C.M. Albrecht's Weblog

This is how I see it.

Tag: death

“Hail Mary”

At last! My short novel “Hail Mary” is about to be published, probably before the end of June. July  at the latest.

A notable departure from my usual crime/mystery and/or noir fiction, this Hail Mary jpeg 2tragicomedy, “Hail Mary” follows three, well make that four people as they survive a couple of days of confusion, fear, danger, laughter and grief.

Many find it hard to believe that free-spirit Mary and hard-nosed, by-the-book retired cop, Harry “Bulldog” Drummond could be soul mates, but they are. Make that were. After over forty years of fighting and making up, Mary awakes to find the Bulldog dead.

As this happens, their diffident son, Creighton, an accountant goes to work happily expecting the raise his boss, John McClatchy has practically promised. Instead of a raise however, Creighton sees a plum payroll account slip through his fingers and in the ensuing discussion, actually trying to assert himself for once, Cray goes about it in the wrong way and gets himself fired on the spot.

Now, coming home despondent and jobless with a wife and two kids, two mortgages, payments on his wife’s SUV and a lazy dog, Cray learns the news that his father has just died.

Creighton and his wife, Celie, decide to help Mary get through this by bringing her to stay with them until after the funeral.

It turns out that their attentions are not quite enough and Mary gets in touch with a couple of women from their school days. She “borrows” Cray’s car, and the trio go off on what turns out to be one wild ride, not just on the ground but in the air as they get high in more than one way.

After two days of harrowing experiences for the women as well as for a hapless Creighton, Mary comes back down to earth help Cray and his family get back on track.

The only unhappy participants at the end of this ride are the four hard-ass bikers in jail nursing their injuries and regretting ever having messed with those three little old ladies.

That’s just a small part of the goings-on when these three slightly tarnished “Golden Girls” get out and about.

“Hail Mary”

     ISBN — Print:  978-1-61386-369-5 — e-book:  978-1-61386-370-1

Pre-order your copy today from http://writewordsinc.com

Soon available as a Kindle book, Nook etc.

“A study in family dynamics. This is a fine tale with lessons for those who face tragic situations.” — Anne K. Edwards “Murder in Paradise”

“I laughed more in this book than in any I’ve ever read.” — Martha A. Cheves  “The good, the Bad, the Maybe”

 

 

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Rules of Writing

I sent an early crime novel to a publisher who had already published one of my novels, but she rejected it, saying that, in a mystery, the victim is only there to provide a puzzle for the reader. Therefore, I should bump somebody — anybody — off in the first few pages and devote the rest of the novel to the investigation whether it be by police detectives, a private detective, or an amateur sleuth. Carefully following her own advice, she rejected my mystery on the grounds that I didn’t murder anyone until just over a hundred pages into the story.

I felt bad, naturally, but at the same time, something in me rebelled. Over the years I had read a great many detective novels and mysteries, and, although at the moment, I couldn’t offer book and page number, I was pretty certain my publisher’s theory was in error. I was almost certain I had read many crime novels, be it private eye tales or police procedurals,  in which a murder didn’t occur until later in the book.

Okay, I got over it and moved on.  A bit later I  found a new publisher.

But the other day I chanced to pick up a tattered old novel by Ngaio Marsh, arguably one of the true queens of mystery fiction, and decided to read it. In this particular novel, “Tied up in Tinsel”, we don’t stumble across a body until page 242 in a book that has only 286 pages. Wow! Obviously, the editor who rejected my little novel also would have thrown Ms Marsh’s effort into the circular file and in her disgust, she might well have sent Ms Marsh a stern message about the way to write mysteries. Too bad for an editor who had made up her mind about what constitutes a mystery novel. But reading the book and remembering the editor’s remarks, the entire incident poured back into my mind and I got all wound up again.

All this the above is a prelude to my remarks that in novel writing, there are no rules. The very word novel conjures up images of something new and different. Now a mystery novel with no murder might not go over well with readers, starting with editors, but still it is legal. There’s no law that says you have to have a murder. A short story, maybe. Remember “The Purloined Letter” by Mr. Poe.

In “Vanity Fair”, Thackeray talks frankly, to his reader. He knows it’s just a story and he knows the reader knows it’s just a story, so tongue in cheek, he goes ahead and tells it, stepping in from time to time to remind us that, after all, it’s just a story.

Fowles puts himself right into the background of a novel while observing the proceedings and of course, in my favorite mystery novels, the narrator, the detective, tells his story as he remembers it. He’s just a reporter giving us, as Sgt. Friday would say, the facts. He’s not the real author of course, but we can suspend belief and assume that private eye Raymond Chandler is just calling himself Philip Marlowe to avoid being stalked by beautiful women with pearl-handled .25 automatics in their handbags.

In fact, being a very young reader when I began reading Marlowe novels, I was severely traumatized to learn one day that Mr. Chandler was in his sixties, meaning Marlowe was in his sixties. Philip Marlowe kicking butt in his sixties? To me, a kid of sixteen, I couldn’t believe anybody in his sixties was still able to walk, much less kick butt or write about the butts he kicked. And I felt very betrayed, almost the victim of a bad joke. But I was a vapid youth of sixteen. Maybe only fifteen.

Most people today lack the patience to wade through “Moby Dick”, but when it was written, I believe people liked a more leisurely novel, something they could spend hours, even days on. They wanted their money’s worth. Remember, at that time there wasn’t much else in the way of entertainment, at least not in that price range. But today what editor would accept a long tedious novel that stops cold, and before continuing, offers lengthy dissertations on whaling, or any other industry?

If there is anything to be gleaned from this little outburst, it is that as author, you are God. Rules, schmules, it’s your creation and you have the right to say anything you want to. Now if you step too far out of recognized lines, you may never find a publisher, but these days with the Internet and self-publishing opportunities being offered every time you log on, you can still get your stuff published.

Now, I don’t suggest you go too far off the grid if you hope to find a traditional publisher who is willing to take a chance on your work, but I do feel that, as the writer, you still have the right so say what you want to.

I should mention that what makes books  like Moby Dick, Sherlock Holmes, Don Quixote, etc. isn’t always their construction, but their unforgettable characters. Remember that.

So the takeaway here is to write what you want to. Once you’ve written it, you might want to see how it compares with similar works. If you feel it’s a little outré in some respect or another, you might want to make a few changes. If you like it the way it is, submit it and see what comes out of that. BIG PUBLISHERS probably won’t look at your masterpiece no matter what it is, but there are a great many independent publishers now. Most of them are open to unpublished writers and if all of these reject your stuff, you may want to revisit the entire work and see what’s holding you back. If you do get feedback, by all means, listen to it. Listen to it, but you don’t have to do more than that. It’s up to you. You’re the writer.

In my case, hearing about the rule that the murder should happen on page three or thereabouts, I nevertheless stubbornly felt I was okay with what I had written and time has proven me to be correct, insofar that another publisher accepted Deadly Reception, and I haven’t had any complaints. So you just have to consider what you’ve written and if you firmly believe you’re right, then stick to it. Sooner or later you’ll connect with the right publisher and hopefully you’ll establish a good relationship.

One last thing that may give you solace: If and when you do get some BIG PUBLISHER to publish your book, you’ll have a very short window of opportunity. If sales after a couple of months or so aren’t what the publisher wants, off with your books head (or cover). It’s gone. Buried without any ceremony, and all you’ll have are the few copies sitting your shelf to remind you that you once had a book published. As an added humiliation, if you’re really unlucky, you may stumble across a few copies of your book in Big Lots or a 99c store but let’s hope that doesn’t happen to you.

If you allow them, most of the indies will keep your book on the Internet forever. You may not sell a lot of POD copies because of the cost, but your masterpiece can float around as an E-book on Kindle, Nook and so on forever and who knows? Maybe one day, like Van Gogh, you’ll be DISCOVERED! Hey, if Picasso and Warhol can be “discovered”, anything can happen.

Editor

The Deputy

Critics are already raving about this dark mysterious novel. The Deputy by C. M. Albrecht, coming soon from Write Words, Inc. (Cambridge Books) http://writewordsinc.com
Reserve your copy today.
“I loved The Deputy. This book kept me on edge all the way.” — Martha Cheves “Stir, Laugh, Repeat”.

How not to have control

penI‘m sure most of us like to believe we’re in control of our lives, even though experience tells us we’re mistaken. It’s certainly a comforting thought to know that you’re totally in control of everyday events around you, but of course we know that’s not strictly true.

Best laid plans…etc. We’ve all had the experience of planning say, a picnic only to find it decided to rain that day. I remember one time when I confidently went out and bought an expensive stereo on the time payment plan only to be laid off my job a week later. And so it goes. It’s pretty disappointing to finally realize and admit that we don’t really have much, if any, real control over our lives.

But when it comes to writing, ahhhh. When you’re writing, you’re God are you not? You’re completely in charge. You dream up a plot or situation and start creating characters to act out their given parts and you have the option of changing any and everything you want to. Right?

Well…maybe. Maybe usually, but here too there can be exceptions.

I know some writers make detailed notes and outlines when they write, others less so and some just sit down and start writing. In my own case, I normally don’t do much if any outlining on the computer. Being primarily a mystery writer, I usually begin dreaming up a plot and creating at least some of the characters in my head and before I actually begin writing, I usually know the ending. I know who the baddie is and how to expose a murderer. But nearly all of this is bumbling around in my mind.  Once I begin in earnest I usually make a list of the characters as they come along so I can remember their names and anything else of importance about them, but that’s about all. I’m not saying it’s the best way and it’s certainly not the only way, but alas, it’s my way and I’m too old to learn new tricks. After all, I can barely use a cell phone and consistently hold the TV remote backwards. If it was a gun I’d be dead right now.

All this preamble brings me to the point of this.

After a number of stillborn attempts and misbegotten ideas I finally began to put together a plot for (hopefully) my next epic opus. It came to me complete with a title: “The Morgenstern Murders”.

I had this Morgenstern. He was one of those investment banker birds who made a killing in the big bust and quietly retired to a luxurious compound overlooking the lovely Pacific Ocean in sunny California. Naturally, because of the many people whose fortunes and sometimes, lives, were ruined due to his shenanigans, he had accrued a pile of enemies as big as his fortune.

Before long I was actually writing. Started off well. I was fully in charge. But then, about a week or so into this work, something unexpected happened.

That jerk Morgenstern didn’t want to be an unscrupulous investment banker. He wanted to play doctor. Doctor?!

Slipping completely out of my control this guy had decided to be a doctor instead of an investment banker. That meant I had to go back and add “Dr.” every time I mentioned his name. Luckily, on the computer that isn’t so difficult. And he didn’t like to be such a lowlife either. Enemies? Sure. As a doctor, he had opened several abortion clinics in the bay area and found his clinics plagued by protesters who marched daily around displaying placards. They even located his compound and began marching outside in front of his home.

Okay. I didn’t ask for that and didn’t expect it. I honestly don’t know where that came from, but there it is. Even my fictional characters come out and mess up my plans.

Now let me say right here that this isn’t a moral story. I couldn’t dream of writing a scathing philippic against abortionists, and I certainly can’t blame those who are against it. I write mysteries and don’t want anyone to think I’m trying to make a statement. Blame Dr. Morgenstern if you want to blame somebody. I don’t know how or why he decided to become a doctor and set up abortion clinics.  I certainly don‎’t have the expertise to speak for or against abortions. I’m not writing to make any judgments, and I’m not here to defend those who don’t believe in abortion and I can’t judge the doctors who perform this service. Being a male, I’ve never had occasion to consider having an abortion. Fortunately too, the possibility has never come up in my extended family. Everybody related to me already has plenty of kids and more on the way. I suppose one thing in favor of abortions would be the savings in birthday presents, but I kind of enjoy all those little birthday parties even when the cake is on the heavy side.  On the one hand, I wouldn’t advise anyone to have an abortion, but on the other hand, it’s certainly not up to the likes of me to tell women I don’t even know how they should live their lives.

I hope to get this book finished before the end of the year, and God willing, it will be available early next year and I’ll be done with the late Dr. Morgenstern. Yes, despite his change of career, he still gets whacked. (Call it fate, Kismet, destiny.) And although he isn’t really a bad guy, I’m just not that emotionally involved with him to be upset at reading of his demise.

So the takeaway here is that we’re not only not in control of our lives, but evidently we aren’t always in control of our fiction either, but I guess that isn’t all bad. Makes the whole journey more interesting and sometimes even fun.

Marta’s Place

A brief plug for my noir novel, Marta’s Place. Check it out!

A Section of River Road

Here’s a short excerpt from River Road:

Homicide Detective Hugh Rafferty stood in the center
of the kitchen holding Fido, his hefty black cat in his arms.
In dismay his sharp eyes roved over the disaster that
surrounded him.
A huge dark brown stain matted the filthy linoleum floor,
Cabinet doors sagged open, some broken, as was the
kitchen window. The oven door hung sideways and the
kitchen fanlight was hanging by one electric wire. Rafferty
wrinkled his nose at the familiar smell that permeated the
room.
Fido struggled to get down, but Rafferty held him fast.
“No no, Fido. You know you can’t be wandering around
crime scenes. Jesus…”
Jeff Malone, a husky man in his early forties stood in tshirt
and jeans holding a clipboard in one hand and a digital
camera in the other.
“Yeah Raf. Crime scene is right. This is about as bad as
it gets. The bastards that did this—” He broke off and
sucked in his breath. “I mean…this is sick, man.”
“I hear you,” Raf agreed. “Just when you think you’ve
seen it all.”
His eyes continued to rove about the kitchen. Cracked
tiles sullied the counters. Litter cluttered the counters and
the floor.
“But hey,” Raf went on, “look at the bright side, Jeff.
Somebody did us a favor. When we bring this puppy back
to life, she’ll be worth three hundred grand. Maybe a little
bit more.”
“Well, we’ve got our work cut out for us, Raf. But—you
know, only giving me a forty thousand dollar budget to
work with—this isn’t going to as easy as the last flip.
Besides, if you ask me, this was a poor time to be trying to
flip a house. This’s not like a couple of years ago.”
“You said that the last time, Jeff. In fact you always say
that. But somehow you always come through for me. And
we won’t be greedy. If we offer a good value, the right price,
somebody will buy. I —” He broke off to answer his ringing
cell phone. Still holding Fido firmly in his grasp, he fished
the phone from his side pocket. “Yeah. Yeah. Where? Jesus.
Yeah. Okay, I’m on my way.” He shoved the phone back
into his pocket.
Jeff stood patiently looking at his employer.
“Looks like my city needs me, Jeff. Crime never takes a
holiday. Well, you’ve got enough to start on. I’ll touch down
with you later.”
As Raf headed for the door, Jeff nodded and looked at
his clipboard. Raf turned suddenly back.
“Well, come on man. We’ve only got four weeks to flip
this puppy.” He looked down into Fido’s yellow eyes.
“Come on, Partner. We’ve got us a homicide to investigate.”
“Yeh,” Jeff came back, “and you need a new hat.”
Raf pulled off his ragged and stained straw hat to reveal
a thick mass of uncombed red hair. He looked fondly at the hat.
“Hey, I’m sensitive about this hat. This is my lucky hat. I
wouldn’t trade it for two new ones.” He slapped the hat
back onto his head. “Now get busy.”
***
Raf pulled his Ford off onto the right embankment of
River Road, opposite the small army of other vehicles,
including two television vans.
Raf sighed and grabbed Fido up in his arms. “Come on
big boy. We’ve got work to do.”
The day was warm but hazy and the tree line that edged
down toward the river looked slightly fuzzy. Carrying Fido
in his arms, Raf crossed the roadway.
A uniformed officer snapped his notebook shut as Raf
approached.
“Looks like you and your partner there have
another nasty one on your hands, Raf.”
“Gee, thanks, Jason. Just what I needed. “You know Fido
can’t stand the sight of blood.”
Jason laughed. “Sorry about that. Tell him to look the
other way. Here’s the deal: The girl was apparently riding
her bicycle in the rain along the road here.” He waved out
toward the roadway, dry now on this warm day. “Evidently
her bike was struck from behind by a vehicle, throwing
her off. But her body turned up down below there, under
a tree.” He waved his arm downward in the direction of
the river. “We don’t think the force of the blow threw her that
far, not by a long shot. Somebody got her down there one way or
another and smashed her head in with a rock.”
Raf’s face sobered. He set Fido on the ground and pushed
back his straw porkpie hat, allowing his tumbled red hair
to fly out. “Sexual assault?”
“Medical Examiner thinks so. Her shorts and panties are lying
by the body.”
“Oh boy…well, come on, Fido.”
Closely followed by Fido, Raf struggled to maintain his
balance as he slip-slid down through the wet grass and
gravel to the huddled corpse.

And we haven’t yet met Lucretia St. James, the medium.

River Road from http://www.writewordsinc.com and most sites.

The Sand Bluff Murders

It’s coming soon! The Sand Bluff Murders.

Cover by Shelley Rodgerson

When Jonas McCleary gets the opportunity to join the force in sleepy Sand Bluff, he jumps at it. A cushy job in a little town where nothing ever happens. He can relax and enjoy life, and since Jonas is getting onto thirty, he’s hoping with a little luck, to meet Miss Right.

But on his third day in Sand Bluff, another officer, Ackers, finds a body in an alley.

Now the only bright thing about Harold Ackers is his badge. Ackers thought the guy was drunk and only after he managed to get him to headquarters did someone inform Ackers that his drunk was dead. Albert Mohr, cocky and mouthy, isn’t much better, and probably not much brighter, so Chief Raymond Castillo is depending on Jonas, his only real cop with any previous training, to solve this mystery and bring a killer to justice.

Jonas just wishes he had the confidence his chief places in him. But he’s going to give it his best shot.

As he goes around town talking to people, he meets some strange residents, especially little person, Lester/Jessica, trailer court operator and dog trainer. Lester/Jessica is also a transvestite with a mammoth bodybuilder boyfriend, and of course, there’s Larry Peters, the town insurance agent and his wife, town hussy, Twyla. Twyla’s got quite a reputation.

Jonas also meets Roxie Jenkins whose father runs the local newspaper. Could she just be Miss Right? Stay tuned!

As Jonas digs around in Sand Bluff’s dirt he learns about the horse ranch, Oak Park, and the accident. He learns too that Jessica’s father murdered Jessica’s mother twenty years ago, did his time and now works out at the ranch. Lot of bad blood there.

And then there’s Twyla. She’s hot and boy, does she know it! There isn’t a male in town that hasn’t had Twyla flirt and tease at him, including Jessica’s boyfriend, Terrence. No man is immune. For Twyla, it’s all funny. Lots of laughs. A real ego builder. Boy, would we love to read her diary!

But Sand Bluff never expected Twyla to be found lying in a pool of blood. Or did it?

What happened? Did she drive someone to murder? Any man in town might have lost it if Twyla led him on and then laughed in his face. Or how about the town’s womenfolk? Women don’t take kindly to other women flirting with their menfolk. Of course Twyla’s husband Larry is a prime suspect. She really knew how to torture him. Turns out she was pregnant too, and Larry’s sterile.

Now with two murders on his hands and no apparent connection, Jonas is wandering around in circles. As he plods along, his quest leads him out to Oak Park, the horse ranch, back to town to the Blu Lite Lounge and soon he begins to tie loose ends together as he comes closer and closer to bringing these murders to a solution. But before he can do that, there may be still more murders and surprises to come in “The Sand Bluff Murders”.

Coming soon from http://www.writewordsinc.com, print edition from Cambridge Books. Don’t delay! Pre-order your copy today.
http://www.writewordsinc.com, America’s most recommended website. Clinically proven to be more effective than other sites and doctor recommended two to one.

Deadly Delicious Meat Sauce

Chef Merle Blanc’s signature meat sauce for spaghetti, etc.

(This is the sauce he prepares for visiting Italian dignitaries)

You need two pots, one at least 3 quarts, the other about 2 quarts.

For the larger pot (or large frying pan)

Add:

1 lb. ground beef

¼ lb. pork sausage (or Italian sausage, or a slab of salt pork, removed before serving. If you don’t eat pork, just omit it. The chef won’t mind and neither will your guests)

About ¾ cup of each, chopped in ¼ in. squares:

Onion

Celery

Green Pepper

1 Small Zucchini (Optional)

1 can of chopped tomatoes, drained. (Drain the juice into the broth mixture). If using petite cut, add to the meat mixture. If using regular chopped tomatoes, place drained product on a cutting board and chop a little before adding to meat mixture.

½ cup olive oil

All this goes into the larger pot. Cook over medium heat until veggies are tender and meat browned.

Meanwhile, in the smaller pot add:

4 cups broth (This can be beef, chicken, vegetable or, in a pinch: water.)

You can make easy broth using tinned broth or chicken or beef flavoring, usually 1 tsp. per cup of water, and adding:

5 peppercorns (Or goodly sprinkle of ground pepper)

½ cup balsamic vinegar

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp. dry mustard

1 tsp. anis (not star anise)

½ tsp. allspice

½ cup dry basil leaves or more, chopped or ground. If you have fresh basil, use even more. (don’t be afraid to throw in the basil.)

1 tsp. oregano (Be careful not to overdo the oregano).

1 whole head of garlic, cut coarsely.

1 large bay leaf, crumpled.

Bring to a boil and lower heat.

Now, with both mixtures going, simmer the broth gently while browning the meat and vegetables. If you like to cook with wine,  you can drink it now while you wait.

When the meat and vegetables are done, remove from heat and add:

2 small tins of tomato paste.

Nest, strain the hot broth into the mixture and gently stir, letting the sauce simmer for twenty minutes.  (A great time for a second glass, but don’t walk off and forget what you’re doing.)

When Chef Blanc prepares this, everything of course comes out perfect the first time. But if your sauce (or gravy as the Italians call it) comes out a bit thin, you can add a small can of tomato sauce or a little more tomato paste. If too thick for your taste, add a bit more broth.  At this point, if needed, add additional sugar.  Better to leave the salt and pepper for the table. Yield about 2 quarts of delicious.

Spoon over drained spaghetti or other pasta and top with freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese. Serve with fresh bread and a green salad with oil and vinegar dressing. Your guests will love you and I will too.

When Chef Blanc creates this sauce he says, « Impeccable ! »  When he serves it, even though he is fiercely French, Chef Blanc always says, “Buon appetito !”

The Sand Bluff Murders

“Human nature is much the same in a village as anywhere else, only one has opportunities and leisure for seeing it at closer quarters.” — Jane Marple

I wanted my tenth mystery novel, “The Sand Bluff Murders” to take place in a small town. I usually set my stories in cities where they have an adequate police force, forensic experts, labs, etc. but the tale was a long time coming. I began to sketch it out in my mind and made a few notes on the computer, but before I got very far I came to a dead end.

Nice setup, I thought, but now what?

That ‘now what’ sank into murky depths of my subconscious and wallowed there for nearly a year. Several times I almost deleted what little I had saved in the computer. Can’t waste those kilobytes or whatever they are. I thought I’d do better to start all over.

But after all those months, a funny thing happened. Some of the characters began to talk to me. They were coming alive and despite my lack of enthusiasm, their voices grew more and more persistent. They were saying, “Hey, what’s the holdup, soldier? Sand Bluff’s just a little town. We can’t run around here killing people forever.” I realized then that I wasn’t going to get any peace until I let them get back to their grisly work.

There’s the transvestite ‘little person’, Jessica, who with his/her giant boyfriend, Terrence, runs a small trailer court and trains dogs. Terrence would do anything for Jessica. Anything? Anything!

There’s Larry Peters, insurance broker, über jealous (and with good reason). Every male in town would love to get his paws on Larry’s hot little wife, Twyla. The rumors are rampant. Boy, would we like to read her diary!

Pop Jenkins prints the weekly Sand Bluff Banner. The paper may not be special, but Pop’s daughter, Roxie, sure is. In fact she may just be Miss Right. But she does have that kid. Maybe he’d be all right if he could just stop talking Yodaspeak.

When Chief Raymond Castillo hires new cop, Jonas McCleary, Jonas feels very lucky indeed. He has just landed an easy job in a quiet little town where nothing ever happens. Maybe he can settle down in Sand Bluff and with any luck, he may just find Miss Right. After all he’s almost thirty.

But on McCleary’s third day in Sand Bluff, Officer Harold Ackers stumbles over a corpse in the alley behind the Blu Lite Lounge. To give you an idea of the caliber of Sand Bluff’s police department, Officer Ackers didn’t realize the man was dead. He thought the man was dead drunk. He manhandled him into his patrol car and took him to headquarters where somebody noticed blood stains on Acker’s uniform and bullet holes in the back of the man’s head. When Jonas is sent to investigate he learns the town doesn’t even have yellow tape to secure the crime scene. What crime scene? It’s already hopelessly compromised.

Less than a week later, while Jonas is still clueless and still without any yellow tape, the infamous Twyla Peters is found lying in a pool of blood. No panties. Rape? Maybe, but if rape was involved — according to town gossip  — Twyla would have been the rapist. Anybody in town may have wanted to see her dead. And it turns out she was pregnant. Luckily Larry Peters didn’t know that, or did he? What he does know is that he’s sterile. Larry makes a pretty good suspect. But what does that have, if anything, to do with the body in the alley?

And then a body turns up in the Sacramento River.

That’s when gossip, rumors, coincidences, lies, confusion and false leads give Jonas a murky idea of which path to follow, but does he really want to go down that path? It’s a path that leads into some dark corners, out to horse ranch Oak Park, back to the Blu Lite Lounge and finally, to that final destination at the end of the trail, Weaver’s Funeral Home.

Sand Bluff may be a sleepy village, but even sleepy villages can have their crime waves.

“The Sand Bluff Murders” coming soon from www.writewordsinc.com (Cambridge Books) Make an author’s day. Order an advance copy now! I will love you and my publisher will love you too.

“Reading this tale will be like having Jonas sitting in an easy chair across from you and telling you what happened.” — Anne K. Edwards

Author Jay D.

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