Sunday, June 16, 2013

Tour Stop | Broken Strings by Nancy Means Wright

Book Title: Broken Strings
Author: Nancy Means Wright
Release Date: May 7th 2013
Genre: Mystery
Publisher: GMTA Publishing, LLC
Presented by: As You Wish Tours


When puppeteer Marion collapses during a performance of Sleeping Beauty, her friend Fay Hubbard promises to carry on. But Fay already has her hands full with three demanding foster children, Apple and Beets, who have a fractious jailbird father—and sixteen-year-old Chance, who has a crush on a much older guy in a band called Ghouls. And now Marion’s husband Cedric seems more interested in a drop-dead-gorgeous French teacher than in any string puppets. And who is the mysterious Skull-man who warns of death if the show goes on with one of Marion’s offbeat endings? When an autopsy reveals that Marion had swallowed a dose of deadly crushed yew—and a friend finds her sister dangling from a rod like a marionette, a shocked Fay goes after the killer.


Finally Cedric said through his teeth: “The yew got in her drink, absolutely. She bought it at the local co-op, you know, some fool could have put in the wrong herb. But the control stick couldn’t poison her.”

They locked eyes a moment. She said, “It was you gave her that yew controller, wasn’t it. Wasn’t it? Cedric?”

He was quiet a moment. She could feel the electricity in the air, like a storm was brewing in the room, ready to break. Willard put a hand on her shoulder; the rough skin of his hand gripped her Valentini Marionettes tee shirt, digging in, but she didn’t want him to take it away. Cedric’s back was against the wall; his shoulders curved like a bow that might spring any moment and loose the poison arrow. “You gave her that controller,” she repeated.

“It was a gift,” he said finally. “For her birthday. I had it made. Yew is a beautiful wood. Supple, good for stringing, for operating marionettes. She loved it, she strung Beauty onto it. I was planning to lacquer it but she wanted to use it right away, so what could I do? You know Marion when she gets a bee in her bonnet.”

He was breaking down, his face like a split egg, the yolk running down his cheeks, onto his hands that were holding his face. She mustn’t feel sorry for him. He knew plants, he probably knew wood. Knew yew, the yew sap that still bubbled in the untreated wood. He could have warned his wife, stopped her.

Seeing his face she backed off. Willard’s hands lifted from her shoulders and she turned away. Her signmaker went back to his packing. She didn’t want any part of these accusations, his stance told her, he just wanted everyone to be happy. Willard the peacemaker.

But Fay was angry. The man had lied! His grief was false, he was playacting; he had a new girlfriend. Now he was turning his back on her. She went after him half running, into the kitchen. “You lied to me,” she shouted. “I don’t like that! I want the whole truth from you.”

‘I gave it.” The back door slammed. She opened it to follow but Willard pulled her back, his hands firm on her shoulders. ‘It’s okay, Fay, okay,” he said, and maneuvered her back into the livingroom. The day had turned dark. Rain was beating at the windows, and the ceiling was leaking into a box of puppet stuff.

Nancy Means Wright has published 17 books, including 6 contemporary mysteries from St Martin’s Press and two historical novels featuring 18th-century Mary Wollstonecraft (Perseverance Press). Her two most recent books are the mystery Broken Strings (GMTA publishing) and Walking into the Wild, an historical novel for tweens (LLDreamspell). Her children’s mysteries have received an Agatha Award and Agatha nomination. Nancy lives in Middlebury with her spouse and two Maine Coon cats.


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Nancy Means Wright said...

Hello, RaeBeth! Thank you so much for hosting my excerpt and cover art, et al., from my novel Broken Strings! I'm delighted to be here on your terrific blog. Looks like I'm in good company, too. (Nancy)

Nancy Means Wright said...

Hi, Raebeth: I tried to comment earlier but it evidently hasn't gone through! Anyway, I just want to thank you for hosting my Broken Strings novel on your lovely blog. I'm most grateful! (Nancy)


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