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Just before Walter Egret was killed in a hit-and-run, he phoned his half-brother Sammy to report that he’d unearthed their missing father’s pocket watch, along with a pile of human bones. The project is put on hold until it can be determined if the site is an Indian burial ground. Then the bones disappear.Now Sammy and his brother’s three orphaned children want Eve Appel to go pro, applying her innate snoopiness to the trade of private investigator.
Eve already has her hands full with her two consignment stores. What is she going to do? Sammy and Walter are Miccosukee Indians, and Walter was employed as a backhoe operator on a construction site for a sportsmen’s resort. Was Walter’s death murder or an accident? If the bones belong to Sammy’s father, how did they get there? Delving into these mysteries, Eve is aided by her usual crew of friends and family. This adventure will not only up the stakes for Eve as an investigator, but it will also open her eyes to life possibilities she never imagined.
Welcome to Island Confidential! Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself?
Grandy: I’m Eve’s maternal grandmother always referred to as “Grandy” by Eve, her friends and mine. I’m originally from Connecticut which is Eve’s home also. When younger, I worked for a wealthy Hartford family and fell in love with the family’s son and he with me. We didn’t marry because his family would not hear of their son marrying the hired help, although he would have gladly sacrificed his family’s support for me, but I knew it would later become a problem for us.
I raised Eve because my daughter (Eve’s mother) and my son-in-law were killed in a sailing accident. Everyone thought Eve’s subsequent rebellious behavior was because she couldn’t deal with her grief over the loss of her parents, but I knew was made of tough stuff (she’s just like me) and she would find her own way from her feelings of loss. In personality Eve and I are alike, both snoopy, in-your-face kind of women with a penchant for doing as we like. IN looks, we couldn’t be more different: I am short and chubby while Eve is tall and skinny and likes to emphasize her height by always wearing stiletto heels.
My present husband and I now run a fishing charter boat out of Key Largo, Florida, but because of Max’s recent heart attack, we are considering giving up the boat and retiring to rural Florida. Max seems to be getting into fishing the Big Lake and my freezer is full of speck, bass and catfish.
I help Eve with the consignment shop she runs with her best friend Madeleine. I have to admit that Eve needs all the help there she can get because she’s so often off chasing the bad guys around the swamps!
Who’s the character you get along with the best?
Grandy: Eve and I may lock horns because we are so alike, but I love her like mad. I get along with everyone, but I adore Nappi Napolitani, our mob boss friend. I know that sounds funny, but Nappi is a true friend, always there when you need a hand or a gun or some big guys. He’s a perfect gentleman with a flair for fashion. I’ve never seen a man dress so well or eat so neatly. He tucks into a rack of ribs and rarely leaves a trace of sauce on his lips. I feel fortunate to have him in my corner and particularly in Eve’s corner because she can get herself into some dandy jams.
Which other character do you have a conflict with?
Grandy: I’ve never been a fan of Eve’s ex-husband Jerry. I knew better than to tell her not to marry the guy, and she came to her senses and finally divorced him. He was always chasing women and finally got himself in trouble with of all people Nappi when it looked as if Jerry and Nappi’s daughter had hooked up and were pregnant. It turned out not to be true, but that’s the kind of irresponsible man Jerry is. He’s become a better person now that he’s paying off his affront to Nappi by becoming his gofer. I hope he’s learned his lesson, but I’m not convinced he’s completely over being a jerk.
Just between you and me: What do you really think of Lesley?
Grandy: Well, now that you ask, she’s okay I guess, but she’s kind of boring. She doesn’t have the panache that Eve and I have, but she does make a good friend. I think she’s like Eve’s friend Madeleine, a nice person, dedicated to her protagonists, reliable and honest, but…boring. I can’t see her running through the swamps saving anyone, but she’s willing to have Eve do that. She has a good imagination, but no gumption when it comes to getting out there herself and chasing down any bad guys. Maybe that’s why she writes sassy protagonists. She’s got a good eye for men. She’s cooked up some mighty hunky love interests for Eve. If I didn’t have Max and I was thirty or forty years younger, I’d love a go at Alex or that handsome Miccosukee Indian, Sammy. Lucky for me, she wrote me as a pip of a grandmother with an appreciation for the male figure.
What’s next for you?
Grandy: Eve is interested in becoming a PI and that has some appeal to me. I know I’m not a youngster, but I’m better at handling a gun than Eve—actually she hates guns—and I have the same eagerness to take on people who hurt others and some of the folks around here who don’t appreciate the lovely wildness of this place and destroy living and breeding habitat for plants and animals. Well, maybe I’d do well in the environmental protection field. There’s nothing I’d like better than chasing some of these developers into the swamps and let the gators have a go at ‘em. I’m a darn good rider, too, so I’m thinking of getting myself a little cracker pony to ride while Max is out fishing the lake.
About the Author
Lesley retired from her life as a professor of psychology and reclaimed her country roots by moving to a small cottage in the Butternut River Valley in upstate New York. In the winter she migrates to old Florida—cowboys, scrub palmetto, and open fields of grazing cattle, a place where spurs still jingle in the post office, and gators make golf a contact sport. Back north, the shy ghost inhabiting the cottage serves as her literary muse. When not writing, she gardens, cooks and renovates the 1874 cottage with the help of her husband, two cats and, of course, Fred the ghost, who gives artistic direction to their work.
She is the author of a number of mystery series (Microbrewing Series, Big Lake Mystery Series, Eve Appel Mystery Series and the Laura Murphy Mysteries), a standalone mystery (Angel Sleuth) and numerous short stories.
Visit her on her website: http://www.lesleyadiehl.com
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