July 16, 2014

Cozy Mystery Author P.J. MacLayne and Her Book The Marquesa's Necklace; An 'Oak Grove Mysteries Novel'

Thanks Clare, for giving me the change to appear on your blog.

When I started writing what turned into The Marquesa's Necklace, I thought I was going to write a romance novel. In fact, the working title was “The Ghost Who Loved Me.”  But as I got to know my main character, Harmony, it quickly turned into something else. Much to my surprise, I found I was writing a cozy mystery, and having fun doing it.

In fact, it takes Harmony a while to figure out that she's in the middle of an unsolved puzzle. But she tackles it with a passion, despite her preference for routine. Which is a good thing, because her life just might depend upon finding the answer to questions she doesn't even know to ask.

And that title I didn't use? I still love it. I may just write the book that deserves to have it.


“Harmony,” he said tentatively.

“Detective Thomason,” He might be trying to be friendly, but I still hadn’t forgiven him for arresting me.

He cleared his throat, and set the file back on his desk. “Did you let anyone borrow your car today?” he asked.

“No, my keys are right here.” I started digging through the contents of my purse.

“I’ll take your word for it,” he said, after I pulled out my checkbook, a packet of pink tissues, and a paperback with an almost-naked man on the front cover and piled them on the corner of his desk.  His mouth twitched. “Have you made any new enemies recently, Miss Duprie?” I guess he got my message about the terms of our relationship.

“Besides a certain insufferable cop?” Even in the artificial fluorescent light, I saw the red rising in his cheeks. I could almost hear him counting to ten as I pretended to consider the question. “I think Larry, the florist, is ticked off that I’m not receiving flowers anymore. And Bart at the grocery store yelled at me last week when I went through the ten items or less line with fourteen items. But what does that have to do with someone stealing and wrecking my car?”

He took a deep breath, held it for a moment, and exhaled. “Bear with me a moment. Did you go anywhere today?”

I couldn’t figure out where this line of questioning was going, but I answered anyway. “No, I woke up with a killer headache, realized it was going to rain, and decided to stay home and work.”

“And when was the last time you saw your car?”

“This morning. I planned to go to the library, but it started to storm as I was leaving. Why?”

He swiveled his chair so he was facing away from me. I fidgeted in my suddenly uncomfortable seat and waited. He turned back around and leaned forward with his forearms on his desk. 

“Your headache may have saved your life. We’ve asked for help from the state police to verify our theory, but our preliminary investigation and accounts from a few eyewitnesses indicate your car exploded.” Sitting back and rubbing his forehead, he added. “A tall man in a brown suit was seen in the vicinity.”

I sputtered. “What do you mean my car exploded?”

“In a fireball. Burnt to a crisp. If you had been in the vehicle, you’d be dead.”

The Marquesa's Necklace is available at major retailers





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1 comment:

  1. Since her old car was blown up, whoever did it may have done her a favor because she's bought a beautiful Jaguar as a replacement.


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