My name is Rory McCain. I was a sketch artist for the Suffolk County Police Department here on Long Island until I solved two murders on my own, one being my uncle Mac’s. It was then that I decided to continue his work as a private investigator. My life hasn’t been the same since, courtesy of one Ezekiel Drummond, the deceased federal marshal whom I inherited from my uncle along with his restored, Victorian home. Living with a ghost who’s also my business partner, leads to some pretty unpredictable days. When you add my zany aunt Helene, Hobo, the shaggy mutt I adopted when his owner was murdered, and Eloise, an elderly neighbor who developed psychic abilities as a result of a stroke, you have the makings for all sorts of mayhem on any given day.
For example, today started out as it might have in any normal household. I dragged myself out of bed, made coffee and let Hobo outside to take care of doggy matters. And right then and there the normal part of my day came to a screeching halt. First Zeke popped in to remind me that I’d promised to take him along when I interviewed a witness in one of our current cases. I’d been hoping he’d forget. You’d think that after being dead for over a hundred years maybe his memory wouldn’t be so good — no such luck. It’s not that I mind his company, but I do mind the problems he causes. When his energy is at full capacity he’s able to manifest in such a solid, three dimensional fashion that it’s nearly impossible to distinguish him from a person of flesh and bone. Unless you happen to walk through him, that is. But when he runs out of energy, he loses cohesiveness and pieces of him fizzle away. As you might imagine, most people don’t cope well when they realize they’re in the company of a ghost. I wouldn’t be surprised if Zeke’s responsible for a spike in the patient base of more than a couple of local psychiatrists.
I was still trying to come up with a way to talk him out of accompanying me, when the doorbell rang. Since it was only seven in the morning, I had a fairly good idea who my visitor was. My new, elderly neighbor has little regard for time. She does things when the spirit moves her. Literally. She claims that spirits talk to her. Her son brushes it off as a result of a stroke she suffered. But I know better. All of Eloise’s predictions have come true and she’s given me information she couldn’t possibly have come by in any ordinary way. Today she stopped by to tell me that Zeke and I are bound by more than just our present, odd relationship. I have no idea what to make of that. Questioning her about her prognostications is never useful. She passes on what she’s been told, and as far as I know, holds nothing back. So thanks to Eloise, I now have another mystery rattling around in my head. Eventually I’ll find out what it means, but I don’t have time to dwell on it at the moment. Hobo is at the back door howling to be let in and given his breakfast. As for Zeke — I’ll probably have to keep my promise to take him along and then deal with any collateral damage when it happens. Wish me luck!
** Thanks to the publisher, I have one (1) copy of SKETCH A FALLING STAR to give away. Contest open to residents of the US only. Contest ends March 11. Leave a valid-email address with your comment. The book will be shipped directly from the publisher. **
Meet the author:
Sharon started writing stories as soon as she learned how to put letters together to form words. Her first novel was Ghostfire, which went on to be condensed in Redbook magazine. It was the first paperback original the magazine had ever condensed. Then came The God Children and The Portal. During that period, Redbook also published her first short story, which was subsequently sold to several foreign magazines.
After taking a hiatus from writing to deal with some life challenges, she began the second phase of her career with her paranormal/cozy mystery series “A Portrait of Crime,” for Berkley Prime Crime. Sketch Me If You Can was published in August 2010, To Sketch A Thief in June 2011 and the third book in the series, SKETCH A FALLING STAR, will be released March 6th 2012. So now she’s come full circle, back to her first love — writing, and she’s having a great time telling Rory’s and Zeke’s story. Visit Sharon at www.sharonpape.com
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