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About Night Candy

1970s San Francisco: the sights, the sounds, the serial killers

As the ’70s draw to a close in San Francisco, things do not bode well for the city—or for ex-con PI Colleen Hayes, whose daughter Pam, in a tragic turn of events, has lost her baby. Pam leaves San Francisco and Colleen, who moved there to reunite with her, starts to wonder what she’s doing in the Bay Area.

Meanwhile, a serial killer given the name “Night Candy” is targeting sex workers, both male and female. The situation doesn’t improve when Colleen’s friend and ally—SFPD Inspector Owens—is arrested for the murder of his ex-wife, who was found burned in a fire the same night the pair had tried to rekindle their love. Could Owens have really done what they say? Even Colleen has her doubts.

But there are people depending on her: Owens, who needs help finding his ex-wife’s real killer, and a trio of sex workers Colleen keeps her eye on—especially with Night Candy on the loose. Then, one of the three girls is next to disappear. If anything is to test Colleen’s resolve, December 1979 seems to be it.

Perfect for fans of Steve Berry and Harlan Coben

While all of the novels in the Colleen Hayes Mystery Series stand on their own and can be read in any order, the publication sequence is:

Vanishing in the Haight

Tie Die

Bad Scene

Line of Darkness

Night Candy


Praise for the Colleen Hayes Mystery Series

“[Line of Darkness is a] tightly crafted crime thriller with writing that hums and vibrates on the page . . . Buy your ticket and get in line, you'll want to be first on this wild ride.” —Carlene O'Connor, USA Today best-selling author

Line of Darkness is an engrossing noir novel that grows darker and more complex under the lingering pall of Nazism.” —Foreword Reviews

“Atmospheric and tense, this one sizzles with twists that entertain and magnetize, whetting the appetite for more.” —Steve Berry, New York Times best-selling author

“As beautifully written as it is expertly crafted, [the series] features characters drawn with the touch of a master artist and a story that sizzles even as it scintillates.” —Jon Land, USA Today best-selling author

* “[In Tie Die, Tomlinson] deepens the character of his multi-layered lead, Colleen Hayes, an unlicensed PI and ex-con who’s still on parole. Readers will want to learn more about this surprising and pragmatic woman.” —Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

“Tomlinson's evocation of San Francisco at that time is spot on, and Colleen is an appealing kick-ass detective.” —Booklist

Bad Scene is an enjoyable read that captures the imagination of mystery and thriller readers—and those who harbor hope that anyone in depths of despair can climb out of the abyss.” —Bookreporter

“Max Tomlinson serves up the perfect mystery in this edgy new detective series set in ’70s San Francisco. Colleen Hayes, an ex-con in search of her missing teenage daughter, finally lands her first big case. There’s just one problem: she must find a killer who’s been lurking since the Summer of Love. Not to be missed.” —James N. Frey, author of How to Write a Damn Good Thriller

“Max Tomlinson delivers a gritty, gripping story set in a fascinating time. Colleen Hayes is a deeply sympathetic sleuth, all too human. I can’t wait for her next adventure.” —Evan Marshall, author of City in Shadow

“I’ve just three words to say about [Vanishing in the Haight] by Max Tomlinson—Wow. Just. Wow. Tomlinson’s taut, spare, evocative writing style is an absolute beauty. You couldn’t ask for a better guide through the dark, shadowy flashback haze of ‘70s San Francisco.” —Tracy Clark, author of Broken Places