Show Me the Murder

Five Star, 2013, 328 pp., $25.95
ISBN: 978-1-4328-2688-8
Harlequin World Mystery, 2015, $7.99
ISBN: 978-0-373-26949-5

Five Star Hardback Cover

After a bullet shatters Phoenix Smith’s career as a CIA covert operative, she returns to her rural Missouri hometown to recuperate and regroup. She arrives as her lifelong friend, civic leader Annalynn Carr Keyser, buries her husband, the sheriff. Everyone except the widow believes he shot his mistress and himself. Annalynn begs Phoenix to help prove he, too, was murdered. The old friends employ their diverse skills and conflicting attitudes to discover what really happened and to survive.

Read Chapter 1
Discussion Topics for Book Groups

Ordering information


Harlequin MMP Cover

Order online.

Amazon: Kindle and used copies

This book is out of print, but I still have a few copies. To order from me, go to Contact.


Excerpts from Reviews

“The first in Mulford’s planned series explores the unsettling rise of crime in rural areas and provides an amusing and touching look at the reunited gal pals.”
Kirkus Review, January 1, 2013

“The friends’ search for the truth, enriched by their individual and group histories, forms a solid foundation for a tightly woven tale of love and hard times in a small town.”
Library Journal, February 1, 2013

“Phoenix is a can-do heroine and all three of the women are appealing characters. The reader cheers when Annalynn steps up to take control of her life. Plot and setting are convincing and the compelling story keeps one reading.”
— Verna Suit, Gumshoe Review, February 2013       (

“This is one fast paced heart-pounding read. One of the best books I have read in a long time. I loved how Phoenix learned to cope and hide her injury. The plot will keep you guessing. I hope we will be reading more about Phoenix Smith very soon.”
— Cheryl Green,, February 7, 2013        (

“There is suspense here, gun battles, and a car chase, but what I enjoyed most were the relationships between the three friends and between them and other characters, including the dog.  Mulford has a real talent for showing how people change, how they influence each other, how they learn to trust and change their minds in good ways.  I also liked the authentic presentation of the tension between Phoenix’s cynical inner voice and how she speaks and behaves to others, how she works out whom she can and can’t trust.  Her gradually strengthening attachment to Achilles [the dog] … is endearing.
—Judy Hogan,, February 17, 2013

Careful plotting and interesting characters are abundant throughout. … The camaraderie and feisty spirit of Phoenix and her two friends are … the strongest parts of this novel and are the reason why readers will pick up book two. The literary world needs strong, female characters, and Mulford has done an outstanding job of giving us a new one.”
—Margo L. Dill, The News Gazette, Champaign, IL, March 10, 2013,