Set in the Pacific Northwest, this series follows a homeless woman who calls herself Singer Brown. A musician who sings on the street for coins, Singer watches the ebb and flow of life around her. With a knack for being in the right place at the wrong time, Singer is one of society's invisible people. But being unseen is an incredible advantage when you're digging for secrets.
Long Gone Man ,the first book in this new series, and has won the Gold Medal Award for 2014 from the independent Publishers Association in the Mystery/Thriller category.
Fiction/Mystery October 2016
Trade Paperback ISBN 9780992053673 Electronic ISBN 9780992053666
After her life on the streets Singer Brown figures only a dance with an orangutan could still shock her. The music is playing and the waltz begins when the body of a teenage girl is discovered on Ghost Island. Singer identifies the remains, attacked first by man and then by nature, from a blue butterfly tattoo. Suspicion, toxic and dangerous, begins to poison the small community of Kilborn, corrupting relationships and leaving no one without fear or guilt.
"Beach Kill" is set on a Gulf Island of British Columbia and follows "Long Gone Man" although it is nice to read series in sequence it not necessary to do so here, the second book works pretty well on its own.
Ms. Smallman has once more penned down a nail biter. It all starts when the body of a teenage girl is found on a beach. As we follow Singer, not so much homeless in this drama, we gradually discover why she has the knack for being in the right place at the wrong time and why she goes digging for secrets. Singer is slowly becoming a crafty sleuth poking her nose where it does not belong, sometime opening a can of worms and leaving no stone unturned, placing herself in danger in order to get to the bottom and get justice. Exciting: yes quite a page turner also.
Of course to spice up the story, we have a budding romance between our protagonist and the handsome RCMP officer.... We simply need to stay tuned till the next saga to find out the outcome. (Can't wait).
I am partial to the author's style: a simple and light narrative, a fast paced storyline that includes many humorous twists and has plenty of suspenseful moments, one that is populated with colorful and eccentric characters and to top it all provides a captivating saga that grabs you from the start and never let's go.
This new series has the same beat as the "Sherri Travis Series", but with a new locale, a new protagonist and a fresh storyline... Well-done.
Tony Osborne ~ Amazon top 500 reviewer ~ Nov 19, 2016
Seduction turned fatal. Tension and passions build in a small town as neighbor suspects neighbor. Smallman scores again with realistic characters, twisting plot, and enough red herrings to fill a net. Be prepared to ride this one to the end ... then demand more.
Mount newton Scribe ~ Amazon Reviewer ~ Nov 21, 2016
Long Gone Man
Fiction/Mystery October 2013
Trade Paperback ISBN #9781771510313
Electronic ISBN #9780987803382
In a thick fog, a ferry docks on Glenphiddie Island and disgorges Singer Brown's decrepit van. The homeless singer is there to exact revenge on the man who destroyed her life but someone has already killed Johnny Vibes. And now the murderer is coming after Singer.
All of the former members of the band, Vortex, are hiding sins both old and new, secrets worth killing for, but Singer has one ally. Or does she? Johnny Vibes' wife has as much to lose as Singer if she doesn't agree to give Singer an alibi, but that doesn't mean Lauren didn't kill her husband.
Long Gone Man is the first in a new series featuring Singer Brown. And what a great character Singer is!.. The scene is set for a good old fashioned whodunnit, with Singer high on the list of suspects. ... we're kept guessing right to the end in a well-drawn plot designed to confuse... We even have a denouement worthy of Agatha Christie... The author deftly drip-feeds us Singer's back story as the novel progresses, and she is to be congratulated for creating such a fascinating and engaging character...
I can't wait to see where Singer's adventures will take us next!
See the full 5 Star review at Crime Fiction Lover or at Amazon.co.UK
Sandra Mangan ~ The Crime Fiction Lover ~ September 9, 2013
....and it takes real moxie to branch out with a new tale featuring an untested lead in a radically different setting. I needn't have worried, though; this savvy author has delivered an original, compelling and, it must be said, altogether darker tale to kick off her exciting new series.
Jim Napier ~ January Magazine ~ September 12, 2013
For the full review, go to Jim Napier In January Magazine
.....Long Gone Man is a beautifully written mystery that took me on a thrilling ride. Right from the beginning as Singer makes her way to Glenphiddie Island, amidst fog and danger, to the satisfying ending as the killer is revealed, I absolutely loved every second of it. Phyllis Smallman has a way of wrapping the reader up in a plot so tempting that you simply can't put the book down - and I didn't want to, not even for a second......
Bella McGuire ~ A Prairie Girl Reads Blog ~ Sept 19, 2013
To see the full review, go to A Prairie Girl Reads Blog
With Sherri Travis taking a well-deserved Florida respite, talented Phyllis Smallman starts a new exciting mystery series diagonally across the continent. Singer is terrific and the cops competent; but it is the angry band members and their families who make for a strong amateur sleuth as the audience. Wilmot and the heroine uncover their guilt, rage and greed. Fast-paced, readers will appreciate the first act while expecting encores.
Harriet Klausner ~ Amazon #1 Reviewer ~ September 27, 2013
I received this book free as a Goodreads give-away. I really enjoyed this book. It was a fast-paced who-done-it story. It had you hanging on to the very end. Every one had a reason to kill Johnny,everyone had the means and opportunity, but who did it and why? I always pride myself on figuring it all out. This one kept me guessing until the very end.
Colleen ~ Good Reads Review ~ September 2, 2013
Phyllis Smallman, author of the Sheri Travis mystery series, begins a new series with Long GoneMan, featuring Singer Brown, a middle-aged woman who'd be comfortable at Travis's Florida bar.
Brown peddles her voice for coins on street corners, and lives in an old van full of aches, pain and memories. The memory of a past lover's suspicious death leads her to Glenphiddie Island in the Pacific Northwest, just in time to learn of the murder of the man she suspects is the source of her 20 years of pain.
Suspects include a widow, other band members and, for some, Singer herself. Add motive, revenge, a gloriously obscure setting and the RCMP, and Smallman delivers a fresh take on the old saying that revenge is a dish best served cold.
Don Graves ~ The Hamilton Spectator ~ November 2, 2013
Smallman writes strong women and she writes them really well. Sherri Travis, whom we've gotten to know and root for over five novels, is such a woman. And Singer Brown is someone to be reckoned with. She's determined and daring, not always a good thing, but she's also clever and that's what takes this past a gothic sensibility. Because many times I had the urge to call out to Singer, telling her to back off and lie low. Just shows that I was really drawn into the story. It's no wonder. Smallman is an award-winning writer and one worth reading.
Linda Wiken ~ Mystery Maven Reviews ~ December 6, 2013
To see the full review, go to Mystery Maven Review