Needled to Death

Needled to Death

by Annelise Ryan

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Overview

As a colleague of deputy coroner Mattie Winston, social worker Clothilde “Hildy” Schneider is no stranger to unsolved murders at Sorenson General Hospital. Except this time, it’s up to her to crack the case . . .
 
Motivated by her own difficult past, Hildy has an unparalleled commitment to supporting troubled clients through grief and addiction in Sorenson, Wisconsin. But when a distraught group therapy member reveals disturbing details about her late son’s potential murder, Hildy goes from dedicated mental health professional to in-over-her-head amateur sleuth . . .
 
Alongside her loyal therapy Golden Retriever, Hildy stumbles through incriminating clues—and an unlikely partnership with Detective Bob Richmond, the irresistibly headstrong cop who shares her passion for helping others. With signs of foul play surfacing all over town, can Hildy and Detective Richmond pinpoint the deadly traits of a sharp-witted killer before another seat gets filled at grief therapy?
 
Praise for Annelise Ryan and her Mattie Winston series

“The funniest deputy coroner to cut up a corpse since, well, ever!”
—Laura Levine, author of Killer Cruise

“The forensic details will interest Patricia Cornwell readers . . . while the often slapstick humor and the blossoming romance between Mattie and Hurley will draw Evanovich fans.”
Booklist

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781496719430
Publisher: Kensington
Publication date: 07/30/2019
Series: A Helping Hands Mystery Series , #1
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 37,719
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Annelise Ryan is the pseudonym for the author of the Mattie Winston Mysteries and the Mac's Bar Mysteries (written as Allyson K. Abbott). She has written more than 200 published articles, worked as a book reviewer for Barnes & Noble, and is an active member of Mystery Writers of America and International Thriller Writers.

Needled to Death is her first book in a new mystery series, A Helping Hands Mystery, featuring a social worker at the Sorenson Hospital who solves mysteries.

Annelise currently works as a registered nurse in an ER. She can be reached at www.mattiewinston.com. Her books have garnered numerous accolades, most recently she has been honored by the Wisconsin Library Association as a Wisconsin.

Customer Reviews

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Needled to Death 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
annie2015 10 months ago
I love cozy mysteries and thought this book sounded excellent so I was pleased to receive a cop. from the publisher. Sadly, it turned out to not be my cup of tea. I thought it was very slow moving and I couldn't connect with the storyline or the characters. I finally ended up skimming the book to the end. I'm willing to give the series another shot....maybe the next one will grab me. I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. My thoughts and opinions are my own and without bias or remuneration. #NetGalley #NeedledtoDeath
Anonymous 11 months ago
Plot was too ridiculous and very slow. Not nearly as fun or interesting as the Mattie Winston series. Still, it is just the first book and maybe the series will get better, so I plan to read at least one more. Stephanie Clanahan
Anonymous 11 months ago
Love the Mattie Winston series, so was definitely looking forward to this first book of a semi-related series. I really enjoyed it ... finished it in one day. I am looking forward to seeing how the characters develop as the seties progresses.
Anonymous 11 months ago
I love the Mattie Winston series so thought this one would be good too... so wrong! This was so boring on so many levels. Hard to finish.
lghiggins 4 months ago
Welcome to the first book in The Helping Hands Mystery Series by Annelise Ryan. This series and its premier tale, Needled to Death, share some characters with Ryan’s Mattie Winston Mystery Series. As is true in the real world, people in a fairly closed community, like those who deal with crime and its victims, such as evidence technicians, detectives, and those in the Medical Examiner’s office, frequently have intersecting spheres. Experience with that series is not necessary to enjoy this one. In Needled to Death, the main character is Hildy Schneider, a social worker for the hospital. Hilda is a flawed protagonist if ever there was one, and you will quickly come to love her, quirks and all. A product of the foster care system since a young age, she has been passed through more homes and psychiatrists than most people can count. Hildy, however, has emerged strong, but vulnerable, with an insatiable curiosity and a desire to help others. A woman in Hildy’s grief support group at the hospital is convinced her son was murdered, and Hildy agrees to try to get the police to reopen the case. Hildy manages to get involved in the investigation as well as with the investigators on a personal level. There are a lot of interesting characters including P.J., a neighbor girl with Asperger’s, and Rosco, Hildy’s golden retriever whom she sometimes uses with clients as a therapy dog. Hildy goes from no social life to attracting the interest of two men who admire her smarts and spunk. Author Ryan has a talent in her writing style that makes it hard to put this book down. I really needed to stop reading to attend to another task. Unfortunately for the other project, I would end a chapter, peek at the next, and off I went into the plot again. It was at least five chapters later before I managed to get tough and close the book. Another feature I like about this book is the humor scattered throughout. The ending of one chapter (no spoilers here) was a surprise that was laugh out loud funny. With a great plot and characters with interesting backgrounds, Needled to Death skyrockets for me, and I can hardly wait for the next book in the series to make an appearance! I would like to extend my thanks to netgalley.com and to Kensington Books for giving me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Dollycas 10 months ago
Dollycas’s Thoughts Still dealing with my own grief for a loved one I was a little nervous about reading this book but I really wanted to support the author from my home state. An author whose own books have brightened some of my dark days I decided to push ahead knowing that if it got to be too much I could always stop. I am so glad I started reading because a few uncomfortable moments at the beginning of the story were clearly outweighed by the rest of the story. Clothilde “Hildy” Schneider works as a social worker at the Sorenson General Hospital. She also leads a grief and addiction support group at the hospital. It is there she meets Sharon Cochran, a mom who lost her son to what the police have ruled a suicide. Sharon doesn’t believe her son took his own life and she begs Hildy and the support group to help her prove it. She feels her son was murdered and no one is paying attention. First, Hildy checks in with the Medical Examiner’s office and finds some inconsistencies. She then visits Sharon’s home and finds some interesting drawings and the young man’s computer. Armed with both she confronts Detective Bob Richmond in hopes he will share information and reopen the case. He realizes she may be onto something and agrees to work with her to find out what really happened to Toby Cochran. I immediately liked Hildy and her open heart. She has great instincts and she doesn’t back down. She also has a wonderful golden retriever named Roscoe, who works as a comfort animal when needed. We also meet Hildy’s neighbor P.J., a very adult 11-year-old who walks Roscoe several times a day and even gives Hildy relationship advice and fashion tips. The author also sets up a prospective love triangle with Hildy, Detective Richmond, and evidence technician Jonas Kriedeman. Jonas is raising his 7-year-old daughter on his own. She is also very smart and independent for her young age. But I really identified with Sharon Cochran. I could feel her pain. No matter how your child died the grief is with you the rest of your life. Life is never normal again. Ms. Ryan portrayed that very well in this character. All the recurring characters are complex and I am excited to see them evolve as this series continues. Deputy Coroner Mattie Winston from the author’s other series does make a cameo appearance but this series stands completely on its own. I really enjoyed the way Bob and Hildy worked together and the premise of this series means it is not just a one-time thing. This murder investigation was not an easy solve and had some truly surprising moments that had me holding my breath. My focus was in the right ballpark but I struck out putting everything together until it was clearly spelled out for me. The icing on the cake was that this series takes place in my home state not too far from where I live. I loved recognizing all the landmarks as we followed along with Hildy and Bob as they chased down clues. The Helping Hands Mystery series is off to a champion start! Needled to Death was a Perfect Escape and I can’t wait to read the next book in this series!
KrisAnderson_TAR 10 months ago
Needled to Death is the first book in A Helping Hands Mystery series which is a spin-off of A Mattie Winston Mystery series. Needled to Death can be read as a standalone though. Hildy Schneider is a social worker, pleasantly plump, single, and has some quirks. Hildy’s mother was murdered when she was seven years old. She then found herself in the foster care system where Hildy was a less than an ideal child. She moved from home to home until she aged out of the system. Being in the foster care system left Hildy with an odd habit or two that she has been unable to shed. When Sharon Cochran asks for the grief support group’s assistance in proving her son was murdered, Hildy wants to help because her mother’s case is still unsolved. Hildy talks with Mattie Winston and then teams up with Detective Bob Richmond. Hildy became assertive with Bob regarding the case and also worked up the courage to ask him out on a date. Bob is a handsome and has been working out since he was shot. Hildy is surprised to learn he is fifty-two (he does not look his age). Jonas Kriedeman, an evidence technician, is attracted to Hildy and invites her to dinner. The mystery is multilayered with a twist or two. Hildy stumbles upon an interesting find that, in my opinion, was the best part of the mystery. I was happy that all the details of the case are revealed providing a satisfying conclusion. I found it fascinating when Hildy was trying to lift a print and how she was able to utilize it. I did find Needled to Death to be a slow starter and I did not like the repetitive details (that Hildy was in the foster care system, bad homes, she has no family, her mother’s history). I like that the author took the time to establish the main characters and there are descriptive details on each character. I did not like that Needled to Death is written in the first person (it was unappealing to me). P.J., the neighbor’s daughter, was a delightful addition to the book. I liked her frank nature. Roscoe, Hildy’s golden retriever, is a protective and comforting dog. He was a sweetie. Those readers who enjoy A Mattie Winston Mystery series will be delighted with A Helping Hands Mystery series. Needled to Death has a protective pooch, a dashing detective, a cold case, a perplexing puzzle and a caring counselor.
Karen-Hollins 10 months ago
"Needled to Death" by Annelise Ryan is the first in "A Helping Hands Mystery Series". This is a new to me author and I found it to be a good beginning to a new series. Annelise Ryan is the pseudonym for the author of the Mattie Winston Mysteries written as Allyson K. Abbott and this is a spin off featuring one of its characters social worker Clothilde “Hildy” Schneider. I enjoyed this book and the setting of Sorenson, Wisconsin. Protagonist Hildy is a complicated, messed up but loyal, and likable character and her sidekick Roscoe a golden retriever therapy dog is adorable. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep me wanting to find out whodunit. I look forward to reading the next installment in this series. I requested and received an Advance Reader Copy of this book from Kensington Books and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my OWN.
Karen-Hollins 10 months ago
"Needled to Death" by Annelise Ryan is the first in "A Helping Hands Mystery Series". This is a new to me author and I found it to be a good beginning to a new series. Annelise Ryan is the pseudonym for the author of the Mattie Winston Mysteries written as Allyson K. Abbott and this is a spin off featuring one of its characters social worker Clothilde “Hildy” Schneider. I enjoyed this book and the setting of Sorenson, Wisconsin. Protagonist Hildy is a complicated, messed up but loyal, and likable character and her sidekick Roscoe a golden retriever therapy dog is adorable. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep me wanting to find out whodunit. I look forward to reading the next installment in this series. I requested and received an Advance Reader Copy of this book from Kensington Books and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my OWN.
PNWBookworm 11 months ago
This book was a fantastic start to a new series. I have read all of Ryan’s other series and this one is sort of a spin off from that, with some character cross over. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about that going in but it actually worked really well and gave a depth to characters right off the bat that you wouldn’t normally get. I also loved that Ryan gave her character a job that allows her to be involved in cases without it seeming like she’s forcing something that doesn’t fit. It all fit together very naturally. I also enjoyed the mystery itself and how it played out, I felt like it was well done. The only part that I didn’t really like was how the mystery ended. It felt just a little bit far fetched to me but it wasn’t something I had read before so there is that.
KiahJT 11 months ago
1 star Don’t bother reading this book. It is the first in a new series and is just a disjointed mess. I started reading this book not realizing it was the FIRST in the series, I thought it was at least book two or three because Annelise Ryan writes it in such a way that makes you think you have missed important backstory. There are just so many weird details such as the main character Hildy is apparently very short; however, she doesn’t ever say how short or even why it is such a large part of the storyline. It’s just oddly bizarre. Another example, Hildy is an almost 40-year-old woman with kleptomania tendencies who has never been married and apparently overweight, yet she has two men (both in law enforcement) wanting to date her within the first part of the book, it just doesn’t make much sense. It came off as the author wanted the main character HIldy to mirror the character of Stephanie Plum and/or other like characters. I just cannot recommend this book. It is just a poorly written mess and it makes me wonder how Needled to Death ever got published. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley. The views given are my own. #NeedledToDeath #NetGalley
CozyOnUp 11 months ago
Hildy Schneider is a social worker who runs a grief support group at the local hospital. When a new attendee joins the group and asks for help in solving her son’s murder, Hildy and the group listen to her story and agree to help. While the police called it an accidental overdose, the grieving mother doesn’t believe it. A former ward of the state herself, Hildy became a social worker to help other children in the system. However this time she is going to be helping a mother who has suffered the loss of a child. If it helps her get a little closer to her crush, Detective Bob Richmond, all the better for Hildy! This first entry in a new series with great promise. I found HIldy to be a little spitfire, all five feet of her, with cajones. She’s honest about her shortcomings, faithful to a fault, and extremely likable, as is her golden retriever, Roscoe.
iiiireader 11 months ago
Hildy Schneider is a social worker who was introduced in book 10 of the author’s Mattie Winston mystery series. While you can certainly read this book as the beginning of a new series, I recommend reading book 10 to get an introduction into how Hildy became important in investigations. Hildy gets involved in checking out a possible suspicious death when one of her group therapy members asks for the group to investigate. To stave off every member getting involved, she promises to look into it and to get her contact, Detective Bob Richmond, to do some research. She has a bit of a crush on Detective Bob Richmond, so part of the promise is self-serving. She wants an opportunity to see him again. Bob responds with a challenge that almost knocks Hildy off her feet (literally.) The character wasn’t all that funny in the prior book but she comes into her own in this one. The plot of the book is serious but the road to the end whodunnit is hysterical. I can hardly wait for the next book in this and the Winston series. I was provided a digital advance reader copy of this book by the publisher via Netgalley.
AMGiacomasso 11 months ago
It's a new series and it's got a lot of potential but also some of the usual issues of a first instalment. I loved Hildy: she's damaged, quirky and fun at the same time. A very good an unusual character for a cozy mystery. I also love the rest of the cast of characters, I found them fleshed out and likeable. The plot is engrossing and entertaining, some parts requires a bit of suspension of belief but it flows without issues. The mystery was good, full of twists and turns. i look forward to reading the next instalment in this series. Recommended! Many thanks to Kensington Books and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.