A Sketch in Crime Mystery, #2
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Date of Publication: February 8, 2016
Number of pages: 336
Cover Artist: Bill Bruning/Deborah Wolf Ltd.
CeCe Prentice returns with her band of Dumpster-diving pals in this fast-paced mystery that puts the eco-friendly heroine back on top--of a pile of trash.Guest Post:
When Big Bob, manager of the town dump, goes missing, CeCe is worried about more than where she'll score her next salvaged car. First at the scene when Bob's body is recovered from under the weekly recycling haul, CeCe is quick to identify potential witnesses and provide crucial scene sketches. But when CeCe is uncharacteristically startled by an unidentified woman at Bob's abandoned house, her artistic talents are challenged, and her drawings, much to her frustration, come up short.
With CeCe's observational talents on the fritz, Detective Frank DeRosa, CeCe, and her network of Freegans are forced to recreate Big Bob's life from the garbage up. The team is soon thrust into the underworld of recycling where what appears to be junk could actually be the clue that saves a life.
All in the Family
I’m convinced my family and friends only read my books to see if I’ve incorporated their name, personality or recognizable quirks into my characters. Of course, they’d be correct in this assumption. I can’t help but include my family within my literary world. I love them all, and I can’t escape the impact my inner-circle has had on my perception.
I do this because my memories often drive the details in my books. Not big memories, but the little thoughts that wind their way through my subconscious - like remembering the feel of the first day of school with my mother by my side. For the record, it was sunny and I was over the moon with excitement.
Every now and then, I go overboard as my recollections snowball into intricate characters, some with less than honest intentions. In my most recent book, Drawing Blood, the manager of the local recycling center, Bob Rooney, is killed in a horrendous crime. It just so happens that I have an uncle by the same name and he was, indeed, the inspiration for this particular character. It all started with my uncle’s laugh; a low-bellied chuckle I’ve enjoyed for over forty years. It’s the kind of laugh that rumbles up and then reverberates like a tuning fork. I stole this laugh from my uncle along with his name, then created a lovable character who, unlike my uncle, is grossly overweight. I cleared the weight issue with Bob before the book went to print and he seemed amenable to using his name, although I’m afraid he’s now on an unnecessary diet.
Except for my husband, who insists on remaining on the literary sideline, I’m worried the rest of family will want their own personalized protagonist! Here’s hoping the Sketch in Crime Mystery series lives on for years. I’ve certainly got enough material to create a character for each of my friends and family, but new friends beware – you may be inspiring me in mysterious ways.
Deirdre Verne (Lower Westchester, NY) is a mystery writer, college professor, and an active college blogger. Deirdre’s interest in green living inspired her to create an off-the-grid character who Dumpster dives her way through the “Sketch in Crime” mystery series. Verne’s second book, Drawing Blood, is available in February 2016. “A dysfunctional functional family to die for…[CeCe Prentice’s] second case is every bit as twisty and surprising.”-Kirkus Reviews.
A member of Sisters in Crime, Deirdre’s short stories appear in all three New York chapter anthologies – Murder New York Style, Murder New York Style: Fresh Slices and Family Matters. Visit her online at DeirdreVerne.com.
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