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Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Guest Post: A MEASURE OF MADNESS by Kim McMahill

Today my guest is author Kim McMahill. She grew up in Wyoming which is where she developed her sense of adventure and love of the outdoors. While she started out writing non-fiction, her passion for exotic world travel, outrageous adventures, stories of survival, and happily-ever-after endings soon drew her into a world of romantic suspense and adventure fiction. Along with writing novels Kim has published over eighty travel and geographic articles, and contributed to a travel story anthology. She has had the opportunity to live in Hawaii, New Mexico, South Dakota, Iowa, and Colorado, but has finally returned home to Wyoming. When not writing she enjoys gardening, traveling, hiking, puzzles, playing games, and spending time with family

     I would like to thank Penelope for hosting me on her blog and allowing me the opportunity to share a bit about myself and my work. I’ve been writing for about twenty years which has taken me on an evolving journey from non-fiction, to stand-alone novels, to short stories, to my current project, a romantic suspense series. I am often asked how I came up with an idea that I thought could sustain multiple books. Well, the idea emerged as I started getting to an age when keeping fit and healthy started taking a little more effort and a lot more research. 

     Nearly every woman I know, myself included, educates herself about nutrition, exercise, fitness, diets, etc. in order to live a healthier life, manage a medical issue, or to lose weight. I’ve found there is so much information out there that it is difficult to sort out fact from fiction. The diet and nutrition industries are worth billions, which makes it even more challenging to ascertain who or what to trust. With so much on the line for something that impacts nearly everyone, there is no doubt corruption and crime infiltrate the industry making it perfect fodder for a crime series. 

     So, about six years ago I came up with an idea that I thought would make an awesome romantic suspense series. I’ve named it the Risky Research Series. The series starts with, A Dose of Danger, which deals with a potential miracle diet pill. Book 2, A Taste of Tragedy, revolves around a deadly sweetener, and book 3, A Foundation of Fear, explores the role of lobbyists and politics in the industry. The latest novel in the series, A Measure of Madness, releases on April 9, 2021. There are also two short-story prequels available for free download, A Formidable Foe and Midnight in Montana. Here’s a bit more on the latest novel, A Measure of Madness
     The FBI locates the mastermind behind Coterie, but attempts to bring him in result in a shootout that sends Coterie’s members scrambling for cover. When Devyn’s partner is left fighting for his life in a Puerto Rican hospital, she becomes more determined than ever to bring them to justice.
     Devyn’s decision to ignore her orders and pursue the head of Coterie to Brazil puts her job and her relationship with Sheriff Gage Harris in jeopardy, but she is unwilling to allow those responsible for so much death to live out their lives in paradise.


“Where are you?”

“You probably don’t want to know.”

“Devyn, where are you?”

Devyn took a deep breath. She hoped he wouldn’t be too angry. When she left Puerto Rico, she didn’t see any other option. Now, she was so tired she wasn’t sure what to think.

“Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.”

“What? Alone? Does your boss know?”

“You heard correctly. Yes, alone and yes, Conroy knows. He wants me on the next plane out of here, and I’m considering it.”

“What do you hope to accomplish?”

“I don’t know. I just couldn’t let Coterie get away with everything they’ve done. Conroy has a friend in the CIA who has a contact here. The best they can do is keep an eye on the group and arrest them up if they screw up or if they overstay their visa. That’s not good enough.”

“You have no jurisdiction.”

“I’m aware of that. I’m pretty certain I know where the head of Coterie is at this moment along with his right-hand man, but there’s not a lot I can do about it. The other little development is that Sofia decided to run, and J.R. is not happy. I may be delusional from lack of sleep, but I kind of had this thought that maybe if I could get to her first, I could convince her to come back to the states and cooperate. If J.R. never followed her back he’d still be free, but he seems pretty obsessed with her, so I’m betting he’d take the bait, and we could lure him to return to the states.”

“You need sleep. That’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard.”

“I know, but without a gun or any authority to arrest anyone, I haven’t come up with a better plan.”

“Get some sleep and call me in the morning when you’re thinking clearer. Don’t risk your life or career for this demented group. I don’t want to lose you.”

Devyn felt like crying. She wasn’t generally emotional. Maybe she was just too tired to have this conversation.

“I’m sorry, Gage. Please stick with me a little longer. This has to end one way or another, and soon. Coterie seems to be imploding. I may not get another opportunity to get to as many as I can while they are in disarray. If we do nothing they may regroup and the killing will continue.”

“I do understand, but sometimes we just have to concede defeat and move on. I’m with Conroy all the way on this, but I’ll not turn my back on you whatever you decide. I love you too much.”

“I love you too,” Devyn whispered as she disconnected the call.


To learn more about the Risky Research Series or to Download your copy of any of Kim’s novels, visit:


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Kim McMahill said...

Thank you for hosting me on your awesome blog!

Penelope Marzec said...

Hi Kim,

You are most welcome! Good luck with the series.

Gail Pallotta said...

I've read a couple of Kim's books and enjoyed them and this excerpt. Congratulations!

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

Great excerpt and what an intriguing premise for a series!
Good luck and God's blessings with your writing