Lila Maclean here. Nice to meet you.
It’s my second semester at Stonedale University, and though I’m still learning my way around, at least I’ve managed to confirm one of my suspicions: a professor’s work is never done. You finish teaching, there are office hours and meetings. You grade one stack of papers and another rolls in. You complete some research, and more awaits. And so on. It’s enough to make you question why you thought spending that all money on the degrees required to apply for the job was worth it in the first place. But I digress.
The point is, most of my time is already accounted for, so when my department chair urged me to join the Arts Week Committee, I hesitated. He convinced me by pointing out that it was one of the chancellor’s favorite projects and that participating might generate some goodwill. Since the chancellor is already unhappy with my involvement in the unfortunate events of last fall (the less said about that, the better), it sounded like a wise idea. Yet it may turn out to be a questionable decision.
By which I mean that the chancellor has just sent me to bring back a lively and informative interview featuring the world’s crankiest author, Damon Von Tussel, who is supposed to headline our Arts Week festivities. It’s a difficult mission, given Damon’s famous resistance to doing anything requested of him by another human, but the chancellor made it very clear that failure was not an option. Trouble is, Damon’s disappeared. . .
You can read more about Lila in The Art of Vanishing, the second book in the “Lila Maclean Academic” mystery series.
When Professor Lila Maclean is sent to interview celebrated author and notorious cad Damon Von Tussel, he disappears before her very eyes. The English department is thrown into chaos by the news, as Damon is supposed to headline Stonedale University’s upcoming Arts Week.
The chancellor makes it clear that he expects Lila to locate the writer and set events back on track immediately. But someone appears to have a different plan: strange warnings are received, valuable items go missing, and a series of dangerous incidents threaten the lives of Stonedale’s guests. After her beloved mother, who happens to be Damon’s ex, rushes onto campus and into harm’s way, Lila has even more reason to bring the culprit to light before anything—or anyone—else vanishes.
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About the author
Cynthia Kuhn writes the Lila Maclean academic mystery series. Her work has appeared in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern, Literary Mama, Copper Nickel, Prick of the Spindle, Mama PhD and other publications. She teaches English at Metropolitan State University of Denver and serves as president of Sisters in Crime-Colorado. Connect with Cynthia at cynthiakuhn.net
All comments are welcomed.
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The Art of Vanishing is available at retail and online booksellers.