I’m delighted to have a visit today from Maria Ferreira, mother of the narrator in the about-to-be-released Chasing the Case by Joan Livingston.
Although we have never met before, I’ve read so much about this feisty nonagenarian that I feel as if I know her already. She plays an important part in Chasing the Case, a novel that was an honour for me to edit. Here’s her letter to her daughter:
You were always such a curious child. If you heard something happened, you wanted to know why. If somebody told you a story, you asked about the missing pieces. I am glad you turned your curiosity into a job, first as a journalist and now as a private investigator.
I laugh when I hear you say you inherited the nosy gene from me. You know how much I love reading and watching mysteries. Now I’m doing what I can to help you with your case. It keeps my 92-year-old mind sharp — that and coming to live with you. I am grateful.
This wasn’t a good year for you — first with Sam dying and then you losing your job running that paper. But now you’ve decided to investigate this case about that woman, Adela Collins, who went missing in this town 28 years ago. For the first time in a while, I see you are not so sad. You are that interested and interesting girl I raised.
No one told you to investigate this case. You did tell me it was the first big story you had when you were a rookie reporter. But you also knew the woman. She worked at her family’s store, the only one here in Conwell. This town is so tiny with only a thousand people. How does something like this happen? I am curious, too.
But bad things can happen even where you think you’re safe. Take your little cousin, Patsy. We still don’t know who stole and killed her even after all these years. The family was never the same. Perhaps some day you will solve that mystery.
I hope you are able to bring some peace to Adela’s family. I’m proud I’m your mother and partner in crime.
P.S. I like your boss, Jack, at the bar you work. I heard he’s available. You’re too young to be single again. He’s a pretty nice guy. What are you waiting for?
About Chasing the Case
How does a woman disappear in a town of a thousand people? That’s a 28-year-old mystery Isabel Long wants to solve.
Isabel has the time to investigate. She just lost her husband and her job as a managing editor of a newspaper. (Yes, it’s been a bad year.) And she’s got a Watson — her 92-year-old mother who lives with her.
To help her case, Isabel takes a job at the local watering hole, so she can get up close and personal with those connected to the mystery.
As a journalist, Isabel never lost a story she chased. Now, as an amateur P.I., she’s not about to lose this case either.
Chasing the Case can be pre-ordered now on Amazon.
About Joan Livingston
Joan Livingston grew up on the coast of New England, where her grandparents arrived from the Azores and Madeira islands. While raising six children, she began writing in earnest when she worked as a reporter covering the rural hilltowns of Western Massachusetts. It was the start of a 30-year career as an award-winning journalist, an experience she says has paid off with realistic characters and dialogue in the fiction she creates for adult and young readers. After over a decade living in Taos, New Mexico, Joan and her husband recently returned to Western Massachusetts, which is the setting for most of her adult fiction, including her first mystery, Chasing the Case. She blogs about whatever interests her at www.joanlivingston.net.