Book Release: Bad Makes Bad: A Cherry Orozco Mystery by Ilyn Welch

We are thrilled to release Bad Makes Bad by Ilyn Welch, the follow up to her debut novel Signs of Pain featuring Cherry Orozco.

About the Book

Cherry Orozco keeps slapping women—in her dreams. And she’s a sleep-deprived mess. Free group therapy at a neighborhood mental-health center steers her to confront issues of past and present trauma, including those about childhood frenemy Lana Picasso, a one-psycho hazing factory. Adding to her angst is the fact some monster is on the loose, booby-trapping area playgrounds with razor blades among other crimes. The support sessions appear to help, plus Cherry clicks with a kindred smart-ass named Parvati who devours serial-killer paperbacks and clashes with the indifferent therapist. As group members bare their souls and work on coping strategies, the razor-blade incidents escalate outside the center’s walls. When the villainy is brought up at therapy, Parvati goes overboard relishing the gory details, making her Cherry’s number-one suspect—until she disappears.

What folks are saying…

“A mysterious perpetrator of heinous acts, a charismatic protagonist and Ilyn Welch’s delicious writing style contribute to a delightful read in Bad Makes Bad.”

Iris Yamashita, author of City Under One Roof

“Welch writes with a sledgehammer. In Bad Makes Bad, fiery amateur sleuth Cherry Orozco is sleep deprived and suffering PTSD related to her last case, but that doesn’t stop her when a truly horrifying villain starts playing in her neighborhood. In this riveting follow-up to the brilliant Signs of Pain, Welch fearlessly charges into her bleakest material yet, and cements herself as the Dark Queen of the Cozy.”

Meagan Lucas, author of Here in the Dark and Songbirds and Stray Dogs

“A dark, wounding mystery for Cherry Orozco, the ad hoc sleuth of Raptor Flats. Bad Makes Bad is a brilliant canvas, and Welch is an artist wielding razor blades, trauma, and strokes of realism in equal measure.”

Coy Hall, author of A Séance for Wicked King Death

“What divides victims who go on to lead gentle lives from those who inflict their pain onto others? That’s the question in Bad Makes Bad, Ilyn Welch’s fast-paced second novella featuring the unapologetically indolent, come-as-you-are Cherry “Bomb” Orozco. Fresh off her victory against human traffickers, Cherry’s status as a self-styled slacker is at risk as she finds herself the unofficial but essential guardian of Raptor Flats. When a dangerous kook starts hiding razor blades on playgrounds and committing other crimes in the neighborhood, Cherry—supported by her circle of friends—steps up to uncover the perp, along with her own buried trauma.”

—Zakariah Johnson, author of Mink: Skinning Time in Wisconsin

Bad Makes Bad establishes Ilyn Welch as the master of the Dark Cozy. Weaving elements of folk-horror and amateur sleuthing in this brilliant follow-up to Signs of Pain, Welch pushes the boundaries of genre, sending Cherry “Bomb” Orozco and the rest of the Raptor Flats gang into another neighborhood mystery where community and friendship are the ultimate foils to the most sinister schemes.”

Dr. Edward Karshner, Folklorist and Professor of English, Robert Morris University

“Ilyn Welch tangles malevolence and turmoil together creating a fraught novella in Bad Makes Bad. Cherry Orozco must unwind this ruinous knot that strangles the community she cherishes, strand by strand in her own indefatigable way.”

Rob D. Smith, author of Good-Looking Ugly

About the Author

At three months old, Ilyn Welch crossed the USA in a Buick Special with her parents, taking up residence around the aerospace industry in Southern California. A sidewalk encounter with an irate Bob Barker while he taped a segment of The Pillsbury Bake-Off began her love for storytelling, which expanded with the public library and television, two dear friends. Ilyn lives with extended family, dogs, turtles and fish in the shadow of a state park.


Nestled in the foothills of West Virginia, Ron Earl Phillips lives with his wife, a daughter, a German Shepherd, and one too many cats.