“Murder Becomes Mayfair” is hot off the presses!

Few things warm an author’s heart more than seeing the first run of a new novel arrive at one’s doorstep.

The first 200 copies of “Murder Becomes Mayfair” have arrived! Fall colors even, for those of you in the Northern Hemisphere.

Pre-order now, at:

https://murderbecomes.com/purchase-print.html

(You can also order there the books that provide the Dalton Lee Mystery backstory).

These copies will likely be gone by the time our launch party takes place on Sunday, September 30. So reserve your copy now. (RSVP to our launch party in Dallas at:

https://murderbecomes.com/rsvp-mayfair-book-launch.html

Crafting “Murder Becomes Miami”

Last night I sat down to a plate of calamari and a glass of pinot grigio at my favorite Italian restaurant to map out the plot to my next book, “Murder Becomes Miami.” Even though “Murder Becomes Manhattan” just landed a few weeks ago, I am itchin’ to carry on the tale of Dalton Lee and the architect/detectives who make up The Lee Group.

Mapping out a plot is, I believe, one of the most exciting parts of crafting a book, for it by itself bathes me in a mood of mystery and intrigue well before I have written the first word.

Who will I select as the murderer and how will they be connected to this strange cult known as The Organization? What plot is The Organization hatching and how was the victim connected to it? How will I hide the murderer within the community of people you will meet? Who else will I put forward as possible suspects and how can I best make them suspect without making their innocence too obvious to you?

And most important, how can I push myself to ensure the reading experience I give you delivers twists and turns neither of us saw coming?

Whereas the architecture of the skyscrapers in Manhattan took center stage in the first book, in this next book it will be the Art Deco motifs found in Miami. But an architectural detail will once again play a key role in the solving of the murder.

I look forward to the tale unfolding and to your feedback as to how I can improve on the debut effort found in “Murder Becomes Manhattan.”

Who lives behind the doors?

They seemed to appear overnight. Small, colorful doors, with locks, embedded in tall trees in a greenbelt in my neighborhood. Quirky, intriguing and mysterious.

What I love about these doors is how they represent in such a great way what makes a mystery book like Murder Becomes Manhattan so appealing. The small detail, missed by most (in this case, missed by most passing motorists and pedestrians) yet yielding so many questions.

Of course we know no one, or thing, lives behind the doors. But they conjure up mysteries nonetheless. Who had them installed? Why in that location? What do we think could be behind the doors? Are there others we’ve not yet noticed? All questions Dalton Lee would consider as he wages his hunt for The Organization…

Novel Concept?

One of the great challenges associated with writing a mystery is how to make it stand out from the 100 gazillion other mysteries out there. I concocted the angle of letting the eBook versions of Murder Becomes Manhattan contain links to pictures, videos and other content that might enhance the reading experience.

Or does it? Most murder mystery readers I have shown the concept to have found it fun and worthwhile. But I do wonder if some will consider those links distractions to the story.

The entire book contains about 40 links. I have tried to scatter them throughout the book, although some of the early chapters have a greater abundance of them than the chapters near the book’s climax. And I tried to focus on including only those links that I felt might be worth exploring. A video of a popular song that causes one of the characters to have a public meltdown. A recipe to the perfect grilled cheese sandwich the primary detective craves.

And of course links to the murder scenes and the apartment lived in by one of the victims.

But what do you think about this — if you will pardon the pun — NOVEL concept. Beneficial? Or an irritation?

Architecture for each book’s location

There’s so much groundbreaking architecture in Manhattan. Who can resist the pull of the Guggenheim Museum, the New York Public Library or Grand Central Station? Yet none of those get coverage in my novel Murder Becomes Manhattan. Why is that, a couple of early readers have asked.

My primary detective in the “Murder Becomes” series, Dalton Lee, is a world-renowned architect with projects across the globe. In each book, his knowledge of architecture will help him solve the murder at hand. So I wanted architecture to play a key role in each book.

The architectural form Manhattan is most renowned for is the skyscraper. That is the city in which it debuted and that is the city in which it has been perfected over time. And in the 2010s, it is the city in which a revolution in skyscraper design is underway.

Since I cannot focus on ALL of the tremendous architecture available in my murder locales, I chose to settle on the subset of architecture most important to each place. In my mind, in Manhattan, that should be the skyscraper, and in my next mystery, Murder Becomes Miami, it should be the Deco architecture that city is known for. But do you agree?