Saturday, June 1, 2013

A Guest Blog by Jeannette de Beauvoir (Alicia Stone)

Welcome to Mysterious Writers, Jeannette. Tell us about Murder Most Academic--academia with a twist. 

A good mystery is like a good recipe: it takes fresh local ingredients and mixes them just right: characters, plot, background, dialogue. One of those ingredients is both important and elusive: the main character’s background. There are mysteries involving people who do dog-sled racing, about people who appraise antiques or knit or sail, about archaeologists and poker players and restaurant owners … mysteries involving mystery writers, even.

 So it’s a challenge to ensure the freshness of that particular ingredient.

 That’s why I wrote Murder Most Academic, the first in a series about Trinity Pierce, a young professor at a Boston-area college. No, wait: there’s more. Because of some horrific circumstances, Trinity’s mother is confined for life to a psychiatric institution, and when a problem with insurance meant that the policy had lapsed, Trinity ended up doing her doctoral work alongside a brief career as a high-class call girl to make ends meet.

 Not an everyday back-story, but far more common than most people think—there are in truth scores of young women who dabble as escorts to put themselves through college. And what an intriguing background for Trinity to draw upon!

I love Trinity’s past. And even more than Trinity’s past, I love the people it’s brought into her life. Meet Kate Kazanjian, who, as Trinity observes, is probably the only madam in the world who still lives with her mother. Mama is always making Armenian sweets for Kate’s girls, all the while yelling at the collection of family from the old country that drifts in and out of their Victorian house. Trinity lives above an auto body shop whose owner is in love with her and is constantly offering to sell her cars of slightly dubious provenance. And her best friend is Sean, a reformed alcoholic who drives Kate’s girls to their appointments and shares Trinity’s passion for Irish music.

In Murder Most Academic, George Kirkland, one of Trinity's colleagues—and also Kate's client—is being blackmailed, and Kate needs Trinity to figure out who's doing it. But when the blackmailer is murdered and George is in the next room, he becomes the immediate suspect. Now Trinity and Kate must determine who is the real killer ... before it's Trinity herself who ends up dead.

 I promise you’ve never met anyone like Trinity Pierce. Why not get to know her today?


Jeannette de Beauvoir (Alicia Stone) is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and poet, whose work has appeared in 15 countries and has been translated into 12 languages. You can learn more about her at



Jean Henry Mead said...

Welcome to Mysterious Writers, Jeannette. It's great to have you visit here this week.

Jeannette said...

Thanks so much, Jean! Lovely to be here.

Anonymous said...

An interesting theme for your book. I guess I shouldn't be shocked at the idea of college girls serving as call girls, but I am.