Toni L.P. Kelner

Toni L.P. Kelner is the author of eleven mystery novels: eight Laura Fleming mysteries and three “Where are they now?” mysteries. Both series are available as audio books and e-books. Kelner is also the author of numerous short stories, and co-edits bestselling urban fantasy anthologies with Charlaine Harris. Their most recent are Games Creatures Play and Dead But Not Forgotten. Kelner has won the Agatha Award and an RT BookClub Lifetime Achievement Award, and has been nominated multiple times for the Anthony, the Macavity, and the Derringer. As Leigh Perry, she writes the Family Skeleton series for Berkley Prime Crime.

Find Kelner on her website, or follow her on Twitter @ToniLPKelner.

Bibliography

  • Family Skeleton Series
    A Skeleton in the Family (#1)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Family Skeleton Series
    The Skeleton Takes a Bow (#2)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Family Skeleton Series
    The Skeleton Haunts a House (#3)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Family Skeleton Series
    The Skeleton Paints a Picture (#4)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Family Skeleton Series
    The Skeleton Makes a Friend (#5)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Family Skeleton Series
    The Skeleton Stuffs a Stocking (#6)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Dead But Not Forgotten: Stories from the World of Sookie Stackhouse
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Games Creatures Play
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    An Apple for the Creature
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Home Improvement: Undead Edition
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Death’s Excellent Vacation
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Wolfsbane and Mistletoe
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Anthologies
    Many Bloody Returns
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Down Home Murder (#1)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Dead Ringer (#2)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Trouble Looking for a Place to Happen (#3)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Country Comes to Town (#4)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Tight as a Tick (#5)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Death of a Damn Yankee (#6)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Mad as the Dickens (#7)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Wed and Buried (#8)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Laura Fleming Series
    Crooked as a Dog’s Hind Leg: A Laura Fleming Collection
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Where Are They Now? Series
    Curse of the Kissing Cousins (#1)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Where Are They Now? Series
    Who Killed The Pinup Queen? (#2)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Where Are They Now? Series
    Blast from the Past (#3)
    Toni L.P. Kelner
     

Reviews

Family Skeleton Series

A Skeleton in the Family (#1)
“A very touching and entertaining whodunit. The mystery is intelligent and nicely done with fun insights into academia and anthropology.”

RT Book Reviews

“A SKELETON IN THE FAMILY is a very clever, engaging book with several LOL moments. I’m eagerly waiting publication of THE SKELETON TAKES A BOW."

Nightstand Book Reviews

“I had a grand time reading this fresh, original novel peopled (and skeletoned) with enchanting characters and a warm, engaging story. The undercurrent of the gift of love and loyalty between friends and family members gives this book a burnished glow of strength and peace. I totally loved every page and want to visit with Georgia and Sid again and again. Bring on book two of the series!”

Criminal Element

“I loved this unique fusion of paranormal, cozy, and academic mystery.”

Stuff and Nonsense

“This off-beat paranormal cozy will resonate with a lot of different types of readers, from the single mom, to the professor, to the paranormal enthusiast. There is literally something for everyone!”

Debbie’s Book Bag

The Skeleton Takes a Bow (#2)
“The quirky and delightful Family Skeleton series continues [...] This mystery moves effortlessly with good plotting, amusing dialogue and a suspenseful and funny ending. Georgia’s endearing family of crime solvers will have readers clamoring for the next in the series.”

RT Book Reviews

“The humor and wit are razor sharp […] The plot succeeds in connecting various threads in an unexpected but logical conclusion. Leigh Perry, the pen name of Toni Kelner, shines in this delightfully funny and unique series that blends paranormal with mystery and academic satire.”

Kings River Life Magazine

“This newest in the Family Skeleton Mystery series is absolutely terrific. Yet again, Perry has come up with a fantastic concept that has never been done […] Such a fun read […] Perry has, yet again, come up with a barrel of surprises.”

Suspense Magazine

“This is a great cozy filled with sparkling humor and lots of twists and turns […] [the] sense of family love and loyalty is pervasive throughout the story. Every cozy lover will revel in THE SKELETON TAKES A BOW.“

Criminal Element

“A light-hearted cozy style mystery with slight paranormal overtones […] [a] traditional mystery with great characters, interesting subplots and a satisfying mystery […] Leigh Perry manages to infuse her story with vast amounts of humor.”

BOLO Books

The Skeleton Haunts a House (#3)
“This fun cozy paranormal mystery provides a unique look at the investigative process when one of the sleuths has been distilled down to bare bones—literally [...] The characters are fun and the wacky situations escalate nicely to the exciting climax.”

Night Owl Suspense

“Leigh Perry does a marvelous job utilizing the humorous aspects to full effect as there are more than a few laugh-out-loud moments. However, the sense of family togetherness is what truly makes THE SKELETON HAUNTS A HOUSE perfect [...] each and every aspect of THE SKELETON HAUNTS A HOUSE is a true delight.”

Fresh Fiction

“Sid and Georgia are an amazing duo. They complement each other very well and part of the reason why I love original and creative cozy-mysteries such as this one."

Night Owl Book Cafe

“The perfect mystery to cozy up with on Halloween or any other time of the year.”

Kings River Life Magazine

"Leigh Perry is a wonderful author. Not only does she pen an awesome mystery, but she makes you forget that one of the lead characters is dead and a skeleton, even though it’s of course mentioned in the story many times. She has given a personality and a soul to a walking stack of bones and it works!”

Lisa K’s Book Reviews

The Skeleton Paints a Picture (#4)
“THE SKELETON PAINTS A PICTURE is the best book in the series to date.”

BOLO Books

“This was a great story and mystery, different from the last three but built on the magic and mystery solving duo I love.”

A Cup of Tea and a Cozy Mystery

“I never thought I would find the friendship between a woman and a skeleton to be so charming, moving, or enviable. The murder plot is just as complex and unpredictable, making it a winning entry in the always entertaining field of academic mysteries.”

KRL News & Reviews

“Make no bones about it, if you enjoy a good mystery, you’ll enjoy THE SKELETON PAINTS A PICTURE. This is a fun book that will leave you hoping Sid still has a very long life ahead of him.”

Carstairs Considers

“Another enjoyable book in this series! The mystery is perfectly paced, with plenty of humor, investigation and college professor drama. Sid and Georgia make a great team.”

My Interdimensional Chaos

The Skeleton Makes a Friend (#5)
“Whodunits don’t come much funnier than Perry’s suspenseful fifth mystery featuring 'an ambulatory skeleton named Sid.'”

Publisher’s Weekly, Starred Review

"This series just keeps getting better […] This is a solidly readable, writerly, thoroughly enjoyable mystery […] I can’t imagine it being better, honestly. I’m looking forward to more from Sid and Georgia.”

Nonstop Reader

“Fans of Sid will delight in watching him navigate the challenges of having his first “outside” friendship while never straying to far from his smart-alecky roots.”

BOLO Books

"What a treat to see another side of Sid as he makes a friend via an online game [...] The author did a great job in staging this mystery [...] The characters are well-developed and the dialogue is engaging [...] Overall, this was one of the best book in this delightfully endearing series and I can’t wait to see what is in store for Sid, Georgia and the gang."

Dru’s Book Musings

“Kudos to the author for delivering one of the best in the series with this one.

This Is My Truth Now

The Skeleton Stuffs a Stocking (#6)
"Mirth and murder blend beautifully in Perry’s sixth whodunit featuring Sid [...] Perry tosses in helicopter parents and academic politics en route to a satisfying denouement. Cozy fans who enjoy their mysteries leavened with humor will find their funny bones tickled."

Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

"This fast-paced and well-written whodunit immediately grabbed my attention [...] a solid plot, a lovable and quirky cast of characters, suspense and intrigue to keep me reading, engaging dialogue, a feel good atmosphere, and a few strategically-placed twists that enhanced my reading pleasure [...] by far, the BEST book in this delightfully endearing series."

Dru's Book Musings

"Loveable, well-written and endlessly engaging. The plot in THE SKELETON STUFFS A STOCKING is exceptionally original [...] Sid and Georgia will delight readers of all ages and types [...] I truly enjoyed this holiday cozy and can’t wait for the next addition to this series. I am thrilled to recommend this book along with the entire series to cozy readers everywhere."

The Cozy Review

“Leigh Perry always manages to find new and interesting ways for the walking, talking skeleton to get out into the world and investigate murders […] If quirky cozies are your thing, I can’t recommend this series enough!”

Michelle’s Romantic Triangle

“Sid is back with a murder that’s sure to send a chill down your spine in Leigh Perry’s festive new mystery.”

Bolo Books

“[The Family Skeleton Series are] the perfect length and have a fine balance of complexity and levity […] It seems each newly published tale is better than the last one.”

This is My Truth Now

“THE SKELETON STUFFS A STOCKING was purely delightful. Whether this book is your introduction to Sid or you want a chance to catch up with old friends, you’ll savor every page.”

Carstairs Considers

“Delightful light reading […] There is romantic romping, daily college student dealings, family fun, perpetual puzzles, copious curious characters and tenuous trust.”

Book Postmortem

Anthologies

Dead But Not Forgotten: Stories from the World of Sookie Stackhouse
“Unseen adventures that give Sookie’s world a little more complexity and depth […] They’re entertaining and sometimes revelatory. In some ways, this feels like a farewell tour of the series, involving a jam session with top-notch musicians.”

Publishers Weekly

“Wildly entertaining […] Fifteen stories, cleverly and humorously written, shed light on several secondary characters who are as diverse as can be, from witches to werewolves, to Sookie’s own grandmother. Crisp storytelling, sharp dialogue and great pacing are the highlights of what, for Sookie fans, will be an anthology to die for.”

RT Book Reviews

“This new compilation with stories featuring Sookie’s world is a must-read […] The stories are a proper addition to Sookie’s world of make believe as her character is always standing in the background, always on the fringe of each and every story as it’s told. A great mix of funny and dark, this anthology will have readers and fans beyond excited.”

Suspense Magazine

Games Creatures Play
“I know many will love every single story in the book. So if a shock, a scare a little fright, something to get the pulse racing is what you enjoy […] well this is the anthology for you.”

Parmenion Books

“Its fun, has some cracking play on games and how the “creatures” unwind and all round gives the reader a short stories that they can dive into during journeys or lunch breaks to get away from the real world. As usual the talent within is top notch and when edited by two top notch names in the genre, all round gives it a seal of quality that you can’t ignore. Great stuff.”

Falcata Times

“Harris’s story is a Sookie Stackhouse tale, nestled closely into the True Blood universe and its existing characters and mythos. It works nicely as a stand alone, whilst enticing a captured reader deeper into the bigger picture.”

It Puts the Blog in the Basket

An Apple for the Creature
“Kelner and Harris have once again brought together a bevy of talented authors to explore 13 entertaining stories of education of the most unnatural kind.”

RT Book Reviews

“This is a fun book for the Halloween season filled with a lot of our favorites like Charlaine Harris, Amber Benson (Buffy fame), Illona Andrews, Rhys Bowen & many more! […] I love this book”

Kings River Life Magazine

“AN APPLE FOR THE CREATURE is a great read. With such a vast array of authors from different genres, readers are sure to find at least one story that they can enjoy […] I only wish some of the stories were longer!”

Fresh Fiction

“School is back in session with this mostly delightful collection of tales […] AN APPLE FOR THE CREATURE is a great fall read.”

San Francisco Book Review

“While most anthologies tend to have a few strong stories sprinkled amongst an assortment of weaker offerings. This is an exception because nearly all are fresh, inventive and downright entertaining with several including nice comeuppances or clever tweaks that are good fun. Short stories are too often overlooked and that is a shame because as this collection shows, they can be delightful treats.”

Monsters And Critics

Home Improvement: Undead Edition
“14 authors hit the nail on the head with these truly DIY nightmares. With literal skeletons in the closet or portals in the attic, the stories range from the chilling to the offbeat.”

RT Book Reviews

“A consistently entertaining selection of stories with some nice variety.”

Locus

“This collection is a treat. The stories are strong and most reward the readers with a pleasing plot twist.”

Monsters and Critics

“A good, strong mix of stories […] you’re sure to find more than one that will make the book worthwhile.”

SFRevu

“Definitely one of the most fun books you will read this summer.”

San Francisco Book Review

Death’s Excellent Vacation
“Readers will find this collection a great sampler for discovering authors they’ll want to follow.”

Publishers Weekly

“An interesting collection [and] a quick read […] Rabid True Blood and Night Huntress fans will likely drive circulation of this new title.”

VOYA

“An excellent way to spend your time at the beach. Satisfaction is guaranteed in 13 fantastical stories by some of the genre’s most talented and inventive writers.”

RT Book Reviews

“A rare mix of both fun and exciting, and comical and serious stories […] No two stories are alike, and there’s a story for just about every reader.”

Speculative Book Review

Wolfsbane and Mistletoe
“The expertise of 15 wolfishly inspired authors is dished up into a combination of stories that run the gamut from funny to downright creepy. There’s a little something for every taste — literally!”

RT Book Reviews

“I didn’t think they could top MANY BLOODY RETURNS, but WOLFSBANE just might have raised the bar […] an excellent volume, not a bad story in the bunch.”

SFRevu

“Fifteen exceptional authors are brought together to make WOLFSBANE AND MISTLETOE a captivating collection. From stories of urban fantasy to those edged in horror, this anthology offers a fun and sometimes gory variety. Edited by Charlaine Harris and Toni L.P. Kelner, WOLFSBANE AND MISTLETOE offers up the Christmas spirit in a wonderfully wicked way. Each story is written as a stand-alone, but among them readers will find entertaining additions to some of the most followed series.”

Darque Reviews

Many Bloody Returns
“This […] anthology of 13 new vampire stories proves that heavy-weight contributors can give some substance.”

Publishers Weekly

“13 talented writers have found clever ways to intertwine two seemingly disparate themes. Some stories are better than others, but all are entertaining and worth reading. This excellent collection will appeal to the growing legion of paranormal fans.”

Library Journal

“Experienced genre hands ensure the high quality of 13 stories about birthdays and vampires.”

Booklist

“[An] amusing original anthology. For fans of the series represented here, this is an entertaining birthday party well worth checking out.”

Locus

Laura Fleming Series

Down Home Murder (#1)
“You’ll need a road map to keep track of Fleming’s relatives (I counted two dozen), but they speak and behave authentically.”

The Charlotte Observer

“A tightly woven tale of family quarrels, jealousies, secrets, and loyalties. Laura Fleming is interesting, likable, and a delight to read.”

The Armchair Detective

“DOWN HOME MURDER […] is a marvelous slice of working class North Carolina. Even if it weren’t a mystery, it would be worth reading as a Southern novel.”

Mysteriously Yours

“A wonderful book, a terrific character driven story telling triumph. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.”

I Love A Mystery

Dead Ringer (#2)
“Kelner shows herself to be an expert at suspense, wit and characterization. Five Cats.”

Kate’s Mystery Books Newsletter

Trouble Looking for a Place to Happen (#3)
“Down–home mores and country humor inform this ebullient debut. A lively, lighthearted cozy.”

Publishers Weekly

“The dynamics of a large extended Southern family is the nexus of author Toni L.P. Kelner’s charming and chatty TROUBLE LOOKING FOR A PLACE TO HAPPEN.”

Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel

“The down home flavor makes this a unique adventure and makes you want to find any other stories by this author.”

Rendezvous

“The true charm of this delightful and lighthearted mystery is Toni Kelner’s portrayal of life in a small Southern town and the characters who reside there.”

Kate’s Mystery Books Newsletter

Country Comes to Town (#4)
“Greed and jealousy in the intricate world of computers provide a nonstop pace.”

Publishers Weekly

“Moves along as swiftly as a debugged program–or, as Laura and cousin Thaddeous might say, right smartly.”

San Jose Mercury News

“These characters warm your heart as the murders chill your soul, as good mysteries should.”

Rendezvous

“A charming, charismatic and intelligent mystery that will kidnap your attention and time. Five cats.”

Kate’s Mystery Books Newsletter

“The cast of characters is witty and the solid mystery compels this puzzle.”

Mystery Lovers Bookstore News

Tight as a Tick (#5)
“Kelner’s Laura is an enjoyable, gently sarcastic narrator whose amusement at the down-home style of rural Byerly will be shared by most readers.”

Publishers Weekly

“Decidedly homey characters, country charm, and an upbeat tone should make this a popular choice. Recommended.”

Library Journal

“The Laura Fleming mysteries are some of the most whimsical and entertaining books on the market today. Mystery fans will have a jolly time with this well written charmer.”

The Midwest Book Review

“Her best outing to date.”

Meritorious Mysteries

“Toni Kelner’s books keep getting better. TIGHT AS A TICK is a delightful read.”

Kate’s Mystery Books Newsletter

Death of a Damn Yankee (#6)
“If you like your mysteries Southern-fried, check out Toni Kelner’s Laura Fleming series. Kelner […] paints her native South in loving detail, from sweet tea to third cousins twice removed.”

The Charlotte Observer

“As refreshing as an iced tea on a hot summer day. Laura’s family is so delightfully nutty they’ll tickle you pink. Four and a half stars and A Top Pick.”

RT Book Reviews

“The blend of Southern wit and charm, combined with characters that are purely a pleasure to know, make the Laura Fleming series a real treat. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.”

I Love A Mystery

“There is an even-keeled wisdom running through this book, which is Kelner’s strongest yet. DEATH OF A DAMN YANKEE is a cool glass of lemonade on a hot day.”

Kate’s Mystery Books Newsletter

Mad as the Dickens (#7)
“Sure to charm Kelner fans.”

Publishers Weekly

“This is sparkling entertainment with a great storyline and an utterly charming cast of characters. Four stars.”

RT Book Reviews

“Lots of small-town bickering, family gossip, and not a few private agendas make for an entertaining Southern mystery. For all collections.”

Library Journal

“The puzzle is difficult to solve, the characters are endearing, and the dialogue is witty. Recommend this one to fans of Southern mystery series by Anne George and Margaret Maron.”

Booklist

“Kelner deliver the perfect relaxer during the stressful holidays. The author’s lively approach shines, but Kelner also infuses MAD AS THE DICKENS with a sly look at family ties. MAD AS THE DICKENS will lift any holiday spirits.”

Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel

Wed and Buried (#8)
“Good humor abound amid the murder and mayhem in this sprawling family.”

Publishers Weekly

“The Laura Fleming series has been consistently good, and WED AND BURIED is no exception. The characters are irresistibly engaging, the plotting is superb and the ending terrific. Let’s hope this series goes on for quite a while. Four stars.”

RT Book Reviews

“Manners, style and charm vie for a place with clever detecting and Southern humor spiced with Richard’s Shakespearean quotations […] Whether viewed as an excellent example of the Southern mystery or as a well plotted, character driven mystery, WED AND BURIED is an excellent addition to Toni’s fine series. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.”

I Love A Mystery

Where Are They Now? Series

Curse of the Kissing Cousins (#1)
“Sassy Tilda, taking the reins from Kelner’s usual sleuth, Laura Fleming, presides over an overburdened plot laced with Hollywood tidbits that may please trivia fans.”

Kirkus

“Kelner depicts Tilda’s search for the elusive actress as a merry chase through cyberspace and stacks of dusty magazines, adding in a little romance with sexy bodyguard Nick Tolomeo to keep things humming.”

Publishers Weekly

“[A] suitably dramatic climax and then all is explained in an equally satisfying denouement. This is a light frothy contemporary mystery with an engaging protagonist and it will be interesting to see where Kelner takes Tilda and the series in future books.”

Gumshoe Review

“[A] pleasant read with characters just begging for another book.”

Reviewing the Evidence

Who Killed The Pinup Queen? (#2)
“WHO KILLED THE PINUP QUEEN? is a fast-paced read that fans of television nostalgia will quickly add to their must-read lists.”

The Mystery Reader

“This is a solid entry in Toni L.P. Kelner’s Where Are They Now mystery series. Kelner has clearly done her homework regarding the old pinup models and the amateur camera clubs and professionals who photographed them.”

Gumshoe Review

“Toni L.P. Kelner did a great job in keeping the book flowing with stuff happening so you just couldn’t put it down long enough to do much anything at all.”

Once Upon a Romance

Blast from the Past (#3)
“BLAST FROM THE PAST has great characters that come alive off of the pages […] Kelner is able to weave a twisted tale that takes the reader into the past and back with ease.”

The Romance Readers Connection

“[BLAST FROM THE PAST] gets to that point of ‘not wanting to put it down’ good.”

Once Upon a Romance

“The latest Where Are They Now? Harper tale is a great read.”

Genre Go Round Reviews

“This was a very enjoyable read with a good mix of plot and characters against a great backdrop of Cape Cod.”

Mystery and My Musings

Awards & Accolades

Family Skeleton Series

A Skeleton in the Family (#1)
USA

#4 Mysterious Galaxy Bookstore Paperback Bestseller

The Skeleton Takes a Bow (#2)
The Skeleton Paints a Picture (#4)
The Skeleton Makes a Friend (#5)
The Skeleton Stuffs a Stocking (#6)

Anthologies

Death’s Excellent Vacation
USA

#8 New York Times Bestseller List

Wolfsbane and Mistletoe
USA

#31 New York Times Bestseller List

USA

#10 Locus Bestseller List

USA

Finalist, Pearl Award: “Best Paranormal Anthology”

Many Bloody Returns
USA

#30 New York Times Hardcover Bestseller

USA

#29 New York Times Paperback Bestseller

Laura Fleming Series

Where Are They Now? Series