Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Gunfight at Grace Gulch Plus and Interview with Darlene Franklin!

Who dunnit? Was it his arch rival in the Oklahoma land run? A business competitor? Jilted lover or angry family member?

Darlene Franklin makes her mystery debut with Heartsong Presents with a wonderful cozy mystery entitled Gunfight at Grace Gulch. In a small Oklahoma town, Cici runs a vintage clothing store. The city tradition of reenacting the 1891 land run has her shop filled with customers and the streets filled with spectators. When one of the re-enactors doesn’t get up after a gun fight, the town is thrown into shock that one of their own would turn a public celebration into a public tragedy.

Local police name one of Cici’s sisters and one of her beau’s as the prime suspects, and it seems they intend to make little effort to look beyond the most obvious. Cici won’t stand for such antics, so she and another suitor, Audie, team up to try and uncover the identity of the real killer. Their conversations over dinner in the local restaurants stir the gossip mill, and romance does indeed begin to bloom for Cici even amid less-than-desirable circumstances. Will her private murder investigation lead to the killer? Will it jeopardize her chance to find the man of her dreams?

Gunfight at Grace Gulch is really a terrific cozy mystery, and it is perfect for a Summer read at the beach! Purchase your copy today! And don’t forget to keep an eye out for more cozy titles from the pen of Darlene Franklin and Heartsong Presents!

About the Author and an interview!

Darlene Franklin lives in the Denver area with her mother and her lynx point Siamese cat Talia. She has sold four novels as well as a novella and has contributed to numerous magazines, anthologies, and devotionals. She has also written curriculum for children’s Sunday school. She is a frequent guest speaker at local writers groups.

And now a view from Darlene Franklin's Window! Welcome, Darlene!!

- Your mystery has its beginnings based around an intriguing period of history, the Oklahoma land- runs. Any particular reason you chose that period, or do you find history in interesting in general? Will any of your books be set in the past or again based on past actions?

The state of Oklahoma celebrated its centennial in 2007. Experts say to tie your books into current events whenever possible, and originally we expected Gunfight at Grace Gulch to be published last year. I lived in Oklahoma long enough to appreciate its rich history, from the Trail of Tears to Jesse James to the land runs to the oil boom and the Dust Bowl and aviation and beyond.

I do find history interesting in general. In the fall, I have a historical novella in Snowbound Colorado Christmas. The stories in the collection take place during Colorado’s worst-ever blizzard in 1913.

The historical thread returns to my Dressed for Death series in the third book, Paint Me a Puzzle. A muralist paints the history of Grace Gulch on the outside of the new arts center; people are convinced it contains clues to buried treasure, and the adventure begins.

- Will there be any more adventures for Cici and Audie?

A String of Murders is scheduled for release in late December. I expect Paint Me a Puzzle to appear in 2009.

- You obviously enjoy a touch of romance in your stories. Will you ever pursue a romance series for Heartsong or do you plan to stay within the mystery genre?

When I first started writing fiction (I started in nonfiction), I discovered that everything I wrote had a touch of romance. Since I’m a single mother, I attribute my flare for writing romance to the greatest love story of all—God’s love for us.

My first book, Romanian Rhapsody, is a Heartsong romance. I do expect to write more romances for Heartsong. Keep current at my website (ww.darlenehfranklin.com) or blog (darlenefranklinwrites.blogspot.com).

- How important do you think it is to include an overt Christian message in your work?

It depends on the story. If the story calls for an overt message, yes, include it; but if it doesn’t, don’t force it. Ideally, I’d like to be able to write like John Grisham does. Many of his stories include a clear Christian message; others do not.

- What does your family think about your writing? Any memorable reader responses so far?

My family is really very supportive. It’s easier now that my children are grown. My son, who lives in Oklahoma, has started selling Gunfight at Grace Gulch at the restaurant where he works!

My first book, Romanian Rhapsody, drew a response from a reader who went through an experience very much like my hero and heroine. She traveled to Romania on a music tour; a member of their group died while in Romania. The parallels to my story sent chills up my back.

- What exciting thing is God doing in your life right now? Any words of encouragement you want to share with your readers?

The biggest thing in my life right now is not exciting, but God’s presence amazes me. My daughter committed suicide two months ago. God’s love, expressed through His people, and His comfort through word and song, have carried me through.

The theme of my writing is “Writing at the Crossroads of Love and Grace.” God’s love and grace meet us at the crossroads of our lives. Nothing can happen that will take God by surprise, or be too much for Him to handle. These last two months have reaffirmed that reality in new ways.

1 comment:

Darlene Franklin said...

If Gunfight at Grace Gulch sounds good to you, check out the new Heartsong Presents: Mysteries! book club at www.heartsongmysteries.com.