Letter N The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘N’ is for Noelle Granger author of Death on a Red Canvas Chair and Death in a Dacron Sail

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Why do I recommend Death on a Red Canvas Chair and Death in a Dacron Sail?

Death on a Red Canvas Chair is book one of the Rhe Brewster Mysteries. I was drawn into the novel immediately, from scene one when the body is unexpectedly found on the playing fields, and it was a pleasure to read, due to the well-written, vivid, and flowing language. Rhe is an unlikely and loveable heroine. She’s a hard-working nurse, police consultant, loving mother, supportive wife, and good friend. She’s the best friend or neighbour we’d all love to have. Sounds like a boring heroine, well, Rhe is anything but boring! Although she is highly regarded professionally, on a personal level, she struggles with important issues, and there are plenty of exciting moments to keep you on the edge of your seat, in a plot which is carefully woven with plenty of twists and turns!

Our heroine has first-hand knowledge of forensics, so at times, reading is like watching an episode of CSI, but Rhe is also prepared to work outside the lab, and put her life at risk confronting the bad guys, in action-packed scenes.

The second book in the series, Death in a Dacron Sail, is even better. Rhe is all set to solve another complex mystery, yet I was hooked by Rhe’s character and her personal conflicts.

You’ll love them both if you enjoy cosy, yet exciting, crime mystery, with masterful plots and great character development.

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What is Death in a Dacron Sail about, Noelle?

On an icy February morning, Rhe Brewster, an emergency room nurse with a nose for investigation, is called to a dock in the harbor of the small coastal town of Pequod, Maine. A consultant to the Pequod Police Department, Rhe is responding to a discovery by one of the local lobstermen: a finger caught in one of his traps. Thus starts the second book in the Rhe Brewster Mystery series.

The subsequent finding of the body of a young girl, wrapped in a sail and without a finger, sends the investigation into high gear and reveals the existence of three other missing girls of the same age, plus a childhood friend of Rhe’s. Battered by increasingly vitriolic objections from her husband, the pregnant Rhe continues her search, dealing with unexpected obstacles and ultimately facing the challenge of crossing an enormous frozen bog to save herself. Will she survive? Is the kidnapper someone she knows? In Death in a Dacron Sail, Rhe’s nerves and endurance are put to the test as the kidnapper’s action hits closer to home.

Rhe Brewster is a different kind of sleuth – a wife, mother, and emergency room nurse, juggling all of her roles, this time while pregnant. She’s snarky and tends to leap before she looks, which makes for a lot of excitement. While this book is mainly a cozy – set in a defined locale, with no sex and little gore – it should appeal to women from 18-90, mystery readers, and believe it or not, men. I’ve had a number of men read my first book and report they enjoyed it!

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What are you working on now?

Right now, I’m working on my third book in this series, Death by Pumpkin. I promise even more excitement and interesting things. The research for this book has involved cranes, small planes, firearms training and large pumpkins. You’ll have to wait to see how I weave all this together.

I am also doing the groundwork for a book of historical fiction, based on the life of Mary Allerton, the longest surviving Pilgrim who made the trip to the New World on the Mayflower. I’ll be back in my hometown of Plymouth, MA, to do more this summer.

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What would you like readers to know about you?

Rhe and I have a lot of things in common. We both like to sail, work at cooking, and enjoy a lot of day to day interpersonal contacts. This latter took a hit when I retired, but I’ve conquered the solitary activity of writing with blogging, critique groups and interviews for my research. I’d like to think that teaching anatomy for 40 years and earning my EMT license has given me enough knowledge to make Rhe’s career real and to provide a basis for some of the forensics in my books.

Other than that, I am not happy unless I’m in or on the water (swimming and sailing), the beach is my happiest place in the world, pizza is my favorite food, and I love to travel. My husband and I go to Maine in August each year because Maine in August is spectacular. Of course we love lobsters and Maine blueberries, but there is a lot to explore there and I’ve used information garnered there in my books and this year for the A-Z Blog Challenge. We did hit Maine in February last year for more research, and I’m not sure I’ll repeat the adventure. Brrrr….

How can we find out more or contact you?

My blog

My Face book

My Author Facebook

Twitter account: @rhebrewster

Amazon US for Death in a Red Canvas Chair

Amazon UK for Death in a Red Canvas Chair

Amazon US for Death in a Dacron Sail

Amazon UK for Death in a Dacron Sail

Goodreads

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Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

Book Review: Death on a Dacron Sail by Noelle Granger

Death in a Dacron Sail (Rhe Brewster Mysteries Book 2)

Death in a Dacron sail is the type of book I love to read. It’s the second installment of the Rhe Brewster series. Read my review of Death in a Red Canvas Chair, the first in the series, posted a few months ago.

The plot of Death in a Dacron Sail is again tightly woven with plenty of forensic information given by our nurse and amateur sleuth narrator. This time Rhe is helping with an unpleasant crime involving a missing child. There is plenty of fast-paced action and suspense, in spite of the idyllic small town location, and there are many surprises and twists, making it a gripping page turner.

It’s also very well written. The prose flows so smoothly that it is a pleasure to read.

Dacron

However, the very best part of this novel is the characterization. Readers won’t be interested in a good plot and wonderful writing if they can’t engage with the characters. Detective, crime thrillers, and mysteries often run the risk of being plot driven in detriment of character development, but that’s not the case here. On the contrary, the reader will love Rhe, because she is clever, and generous, and caring, but she’s also naïve, sometimes insecure, and others too patient with people who just don’t deserve it! I’ve wanted to tell her to be careful with someone who’s close to her since book one (no name so no spoilers!), and to stand up to her bullying boss! The other characters, both good and bad, are also so real they almost jump out of the page to watch you reading!

I know that now that she’s solved the present mystery, she’ll be involved with another riveting case shortly, but I’m just as interested in finding out how she sorts out her personal predicament, and the direction her personal life will take in book three.

By the way, just in case you were wondering, it can be read as a stand-alone novel, because the cases are independent, and although the main characters are the same, there is enough background information for readers to feel comfortable reading book two alone or first.

Noelle Granger

Noelle Granger

 

Death in a Dacron Sail is N. A. Granger’s second novel.

I asked  Ms. Granger to tell us a little more about Rhe, my favourite police consultant.

My main character, Rhe Brewster, is an Emergency Room nurse, which allows me to bring in medical knowledge, along with a healthy dose of anatomy from her friend, Marsh Adams, the assistant Maine State ME. Rhe is smart, daring, and has what I have called a yen for adrenaline, a not always good mix when she’s in the middle of an investigation.  She tends to leap before looking, which is why she gets herself into challenging situations.  However, she’s intelligent enough to get herself out!  I also wanted to give her a family life, one that many women could relate to: an occasionally prickly relationship with her husband Will (a lot more of that in Death in a Dacron Sail) and a loving relationship with Jack, her son, who is ADHD. MY son is ADHD, and more of that will figure into later books.

I also asked her why she writes crime fiction, and this is what she told me.

I like to write crime fiction because the scientific nature of it fascinates me – brings my background in anatomy and medicine and research together in one package. I also love doing the research for my books. I meet all sorts of people, all of whom have been very open to helping me understand their areas of expertise. I am an extrovert by nature, so this is great for my psyche.

Watch out for N. A. Granger’s  great Blog SaylingAway. 

Check it out on Amazon US or Amazon UK

Review of ‘Death on a Red Canvas Chair’ by Noelle Granger

 

Noelle Granger is one of the wonderful people I’ve met in the last few months in my parallel, virtual blogging universe, and as most important things which happen in life, it was quite by chance.

I had already met a talented writer (again by chance) on Goodreads, Elizabeth Hein, who generously volunteered to beta read my first novel, and whose help was invaluable in the final version, because her wise words convinced me to alter some vital scenes. Elizabeth tagged me onto a blog hop which she in turn had been tagged on by Noelle, so I checked out Noelle’s blog, and was instantly captivated. This was in April, 2014. I remember because they were both taking part in the Blogging from A-Z Challenge, 2014.

One of the irreplaceable things ‘blogging sisters’ (as Noelle calls us) do, is read each others’ work with constructive criticism, and another important activity we take part in is to encourage and support each other on our journey into authorship, which is ultimately a journey of self-expansion and discovery. Elizabeth and Noelle both taught me all about these aspects, implicitly, by their example. They are truly wonderful blogging sisters and inspiring writers, and people.

It is no exaggeration to say that they have changed my life in the last four months, because they have disinterestedly supported me, and drawn me into the wonderful world of blogging and writing, and being supportive with others, because this is a very serious game which must be played forward, too!

After all I have said, you may be inclined to suppose that my review of her novel is biased, well, it isn’t, because I’m making a huge and conscious effort to be impartial, and give an authentic review. I’ve already said I wouldn’t review books I don’t personally enjoy reading, because there may be nothing ‘wrong’ with the book, we all have our tastes in literature, and some stories will not draw me in, which doesn’t mean other readers won’t enjoy reading them. However, if asked, I will tell the author what I think, and why, personally, not publicly.

In order not to be biased, and to make sure I cover all the aspects of the novel I should be dealing with, and to make sure I’m doing it professionally I have written a post called, What do readers need to know: 10-Point Guidelines for Reviewers’. I’m hoping these guidelines will help me, and other reviewers or writers, to cover all aspects of the novel to be reviewed, as impartially as possible.

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DEATH IN

Review of Death on a Red Canvas Chair by Noelle Granger.  5 Stars!

Death on a Red Canvas Chair is an enjoyable murder mystery, including elements of suspense, and featuring the work of forensic experts. I was drawn into the novel immediately, from the startling first scene. It was a pleasure to read, due to the well-written and vivid, flowing language, fast-paced plot, and absorbing characters.

Rhe is an unlikely and loveable heroine. She’s a hard-working nurse, police consultant, loving mother, supportive wife, and good friend. She’s the best friend or neighbor we’d all love to have. Sounds like a boring heroine, well, like the adorable Miss Marple, Rhe is anything but boring! Although she is highly regarded professionally, on a personal level, she struggles with important issues, and there are plenty of exciting moments to keep you on the edge of your seat, in a plot which is carefully woven with plenty of twists and turns!

Our heroine has first-hand knowledge of medical terms, so at times, reading is like watching an episode of CSI, but she’s also prepared to work outside the lab, and put her life at risk confronting the bad guys, in action-packed scenes.

Although the crime is finally solved, we have become so involved with Rhe and her world, that we are anxious to discover what happens to other aspects of her personal life, and are thus drawn into impatient expectation for the following book in which she will (hopefully) unravel another mystery.

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Extra-short, eye-catching review!

If you love well-written and well-woven crime mysteries, with action, drama, and engaging and unexpected leading characters, you’ll enjoy reading Death on a Red Canvas Chair! It’s a great summer read, written by an author who knows her craft.

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Seriously, read the first pages, and you’ll be hooked!

PPS. I forgot to tell you that I love well-plotted, murder mysteries. They are such a satisfying and exciting way to spend precious reading time… I’ll be expanding on my reasons in another post!