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These Toxic Things

By: Rachel Howzell Hall
Narrated by: Susan Dalian
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Publisher's Summary

A dead woman’s cherished trinkets become pieces to a terrifying puzzle.

Mickie Lambert creates “digital scrapbooks” for clients, ensuring that precious souvenirs aren’t forgotten or lost. When her latest client, Nadia Denham, a curio shop owner, dies from an apparent suicide, Mickie honors the old woman’s last wish and begins curating her peculiar objets d’art. A music box, a hair clip, a key chain - twelve mementos in all that must have meant so much to Nadia, who collected them on her flea market scavenges across the country.

But these tokens mean a lot to someone else, too. Mickie has been receiving threatening messages to leave Nadia’s past alone.

It’s becoming a mystery Mickie is driven to solve. Who once owned these odd treasures? How did Nadia really come to possess them? Discovering the truth means crossing paths with a long-dormant serial killer and navigating the secrets of a sinister past. One that might, Mickie fears, be inescapably entwined with her own.

©2021 by Rachel Howzell Hall. (P)2021 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Critic Reviews

“Susan Dalian's narration keeps the tension building in this thriller through her spot-on timing.... Dalian creates believable characters, including the spoiled and petulant Mickie, along with her caring parents and convincingly voiced men. The result is a thrilling mystery.” (AudioFile Magazine)

“Deeply moving, Villa’s debut fills a longstanding need in LGBTQ+ literature for more Latinx characters and a love story between two BIPOC characters. A lovely, important book that deserves a wide readership.” (Booklist, starred review)

“This cleverly plotted, surprise-filled novel offers well-drawn and original characters, lively dialogue, and a refreshing take on the serial killer theme. Hall continues to impress.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

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