by Jo A. Hiestand
GENRE: British mystery
Cameron Rutter drowned two months ago in a lake on a Cheshire moor. Some say a morgen—a spirit who drags men to a watery grave—was responsible. Others say it was the phantom Grey Lady. The police say Gareth Gynne was the guilty one. Whoever—or whatever—killed Cameron needs to be sorted out. And ex-police detective Michael McLaren is asked to do just that.
McLaren’s not keen on delving into the mystery. The accused is the nephew of McLaren’s nemesis, Charlie Harvester. And if there’s one thing McLaren doesn’t want to do is to associate with another Harvester, no matter what generation he is.
Suspects and motives are as tangled as the mere grass. Did a villager kill Cameron, opposed to his crusade to keep the moor in its pristine state? Or did someone previously arrested by Cameron kill him in revenge?
Or was the morgen really responsible?
Can McLaren discover the killer, or will he too become a victim of the haunted water?
Haunted Water is on sale for $0.99.
“I believe you, but the police might not. They don’t know what you’re capable of, how angry you were. They can imagine you’re livid because he couldn’t come up with the loan money, so now you have to pay it. You’re at the mere earlier than agreed upon. It’s afterhours. It’s dark. No lights on. You could have easily killed Cameron. He trusted you.”
Gareth opened his mouth, but McLaren waved off his comment.
“Your feelings are boiling over. You go up to him, maybe just to talk, but you’re livid and you clobber him with a stone. He falls. Maybe he’s not dead, but if he’s not, you’re scared that when he wakes he’ll remember you attacked him. So you do the only thing that makes sense at that moment. You roll him into the mere to drown.”
Gareth stared at McLaren, unable to speak. His fingers sought the edge of the counter to steady himself. A car crawled up the High Street and disappeared before he found his voice. “That’s absurd. It never happened. I arrived with Lisa and Paul and Rhys. I never got there early—”
“Cameron was killed, Gareth. Someone had to have done it. And did it that night. I don’t think you’re culpable, but this could be exactly what the police think. More so, considering your history with him.”
A car turned off the High Street and stopped at the front of the shop.
Gareth stood up and walked over to the display window. “Who’s that? It’s nearly closing time.” He held up a hand, shielding his eyes from the intense headlight beams that lit up the room and threw shadows across the floor.
The lights cut off, leaving an ominous feeling that something unpleasant was about to happen.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Jo A. Hiestand grew up on regular doses of music, books, and Girl Scout camping. She gravitated toward writing in her post-high school years and finally did something sensible about it, graduating from Webster University with a BA degree in English and departmental honors. She writes two British mystery series—of which two books have garnered the prestigious N.N. Light’s Book Heaven ‘Best Mystery Novel’ two years straight. She also writes two Missouri-based mystery series that are grounded in places associated with her camping haunts. The camping is a thing of the past, for the most part, but the music stayed with her in the form of playing guitar and harpsichord, and singing in a folk group. Jo carves jack o’ lanterns badly; sings loudly; and loves barbecue sauce and ice cream (separately, not together), kilts (especially if men wear them), clouds and stormy skies, and the music of G.F. Handel. You can usually find her pulling mystery plots out of scenery—whether from photographs or the real thing.
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
Jo A. Hiestand will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.