Summer 2020

The mystery of a wine connoisseur's death was born at the feet of a twelve foot white marble statue among poisonous yew shrubs in New London, CT. My nearly 20 years experience as a landscape garden designer & project manager brought me to Connecticut where I volunteered to tend a city garden for a day with my friend who was a member of the New London Beautification Committee. Here I was struck with the inspiration I had been looking for... the perfect place to start a murder-mystery story!    (please see my author and research notes below.) 

Book Trailer Video

Roses, Wine & Murder - In the City of Steeples, is a story with high contrast between the peaceful wine regions by Long Island Sound, and New London, CT. A tightly mottled city of grand architecture. The City of Steeples includes New London's labyrinth streets and it's unique history dating back hundreds of years. 
   In this modern-day mystery, a villain creates mayhem in the city managing to put everyone on edge. Will it discourage the summer tourists? The Tall-Ships event? Will it interrupt the Presidential visit to the Coast Guard Academy's graduation ceremonies?
   Detective Morrison is juggling multiple suspects, including the escapades of Roxanne, an expert gardener, and her friend Georgi, a flamboyant wine aficionado. Their comical antics are endearing for us but unnerving for the Detective's investigation. Fire Chief Samson and Dr. Angela Storm, professionally assist as the case confounds them and the body count mounts.
With humor and intrigue, Roses, Wine & Murder will keep you entertained! Enjoy!🌹

My next mystery in the series is in progress:
Love of Art & Murder - From Mystic to the City of Steeples

Check out my Mystery Fan Newsletter where I will keep you up to date on Book 2 with fun tidbits, research, and hopeful release date.

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Roses, Wine & Murder!

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Author Notes: When I was young, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's, Sherlock Holmes fascinated me with his analytical methods utilizing intricate details to solve the crime before anyone else! I then enjoyed being scared by the intrigue of Alfred Hitchcock's, The Birds, Rear Window, and Psycho.

On the PBS television program 'Masterpiece Mystery', I loved watching Agatha Christie's character's Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot. They captured me with their uniquely eccentric personalities and wonderful ways of deduction.

Ye Antientist Burial Ground, New London, CT

A good murder-mystery novel is a thrilling puzzle, a maze for the mind to wander and ask, What is going on? Add in unusual character antics and the drama comes alive! That is why as a reader, it's fun to try and solve a murder from the comfort of a soft chair.

Dan Brown is one of my favorite writers. He adds the dimension of history, architecture, and a strong sense of place, often as we race along a blood-stained trail. It all draws us deep into the story. He knows how to hit the I can't put it down sweet-spot for me. I am inspired and only aspire to the level of his craft.

Research Notes: My love of nature, photography, and writing, allowed me to visit many locations I may not have wandered into. A wonderful surprise was the manicured beauty of the vineyards. As I photographed scenes, to capture the ambiance of my story, I saw families picnicking and enjoying an afternoon snack. The parents shared a bottle of wine and the children sipped on lemonade and chased butterflies.
Working on the book trailer video with Jojo.

  Every vineyard I visited exhibited a partnership with nature. Hardworking men and women who turn a grape-growing, farming business, into a beautiful elite adventure for their visitors. The result, a  stunning vineyard landscape where the fruit is lovingly cared for and placed in a bottle, to become wine.

It was so much fun to insert the wine knowledge and food-pairings I learned from the experts into Georgi's character. And the world of poisonous plants into Roxanne's research and her/my background in gardening. It all made the story more interesting for the reader and helped us learn more about the villain, too.
Thank you for taking the time to visit and I hope you enjoy reading my story!
Vineyard in the North Fork of Long Island, NY

P.S. For writers: Three to five drafts are never enough. You must read your work and put it down. Let it percolate a day, a week, or more. Do more research. Go looking for your inspirations. Away from your work, you will have a new thought, dialogue, or action to add. When you read it fresh, you will improve it. This cycle will be repeated too many times to count! You will move your chapters around to enhance the story. Don't worry that's normal.
In the end, you must have an editor. You will never see every mistake even if you are a perfectionist. Be easy on yourself.

Please visit my Facebook Author Page where I have more photos of locations that inspired the story and the activities I embrace as a writer and researcher for my next novel. 

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