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Publisher's Summary

In the dead of winter, handwriting expert Claudia Rose journeys to Maine to retrieve a manuscript about convicted female serial killer, Roxanne Becker. The manuscript, written by Professor Madeleine Maynard, who was, herself, brutally murdered, exposes a shocking secret: explosive research about a group of mentally unstable grad students selected for a special project and dubbed “Maynard’s Maniacs”. Was Madeleine conducting research that was at best, unprofessional - and at worst, downright harmful and potentially dangerous? Could that unorthodox research have turned deadly? 

Claudia finds herself swept up in the mystery of Madeleine’s life - and death. But Claudia soon realizes that Madeleine left behind more questions than answers, and no shortage of suspects. The professor’s personal life yields a number of persons who might have wanted her dead, and her academic success and personal fortune clearly made her the envy of fellow faculty members.

The university anticipates being the beneficiary of Madeline’s estate but that seems in question when a charming stranger, claiming to be Madeleine’s nephew, turns up brandishing a new will. The local police chief prevails upon Claudia to travel into town to examine the newly produced, handwritten will. Rushing back to Madeleine’s isolated house to escape an impending storm, Claudia becomes trapped in a blizzard. With a killer.

©2017 Sheila Lowe (P)2018 Sheila Lowe

What listeners say about Written Off

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All the elements of a good Mystery.

This Audio Book is a hybrid of a Mystery and thriller with suspense and a glimpse into handwriting analysis.

This field requires a basic understanding of the psychology of the individual you are examining, so the Writer can create
a different view of the characters being observed.It makes for an entertaining and interesting read.

The Narrator the key to any good Audio Book gives a great performance.






This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

13 people found this helpful

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Great mystery!

This is book seven in the series so I'm really late to this party. At least I'm finally here. What a great concept for a mystery!

I had to do some catching up to get info Claudia, Zebediah's, and Jovanic's world but this was still a complete listen. The mystery had so many movable parts that the whodunnit, which made perfect sense, was still a complete surprise.

I loved the narrator. Crowe was tasked with creating quite a few different personas and she didn't miss a beat.

I may go back and listen to some earlier books but I will definitely be on the lookout for any new books in this series.

3 people found this helpful

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Suspenseful descriptive mystery

Written Off is a very descriptive and well developed mystery. I loved how the author gives you the backstory on the characters as the mystery is deepening. The characters are believable and well developed. The narrator did an fabulous job with all the voices with the different characters. The suspects are numerous but I must admit the actual murderer shocked me. I highly recommend this book if you love mysteries.

2 people found this helpful

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I NEED...

... MY HAND WRITING ANALYZED!!! Seriously, as a lover of horror/thriller content and an amateur scientist I was completely enthralled by this concept. This nearly 9 hour long book absolutely flew by for me and if that doesn't speak to how much I enjoyed it, I don't know what will. This was my first Forensic Handwriting Series book and jumping in right in the middle didn't seem to take anything away from the story for me. Anna Crowe does an excellent job of narration. I would recommend this one to anyone who likes mystery content!

I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher.

2 people found this helpful

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LOVE FORENSICS, LOVE MYSTERIES, LOVE THRILLERS!

Good stuff! This is the first in the series I've listened to, but I really liked it! Liked the writing, characters, story, and narration. I was captivated from beginning to end, enjoyed it! I'm a huge forensics, mystery/thriller, and true crime fan, so I was very entertained! I'd definitely recommend it to others, great whodunit!
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

2 people found this helpful

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A Cold Winter Night's Entertainment

This is my first Sheila Lowe book and I was really impressed. I loved the idea of a handwriting specialist, and thought it would be a breezy read. I found it darker and more complex and yes, scarier, than expected and I loved that. A likable, believable and intrepid heroine, well-developed secondary characters, wonderfully atmospheric setting, and expert plotting. And the narration was a perfect match, with Anna Crowe giving effortlessly distinct character voices when called for and otherwise disappearing (in a good way) into the story. Oh -- and I learned stuff about handwriting analysis that made me want to have my own handwriting analyzed. 😃 I'm now going shopping for the earlier books in the series.

1 person found this helpful

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  • 02-14-21

Wonderful forensic series!

I love mysteries in which the protagonist has a special crime-solving skill. In Sheila Lowe,s handwriting expert series, Analyst Claudia Rose cracks cases based on suspects’ handwriting. This typically leads to some very intriguing stories, and this one is no exception. Claudia is called to a small town in Maine in the dead of winter to help with the revision of a recently deceased scholar’s book. She is then embroiled in same author’s murder investigation. Good writing and narration. Love it!

1 person found this helpful

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Superb writing

I was totally captivated by the story and wasn’t able to predict the ending. That’s a huge accomplishment for any author and a nice surprise for us readers!!! This not being my normal genre of books I was completely enthralled in the story. The narrator did a good job on the performance. I look forward to reading more from the author.

I was provided a free copy for my honest review.

1 person found this helpful

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My first, but not last

This was my first introduction to Claudia Rose in Sheila Lowe’s Forensic Handwriting series. The characters and description are excellent! I enjoyed it so much I plan to go back to book 1, Poison Pen, and read them all! The narrator was fantastic—I listened on my daily walks and never missed a beat!

1 person found this helpful

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Great series!

Loved this book! Good set and consistent with authors writing style. I definitely recommend this book!

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for Ostfeld
  • Ostfeld
  • 06-29-18

Totally surprised !!!

Sheila Lowe have really surprised me with her beautifully written story, coupled with Anna Crowe narrating a real masterpiece was born.
I was so sure that this won’t be my kind of a book and wow how I was wrong.
I’ve learned so much about hand writing and much more, great surprises and twists that kept me listening with a big difficulty of taking breaks.

I hope that more audiobooks by this author are on the way, I’D love to review each and every one of them.

I fully recommend this book to all.



I believe that my review was honest even so that I got the book for free.

1 person found this helpful

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  • mangankillarney
  • 07-26-21

Written

I enjoyed listening to Anna Crowe, she did a great job of narration in this great thriller.

In this book Claudia Rose journeys to Maine to retrieve a manuscript about convicted female serial killer, Roxanne Becker. The manuscript, written by Professor Madeleine Maynard, who was, herself, brutally murdered, exposes a shocking secret.

A great thriller and brilliantly paced

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  • Ghislaine
  • 01-24-21

My favourite in the series

Written Off is my favourite in the series starring a handwriting analyst as the protagonist. This time she is on the trail of the murderer of her ex's murdered wife and her handwriting skills help her to establish the personalities of the characters and point to who might be guilty.

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  • Ern shady
  • 01-15-21

Good storyline and nice to listen to

An unusual and interesting storyline, together with pleasant narration, makes for a murder mystery that is nice to listen to.

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  • Jacky
  • 12-10-20

Wonderful suspense mystery thriller

This series of books has been amazing can't wait for new ones to be added, narration was brilliant as usual, love it

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  • Thais Dematte
  • 08-19-20

Cozy Mystery

I really thought this was a psychological suspense with forensic handwriting aspects, but it was a cozy mystery and unfortunately I don't care about those :( The story is well written, but there is a lot of explanation and examples of what a handwriting analyst does, so the first half is more info dump and getting to know the characters. Maybe get better afterwards, but It the story click with me.

The narrator is new to me and I really liked her. She does all the right pauses, can differentiate the characters and give life to their emotions. Her voice is pleasant, I think she was the perfect match for this novel.

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  • jey cee
  • 02-12-19

BOOK 7

I have been following this series and I enjoy every one of them. Very entertaining series and good narration.

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  • Adam Brand
  • 08-10-18

Mystery book that is a must-read for professionals

Written Off is an enthralling book. Every chapter leads the listener on so that one cannot turn off the recording until one finds out who killed the Greystones professor and what the connections are with the mass murderer, Roxanne Becker. Not only is the book a delight for mystery book readers but it is essential reading for those interested in criminal psychology, handwriting examination and graphology, as it is full of fascinating insights. The author, Sheila Lowe, has not just read about these subjects; she is a real professional, like the heroine of her book. So if someone is interested in becoming a professional in the subjects inter-weaved throughout the story, listening to this book is a must. With this book and the others in the series Sheila Lowe has created a heroine, Claudia Rose, who has gained the stature of a Miss Marple. I suggest that Netflix or the BBC buy the books and make a television series.

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  • Norma Miles
  • 07-01-18

Handwriting shows potential, not outcome.

Female serial killers are rare. The professor at a small university in Maine who specialised in abnormal clinical psychology and murderers in particular, was near the completion of her book, The Making of a Serial Killer, when she was found dead, apparently herself a murder victim. With a three month deadline to meet, Maddie's publishers ask her long time ex husband if he will finish it on her behalf. He agrees, but, unable to travel, asks his good friend and and writing expert, Claudia Rose, to fly to Maine on his behalf to both collect the manuscript and visit the subject of the book, the still imprisoned and notorious Roxanne Becker, for a final interview. So Claudia finds herself in cold and snowy Maine, just after Christmas, living in Maddie's cottage close to where she died, with the problem of locating the author's missing notes.

This well written and crafted novel, presented in the third person but from Claudia's perspective, is intriguing from the beginning. Who might have murdered her, and why? The addition of the small group of Maddie's Misfits, also called the Maniacs, several students especially loyal to and tutored by the dead woman, expands the number of interested protagonists and collegic jealousies and politics further increase the possibilities. As Claudia looks at the handwriting of a number of those closely associated with the author, it quickly becomes obvious that something was not right.

This excellent audiobook is narrated by the talented Anna Crowe, who's pleasant, well modulated voice is warm and full of expression. She matches the pace and emotional impact of the text with precision and, although the protagonist's vocal definition is mostly only slight, it is sufficient to be both distinctive and further add character to an already well defined set of players. As a very interesting aspect of the story, the reader is also introduced to the basics of handwriting as a means of understanding personality and possible psychological strengths and weaknesses.

My thanks to the rights holder of Written Off who, at my request, freely gifted me a complimentary copy, via Audiobook Boom. I had not read any of Sheila Lowe's books previously and feel most fortunate to have now discovered her. I look forward to reading more of her novels in the future. A very enjoyable story, well written and narrated. Recommended.