Good morning, Eddie Shoes, Private Investigator here, what can I do for you? Why yes, contacting a P.I. before you buy a house sight unseen is a very smart thing to do. I’d be happy to give you background on Bellingham, Washington, and investigate any neighborhood you’re interested in.
Bellingham is a great location. Our fair city sits in the far, northwest corner of Washington State. Just seventeen miles from the Canadian border and ninety miles north of Seattle.
Are you moving here for work? You are? That’s good. Yes, it is a great place to raise a family. Is your wife starting a new job too? Oh, sorry to hear about the divorce. As a single parent, I think you’ll love the small town feel of Bellingham.
What’s that? Oh, you heard about the murder in December? Yes, it did get into the national news because of the slightly sordid details. But that was also because murders are very unusual in our neck of the woods. We rarely have even one in a single year, so hopefully we’ve reached our quota.
Well, yes, we are in a new year but I wouldn’t let that worry you. Bellingham is a very peaceful town. It’s also very beautiful. We sit right on the edge of Bellingham bay, the views out across the water are spectacular.
I’m sorry, could you repeat the question? Well, yes, I was the P.I. who solved that murder case. Yes, my mother Chava was instrumental in my success. How did you know that? You saw her interview on YouTube? I didn’t even know Chava had her own YouTube channel. Well, you learn something new every day, don’t you? Yes, I will have to check that out. Yes she is a great cook. She’s got cooking videos too? How instructive of her.
You wouldn’t happen to be a professional poker player would you? You are! Just a lucky guess on my part. I take it you know my mother personally?
She recommended me to you? I see. What else did Chava tell you?
She said I was single? Well, that’s true, but I’m not sure how that’s relevant. . .
She said I’d be happy to show you around town? Well, of course if you hire me to investigate a property or a neighborhood, or even look into the business that’s bringing you out here, I’d be happy to drive you around.
Do you have a specific neighborhood in mind?
Chava told you to house hunt on Chakanut drive? She always did have expensive taste. Yes the views are stunning! It’s also the highest priced real estate in the area.
Money is no object? All right then, what else can I tell you about Bellingham? Do you want to know about school districts? Crime rates?
My house? I live over near Bayview Cemetery. Yes, my house is a little small for the two of us, but I don’t think Chava is going to live with me forever.
Have I considered a bigger house? No. I love my little house. Why would I want to move?
Oh you have a house for sale? On Chakanut drive . . . With a gourmet kitchen.
Hey, wait a minute. Is this an April Fools’ joke? Let me guess, Chava is right there with you, listening in on the phone. Chava! I can hear you giggling. Put her on, would you?
Hi, Chava. Very funny. Yes, you got me. Does this also mean you don’t really have your own YouTube Channel? . . . You really do have your own YouTube Channel? I have to get off the phone now, Chava. I think I better see what you’re putting out on the Internet.
What’s that? Nice talking to you too, Mom, I’ll be home for dinner.
One Dead, Two to Go is the first book in the NEW Eddie Shoes mystery series, published by Camel Press, April 2016.
Private Investigator Edwina “Eddie Shoes” Schultz’s most recent job has her parked outside a seedy Bellingham hotel, photographing her quarry as he kisses his mistress goodbye. This is the last anyone will see of the woman. . . alive. Her body is later found dumped in an abandoned building. Eddie’s client, Kendra Hallings, disappears soon after. Eddie hates to be stiffed for her fee, but she has to wonder if Kendra could be in trouble too. Or is she the killer?
Eddie usually balks at matters requiring a gun, but before she knows it, she is knee-deep in dangerous company, spurred on by her card-counting adrenaline-junkie mother who has shown up on her doorstep fresh from the shenanigans that got her kicked out of Vegas. Chava is only sixteen years older than Eddie and sadly lacking in parenting skills. Her unique areas of expertise, however, prove to be helpful in ways Eddie can’t deny, making it hard to stop Chava from tagging along.
Also investigating the homicide is Detective Chance Parker, new to Bellingham’s Major Crimes unit but no stranger to Eddie. Their history as a couple back in Seattle is one more kink in a chain of complications, making Eddie’s case more frustrating and perilous with each tick of the clock.
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Meet the author
Elena Hartwell was born in Bogota, Colombia, while her parents were in the Peace Corps. Her first word was “cuidado.” At the age of nine months, she told two men carrying a heavy table to be careful in their native tongue. She’s been telling people what to do ever since. After almost twenty years in the theater, Elena turned her playwriting skills to novels and the result is her first book “One Dead, Two to Go.” The Eddie Shoes Mystery Series launches April 15, 2016, to be followed by “Two Dead Are Better Than One” and “Three Dead, You’re Out.” For more information on Elena, please visit elenahartwell.com, on Twitter or like her Facebook Page. You may get to see cute pictures of her dog and her horses.
Giveaway: Leave comment below for your chance to win a print copy of One Dead, Two to Go. US entries only, please. The giveaway will end April 22, 2016 at 12 AM EST. Good luck everyone!
All comments are welcomed.