Charlie Lovett is a writer, teacher, and playwright whose plays for children have been seen in over 3000 productions worldwide. He served for more than a decade as Writer-in-Residence at Summit School in Winston-Salem, NC. He is the author of The Bookman’s Tale, First Impressions, and The Further Adventures of Ebenezer Scrooge. Imbued with reverence and mythical storytelling, The Lost Book of the Grail is a mystery of the kind that’s wildly popular in the entertainment world, yet deeply ruminates on timeless themes like faith, perceived truth, and how the past has informed the present day.
Shannon Baker is author of the Kate Fox Mystery series, including Stripped Bare, and Dark Signal. Set in rural Nebraska cattle country, according to Suspense Magazine, Stripped Bare “is a terrific, fast-moving story with a savvy main character at the helm. Kate Fox is a detective that has made her mark and will (hopefully) stick around for many more books to come. Now a resident of Tucson, Baker spent 20 years in the Nebraska Sandhills, where cattle outnumber people by more than 50:1.
Charlie and Shannon will discuss how the past inevitably shapes the present in mysteries and suspense novels.
This book appealed to me for several reasons. I am a mystery fan, enjoy books about lost or stolen artifacts/relics, and who doesn’t enjoy Arthurian legends – especially the search for the Holy Grail? The author has borrowed Anthony Trollope’s imaginary setting of Barsetshire, how I wished it was real. The story has three time lines, 560 – 1888, 1941, and present day. Switching back and forth builds the tension as you follow a long line of monks who pass along their Guardianship of two very special items. Will the protagonist Arthur and his cohorts discover all the hidden clues and discover the treasure? Or, having interpreted the clues, discover the treasure been lost in time? —Christine
Reeling from her recent divorce, Kate Fox has just been sworn in as Grand County, Nebraska Sheriff when tragedy strikes. A railroad accident has left engineer Chad Mills dead, his conductor Bobby Jenkins in shock. Kate soon realizes that the accident was likely murder.
Who would want to kill Chad Mills? Kate finds that he made a few enemies as president of the railroad workers union. Meanwhile his widow is behaving oddly. And why was his neighbor Josh Stevens at the Mills house on the night of the accident?
While her loud and meddling family conspires to help Kate past her divorce, State Patrol Officer Trey closes in on Josh Stevens as the suspect. Kate doesn't believe it. She may not have the experience, but she's lived in the Sandhills her whole life, and knows the land and the people. Something doesn't add up--and Kate must find the real killer before he can strike again.
Book lover and Austen enthusiast Sophie Collingwood has recently taken a job at an antiquarian bookshop in London when two different customers request a copy of the same obscure book: the second edition of A Little Book of Allegories by Richard Mansfield. Their queries draw Sophie into a mystery that will cast doubt on the true authorship of Pride and Prejudice--and ultimately threaten Sophie's life.
In a dual narrative that alternates between Sophie's quest to uncover the truth--while choosing between two suitors--and a young Jane Austen's touching friendship with the aging cleric Richard Mansfield, Lovett weaves a romantic, suspenseful, and utterly compelling novel about love in all its forms and the joys of a life lived in books.
Kate Fox is living the dream. She's married to Grand County Sheriff Ted Conner, the heir to her beloved Nebraska Sandhills cattle ranch, where they live with Kate's orphaned teenage niece, Carly. With the support of the well-connected Fox Clan, which includes Kate's eight boisterous and interfering siblings, Ted's reelection as Grand County Sheriff is virtually assured. That leaves Kate to the solitude and satisfaction of Frog Creek, her own slice of heaven.
One night Kate answers a shattering phone call from Roxy at the Bar J. Carly's granddad Eldon, owner of the ranch, is dead and Ted has been shot and may never walk again. Kate vows to find the killer. She soon discovers Ted responded so quickly to the scene because he was already at the Bar J . . . in Roxy's bed. And to add to her woes, Carly has gone missing.
Kate finds out that Eldon was considering selling his ranch to an obscenely rich environmentalist. Some in town hate the idea of an outsider buying up land, others are desperate to sell . . . and some might kill to get their way. As she becomes the victim of several "accidents," Kate knows she must find the killer before it's too late. . . .
Nine months after the death of his beloved wife Amanda left him shattered, Peter Byerly, a young antiquarian bookseller, relocates from North Carolina to the English countryside, hoping to outrun his grief and rediscover the joy he once took in collecting and restoring rare books. But upon opening an eighteenth-century study of Shakespeare forgeries, he discovers a Victorian watercolor of a woman who bears an uncanny resemblance to Amanda.
Peter becomes obsessed with learning the picture's origins and braves a host of dangers to follow a trail of clues back across the centuries--all the way to Shakespeare's time and a priceless literary artifact that could prove, once and for all, the truth about the Bard's real identity.