Dear Blog Readers, Midnight on the Mississippi is a departure from the type of books, Mary Ellis has written before. I absolutely loved it. It’s my favorite book by Mary. The setting and feeling of the South, the characters who leapt off the pages, and the wonderful suspense plot that kept me guessing. I know you won’t want to miss this novel.
Welcome back, Mary. Since you’re being published regularly, what new avenues will your future books take?
I love writing mysteries and romantic suspense set in the South. Since we’ll be living in a warmer climate once my husband retires, at least part of the year, I’m enjoying researching places to live and towns to set my stories in.
What conferences will you be attending this year? Will you be a speaker at any of them?
Unfortunately, I won’t be attending any conferences and I will truly miss ACFW’s. This year my husband and I are taking a month-long research trip/vacation, which will consume every penny of our travel budget. Next year I hope to attend ACFW in
RWA in New Orleans.
ACFW is very near my house, but I don’t think I’ll be able to go because of my knee replacement surgery. I’ll try to go out at least one day if I can. If you were in charge of planning the panel discussion at a writing conference, what topic would the panel cover, and who would you ask to be on the panel, and why?
I would plan a panel of authors who have changed genres or successfully write in several genres at the same time. Since Midnight on the Mississippi represents a change in genres for me, I would be fascinated by their answers.
How important is it to you to be active in writing organizations?
Frankly, I wouldn’t be where I am today without writing conferences. I have taken and learned from dozens of wonderful workshops, participated in panel discussions, and networked with other writers, agents, editors, and industry professionals. I attend every one that I can possibly afford. Their value is immeasurable.
Where in the community or your church do you volunteer?
I have volunteered at my church with our homeless outreach, Sunday school and VBS, at our local SPCA chapter, the local historical society, and with the women’s auxiliary in our town, which is a community service organization.
Who are the five people who have made the most impact on your life, and how?
My Lord Jesus Christ, my parents who adopted me when I was six weeks old, my husband of many years, and Pastor Bob Pettuccio, who baptized me for a second time. He taught me to live my faith every day.
If you could write the inscription on your tombstone, what would it be?
Here lies Mary Ellis who wished she’d discovered writing a little earlier in life!
Tell us about the featured book, Midnight on the
What lies beneath the black water of the bayou? Hunter Galen, a
securities broker, suspects his business partner, James Nowak, of embezzling
their clients’ money, but he’s reluctant to jeopardize their friendship. After James
turns up dead, Hunter realizes his unwillingness to confront a problem may have
cost James his life. Nicki Price, a newly minted PI, intends to solve the
stockbroker’s murder as she establishes herself in the career she adores. As she
ferrets out fraud and deception at Galen-Nowak Investments, Hunter’s fiancée,
Ashley Menard, rubs her the wrong way. Nicki doesn’t trust the ostentatious
woman who seems to be hiding something, but is the PI’s growing attraction to
Hunter—the police’s only suspect—her true reason for disliking Ashley? As
Hunter and Nicki encounter sophisticated shell games, blackmail, and death
threats both subtle and overt, danger swirls around them like the mysterious
dark water of the bayou. Only their reliance on faith and fearless determination
give them hope they will live to see another day.
Please give us the first page of the book for my readers.
Yacht Queen Antoinette
“What? I still can’t hear you, James!” Hunter Galen shouted into the mouthpiece. “Call me back in a few minutes. I’m going on deck. Maybe the signal will be stronger.” Ending the call, he headed for the doorway of the grand dining salon. Around him, the birthday party was in full swing. He glanced across a room filled with smiling faces, assured that the party had been a great idea. His mother, still stunning at sixty years old, was dancing with the senior partner of the law firm that had represented Galen business interests for years. Was something going on between them—more than just a slow waltz between old friends? Maybe, but he wouldn’t worry about it tonight. His mother and everyone else were enjoying themselves. In addition to delicious catering and plentiful libations, two bands—zydeco and swing—provided entertainment, with even a DJ between sets to keep the younger generation happy.
From the corner of his eye, Hunter spotted his girlfriend, soon-to-be fiancée, clinking champagne glasses with his sister, Chloe, and his sister-in-law, Cora. Together the three looked like a blonde, brunette, and flaming redhead hair color advertisement. While he watched, Ashley Menard glanced his way, her face lighting up with a Miss Louisiana smile. That’s what she once had been—or, at least, first runner-up. Tall and reed slim, Ashley’s cool composure stemmed from the belief that everything she touched would turn to gold. And it usually did. She lifted two fingers in a wave before refocusing on her future sisters-in-law.
“Don’t even think of getting down on one knee until you ask Daddy,” Ashley had warned him. Daddy. Twenty-six years old and owner of a chain of hair salons, yet she still referred to her father with a juvenile moniker. Well, this still was the old South, after all.
When the vibration of his phone jarred his attention from the party, he saw on the screen that it was James again. Sighing, he headed up the stairs for better reception. On the promenade deck above, Hunter sucked in a lungful of humid air and leaned over the polished teak railing. “Hello, James,” he spoke into the mouthpiece.
“Hunter, we have to talk. This is important. I know you’re tied up right now, but I had drinks tonight with old man Morrison at the bank. He wants to talk to us about the credit advance I requested. He refuses to extend the corporate credit line until we both come to his office. That tight-fisted—”
His colorful description of their banker became garbled as James’s voice rose with agitation.
Where can my readers find you on the Internet?
Thank you, Mary, for sharing this new book with us. I can't wait until the next book in the series comes out.
Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.Midnight on the Mississippi - Christianbook.com
Midnight on the Mississippi (Secrets of the South Mysteries) - Amazon
Midnight on the Mississippi (Secrets of the South Mysteries) - Kindle
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