Featured New Book: An Idyllic Place for Murder by Liz Milliron


If you’ve looked around the site since the redesign, you’ll know Liz Milliron’s name. Or, you’ll recognize her real name: Mary Sutton, the head of our non-fiction department and one of our e-book formatters. Mary’s one busy woman! On top of writing and being a West of Mars subcontractor, she also has a day job and a family with needs. And I think there are some pets in there, too, but I’m not 100% certain.

Idyllic Place

She’s here with the first short story in her Laurel Highlands Mystery series. I was thrilled to find a fellow soul sister in Mary, in that on top of everything else, we share a love for Pennsylvania’s Laurel Highlands. I’m not sure where her love of the area came from, but what’s important here is that Mary shares it.

The story was originally published at Mysterical-E, and she’s got the rights back, so … it was time to let a wider audience know about Jim and Sally. Once you’ve met them, you’ll be glad you did.

So, Mary/Liz… what song reminds you of your book?

I don’t have a particular song in mind for this story. However, thinking of my protagonist, Jim Duncan, always puts me in mind of Bruce Springsteen. Springsteen is classic rock, simple lyrics, just a hard-working every day guy. No punk, no death metal. Just a guy singing about life, usually in a small, working class town. And that’s Duncan, just a guy trying to do a job. He lives in a rural county and likes it. He likes being a cop, being a hard-working guy, doing a job he loves because he wants to do it. And he’s a little working class. But he’s, um, really not lucky in the relationship department. He had a wife he loved and lost her. So if I have to pick a song that represents Jim at this point, it’d be The Boss’s “I’m Going Down.” The song is about a guy who sees a relationship that used to be perfect going down in flames. And that’s pretty much where Jim is in the relationship department – down in flames.

Ahh, Springsteen… I’ve seen him live twice. He truly holds a special place in my heart, and that’s before we get into the really good stories (and the fact that he inspired my own short piece, Keys, which is in Demo Tapes 4).
See? I told you Mary is cool.
Ready for the story’s description?

The Laurel Highlands seem idyllic, but for Trooper First Class Jim Duncan, they’re anything but.

When a young woman from Pittsburgh ends up dead inside a rental cabin Confluence, it’s up to Duncan to find the killer before the event brings unwanted publicity to one of Southwestern Pennsylvania’s most scenic regions. There seems to be a built-in suspect in the local character known as The Creeper, but if Fayette County public defender Sally Castle has anything to say, The Creeper won’t end up in prison without a fight.

Previously published at Mystericale.com, “An Idyllic Place for Murder” is the first story in THE LAUREL HIGHLANDS MYSTERIES series.

This makes me want to read it, and I already have. Don’t be left out.

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