The Commonality of My Characters
Thank you, Ginger and Rita (alphabetical listing), for inviting me to guest on your blog.
Some people have asked me why I write cozy mysteries with a female detective embroiled in her family’s life, on top of catching a bunch of criminals. I’m referring to the Alvarez Family Mystery series and The Persephone Cole Vintage Mysteries. The two protagonists, Lee Alvarez and Persephone ‘Percy’ Cole have much in common, even though they are sixty-odd years and three-thousand miles apart.
True, at first glance there are some big differences. Lee and the Alvarez clan live present day in Palo Alto, California. They are beautiful, glittering and privileged. They are not without their problems - who ain’t - but they glitter while facing up to them. In short, Lee wears Versace dresses and Christian Louboutin heels, but still can’t figure out how to please her mother or take a stand with her.
Persephone Cole and her family live in Manhattan, circa 1940, in an East Side walk-up. WWII looms overseas, they are still shaking off the dust of the depression, and Percy, her son, sister, and parents have no trust funds in sight. They may eke by, but make no mistake, they are pure gold. At 5’11”, Percy is a full-figured gal in her off-the-rack and let-out Marlene Dietrich pant suits and man’s fedora. She is an interloper in a man’s world and comfortable being there. One tough gumshoe with a take no prisoners attitude, she still grapples with why her husband dumped her.
What do these two women and their families have in common? They are survivors. And together with their families they share love, a positive attitude, respect, and humor, humor, humor. Humor will get you through anything. It doesn’t make the problems go away, but it sure makes them more bearable.
Speaking of humor, there is rarely anything funnier than relationships between certain family members, especially in my books. The good, the bad, the endearing, the annoying, the in-your-face ‘get out of my face’ times are there, but love, particularly love of family, is present and always my central theme.
Oh, yes, and then there are the murders. After all, these are whodunits. Lee Alvarez sleuths her way through today’s gorgeous Bay Area in her restored classic 1957 Chevy convertible. Shamus Persephone ‘Percy’ Cole hoofs it up and down the streets of New York City on foot, or hops a subway or bus for a nickel. In 1942, a nickel was a nickel, my friends.
Like the rest of us, neither Lee nor Percy takes many steps without their thoughts being wrapped around a family member’s words, actions or needs. They may jump onto roofs chasing the bad guy or pummel him into the ground if he tries to get away, but they are never far from family. That’s part of what makes them caring and complex women. It makes them who they are and who they are is pretty okay. I’m sure many of you can say the same thing about yourselves, even if you don’t carry a Colt Detective Special or World War I German Mauser.
Death Runs in the Family Blurb
Lee Alvarez’ ex-husband, Nick -- a man she divorced with joy in her heart and a gun in her hand – sprints back in her life only to disappear again. She’d love to leave it at that, but could he be responsible for the recent death of her cousin, who keeled over at the finish line of a half-marathon in front of hundreds of spectators? As PI for the family run business, Discretionary Inquiries, Lee follows the clues to Vegas, where she joins forces with Shoshone PI, Flint Tall Trees. Together they uncover a multi-million dollar betting syndicate, a tacky lounge lizard act, and a list of past but very dead runners, plus future ones to off. At the top of the ‘future’ list is the love of her life, Gurn Hanson. Hoping to force the culprits out in the open, Gurn and Lee’s brother, Richard, vow to run San Francisco’s famous Palace to Palace footrace in only a few days. Can Lee keep the two men she loves from hitting the finish line as dead as her cousin? With more at stake than she ever dreamed possible, Lee is in a battle against time to stop the Alvarez Family’s 12K race with death.
This third offering of the Alvarez Family Murder Mystery Series is a finalist for the EPIC Best eBook Mystery 2013. Published by MuseItUp.
Buy page for Death Runs in the Family: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0088HSIYW
Christmas Killings Conundrum Blurb
In late December, 1942, Persephone (Percy) Cole, one of Manhattan's first female PIs, has been hired to find out who killed a Santa Land elf and left the body in the storefront window of a swank 5th Avenue jewelry store. Was it the spoiled heiress whose big buck handbag was found on the scene? Or was it the rat who broke out of the big house to settle a score? Shortly after, the corpse of the Christmas Angel is discovered stuffed in Mrs. Santa's workshop. Will Santa Claus be next? With a penchant for Marlene Dietrich suits, pistachio nuts and fedora hats, this working mother finds diamonds to the left of her, diamonds to the right, and skullduggery aplenty. Armed with her noodle and a WW I German Mauser, Percy is determined to solve these crimes or it just might be the 'kiss off' for Christmas.
Published by Books We Love, click BUY LINK to go directly to the Amazon Page.
- Heather's blog at: http://tinyurl.com/4nensnp