t press the matter.” The sheriff tapped the dossier file. “Everything I need is right here. I can study your file and read up on all of your past accomplishments ’til the cows come home. What these papers can’t tell me is what I want to know by listening to you. You have outstanding credentials, a stellar law enforcement career, and you fast-tracked through the ranks in Chicago PD. Eckardt County is by no means a place to advance a career. Especially for a woman.”

“Correct me if I’m wrong, ma’am, but you are the sheriff of this county, are you not? Elected by the people to keep them safe? A woman sitting in a position of power normally controlled by men. I’d say that’s a fine career advancement.”

Lila enjoyed watching the warm smile appear on Benoit’s lips.

“That being said, I need to know one thing from you, Ms. Dayne. I need to know where your focus lies.”

“My focus?”

“The deputy whose position you applied for quit. Let’s just say there was a major difference in opinion that caused the man to forsake his career. Before I make any final decisions, I want to hear from you what your intentions are for this job and if Eckardt County is a place you can see yourself living in for a good long while. To be frank, I have no intention of appointing someone who will bail on me the moment things go south.”

On the spot. No holds barred. Everything the dispatcher had mentioned about Elizabeth Benoit was true. Finally, someone who didn’t give a damn about their political rising star and was ready for real police work.

“Ma’am, I firmly believe this position came available at just the right time for you, and for me. I wouldn’t have bought a house here if I wasn’t certain of where I wanted to live. Being from Chicago, there isn’t much I’ve seen or dealt with that makes me turn tail and run. The final decision is yours, but I don’t sense that you’re willing to turn me away.”


What are you currently reading?

I’m in the middle of reading 2 historical mysteries. Murder on Black Swan Lane by Andrea Penrose the first book in her Wrexford & Sloane Mystery series. And A Duty to the Dead by Charles Todd the first book in the Bess Crawford mystery series. (At the time of writing this, I just learned that the mother of the duo of Charles Todd, Caroline, had just passed away.)

When I’m writing I tend to stay close to what I write, but not in the same time period. I’ve really gotten interested in books set during the Regency era and the World Wars.


About the Author

Winter Austin perpetually answers the question: “were you born in the winter?” with a flat “nope,” but believe her, there is a story behind her name.

A lifelong Mid-West gal with strong ties to the agriculture world, Winter grew up listening to the captivating stories told by relatives around a table or a campfire. As a published author, she learned her glass half-empty personality makes for a perfect suspense/thriller writer. Taking her ability to verbally spin a vivid and detailed story, Winter translated that into writing deadly romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers.

When she’s not slaving away at the computer, you can find Winter supporting her daughter in cattle shows, seeing her three sons off into the wide-wide world, loving on her fur babies, prodding her teacher husband, and nagging at her flock of hens to stay in the coop or the dogs will get them.

She is the author of multiple novels.