"Murderous Means" By Lida Sideris: Review/Giveaway

 Review by Cynthia Chow

 Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of the book and a link to purchase it.

Even though she is still working as a junior attorney for Ameripictures Film Studio, Corrie Locke’s real passion is to finally earn her Private Investigation License while taking on her own cases. That is why she and her legal assistant-slash-PI partner Veera Bankhead are at the Means Well Ranch in Los Ranchos, California, investigating the death of Josephine Joelle JoJo” Means. Her sister Marti is unable to accept that the otherwise healthy 72-year-old rancher could have died of a heart attack, so Marti has hired Corrie and her team to investigate the death.

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It seems that there was a lot of disagreement within the family over the ranch and JoJo’s refusal to sell it, but what is truly leading Marti’s assertions are the words by her psychic Heidi Honeyman. Corrie doesn’t believe in psychics and thinks it’s a bunch of hooey, especially since their own staff psychic” actually uses his Sherlockian observational skills to make seemingly psychic statements. Michael Parris also happens to be a computer whiz and Corrie’s adorably loyal boyfriend, so he will be joining Veera, Corrie, and even Corrie’s mother as they delve into an increasingly complicated puzzle of family secrets and greed.

Armed with her throwing stars and a stellar wit, Corrie is steadfastly determined to prove the psychic/medium a fraud while also unraveling the truth about JoJo’s death. The small town of 1,300 is rife with quirky characters, many of whom seem to have shared secrets with or about their late neighbor. While Corrie may have learned many of her investigative skills from her famous private detective father, this time it’s her mother who is instrumental when blending in at a séance or socializing with the locals. Michael continues to be the absolute best as a supportive boyfriend and whiz in the kitchen, while Veera provides hilarious commentary and insights. 

There is a reason that this series always tops the lists of my favorite reads of the year, as it has an old-fashioned, wise-cracking detective narrative coming from a very modern, snappy heroine. Despite it being located between Calabasas and Malibu, Los Ranchos seems worlds away from L.A. and the moviemaking business. This allows for a fun fish-out-of-water adventure as the citified investigative team find themselves among horses, cowboys, and an immobile bull. The one crime that goes unsolved is why this talented author isn’t more well-known, as this series continues to shine with its sparkling dialogue, compelling plot, and extremely engaging characters. 

To enter to win a copy of Murderous Means, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "means,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen January 27, 2024. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. If entering via email please include your mailing address in case you win. If entering via comment please include your email address so we can contact you. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. 

Listen to a Mysteryrat's Maze Podcast episode featuring the first chapter of an earlier book in this series by clicking here or listening on the player below is reading this on our website.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors!

You can click here to purchase this book.

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).
 Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. A very heartfelt thank you to Cynthia for this lovely review! I appreciate it very much! Lida

  2. Mary Holshouser
    Another book with helpful family members.
    Always a good feature. Sounds like one I
    want to read. thanks.

  3. I enjoy mysteries! tWarner419@aol.com

  4. We have a winner!
    Lorie Ham

  5. We have a winner!
    Lorie Ham


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