Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
The Sleeping and the Dead

The Sleeping and the Dead

A Mystery

Jackie Lyons Mystery (Volume 1)

Jeff Crook

Minotaur Books




A new mystery series starring a Memphis crime scene photographer with ghostly assistance

Jackie Lyons, a former vice detective with the Memphis Police Department, is trying to put her life back together. Her husband has served her with divorce papers, she's broke, and her apartment has just gone up in flmaes. But a failed marriage, unemployment, and an incinerated home aren't her only problems: she also sees ghosts.

Since Jackie left her job with the MPD, she's been making ends meet by photographing crime scenes for her old friends on the force, and for the occasional collector. When she's called to the murder scene of the Playhouse Killer's latest victim, she starts seeing crime scenes from a different perspective-- her new camera captures spectral images. As her camera brings her ghostly visitors into sharper relief, it also points her toward clues the ex-detective in her won't let go: Did the man she has just started dating kill his wife? Is the Playhouse Killer someone in her inner circle?

As Jackie works to separate natural from supernatural, friend from foe, and light from dark, the spirit world and her own difficult past become the only things she can depend on to solve the case.



I SAT AT THE DEEPEST corner of the bar away from the door, trying to get the bartender's attention without my hands shaking. He finally noticed and came over—young kid, obnoxiously cute with his manicured chin stubble, pouty...


Praise for The Sleeping and the Dead

“Crook brings the world of the dead and the living together perfectly in this captivating mystery starring one of the most wonderful, unlikely protagonists I've come across. Jackie Lyons is a flat-out train wreck -- an ex-cop turned crime scene photographer battling addiction who happens to see dead people. You will love her, not in spite of her faults and demons, but because of them.” —Jennifer McMahon, New York Times bestselling author of Promise Not to Tell and Don't Breathe a Word

“A fun, spooky ride.” —Tom Franklin, Edgar Award-winning author of Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter

“There is no killing me softly in this hardboiled song from a southern city sinking into the abyss; a terrific tale hammered down on filthy keys in a lost bar.” —Åke Edwardson, author of Sail of Stone

“Read The Sleeping and the Dead and you may never buy a camera from a stranger.” —Pieter Aspe, author of The Square of Revenge

“Crook deftly explores the human fascination with the macabre at the same time he draws attention to the reader's own voyeuristic impulses.” —Publisher's Weekly

“[Crook's] first mystery sets a high standard.” —Associated Press

“Want a ghost story/crime story/police procedural/Shakespeare lesson all twisted – really twisted – into one page-turner? See The Sleeping and the Dead.” —The Memphis Flyer

“A suspenseful blend of the supernatural and crime fiction. Jackie Lyons is a strong female detective.” —Mississippi

“This series starter should go right to the top of all bestseller lists. It is very well written, with fresh new characters, an unusual atmosphere and setting and an explosive ending. Crook's voice is well developed although this is his first mystery . . . An excellent read that you won't be able to put down.” —Romantic Times Book Reviews, Top Pick

In the Press

Read the Kirkus Review of THE SLEEPING AND THE DEAD . A camera purchased by Jackie Lyons, former Memphis vice detective, photographer and recovering junkie, lands her in the center of a major murder case. - Kirkus Reviews

Fantasy author Crook (Conundrum) introduces Jackie Lyons, a former Memphis PD vice detective battling self-destructive tendencies, in his disturbing first mystery, a mix of the hard-boiled and the sup - Publishers Weekly

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Jeff Crook

JEFF CROOK is a technical writer/editor for the U.S. Postal Service and the author of several fantasy books in the Dragonlance series including Conundrum and The Thieves' Guild. He lives in Mississippi with his wife and two sons. The Sleeping and the Dead is his first mystery.

Jeff Crook

Mark Coleman

Jeff Crook



    Latest on Facebook


    From the Publisher

    Minotaur Books

    Latest on Facebook