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Bestselling Jasmine Steele Mysteries

Kimberly Amato is the author of the best-selling Jasmine Steele Mystery series, Steele Intent, Melting Steele, and Breaking Steele. Amato is also a freelance writer, actress, and filmmaker. Among her several film projects, the teleplay Party Girl, which she co-wrote and starred in, has accorded her the most honors, including The Golden Ace Award and the Aloha Accolade for Excellence in Filmmaking from the Honolulu Film Awards.

Amato holds a BA in Psychology from Hofstra University and an MA in Forensic Psychology from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She is currently working on several more books and future Steele Series installments.

Kimberly hails from the great state of New York, where she currently lives with her wife.

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Steele Intent (The Jasmine Steele Mystery Series Book 1)Steele Intent (The Jasmine Steele Mystery Series Book 1) FREE MARCH 3-4!

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"Don't think you're untouchable…you or your son." Then a dial tone..

Shrewd, hardened New York homicide detective Jasmine (“Jazz") Steele’s just come back from a grisly crime scene involving the body of a brutally-beaten young girl, the second she's investigated this week. That was horrendous, but with these eight words, ending ominously in “your son,” Jazz’s immediate fear is for her vulnerable nephew, Chase, who’s already been through hell in his seven short years. In Kimberly Amato’s hard-boiled yet deeply emotional police procedural, no one is spared tough breaks and turbulent anguish. A lesser cop than Jazz would barely be able to cope.

A year ago, a gruesome car accident claimed the lives of her only brother and his wife, making her the de facto mother of 7-year-old Chase. The sudden household change ended in the loss of her life partner and still best friend, chic police psychologist Frankie, not to mention the dashing of Jazz's lifelong dreams of becoming a successful mystery novelist. Now every day is a battle against Chase’s demons—and her own.

Quick reconnaissance reveals the call wasn't a clever joke courtesy of Hadley, Frankie's droll actress roommate, nor was it Victor, the wry police department coroner who happens to be Jazz's confidante. Further detective work shows the caller wanted Jazz to find him—along with the fresh dead body he left for her in a Harlem warehouse.

With a shadow on Chase and the aid of Frankie's grace-under-fire, not to mention Victor's brandy-fueled heart-to-hearts, Jazz--who has more 'tude than even the toughest investigator, male or female--navigates the cruel streets of New York City while struggling to keep custody of the only family she has left, doggedly in search of the elusive, psychopathic murderer who seems to be summarily killing off women who look suspiciously like someone close to Jazz... and she's not willing to lose yet another person she loves.

Fans of the exciting new wave of hard-boiled women sleuths created by writers like Megan Abbott, Laura Lippmann, Lisa Lutz, and Vicki Hendricks will be attracted to the author’s take-no-prisoners style, and her unflinching attention to harrowing detail.

Yet lovers of traditional mysteries will appreciate the web of fierce loyalty tempered with fearful caution that links Jazz’s tiny but hardy support system—Victor, Frankie, and Hadley, not to mention Chase himself. Somehow or other, Amato manages to mix all the excitement of an action thriller with the swirling emotions of a mainstream psychological novel.

Those with a weakness for badass female cops like Mary Shannon of In Plain Sight and Olivia Benson of Law & Order SVU will revel in Jasmine Steele's gritty determination laced with compassion. Readers of lesbian mysteries will be reminded of  Sandra Scoppettone’s Lauren Laurano and Laurie R. King’s Kate Martinelli.

And it's also a great read for fans of resilient heroines of psychological thrillers like Liz Keen of The Blacklist and Carrie Mathison of Homeland, who will love Jasmine Steele's fearlessness, tinged with the very real emotional roller coaster of love turned to grief.

"(Amato) makes Detective Steele a winning female character, and... introduces comic relief at just the right moments. This is very fine writing by a lady who knows the idiom!"

-- Grady Harp, San Francisco Review of Books


Melting Steele (The Jasmine Steele Mystery Series Book 2)Melting Steele (The Jasmine Steele Mystery Series Book 2) On KINDLE COUNTDOWN BETWEEN 99c and $3.99

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A family brutally slaughtered. A daughter disappeared into thin air...

Still recovering from the murder attempt that nearly took her life, tough-as-nails New York homicide detective Jasmine Steele is slowly coming to grips with a world that's seemingly gone mad. She has every reason to fear death: her parents are both long gone, and she watched her brother bleed out following a drunk driving accident that left his wife dead and his son an orphan. Now Chase lives with his Aunt Jasmine--Jazz for short--and life was readjusting for them both until a serial killer gunning for Jazz almost resulted in the murders of both Chase and Jazz's longtime actress friend Hadley. And there are still loose ends she’s desperate to tie up…

Jazz's bleary obsession with her past is interrupted when she's assigned to a horrifying case: the entire Johnson family's been viciously murdered. Hard-boiled alert:  author Kimberly Amato pulls no punches. The mother's throat was slit while trying to call for help and the father was shot in the chest, then gruesomely sliced up while still alive, like a scene from a horror film. Also found, the body of their young son, about Chase's age, left in the closet with a snapped neck. When ever-adept Jazz finds a business card in the father's wallet reading "Garrison Developments," she's suddenly on high alert. This is a link to her horrendous losses.

But it's the remaining clues to a missing fourth victim--a teenage daughter named Kaley--that leave her reeling.

Kaley's seemingly disappeared without a trace. But something about the crime scene just doesn't seem right... Looking to psychologist Frankie for help (her own life partner and Kaley's child psychologist), Jazz discovers that the Johnson family had plenty of disturbing skeletons in its closet. Skeletons possibly warranting hiring a hit man on the Internet. And then there's that business card. And that photo of, the Garrison clan patriarch shaking hands with the principal of Kaley's private school--a school that couldn't seem to care less whether Kaley is dead or alive.

With the help of trusted coroner and best pal Victor, as well as her new partner, Detective Will Everts (a father of daughters who's about to learn more about the teenage girl psyche than he'd like to), ever-fearless Jazz jumps head-first into the opaque abyss of corrupt New York finance and down the dangerous and secretive rabbit hole of the Deep Web. Can she manage to trace a cold-blooded killer, using only the most untraceable technology known to man?

This one’s for fans of hard-boiled police procedurals, lesbian mysteries, and badass female sleuths. Definitely not for the squeamish! But those who can't get enough of the exciting new wave of hard-boiled women sleuths, created by writers like Megan Abbott, Laura Lippmann, Lisa Lutz, and Vicki Hendricks will be attracted to the author’s take-no-prisoners style, and her unflinching attention to harrowing detail.

Yet lovers of traditional mysteries will appreciate the web of fierce loyalty tempered with fearful caution that links Jazz’s tiny but hardy support system—Victor, Frankie, Will, and their actress friend Hadley, not to mention Chase himself. Somehow or other, Amato manages to mix all the excitement of an action thriller with the swirling emotions of a mainstream psychological novel.


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THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME…JUST MIGHT BE GAMING ITSELF.

Gory video game violence comes home to roost when two store managers are brutally murdered in the back room of their gaming shop just before peek holiday season. The corporation that owns the store is doing everything it can to keep the matter quiet—but they won’t succeed if detective Jasmine Steele cracks the case. Because said corporation has plenty of skeletons in its closet; and one of them is far too familiar to our heroine…

Kimberly Amato serves up a heart-pounding, chilling addition to the Jasmine Steele hard-boiled mystery series—a fast-paced police procedural that’s as gripping as it is eerily personal. And it comes with a captivating (although, as Jazz might say, a slightly “nerdy”) bonus: a heaping dose of the fascinating ins and outs of video game subculture. Which is far more murderous than the average reader would suspect.

A routine call lands hardass detective Jasmine Steele and her longtime partner Will Everts at the scene of a grisly crime—two employees of a mega-corporation called Gamer Syndicate are discovered in a pile of blood, tortured, with their throats slit, and cocaine on or near them. Just as Jasmine begins to suspect the meticulous job was done by a calculating professional, she gets a jolting confirmation—literally: the joint blows up while it’s full of cops. All signs point to the shop being involved in activity much more treacherous than video games.

Understandably, Gamer Syndicate isn’t pleased with the notion that a murder was committed on their property. Not to mention that you can’t have a double homicide with drug implications when you have a billion-dollar game release in a month or so. But what Jasmine can’t abide is their apparent refusal to cooperate with the authorities—at all. The sole witness is a 19-year-old kid named Tucker Winslow, a clerk at the shop. And his employer’s keeping him silent.

Jasmine thought she was done playing games with criminals. Suddenly the case is full of them. And she has a hunch her old nemesis, the corrupt—and downright evil—Garrison clan, is at the control panel.

Alongside her big brother-esque ex-Marine partner Will and smart, savvy (not to mention sexy) girlfriend, psychologist Frankie—with some loving comic relief from her live-in nephew Chase, who’s growing up way too fast for her comfort… Jasmine must navigate the complex ins and outs of greedy corporate America at its most corrupt to solve a gruesome murder mystery—and finally put a ruthless enemy to bed.

A chilling hard-boiled treat for fans of gritty murder mysteries like those by Karin Slaughter, Mo Hayder, and Alex Marwood, not to mention those with a weakness for female cops, from the BBC’s Jane Tennison up to Rizzoli and isles. And as an added bonus, author Kimberly Amato’s no-holds-barred commentary about the ills of social media—and corporate America—is as apt as it’s wry and witty.


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A SERIAL KILLER IS SAYING IT WITH FLOWERS...

In the fourth installment of Kimberly Amato’s chilling hard-boiled mystery series, badass detective Jasmine Steele is back -- and shockingly, to herself most of all -- she’s as happy as she’s ever been.

She and her brilliant psychologist partner Frankie are planning a wedding that’s been years in the making, and she’s settled into a new chapter of life with her nephew-turned-adopted son, Chase. But the good life turns out to be more fleeting than the detective’s caffeine withdrawals.

Jasmine, or Jazz, to her friends, gets a rude awakening when a 3-year-old cold case comes back hot. New York City’s “Carnation Killer,” a serial rapist and murderer, leaves his fifth calling card on a woman named Emilia Smith. The calling card? A heart-shaped carving into the woman’s chest and a single white carnation.

On the creep spectrum, Jazz puts this killer somewhere between Jack the Ripper and the Zodiac Killer. And her veteran right-hand man is on medical leave.

She’s joined instead by temporary partner Detective Sydney Locke, a welcome new character. Sydney’s pretty green but has a fiery determination and talent for the beat that Jazz recognizes within minutes. Soon enough, they’ve got a mentor/protégé thing going – which certainly comes in handy at their often patriarchal workplace.

And it turns out Jazz and Syd will need that and more when the military gets involved with the investigation -- because the victim is none other than the daughter of a high-ranking official, and the brass knows more than they’re saying.

What the team does know is that Emilia’s last night alive was spent at a college bar that sparks Jasmine’ least happy memory – the very same establishment that served as a backdrop to her own early adult years, a past defiled and traumatized by a dangerous man. Just as Jazz is finally ready to be happy, her bone-chilling trauma comes rushing back. And the Carnation Killer is still out there.


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SHE’S ALMOST FAMOUS—AND SOMEONE’S TARGET.
EVEN HER COP BEST FRIEND CAN'T KEEP HER SAFE…

“This time it’s personal” is a phrase all too familiar to NYPD veteran detective Jasmine Steele. Trouble seems to find her and her family—a recurring nightmare serving as the traumatic driving force behind Kimberly Amato’s pulse-pounding hard-boiled police procedural mystery series. In this nail-biting entry, Jasmine’s nearest and dearest find themselves tangled in a web of terrifying cyberbullying, hair-raising stalking, sexual harassment, and murder—with Jazz stuck in the middle. 

Some may call Detective Jasmine Steele stubborn; others contrarian. At the very least she’s old-fashioned. So she’s looking forward to a few days of peace and quiet after finally tying the knot with her longtime better-half Frankie. Unfortunately, fate has other plans when the newlyweds’ best friend, rising-star actress Hadley Moreno, turns up on their doorstep, hysterical. Seems a perp broke into her upscale apartment and ransacked the place—with a creepy dollop of reverence. In fact, the whole crime scene looks far too personal for comfort. What’s more, it looks like the deed was done by a professional. And it was long-planned. But that’s nothing compared to the discovery of Hadley’s boyfriend Logan, who’s found poisoned in his own home.

Jasmine suspects both crimes are the work of an obsessed individual who has reached the point of violence, and she’s worried he’s more intelligent—and more dangerous—than the average stalker. With the help of her stellar NYPD team, Jazz heads up an investigation that quickly falls down the sordid rabbit hole of the darker, more twisted side of social media, all the while suspecting she might be too close to the case—and fearing for the safety of her loved ones.

Because any time anyone in Jasmine’s biological or chosen family is in danger, she runs headfirst into the abyss. It’s what makes her such an ace detective—and what makes this psychologically-astute domestic thriller series so compelling. But it’s also her greatest weakness. In fact, it’s bound to get her killed.

A treat for fans of hard-boiled police procedurals, lesbian protagonist mysteries, and hard-boiled women sleuths—like badass female leads written by Megan Abbott, Laura Lippmann, Lisa Lutz, and Vicki Hendricks. Domestic thriller fans of Paula Hawkins’ The Girl on the Train and Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl will adore Jazz in this page-turner.