Available now from Mundania Press

Blood Money Cover

When Patty O'Donnell married her Irish sweetheart and moved from America to her husband's small home town on the Irish seacoast, the most dangerous things she had to deal with were the half-ton racehorses in her father-in-law's stables. But when she and her husband return from a late night out to find their house being searched, she discovers there are far worse things lurking in her bucolic surroundings than temperamental Thoroughbreds.

The teenage son of a late family friend brings proof of a long forgotten debt owed by the O'Donnells, part of a cargo lost in a shipwreck over a century and a half ago. He wants the cargo salvaged, and quickly, so he can help his mother free herself from her abusive second husband. The O'Donnells are willing, but the search and salvage mission puts them square in the sights of modern-day pirates, who want the salvage for themselves.

Suddenly, Patty finds herself hunted and in a fight for her life, where yielding to panic means a swift and ugly death.

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Download chapter one of Blood Money in pdf format.

2010 CAPA Awards Nominee, Romantic Suspense

About the Book

Information about the writing of the book and Patty O'Donnell's biography coming soon.

What they are saying about Blood Money

This book appeals to me on so many levels: a smart, level-headed, feisty woman moving from Arizona to Ireland. An old house filled with secret doors and passageways. Race horses. Sunken treasure. I'm glad that I could read this book uninterrupted because I would have been decidedly grumpy if I'd been disturbed.

Smith couldn't put her foot wrong in this book in the eyes of this reader...If you're in the mood for a fast-paced story with lots of adventure and a strong-willed main character, you certainly can't go wrong with Blood Money. I can't wait to get my hands on the other books in this series!

Cathy Cole, Kittling: Books
Rating: A

Find the full review here.

This was an enjoyable, cozy mystery...The descriptions are fantastic; I felt transported halfway across the world. I could almost smell the water of both coastlines. I loved being conveyed to two foreign locations, it was like taking a vacation without the outrageous airfare...I felt like I not only enjoyed this book but that I got some knowledge as well on various subjects including, horses and training, underwater archaeology and diving as well as volcanoes. There were some wonderful and unexpected twists that I thoroughly enjoyed.

Theresa Joseph, The Romance Studio
Rating: 4 Hearts
Full review here.

Pepper Smith's Blood Money has its eerie and haunting moments, startling moments and even some thrills, but it is most characterized by its vastly unpredictable plot. Ms. Smith takes a chance and makes the offbeat work...and even seem normal... I would say you must read Blood Money for its depth of characters... but then, the descriptions are believe-you-are-there quality...I for one will certainly read this fabulous book again.

Snapdragon, Long and Short Romance Reviews
Rating: 5 Books

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Blood Money's first line is, 'The thief had been hiding in our house for nearly a week before anyone realized he was there.' With that first line Pepper Smith had me.

This was a great book... Blood Money kept me turning the pages until I came to The End. And then I was delighted to find out there are more Patty O'Donnell mysteries for me to enjoy.

BassetBarb, Night Owl Reviews, 4 1/2 Stars.
Full review here

Smith's suspenseful novel has likable characters and interesting locations. Readers will find themselves settling in for a good time.

Cindy Himler, Romantic Times Book Reviews
4 stars
Full review here

Blood Money is wrought with intrigue, suspense, and mayhem. Pepper Smith knows how to draw a reader in and keep them hooked until the very last page. I could not put this fascinating tale down. The characters are especially interesting and strong-willed. Ms. Smith has an uncanny ability to make you feel like you are standing there with the characters and experiencing all the emotions they are feeling. I never saw the ending coming. With all the twists and turns in this intriguing story, you will never guess who the masterminds are.

Billie Jo, Romance Junkies Reviewer
Rating: 4.5 (of 5)
Full review here

A petulant jump-jockey wanna-be. A family of international treasure scavenging pirates. An abusive husband, a defiant step-son, and a proud wife. These are the characters that form the foundation of the lively plot of Blood Money.

Pepper Smith's debut reveals a promising new talent for lovers of suspense and mystery...Blood Money's plot has more twists and turns than the halls of an Irish castle, with a lively pace and cunningly crafted clues...I give this book a Muse Review Mark of Good, for its well-constructed plot and satisfying conclusion.

Mary Schneider, Muse Book Reviews
Full review here

Blood Money can be summed up in one word: WOW. This story is loaded with action, intrigue, danger and excitement. Patty is a determined woman who doesn't stop at anything after she sets her mind in motion. She may no longer live in America, but she never forgets her backbone and sense to maintain her independence in what she believes. She eagerly shows others that she can stand on her own two feet when danger arises.

Pepper Smith has created a remarkable book that gives the characters true grit. Everything is so detailed with the landscape and the picturesque beauty that it pulls the reader into the whole aura of the story. I have always wanted to visit Ireland and Ms. Smith has a flair for writing that put me right in the setting of it all. She has composed an incredible story that had me hooked all the way to the end. The characters were believable and light up the pages. The plot was tight and the outcome unpredictable. I highly recommend this book. Bravo to Ms. Smith for creating strong characters and a powerful strong heroine.

Linda L, Fallen Angel Reviews
Five Angels, Recommended Read
Full review here

This is a truly fascinating story and shows women as being resourceful and able to handle themselves in tricky situations. Several women in this novel are portrayed as strong-willed and this is particularly true of Patty. Though she now lives in Ireland she has retained a strong sense of her American independence and surprises many with her lack of submissiveness to men and refusal to play the damsel in distress.

Throughout this gripping tale are interwoven beautiful descriptions of Ireland as well as Italy, where the treasure hunt takes them.

Cristina Winikoff, Book Review Cafe
Rating: Five Cups