On The Record


Maureen Lewis is a powerful force in Mississippi State government. Already the Consumer Protection Director for the Attorney General’s Office at age 34, her Consumer Protection Act is signed into law and gives her department real firepower in fighting con artists and fraudulent business practices around the state. What Maureen doesn’t know is that Attorney General Frank Cash and several other influential people are embezzling from the office and prepared to frame her if the scheme goes awry. One runs a car dealership which is scamming thousands of dollars from customers in its service department. The car dealer —who is in on the scheme—is Maureen’s first target after the bill becomes law.

Angry when she is pulled off the case and suspicious when she is forced to transfer to a position she doesn’t want, Maureen and a fellow employee stage a risky break-in and retrieve crucial e-mail correspondence from the computer of the woman chosen to replace her. She not only uncovers evidence of the scam, but clues that point toward a web of corruption originating from the office. She resigns and makes her concerns public through the media, which results in a series of anonymous e-mails sent to her home. Now convinced that her safety as well as her reputation is in danger, Maureen enlists the aid of two friends and conducts her own investigation—with terrifying results.

“… a must read for anyone familiar with or fascinated by Mississippi, Jackson or Southern politics and pranksters.”
—Susan O’Bryan, The Clarion-Ledger

“… For anyone who ponders the political machinery of the Magnolia state or for the casual observer who often wonders what is left off the record, this novel is a fun ride …”
—Ann M. Tabb, Starkville Daily News

“In this debut novel On The Record, Joe Lee introduces us to Maureen Lewis, a prototype for the new breed of Southern heroines. A fun, fast-paced read with lots of local color.”
—Martin Hegwood, author of Big Easy Backroad and The Green-Eyed Hurricane

“A splendid mystery novel about corruption in state government …”
—Danny McKenzie, Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal