Tom Bender Books

Award-Winning Mysteries and Young Adult Fiction!
Be prepared! Cemetery Plot ó a witty and romantic mystery ó may keep you up late!

As one reader said, "It's a great page turner, with just a whiff of romance - a delightful read."

A reporter named Morrison covers a grave robbery in downstate Illinois. He thinks it's a lark. He is very much mistaken. He finds more than dessicated bones. A killer stalks him. He uncovers a story worthy of a Pulitzer prize. He also comes under the gaze of a psychopath.

Yet, the story can be funny, too. "Witty and romantic," says one reader. "I love a book that makes me laugh out loud on one page and gasp on the next," says another. "Eye-popping twists and turns," says another.

Cemetery Plot recently won a Royal Palm Literary Award from the Florida Writers Association.

Click here to read the first three chapters.

Contact Me

Copies of all of my books are available, signed if you wish, directly from me. Buying direct is a bargain.

Send an e-mail to:

You also can get my books at, either electronically or as paperback books.

Tom Bender's newest novel, Avenging Allison, is "Unforgettable, really," says one critic
This new mystery took a first prize in the 2018 Royal Palm Literary Awards competition

Why would a mystery writer fail to kill somebody off on page 1? Well, just wait...

Terror comes in on little cat feet.

In a museum in a town in southern Illinois, an exhibit of erotic art opens. Some people are furious.

Meanwhile, in the Shawnee National Forest, south of the town, a 10-year-old boy believes he sees a man falling in the sky. Nothing better to do on a Sunday, a reporter - a man named Morrison - goes looking.

None of this seems connected.

Then, somebody blows up the art museum.

Dead in the rubble is Morrison's lover.

"Collateral damage," say the police.

Then, Morrison's daughter Allison is hit by a car.

Sparks from a bonfire of hate, greed, lust, and fury light up the sky in this second Morrison mystery by Tom Bender.

Click here to read the first three chapters.

Besides writing books I also edit manuscripts. My work wins prizes, and is not expensive. If you are interested in finding an editor, and would like to explore working with me, please e-mail me:
If you are a kid at heart, read Run For It!

Two teenagers think they can outwit Irish terrorists and the Chicago mob.

Maybe not.

Run for It! is my coming-of-age story about two boys who flee across country from the Chicago mob, only to fall into the hands of Irish terrorists. Author Ann Bannon calls this novel The Hardy Boys on Speed.

Click here to read the first three chapters.

Run For It!, like Avenging Allison and Cemetery Plot, is a winner of a Royal Palm Literary Award.

About Me

This is me, holding my mystery story, Avenging Allison, and its award plaque. Thus the big smile. Itís fun to write, and itís fun to sell books that people enjoy.

I certainly donít make any money at it!

Growing up in Chicago, I went down to Urbana to school. After the army, I worked for The Champaign-Urbana Courier, and covered the first draft-card burning in America.

I became a speechwriter and then a college professor.

Now I write books, which is a not too expensive hobby. You canít imagine the buzz I get from hearing from a reader who loved this or that book!

My wife Beth and I have seventeen grandchildren and a few great-grandchildren too. (Beth, a Purdue graduate, handles all the plumbing and electrical work.)

Our son Jim created and refreshes this remarkable collapsible web page. Squeeze it or stretch it wide; youíll see! It fits just about any device. For information and/or help from Jim with your own site, email

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