The Corpse With The Ruby Lips by Cathy Ace
The Corpse With The Ruby Lips
I love that the Cait Morgan series is based in the area that I live…A pleasure to read. I highly recommend The Corpse with the Ruby Lips.
by Cathy Ace
The Corpse with the Ruby Lips (A Cait Morgan Mystery)
TouchWood Editions (November 1, 2016)
Paperback: 240 pages
TouchWood Editions (November 1, 2016)
Paperback: 240 pages
Quirky criminology professor Cait Morgan is invited to be a guest lecturer at a Budapest university, and although she’s hesitant to go without her husband and trusted sidekick, Bud, who must stay home to care for his aging parents, she decides to make the month-long trip on her own.Soon after arriving, one of her new students, Zsofia, pleads with Cait to help her uncover any clues about her grandmother’s unsolved murder, which happened decades ago on the campus of Cait’s own home university in Canada. Cait agrees, but when she is repeatedly hassled by an creepy colleague, and as bizarre details about Zsofia’s family members come to light, Cait is beset by uncertainty.As she gets closer to the truth, Cait’s investigation puts the powers-that-be on high alert, and her instincts tell her she’s in grave danger. Bud races to Budapest to come to Cait’s side, but will it be too late?
About The Author –
Cathy Ace loves crime! It’s true – she discovered Nancy Drew in her local library, then found Agatha Christie on her Mum’s bookshelves, and she never looked back. Cathy happily admits that the characters she met between the book-covers as a child have influenced her writing. “Nancy Drew was plucky, strong and independent, and Agatha Christie’s puzzles engaged me every time. I love the sort of book that mixes intricate plotting with a dash of danger, and that’s what I’ve tried to create with my Cait Morgan Mystery Series. Beginning my new series, featuring the women of the WISE Enquiries Agency, I have been able to indulge my love of stately homes, village life and the interplay between characters that can take place in that sort of setting.”
Born and raised in Swansea, South Wales, Cathy is, like her heroine Cait Morgan, now a Canadian citizen. “Cait’s Welsh Canadian, as am I. They say ‘write what you know’, so a short, plus-sized Welsh woman, who’s quite bossy, fits the bill! But Cait and I are not one and the same: she’s got skills and talents I don’t possess,and I’m delighted to say that I don’t usually encounter corpses wherever I go! I’ve also chosen to burrow even deeper into my roots by creating a new cast of characters in the WISE women who come from all four corners of the United Kingdom and work in a uniquely British setting – a ducal estate set in the rolling Welsh countryside of the Wye Valley in Powys, where I spent a good deal of time when I was young.”
With a successful career in marketing having given her the chance to write training courses and textbooks, Cathy has now finally turned her attention to her real passion: crime fiction. Her short stories have appeared in multiple anthologies. Two of her works, “Dear George” and “Domestic Violence”, have also been produced by Jarvis & Ayres Productions as “Afternoon Reading” broadcasts for BBC Radio 4.
Cathy now writes two series of traditional mysteries: The Cait Morgan Mysteries (TouchWood Editions) and The WISE Enquiries Agency Mysteries (Severn House Publishers).
Cathy is proud to be Chair of Crime Writers of Canada, a member of Sisters in Crime, the Crime Writers Association, and Mystery Writers of America.Author Links:
Amazon – B&N
Where are you from?
I was born and raised in Swansea, South Wales, and moved to London, England, after graduating in psychology at university. I migrated from the UK to Canada in 2000, and now live in a rural area about 40 miles east of Downtown Vancouver, in British Columbia.
Tell us your latest news?
Oh my goodness me…so much happens on a daily basis, it’s hard to keep up, sometimes! Of course I’m delighted that the eighth Cait Morgan Mystery is coming out – it’s an exciting time for Cait (and me) in that respect. In November the paperback version of my second WISE Enquiries Agency Mystery THE CASE OF THE MISSING MORRIS DANCER will also be launched in the US and Canada, as well as the hardcover version of book #3 in that series, THE CASE OF THE CURIOUS COOK, being launched in the UK (it will be available in the USA and Canada in March 2017). I’m quite busy in my role as Chair of Crime Writers of Canada too – it’s a great honour, and responsibility, to represent the more than 300 members we have in Canada and around the world, so I find I have to allow a few hours each day just to concentrate on that job, beyond working on the next books in my series.
When and why did you begin writing?
I was one of those students often chastised by teachers for writing essays so long they were like a book – so I suppose I’ve always had the writing bug within me. My first career was in marketing, advertising and public relations, which meant I wrote for a living…but for clients. I had nine marketing textbooks published too…but my story regarding writing mysteries is a bit different. I entered a crime short story competition in 1987 and won the right to have the story published, but concentrated on building the business I’d just started and didn’t write any more fiction until 20017. I self-published two collections of short stories and novella, then had my first novel (THE CORPSE WITH THE SILVER TONGUE, the first Cait Morgan Mystery) published in 2012.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
My entire life now revolves around writing, promoting and my fellow members of Crime Writers of Canada. Despite all this I still don’t really think of myself as a “writer” – which is odd, when I think about it. Maybe I’m still imagining the life of a writer to be something other than that which it truly is – some idealized vision of sitting about and thinking all day, or having words flow unbidden from my fingertips while characters walk through my front door, fully formed, and introduce themselves to me.
What inspired you to write your first book?
A sneakily wonderful means of killing someone and the perfect place to do it were my first inspirations – and I can’t really tell you what the means of murder is without spoiling the book for those who haven’t read it yet. Suffice to say I heard an interview on the radio with “someone” who did “something” for a living and gave some insights in to the way “something” worked within their field of expertise and I thought “What a great way to kill someone!” Then all I had to do was come up with a cast of characters to populate the apartment a couple of my friends in Nice lived in – which I knew the moment I set foot in it was somewhere I’d like to set a murder mystery – and I was off!
Do you have a specific writing style?
I once saw an excellent programme on – I think – PBS which investigated the way various authors wrote. One of those authors was Agatha Christie, and it was explained that she used plain, everyday language to write her books, the suggestion being that was why they are so popular. I try to do the same, in that I don’t want the words I use to get in the way of telling the story. To me, storytelling is about engaging the reader with interesting people, places and plots, not about befuddling them with technical language that puts a barrier between them and their enjoyment.
How did you come up with the title?
THE CORPSE WITH THE RUBY LIPS is the eighth Cait Morgan Mystery, and they are all titled THE CORPSE WITH THE….then there’s some “precious” body part (Silver Tongue, Golden Nose, Emerald Thumb, Platinum Hair, Sapphire Eyes, Diamond Hand, Garnet Face and now Ruby Lips). In each case there has to be a plausible reason for the corpse in question to possess that type of body part, and, in many cases (though I cannot say too much) that also points to some sort of theme running through the book. In the case of THE CORPSE WITH THE RUBY LIPS this is very much the case…with the power of words playing an important role in the book, as well as Cait having to look into a cold case where the woman in question as known for wearing vivid red lipstick.
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Building on my previous answer, in this book maybe more than any I’ve written before, there’s an undercurrent running through the entire work about how the old saying “Sticks and stones might break my bones, but words will never hurt me” isn’t really true: words – gossip, untruths, or even words not spoken – can damage people deeply, blight their lives, and lead to unforeseen consequences.
What would you like my readers to know?
If readers haven’t met Cait Morgan yet, I’d like them to consider doing so because – despite her flaws and faults – she’s a person who cares deeply about justice being served, and that’s something that means a great deal to me, too. Of course I try to make the journey toward justice as “twisty and turny” (and full of local food, art, architecture and history) as possible, but I do play fair with readers, allowing them access to the same clues Cait has, so they can work out whodunit along with her, if they choose. The other advantage of reading the Cait Morgan Mysteries is that each is set in a different country, so readers get to travel without needing a passport…or facing the long lines at airports!
If folks would like to find out more about me, or Cait Morgan (or, indeed the women of the WISE Enquiries Agency) all they need to do is check out my website here: http://cathyace.com/ where they can meet me “face to face” as I read the openings to a couple of my books in videos, and they can also delve into the questions I’ve written for Book Clubs. They can follow me on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/Cathy-Ace-Author-318388861616661/ or on Twitter here: @AceCathy
I’d also urge folks to sign up for my bi-monthly newsletter, as there are often exclusive offers and deals within it: https://www.facebook.com/Cathy-Ace-Author-318388861616661/app/100265896690345/
Thanks for having me along today – I enjoyed it J Cathy
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