TITLE: Death on the Cliffs
GENRE: Historical Mystery
The day my best friend’s father was murdered began like any other June Sunday in Camden, Maine. That is to say, ordered like clockwork and dull beyond belief.
Church at ten. An enormous Sunday dinner at one. Self-improvement at two.
With a sigh, I settled down on the porch swing and opened the book of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essays to “Self Reliance,” the piece I had been digesting in five-minute installments over the past month. To be frank, my attempt at these dense, scholarly essays was my friend Eugene Palmer’s idea. In his opinion, I needed to elevate my reading material, not to mention my mind, above the level of delectable dime novels like Lady Something or Other’s Secret.
I felt like tossing the book into the lilac bushes, but since Eugene was presently playing the piano in our music room, I was trapped. So, to the thump-thump-thump of a military march, I began to chew on the first sentence.
Within moments, my gaze wandered to the road, where I spotted a lone man approaching on foot. I didn’t recognize him as a local resident; most likely he was one of the visitors who flock to our hotels and grand cottages during high season. His jacket, tie and decent hat indicated a gentleman; the knapsack and walking stick spoke to his being a rusticator who enjoyed tramping the countryside. And most importantly, his tall build, blond hair, bristly mustache and twinkling blue eyes proved him young and attractive. A welcome addition to our unexciting shores.