Gerald Darnell’s Website
Carson Reno Mysteries Website
mailto:geralddarnell@msn.com

A Florida native, Gerald grew up in the small town of Humboldt, Tennessee. He attended high school and was a graduate of HHS class of 64. Following graduation from the University of Tennessee, he spent time in Hopkinsville, KY, Memphis, TN and Newport, AR before moving back to Florida – where he now lives. During the early 70’s the author actually worked from an office in the Memphis Peabody Hotel. So many of the events about the hotel in Carson Reno’s stories are real as well as many of the characters you meet. His fiction books are what he calls ‘Fiction for Fun’. They use real geography and include pictures and characters some readers might recognize. The ‘Carson Reno Mystery Series’ features adventure mysteries set in the early 1960 time period. The primary geography is Memphis and West Tennessee, but Carson’s stories take the reader across the United States and occasionally to foreign countries. Each story is considered light reading and is rated PG for everyone’s enjoyment. You are invited to pick your character and put yourself in the ‘play’. You might find it fun! The reader will experience character continuation through all the stories and enjoy the growth of the core characters with each new adventure.
Current published ‘Carson Reno Mysteries’ include ‘Murder in Humboldt’, ‘The Price of Beauty in Strawberry Land’, ‘Killer Among Us’, ‘Horse Tales’, ‘the Crossing’, ‘SUnset 4’, ‘the Everglades’, ‘The Illegals’, ‘Dead Men Don’t Remember’ ,’Fingerprint Murders’,’Reelfoot’, ‘Justifiable Homicide’, ‘Dead End’ , Deadly Decision, Shadows and Lies, Murder my Darling and Lack of Candor and ‘Murder and More’. Gerald’s non-fiction book ‘Don’t Wake Me Until It’s Time To Go’ includes stories and events spanning time from pre-high school to his now retirement in Florida. As an avid hunter and fisherman, many of the events involve activities and stories from his personal outdoor adventures. As a business executive, and extensive traveler, he gives us some playful observations accumulated from the millions of miles he traveled across the US. As someone who loves animals and adventure, he offers thoughts and observations that are probably outside most reader’s imagination. Not a ‘tell all’ narratives, real names and real people are included. If you know the author, you might find yourself – or one of your adventures – included. If not, I’m certain you will find a real familiarity with the stories and the times chronicled in the book. A must read if you enjoy hunting, enjoy humor and can laugh at yourself – while others are also laughing at you.


All Carson Reno Mystery Series Books are standalone novels. It is not necessary to read them in any particular order.

LACK OF CANDOR
Genre: Murder / Mystery

It’s spring 1962 and a Sergeant with the Memphis Police Department is found dead only hours before his scheduled testimony before a grand jury.
Was it suicide or was it murder? What was he going to testify about?
A handwritten note left by the Sergeant and addressed to the District Attorney disappears. What was in the note? Was it a suicide note with information regarding his pending testimony or something else?
A woman claiming to have information related to his planned testimony comes forward and seeks protection. 
Carson is hired to look into the matter and provide protection to the mysterious woman, but protection from whom?
The situation gets out of hand quickly, and Carson finds himself in trouble with most everybody involved. A dark cloud hangs over the truth, as he tries to determine the ‘good-guys’ from the ‘bad-guys’ from the ‘bad good – guys’.
This old fashion crime story takes Carson Reno and his crew on a complicated adventure, where it seems that no one is looking for a solution.
Join our Cast of Characters and come along to help Carson find the clues and discover the truth, while he tries to understand why everyone has a serious….Lack of Candor. 

MURDER MY DARLING
Genre: Murder / Mystery

A famous author is murdered, Carson is at the scene of the crime and considered a prime suspect – but he doesn’t remember anything!
Missing manuscripts, a missing diary and strange stories from the past bring an unusual group of characters together in this tangled web of deceit, blackmail and murder. The mystery travels from Memphis to New Orleans, while Carson works to prove his innocence – without success.
Come along for the ride and follow the clues to a strange and unforgettable ending in the adventure called: Murder My Darling.

SHADOWS & LIES
Genre: Mystery/Detective

What happens when a rich client, three beautiful women, a shifty businessman, a gambler and a missing spouse are all suspected of murder? The results are a merry-go-round of shadows and lies in a house of cards with clues almost as old as Carson.
Greed, blackmail, infidelity, murder, serial killers and a twenty year old crime spin a tale that is practically unbelievable – with the truth masked behind a story that nobody wants told.
This old fashion ‘whodunit’ takes Carson Reno and his crew on a complicated adventure, which has too many victims and too many suspects.  Come along and help Carson find the clues and discover the truth as he tries to make sense of all the Shadows and Lies.

DEADLY DECISION
Genre: Mystery/Detective

When a Tennessee Highway Patrolman is mysteriously murdered, the clues are nonexistent. Police have the name of a possible suspect, but he’s nowhere to be found. Carson gets involved at the request of the local sheriff, but when the best lead disappears; his assistance is no longer needed.
Things are not what they seem, and it appears the bad guys are winning this war of wits. Everyone has more questions than answers, and just when it seems the mystery has been solved, Carson discovers that it has only gotten worse.
Follow Carson in this strange circle of money, lies, murder and bad guys who have everyone chasing them and their ‘Deadly Decision’.

MURDER AND MORE
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

Carson’s feud with a local crime reporter continues, and then suddenly the husband of his client is brutally murdered – a husband he’s been hired to investigate. Mysterious characters weave a web of blackmail and suspense, while leaving Carson with more clients than he can handle. The Memphis police have warned Carson to back off, but an employee of a friend is missing from a murder scene and he’s determined to find her and the killer. Follow Carson to New Orleans, Humboldt, Memphis and Florida where he chases numerous suspects trying to track down a missing person and the killer he’s been hired to find. Enjoy this unusual adventure for Carson Reno, as he struggles to solve the case of ‘Murder and More’.

DEAD END
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

Is this the end of Carson Reno? Has he finally reached the end of the road – his ‘Dead End’? Is this Carson’s last adventure?
While trying to protect a client for Jack Logan, Carson finds himself in the middle of a family feud – a deadly feud with skeletons AND bodies hidden in all the family closets.
Murder, blackmail, infidelity, counterfeit money and, of course, the Mafia send Carson in search of a client that doesn’t want to be found. In fact, finding the client could turn out to be the worst solution for Carson Reno and his friends.
Join Carson as he follows clues and stumbles down a road of mystery. A road with a bad ending – a ‘Dead Ending’!

JUSTIFIABLE HOMICIDE
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/ Detective

  Carson’s client is suspected of two murders, and desperately needs his help. After a night of drinking she wakes up in a hotel room with a dead man, but claims no memory of the previous night’s events. However, a gun found in the hotel room was used for another murder – used to kill a lawyer at the local Drive Inn Theater. Then…things get worse!
The murder gun belongs to his client’s husband and has her fingerprints all over it. The dead lawyer was blackmailing her and witnesses saw her at both murder scenes.
Interesting and dangerous characters surface, and somehow events from World War Two are playing a part in the mystery. To prove his client innocent, Carson must unravel a complex blackmail scheme and explain a few murders.
Follow Carson as he chases clues trying to solve this old fashion murder mystery. A mystery that has everyone looking the wrong way. This is an unusual case for Carson – a case of Justifiable Homicide.

REELFOOT
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/ Detective

An ex-Memphis cop and a friend of Carson is in trouble – but what kind of trouble? While trying to answer that question, Carson finds more questions – and all with no answers. What Carson also finds is trouble coming from all directions. The Mafia, the Teamsters Union, an unhappy sheriff and some very rough characters are all looking for his friend, and Carson is in the middle of this mess. An apparently senseless murder only complicates Carson’s problems, which makes getting to the truth more difficult. Things are not what they seem in Carson Reno’s adventure at ‘Reelfoot’.

THE FINGERPRINT MURDERS
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

Someone is brutally murdering people in Memphis, and for unknown reasons, the killer wants Carson involved.
They’re not just killing people, they’re removing the victim’s fingers and leaving strange clues everywhere. Carson becomes involved when the killer sends him severed thumbs – each wrapped in bloodstained paper containing Bible scripture.
Clues are everywhere, but none of them make any sense and aren’t connected – yet.
Old names surface and the mystery gets stranger and darker as Carson tries to solve the ‘Fingerprint Murders’.

DEAD MEN DON’T REMEMBER
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

It’s a New Year and it has gotten off to a very bad start for Carson. Several prominent citizens and business leaders from Humboldt are dying in some strange and bizarre accidents. Carson becomes involved when an insurance company hires him to investigate.
What happens next is even more strange and bizarre for this little town in West Tennessee. The clues are everywhere, but none of them make any sense. It may be that the ‘last man standing’ is responsible for these accidents – but why? Follow Carson as he works on one his wildest adventures ever in ‘Dead Men Don’t Remember’.

THE ILLEGALS
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

Crime DOES pay – especially crime that has the support of our legal system. Carson’s investigative work for Attorney Jack Logan runs smack into the path of the largest law firm in West Tennessee. Trying to stay out of their path only succeeds in putting Carson in the crosshairs of lawyers who want him out of the way. Power struggles, infidelity, organized crime and eventually murder all appear to be somehow linked to this powerful law firm – McCabe, McCabe, Clark and Lewis.
This is a story of the small versus the large in a little West Tennessee community that has no idea of the crime and corruption that lay underneath their quiet daily lives.
Join Carson as he takes on the fight of his career when he challenges ‘the Illegals’.

THE EVERGLADES
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

It’s 1962 and the Mafia has discovered some new tricks in getting their drugs from Colombia to the streets of America.
Their plans are working perfectly until an unfortunate boating accident puts the FBI back on their trail.
Carson’s friend, Elizabeth Teague, has a large amount of cash hidden in her luggage and this cash belongs to the Mafia. They want it back.
Protecting his friend and sorting through the details, Carson finds himself in the middle of a conspiracy that has roots in Humboldt. He also finds a murder with too many suspects.
From the Everglades, to Puerto Rico, to Memphis, to Humboldt, to Key West – join Carson as he tries to separate the good guys from the bad guys in ‘the Everglades’.

SUnset 4
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

In 1962 the quiet, and seemingly innocent, activities at the Humboldt Motel in this small West Tennessee town went unnoticed and unchallenged. Besides, a little booze, a little gambling and maybe an occasional ‘lady of the evening’ never hurt anyone, right?
Then one fall night after a football game, things began to come apart. It seemed that everything was not how it should be, or at least, how it appeared.
Unfaithful housewives, a football coach fixing game scores, a crooked private detective and eventually a murder, would bring exposure to ‘SUnset 4’. And that was something its operators didn’t want.
Carson isn’t involved in the investigation, but it seems everyone thinks he is. Protecting a friend, he tries hard to ignore things that are simply not right.

THE CROSSING
a Carson Reno Mystery
Genre: Mystery/Detective

The racial problems of 1962 have found their way to the small West Tennessee town of Humboldt. A white woman has been brutally murdered, and one of Carson’s childhood friends has been accused of the crime. Carson’s friend is a colored man who once worked for his grandfather, but the accusations and problems extend beyond the crime and to the heart of this small community.
Carson finds a divided town; a town divided along the lines of race and the interference of outside groups, which makes this division even wider.
Challenged with defending his friend, Carson must find a solution before the two sides collide, which would definitely have devastating results.
Join Carson, as he faces one of his toughest challenges in ‘the Crossing’.

Other Audiobooks By Gerald Darnell