"Detectives Metzger and Jansson sizzle in this smart page turner. Paton's gift for sharp prose cuts to the bone of her well-drawn characters who drive a plot that propels the reader toward the end of this satisfying mystery."

—Matt Goldman, NYT Best Selling Author

"Clever and intriguing... Full of rich details... this well-crafted mystery offers nuanced characters and an unexpected plot..."

—Susanna Calkins, award-winning author of the Lucy Campion historical mysteries and the Speakeasy Mysteries
P as James Bond1


If you’re reading this, you trust words. I once trusted words. As a reader/teacher/scholar, I put my faith in them. As a mystery writer, I trust that words will misdirect, deceive, and hide desperate deeds and motives.

About When the House Burns

A Twin Cities Mystery

When death comes home, is nowhere safe? The quest for love and home becomes deadly when Detectives Erik Jansson and Deb Metzger must find a man with no address in their search for the killer of an adulterous real estate agent.


"This is a well-crafted novel with excellent writing, witty dialogue, and plenty of humor. There’s a murder mystery at its center, but it’s ultimately a character-driven story featuring real people with real problems."


"If location is everything in real estate, then WHEN THE HOUSE BURNS is the neighborhood where everyone has secrets. . . . Priscilla Paton has created an offbeat but likeable pair of detectives with a wry sense of humor in this fine procedural."

—Gabriel Valjan, Agatha and Anthony nominated author of the Shane Cleary series

"WHEN THE HOUSE BURNS is a sharp mystery novel. . . The book’s treatment of a homeless encampment . . . leads to potent considerations of what home represents to different people."

—Foreword Reviews


Holiday Cookies, Tradition, and Mysteries

Tis the season of mysteries. What’s wrapped under the tree? Which liquor spiked the eggnog? Who will surprise us with a sudden yet abiding kindness? For the devout, mysteries underlie faith—the miracle of lights that burn throughout Hanukkah, the divine birth of Jesus under the light of a star, the burning Yule logs celebrating the…

April, Domestic Violence Books, a Survivors Memorial, Hope and Beauty Reborn

It’s spring. Rebirth abounds in the cold north, songbirds celebrate their return, and flowers dare display their pastel heads. It is not all bouquets since tragedy persists in a pandemic not fully conquered, international strife, and the killings of people of color. Homo sapiens cannot seem to learn live-saving lessons. At the best we are…