Victoria Houston books in order
Victoria Houston is an American award-winning author of non-fiction, and mystery and crime fiction novels.
Born in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, where she grew up catching walleye and bluegills and muskie, Victoria attended Bennington College, Vermont, courtesy of a full scholarship.
Always passionate about writing, her book Loving a Younger Man (1989) was inspired by her relationship with her second husband, who was nine years her junior. The couple eventually divorced for reasons other than their age difference.
Victoria wrote magazine and newspaper features for a decade, and also directed promotion and publicity for Andrews & McMeel/Universal Press Syndicate, where she worked with talented writers and cartoonists like Abigail Van Buren, Gary Larson, Erma Bombeck and Garry Trudeau.
She also worked in a Kansas based public relations firm before moving back to her hometown after more than three decades.
Whenever she isn't writing mysteries, Victoria enjoys running, playing tennis, doing Pilates, and fishing.
Genres: Crime Suspense, Fiction, Mystery, Non-fiction
- Alone After School: A Self-Care Guide for Latchkey Children and Their Parents (1985)
- Loving a Younger Man: How Women Are Finding And Enjoying a Better Relationship (1989)
- Restore Yourself: A Woman's Guide to Reviving Her Sexual Desire And Passion for Life (2001)
- Michelle and Me: True Life Stories of a Heroic Search and Rescue Dog (2002)
Lew Ferris Mystery
- Wolf Hollow (2022)
- Hidden in the Pines (2023)
Loon Lake Fishing Mystery
- Dead Angler (2000)
- Dead Creek (2000)
- Dead Water (2001)
- Dead Frenzy (2003)
- Dead Hot Mama (2004)
- Dead Jitterbug (2005)
- Dead Boogie (2006)
- Dead Madonna (2007)
- Dead Hot Shot (2008)
- Dead Renegade (2009)
- Dead Deceiver (2010)
- Dead Tease (2012)
- Dead Insider (2013)
- Dead Lil' Hustler (2014)
- Dead Rapunzel (2015)
- Dead Loudmouth (2016)
- Dead Spider (2017)
- Dead Firefly (2018)
- Dead Big Dawg (2019)
Detailed book overview
This is an up-to-date, personal look at hormone replacement therapy explains how testosterone affects a woman's libido in different ways, the benefits and side effects of various FDA-approved estrogen and testosterone replacement drugs, the physical and emotional benefits of testosterone, and more.
This book provides a dramatic account of the true-life exploits and rescue missions of one of America's top K-9 search and rescue teams--from finding missing children in wilderness areas to venturing into the dangerous heart of disaster areas.
Lew Ferris Mystery
Murder stalks the Wisconsin northwoods...
It's mid-May in the tiny northwoods Wisconsin town of Loon Lake, and the fish are biting. Walleye's not the only thing on the hook. There are rumors that a precious vein of nickel and copper is buried on the property of wealthy Grace McDonough, and the drilling is about to begin. But not if environmentalist Pete Ferris can help it.
When Grace's 24-year-old son, Noah, is caught in a sordid sex crime, police chief Lew Ferris makes the arrest. But a day later, Lew is stricken when her brother Pete turns up dead, a bloody pry bar found in the woods nearby. Then, Grace's body is discovered in a car at the bottom of a river--and Noah has vanished. Lew puts out a statewide APB, but before long, Noah is also found murdered on the McDonough property.
It's beginning to look like mother and son were killed by the same person. And when Lew learns that her brother had planned to file a lawsuit to prevent drilling for the sulfide mine, a key piece of the puzzle suddenly falls into place.
Lew is beginning to close in on the truth. But has the killer set his bait again, angling for his biggest catch yet?
Sheriff Lew Ferris knows how to land a sweet brook trout—but can she catch a cold-blooded killer?
It’s Lew Ferris’s first day as the newly-elected Sheriff of McBride County, and already things are heating up in the Wisconsin Northwoods. The tragic drowning of a teenage girl draws an eerie parallel to the unsolved murder of another teen thirty years earlier, but one of Lew’s new subordinates—Alan Stern, Chief of the Deer Haven Police Department—has ruled it an accidental death by drowning.
Neither Lew nor the girl’s family accept the ruling, but Lew is up against a wall of sexism and subterfuge. Not only is Stern belligerent and dismissive of Lew, but he takes the word of the local coroner, Ed Pecore, who Lew believes is completely unqualified for the job.
Adding to Lew’s headaches, an unwelcome interference in the case by a multimillionaire resident reopens a cold case that stretches back decades—and could lead to an anguished relative taking justice into his own hands to avenge a crime the cops never solved. And when Lew’s dear friend, Dr. Paul “Doc” Osborne, finds himself witness to a sophisticated money laundering scheme that could threaten the lives of his daughter and her close friend, Lew finally feels like she’s reached the breaking point.
The fish may be biting in McBride County—but now, Lew is on the line to uncover the long-buried secret that could ensnare a killer once and for all.
Loon Lake Fishing Mystery
Retired dentist Paul Osborne hasn’t fly fished since his wife died. He hasn’t had a woman tell him what to do since then either. But in the company of Lewellyn Ferris, he’s relearning both. And when he and his lady instructor find a well-dressed body floating in the moonlight, Paul adds deputy to his list of experiences...
Whether the death is accidental -- or accidentally on purpose -- Lewellyn is determined to rell in the truth. She enlists Pail and his walleye-expert buddy, Ray, to help her get to the bottom of the murky mystery. Whoever thought small-town retirement could be this dangerous?
When Doc Osborne up in the middle of a murder mystery, only Chief of Police Lew Ferris can get him out of it.
Fishing aside, there's nothing Doc likes better than helping Chief of Police Lew Ferris, a world-class fly fisherman in her own right, delve into Loon Lake's criminal underworld. He's looking for any excuse to spend time with the only woman he knows who likes to fish as much as he does. So bloodthirsty killers and backwoods bandits be damned, Doc will take the quiet risk.
Police Chief Lew Ferris hits a snag while investigating a double murder--and pursuing a killer more slippery than any muskie she's had her hands on.
While out kayaking, Paul Osborne discovers the grisly remains of a woman--whose shoulders bear mysterious bite marks. And just as Lew begins her investigation, another body turns up... The second victim was a successful businesswoman from Kansas City, and the evidence indicates she was in Loon Lake for a rendezvous with an ex-lover--a con man who had tried to get his hands on her money. Now, Lew's got two confusing cases--and a killer who may be more elusive than any fish...
Between a fishing tournament and a biker convention, Doc Osborne and Police Chief Ferris are spending less time catching bass and more time catching crooks...
For fishing pals (or are they more than just pals?) Doc Osborne and Police Chief Lew Ferris, Loon Lake, Wisconsin, is usually a great place to seek out some mutual solitude in the trout stream. But lately, the town has been teeming with competitive bass fisherman and bikers, too many less-than-savory characters. Meanwhile, there's an old murder case Doc's bent on solving even as he himself is stalked by a mysterious visitor.
It may be winter, but things heat up when Police Chief Lew Ferris discovers a mystery buried under the icy waters of a local lake.
It's ice-fishing season in Loon Lake and Doc Osborne is trying to convince Police Chief and fishing pal Lew Ferris to give it a chance. But fish aren't the only things lurking below the surface. The bodies of two snowmobilers have just been pulled out of nearby Two Sisters Lake. And a beautiful woman's corpse turns up in a snowdrift. Is it payback for a drug deal gone bad? Or is it something more sinister? Osborne and Ferris once again team up to get to the bottom of a very murky mystery.
With the murder of a well-known advice columnist, Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris has her hands full with all the potential suspects.
Everyone knows the name Hope McDonald--and not just the couple thousand folks in Loon Lake. Her advice column is syndicated worldwide to about eighty million readers. When the wise old woman is found murdered in her home, Chief Lew Ferris can think of more than a few suspects--and calls on Doc Osborne for help. Since Hope was dealing with some desperate souls, Doc and Lew will have to think of the perfect bait to net a cold-blooded killer...
Doc Osborne knows there are plenty of fish in the sea, but only police chief Lew Ferris qualifies as his catch of the day.
Just as the summer is heating up, the town gets turned upside down by the bizarre triple homicide discovered on a backcountry road... Peg Garmin was not Loon Lake's most beloved citizen. Considering her "calling" in life, no one was completely surprised when she was found murdered in the company of two exotic dancers...no one, that is, except for Ray Pradt, Peg's dearest friend.
As the team digs into the mystery of her past, they discover some startling connections to one of the wealthiest families in Chicago and to the buried secret that could destroy them. Now Lew, Osborne, and Ray must root the skeletons out of the Garmin family closet before Peg's killer becomes the one who got away...
Whoever thought life in the Northwoods could be this dangerous?
When the body of a lovely young woman is found floating beneath a party pontoon on a popular lake in northern Wisconsin on the same morning that a prominent widow is found bludgeoned in her gracious home, Loon Lake Police Chief Lew Ferris is caught short-handed.
This is not a problem for Doc Osborne, whom she deputizes to act as coroner and to assist with the investigation. Fishing aside, there's nothing Osborne likes better than helping Lew--a world-class fly fisherman in her own right--delve into Loon Lake's criminal underworld. They're joined in their efforts to untangle two seemingly unrelated murders by walleye-expert, talented tracker, and teller of really bad jokes, Ray Pradt.
A charming resort town on the surface, life in Loon Lake turns murky as bank officials soon discover that both victims' accounts have been looted--along with a dozen others. One grisly development after another further links the two murders even though the victims did not know each other. Wealthy Chicagoans, visiting entrepreneurs, and the young denizens of "Party Cove" complicate the scene.
Murder never takes a holiday...or so Loon Lake learns one wintry Thanksgiving Day.
Chief of Police Lew Ferris, short-handed thanks to an AWOL coroner, never even gets the turkey stuffed before the bodies start to surface. By the end of the day, credit card theft and dysfunctional families have so muddied the waters that not even expert tracker and dedicated fishing guide Ray Pradt can hope to fish the final day of muskie season.
And while retired dentist Doc Osborne had counted on sitting by the fire with Lew (out of uniform) and planning a fly-fishing trip to Wyoming, the unexpected arrival of Gina Palmer, former investigative reporter turned forensics database expert, ramps up the action with her pursuit of a Canadian link to the theft of merchandise from stores across the upper Midwest.
As Lew investigates, uncanny coincidences accumulate like snow on the frozen, deadly surface of Loon Lake...
It's late January and Loon Lake is hosting an International Ice Fishing Festival. Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris and her limited team are busy with the usual headaches and then some, and Doc Osborne is busy studying fly-casting videos in an effort to impress Lew come spring.
But a panicked call from Rob Beltner leads to a sad discovery: his wife, Kathy, is dead of a gunshot wound. Lew barely begins to investigate the shooting before she's sidetracked by the imposing figure of Patience Schumacher, president of Wheedon Technical College--and she's certain she's being stalked.
It's late January in Loon Lake and bodies abound...
While the town of Loon Lake is hosting an International Ice Fishing Festival, Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris and her limited team are busy with the usual headaches and then some. Meanwhile, Doc Osborne is busy studying fly-casting videos in an effort to impress Lew come spring.
But a panicked call from Rob Beltner leads to a sad discovery: his wife, Kathy, is dead of a gunshot wound. Lew barely begins to investigate the shooting before she's sidetracked by the imposing figure of Patience Schumacher, president of Wheedon Technical College. Patience is certain she's being stalked, and as Lew investigates, the uncanny coincidences accumulate like snow on the frozen, deadly surface of Loon Lake...
A hot August afternoon and Midwest Clinic CEO John McNeil has been working late.
Working on his latest conquest, that is. Jen Williams is twenty-six, in charge of graphics for the hospital's PR division—and quite attractive in a healthy, athletic kind of way. She is quick to laugh and a little too quick to fall for guys. She is no virgin. And she is one of three women—including his wife—intimately familiar with McNeil.
When Jen's youthful body is found with a single stab wound through the heart, suspicion falls on both McNeil's wife, who insists she is being stalked, and the striking hospital physician with whom he had just ended an affair.
Pressure to find the killer falls on Loon Lake Police Chief Lewellyn "Lew" Ferris and Dr. Paul "Doc" Osborne, the retired dentist and forensic dental expert whom she has deputized to help with the investigation—when they are not taking a break for fishing and other personal pursuits.
When the mayor demands Lew take early retirement—and Doc has to babysit his teenage granddaughter who won't stop texting—the frustrations mount.
Desperate for a few hours off—and persuaded by Ray Pradt (a fishing guide who wears a stuffed trout on his head, so they should have known better)—to try fly fishing from kayaks, Doc and Lew find themselves in life-and-death straits on the river. This leads to an unexpected and macabre discovery that just may break the case.
In the midst of a catastrophic August rainstorm, a grisly discovery shatters the serenity of a summer evening in northern Wisconsin.
Moving quickly to prevent a panic among tourists, Loon Lake Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris enlists the forensic and interrogation skills of her close friend and fellow fly fisherman, the retired dentist "Doc" Osborne.
Within hours of launching their investigation, they find themselves faced with a national media circus as Loon Lake becomes the focus of a murderous scenario that links the murder to the race for the U.S. Senate by a woman who is heir to a Northwoods fortune and other, less savory, family traditions.
In the meantime, Doc Osborne's eldest daughter, Mallory, enters into a relationship that may put her life at risk--unless her father and Chief Ferris can find the killer stalking the residents of Loon Lake.
It's mid-July in Loon Lake, and Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris has her hands full with the discovery of the skeletal remains of a missing bank executive and the murder of graduate student.
To complicate matters, both victims were discovered on a hidden river deep in the national forest--a place that just so happens to be a dangerous wolf rendezvous site.
Lew recruits her close friend and fellow flyfisherman, retired dentist "Doc" Osborne, for his forensic and interrogation skills. But Doc has his own set of problems to worry about: his grandson is hospitalized with a grave illness, and now Lew seems to be getting too interested in the father of the murdered student--a well-to-do widower who is teaching her the Japanese art of tenkara flyfishing.
It's the dead of winter in Loon Lake when a wealthy widow is run down and killed by a logging truck on an icy street. The truck driver insists he saw a man shove the woman into the path of his truck. A lone witness who may have seen the man who shoved the victim is soon found dead--drowned in icy waters where he was ice fishing.
Within hours, Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris finds herself dealing with malicious family members related to the dead woman, a cache of grisly paintings, and strange disturbances on the land surrounding the widow's contemporary mansion--all of which point to various people who may have wanted her dead.
Lew recruits her close friend and fellow flyfisherman, retired dentist "Doc" Osborne, for his forensic and interrogation skills. Meanwhile, Ray Pradt, ice fishing guide and expert tracker, helps with the initial investigation even as he threatens to engage in an inappropriate relationship with a key witness. Lew's life and career is further complicated when a young woman calls, convinced that Lew is her birth mother.
It's a bright summer morning in Loon Lake when Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris is called to the scene of a horrific accident that occurred in the dead of night at a local gentleman's club. The club is owned by one of the victims, a member of the private Deer Creek Fishing and Hunting Preserve and the scion of a wealthy Wisconsin family. When the county coroner is unavailable due to a car accident, Chief Ferris deputizes her close friend and fellow fly-fisherman, retired dentist "Doc" Osborne, to step in.
Osborne's discovery of mysterious footprints confirms Chief Ferris's suspicions: this is no accident; it's murder. Leaning on Doc Osborne for his forensic and interrogation skills, Lew also hopes to enlist the help of Ray Pradt, fishing guide and expert tracker. But Ray's time is limited as he is coaching the University of Wisconsin's fishing team in a muskie fishing tournament. Things get complicated when Doc Osborne's granddaughter disappears on the first day of the tournament. Sunny June days turn dark as a desperate search ensues.
Lewellyn Ferris and Doc Osborne must solve a murder that shatters the picturesque Wisconsin lake town community at the height of summer.
On a lovely Sunday afternoon in late June, the annual Loon Lake Youth Fishing Tournament is coming to a close. People are happy, kids are full of ice cream, and teenagers are setting off firecrackers so loud that no one hears the gunshot.
But when the crowd thins out, an attractive young wife makes a grisly discovery: A single bullet to the head has killed her much older husband—the richest man in Wisconsin.
Meanwhile, as the murder investigation gets underway, Police Chief Lewellyn Ferris's good friend and deputy coroner, “Doc” Osborne, is alarmed to hear that his oldest grandchild, fifteen-year-old Beth, has been caught in a drug sting.
And Loon Lake’s idyllic summer is further shattered when numerous elderly patients in the local nursing home discover they have been robbed.
"My wife and Gordon Maxwell tried to kill me this morning."
Doc Osborne is startled by the unexpected words tumbling out of the mouth of his friend and fellow AA member Chuck Pelletier, the recently remarried lead accountant for a planned luxury fly-fishing lodge preserve under construction in the area.
Alarmed, Doc tries to alert Police Chief Lew Ferris, but she is tied up with law enforcement teams across the state. They’re searching for thieves who have been cutting down and stealing hundreds of thousands of precious birch trees from public and private property across northern Wisconsin.
But it’s too late. Pelletier is found dead not two hours later. Doc is shocked, saddened, and determined to get to the bottom of the murder.
With one man dead, evidence of lakeshore properties being stolen from elderly owners, and an attempted sexual assault, short-handed Chief Ferris deputizes Doc and his skilled tracker neighbor to help with the investigation. Then, just as they seem to be getting somewhere, things grow even more complicated.
Just another summer in Loon Lake.
When the bodies of a wealthy Chicago industrialist and his wife are discovered in their summer home at the same time that a local lawyer disappears, life becomes complicated for Loon Lake Chief of Police Lew Ferris.
Relying on the forensic dental expertise of her close friend and acting coroner, Doc Osborne, Lew soon finds the investigations are even more complicated than she thought when a rarely used computer belonging to a local sawmill operation is taken over by foreign hackers. Add to that the family issues facing both Lew and Doc, and this Northwoods summer becomes both hot and dangerous.