Delia Armanetti, a member of the chorus of the Midwest Opera Company in Chicago, suffers a devastating stroke, leaving her paralyzed and unable to speak. Delia’s new daughter-in-law, June, is resentful of the responsibility and wants to be rid of her.
Enter Emma Winberry, a friend of Delia’s and suspicious of June. Her sixth sense and her Guardian Angel tell her there is trouble brewing.
Delia begins to recover and is able to communicate with Emma. But June is hiding something in her past and wants both Emma and Delia out of her way.
Follow the persistent Emma Winberry as she puts herself in danger to save her friend. Is she successful?
Praise for Locked Within:
Locked Within is a simply wonderful story written by an author who clearly knows our craft.
I had a great time with this book and recommend it to any reader who enjoys clever plotting and vivid characters.
Osterman is a nurse who understands what it means to care and be cared for. Her writing is scalpel sharp and much more intelligent than some of the cozies I have read.
Locked Within is fun and fascinating. Fans of my books will have a great time with it.
Bravo, Helen Osterman!
Michael Palmer, MD
New York Times Winning Author
Oak Tree Press
Available for Amazon Kindle
Release date, Late July, 2013
Emma Winberry and the Evil Eye, A Prequel
Emma Winberry and the Evil Eye is the prequel to the Emma Winberry cozy mystery series.
A world famous tenor, Marcantonio Speranza, a vendetta by a rival singer, a boy named Angelo with the voice of an angel. Put them together and they could be a plot for an opera.
Emma Winberry’s ‘sixth sense’ tells her that Speranza is in danger. From whom? To investigate, she becomes a supernumerary (extra) for the Midwest Opera Company. Here she meets Nate Sandler, a fellow super, and they become romantically involved.
Emma has bizarre dreams and tries to warn the tenor of impending danger, but to no avail.
In the exciting climax, during a performance of the opera, A Masked Ball, an unexpected sequence of events puts Emma in mortal danger as she tries to save Speranza’s life. Does she succeed?
The story combines mystery, suspense, humor, pathos and romance as the reader is introduced to Emma Winberry.
Praise for Emma Winberry and the Evil Eye:
Since I count myself among the ardent fans of Helen Macie Osterman’s Emma Winberry Series, I was thrilled to see this prequel of how it all began
for the redoubtable Emma and her considerate significant other, Nate. Emma Winberry and the Evil Eye is not to be missed. – Michael A. Black, author of Sacrificial Offerings and Hostile Takeovers.
The book hits all of the highpoints of being a super – excitement, the voices (and power) of the singers (and chorus), maybe being a little nervous and getting wrapped up in a far away world.
Being a super is not all fun. You are earning your way to being part of the performance and that becomes something that you are enormously proud to be part of.
- George Obermaier, supernumerary for the Lyric Opera of Chicago since 2000.
Weaving Dreams Publishing
Trade Paperback: $14.95
Release date: September 14, 2012
The Elusive Relation
In her third adventure, Emma Winberry travels to London.
She receives a bizarre letter from Lindsey Bellingham, a woman in the UK, who claims to be the daughter of Emma’s brother-in-law. She is being threatened by some unknown persons and is trying to find her father.
Nate Sandler, Emma’s significant other, thinks it’s a scam and tells Emma to forget all about it. But, she knows from experience that she can’t.
When Nate is asked to speak at a seminar in Paris, he and Emma decide to visit London. They meet Lindsey and accompany her to her home in Roydon, a village dating back to the 16th century. They find that Isabel, the young cousin, is covered with long red hair, a condition called hypertrichosis. Someone is threatening to harm Isabel unless Lindsey gives them a large sum of money. To complicate matters, a wealthy American wants to buy Bellingham House, but Lindsey refuses to sell.
Emma’s visit is cut short when her granddaughter is injured in an accident. The child recovers quickly and Emma tries to put Lindsey and her problems out of her mind.
When she receives a frantic phone call that Isabel has been kidnapped, Emma knows she must return. Nate cannot go with her because of prior commitments, so Emma takes Tracie Adams, a young girl she befriended two years previously.
The action escalates when Tracie stumbles across the abductors and, she too, is taken. The girls end up in an abandoned shed in the country and are rescued by Miss Weatherby, an old woman living in the area.
Tracie knows the kidnappers are searching for them and it will only be a matter of time before they come to the cottage. Despite a severe thunderstorm, she starts out for help but sprains her ankle and is rescued by two local boys.
They take her to their home and alert the police who find Miss Weatherby injured and Isabel hidden in a root cellar. The girl is ill, both in body and mind.
Two of the kidnappers are apprehended but the third escapes to the continent. Isabel retreats into a fantasy world and the doctor fears for her sanity.
After the storm, Emma finds crumbling plaster in one of the closets. Hidden there is a valuable coin. Is this why the American wants the house? And how did he know it was there?
Emma is frustrated that she must go back home without helping Lindsey solve any of these problems. She tries to reach out to Isabel, but the girl believes she is surrounded by evil. Her delusions escalate as another storm hits the area and she hears the house calling to her.
Follow Emma to the surprising climax to the story as she risks her life to save Isabel from herself.
Praise for The Elusive Relation:
"Helen Osterman’s The Elusive Relation brings back her delightful senior sleuth, Emma Winberry, this time solving a mystery across the pond with inspiration from her ever present guardian angel.
Emma, Nate, mystery-what’s not to love?"
Author of Buffalo West Wing, fourth in the White House Chef Mysteries
"Cozy lovers, The Elusive Relation, will delight you. Emma Winberry is an adorable senior, amateur sleuth. Her travels to Roydon (England) and her encounter with British ways, will amuse you."
Award winning author of the Harry Bronson mystery series.
Five Star/Cengage Learning
ISBN: 43282-511-9 $25.99
The Stranger in the Opera House
Emma Winberry, The Accidental Sleuth, returns for another adventure in The Stranger in the Opera House. This time she and her significant other, Nate Sandler, are supernumeraries at the Midwest Opera for an upcoming production of The Ghosts of Versailles. This title turns prophetic when the lead soprano screams that there is a strange man lurking in her dressing room. Although a police search turns up no evidence that anyone was there, the cast and crew are left on edge. And nerves become more frayed as the ‘stranger’ is seem againand again but never caught despite numerous attempts to apprehend him. Emma’s sixth sense tells her he may be more than he seems. The rehearsals continue to be fraught with mishaps. When a large sum of money is stolen from the office and a guard seriously injured, everyone assumes it is the work of the mysterious ‘stranger.’ Everyone except Emma.
After finding an old trunk in a storeroom in the basement with documents dating back to the Underground Railroad, someone assaults the librarian in an attempt to steal them. The ‘stranger’ is again blamed, but Emma becomes convinced the apparition is a lost soul trapped between two worlds. Her Guardian Angel tells her she must help him cross over. But how?
Adding to the mystery is a figure in black secretly leaving packages in a hidden niche. Can Emma solve this puzzle and release the ‘stranger’ at the same time?
Determined to uncover the truth, Emma and friends are led on a life-threatening adventure that could very well be their last.
Praise for Stanger in the Opera House:
"Emma and Nate’s second case (The Accidental Sleuth 2007) is quietly enjoyable entertainment for cozy fans."
"A mysterious Presence is plaguing the rehearsals of the Midwest Opera Company in Chicago. The Lakeshore Center for the Performing Arts may have been built over an old Underground Railway Station. Backstage ghosts and artistic temperaments! What fun!"
Chicago author of Deaths of a Thousand Cuts
"Nothing beats a night at the opera or a good mystery story. The Stranger in the Opera House by Helen Osterman gives you both. Follow the politely persistent Emma Winberry as she delves into the backstage intricacies and dark corners of the Midwest Opera Company and you’ll be treated to as good a behind-the-scenes look at opera as you’ll get. Just like a good opera, The Stranger in the Opera House is full of surprises and peopled with compelling characters. Brava Helen Osterman!"
Author of Gods of the Andes and Subscriber Relations Manager, Lyric Opera of Chicago
"Emma Winberry is Miss Marple reincarnated … this time as a with-it woman with a Chicago condo rather than a cottage in St. Mary Mead. Her curmudgeonly significant other, Nate Sandler, is a perfect sleuthing partner."
—Diana Vickery, Cozy Library
The Stranger in the Opera House (ISBN 978-1-59414-816-3)
Five Star/Gale Publishing
Now available for Kindle and Nook. Get the Kindle version or the Nook Books version.
The Accidental Sleuth
Emma Winberry gets through life’s ups and downs by depending
on her sixth sense, the patience of her significant other, Nate
Sandler, and assistance from her Guardian Angel to keep her out
of trouble. Most of the time.
When she leaves her old house in suburban Chicago and moves to
a posh condo on the lakefront, she discovers that even her angelic
protector might be a bit overmatched. Emma finds herself mixed
up with a self-abusing, anorexic teenage neighbor, the girl’s
cruel uncle, a couple of tough hoodlums who think Emma has something
they need, and a cadre of mysterious homeless people.
With the help of Nate, an old friend, and her celestial back-up,
Emma begins to figure things out. She knows the trouble is somehow
tied in with the report of an inventor murdered in an alley.
But can even her Guardian Angel keep her out of harm’s way
as the complex puzzle unravels to an exciting climax involving
treachery, deceit, and murder?
Praise for The Accidental Sleuth:
Accidental Sleuth is pure delight. Emma Winberry and her
significant other, Nate, tiptoe on the edge of the dark side
in this one, tangling with some bad crooks, troubled teens,
and homeless allies. It’s a cozy that even a tough guy
like me can enjoy.”
Black, author of A Final Judgment
Osterman presents an authentic picture of the art of filmmaking
as she weaves it into her clever mystery. Her eye for detail
and fresh take on the city of Chicago gives one a sense of actually
being there. The reader will definitely want more of Emma and
Scott Sakamoto, Hollywood Cinematographer
Now available for Kindle and Nook. Get the Kindle Edition or the Nook Books Version
Available in bookstores, Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble
Five Star Publishing