Tuesday, January 23, 2018


As a child I loved child stars like Shirley Temple, Hayley Mills, and Patty Duke, seeing their movies over and over again. My teenage years were fraught with insomnia. Believe it or not, the thing that finally helped me sleep was reading cozy mysteries. After majoring in theatre in college, I became a professional actor working on stage and screen opposite stars like Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. I combined my three passions and created the Jana Lane mystery romance series published by The Wild Rose Press.

Jana Lane was the biggest child movie star ever until she was attacked on the studio lot at eighteen years old. In PAPER DOLL, Jana at thirty-eight lives with her family in a mansion in picturesque Hudson Valley, New York. Her flashbacks from the past become murder attempts in her future. Jana ventures back to Hollywood, which helps her uncover a web of secrets about everyone she loves.

In PORCELAIN DOLL, Jana makes a comeback film and uncovers who is being murdered on the set and why. Her heart is set aflutter by her incredibly gorgeous romantic co-star, America’s heartthrob Jason Adonis. The other suspects include Jana’s James Dean type young co-star, her older John Wayne type co-star, her children’s Eve Harrington type nanny, the film’s gossipy makeup and hair artist, a local reverend trying to stop the film’s production, and Jason’s agent.

Following were SATIN DOLL (where Jana heads to Washington, DC to play a US senator in a new film and becomes embroiled in murder and corruption at the Senate chamber), CHINA DOLL (where Jana goes to New York City to star in a Broadway thriller, facing murder on stage and off), and RAG DOLL (where Jana stars in a mystery television show and once again life imitates art).

I set the series in the 1980’s since I love the music, hair styles, clothing, and decadence of that era. I had great fun writing about Jana’s mansion, wardrobe, makeup, and hairstyles. I was also able to incorporate some of the music, films, television shows, Broadway shows, and political and social events of the era, including the AIDS epidemic.

Many of the readers have told me it should be a television series, so I wrote the teleplay pilot. While waiting for television producers to make me an offer I can’t refuse, I decided to give the green light to audiobook versions of these popular novels. I was incredibly fortunate to find Charissa Clark Howe, a gifted actress, to perform PAPER DOLL. Now with PORCELAIN DOLL, I hit the jackpot with Derick Snow, an actor with a great deal of murder mystery acting experience. He not only connected with the mystery, humor, and mood of the novel, but also beautifully created the multitude of captivating and entertaining characters in Jana’s life in book two. His dramatic voice, crisp diction, and emotional availability bring the characters and story to life. Derick’s intensity is perfect for the many plot twists and turns, dropped clues and red herrings, sweet romance, and shocking yet gratifying ending. So now the audiobook of PAPER DOLL is now joined by the audiobook of PORCELAIN DOLL. It can be found at https://www.audible.com/pd/Mysteries-Thrillers/Porcelain-Doll-Audiobook/B077XKTVKL/ref=a_search_c4_1_7_srImg?qid=1512511196&sr=1-7. The remaining three audiobooks are also in the works.

So, grab your popcorn and take your front row seat. Listen to the Jana Lane mystery, PORCELAIN DOLL, performed by the wonderful Derick Snow. Lights up! Action on mystery, humor, romance, and lots of surprises!

Joe Cosentino
author of PORCELAIN DOLL, a Jana Lane mystery, published by Wild Rose Press