For My Blog Readers,
I’m pleased to announce that the mystery novel is now available on Amazon in paperback and eBook versions. It is not available from bookstores. This is a revised edition of what was published in 2012. Stay tuned for the sequel!
When you order and read it, please post a review as it prompts others to read it. And, if you figure out the mystery, please let me know as no one reading the first publication of the story figured it out! You’d be the first!
Here is the opening to the first chapter.
Secrets of the Disappearing
No one on the island could have foreseen what would happen to the hillside above the marsh at Pocomo Meadows. Only the rising sun that first morning in June would reveal the truth.
Two birdwatchers, kayaking within the marsh’s hidden recesses, saw the first disappearance.
“Josh, I think I need another cup of coffee.”
“Marci, we just got started. Can’t you wait until we’re deeper into the marsh?”
“Well, if I wait until then, you’ll fuss about me scaring the birds when I get out the thermos. I was so looking forward to sitting in the cool, still morning, holding my steaming cup of coffee and watching the world unfold before us. Guess I’ll have to forsake that dream,” she sighed playfully.
“Okay, okay. You win. Why do women insist on nesting every place they go?” Josh muttered into his fleece. “I’ll watch for sharks coming in and out of the inlet. You get your coffee.”
But turning to face his wife, Josh didn’t see Marci contentedly holding her steaming cup of coffee. Instead, he saw his wife frozen with a look of horror on her face, pointing toward the hillside above the marsh.
“Marci, what is it? Are you okay? Look at me.”
“No, Josh. Look at the hillside!”
Pulling alongside Marci’s kayak, Josh focused his attention on the hillside above the marsh. Then, looking back at his wife, he heard a muffled groan. “Josh, I can’t believe it.”
“Marci, what is it?”
Gasping for breath, Marci scratched out in a trembling voice, “Josh, can’t you see it? The houses are gone.”
Sensing not just exasperation but fear in Marci’s voice, Josh stared at the hillside once more. “Marci, that can’t be. Check your binoculars. We just finished building that huge Pocomo house last week. I know they have first and second-floor views of the marsh and creeks.
“Had views, you mean. They’re not waking up to any view this morning.”
“But Marci, that’s impossible. Maybe we’re not close enough. It could be the mist rising off the water distorting our view or the steam off your coffee cup,” he mumbled as he reached for his paddle. “Let’s paddle closer. Maybe that will help.”
“Josh,” Marci pleaded.
“Okay, I believe you. How about we paddle into the salt pond for a better view?”
Turning north, Marci and Josh ran the tide with their kayaks and headed for the opening in the marsh that led to the salt pond just below the hillside.
“Marci, if the houses are gone, we need to tell someone right away.”
“No, Josh. It’s too weird. No one will believe us. We must be seeing things. Maybe we’re not awake enough.”
A long ten minutes passed before they reached the small pond’s opening at the far end of the marsh. Both were silent. Only the birds heard their paddles slipping in and out of the saltwater. Alone in their thoughts, each was mentally running plausible scenarios, wishing they’d never left their warm bed and now dreading what the sun would reveal. The pleasant predawn light and their initial sense of adventure had vanished—just like the houses.