Today, I am featuring a particularly “sporting” book by Charmain Zimmerman Brackett.
Where are you from? I was born and raised in Augusta, Ga., which is the location of my latest series.
Tell us your latest book news? Murder Under the Magnolias was released on April 4 which coincides with the start of a prestigious golf tournament which I won’t name and I don’t name in the book because of copyright. Augusta is well-known for this tournament, and it draws thousands of guests to our fair city each year. I wanted to introduce people to my city through a florist named Grace, and her homicide investigator husband, Drew.
With the tournament in town, Grace is busy providing floral arrangements for the abundance of parties; however, the death of a young woman with a mysterious tattoo makes Grace wonder if there’s something more going on in her town than golf.
Murder En Pointe, the sequel to Murder Under the Magnolias is due out Oct. 3.
When a Russian ballet troupe comes to town, Grace is called on again to provide particular flowers to meet a diva’s unusual requests. When Grace discovers the dead diva strangled with the ribbons on a pair of pointe shoes, she finds herself helping her husband solve another case.
What inspired you to write your first book? The Key of Elyon was my debut novel in 2012. The winner of the 2014 Yerby Award for Fiction at the Augusta Literary Festival,The Key of Elyon is not a cozy mystery but YA science fiction/fantasy.
My entire career has been spent as a writer. I’ve written for The Augusta Chronicle, the South’s oldest newspaper, for more than 28 years, currently serving as its art columnist and a feature writer. In my time there, dozens of people have asked me when I was going to write a book. I thought they were crazy, but around December 2011, my imagination was hijacked with the opening sequence to The Key of Elyon. I fell down the rabbit hole and never looked back.
What do you love about cozy mysteries? I have always been a fan of mysteries. Nancy Drew piqued my interest at an early age. I still have my hardbound volumes that I purchased when I was in the fourth and fifth grades. I let my daughters read them when they were younger.
When I got older, I found the works of Agatha Christie intriguing. I’ve always enjoyed watching the amateur sleuths figure out the crimes and sometimes know more than the professionals. And I do like other types of mysteries as well.
What else would you like my readers to know? I’m a multi-genre writer. It comes from 28 years in the newspaper industry. I’ve covered sports, government, the military, education, and the arts, and sometimes, that’s just been in one week. In addition to my Grace’s Augusta Mystery Series, I’ve written a series of six novellas with a journalist named Victoria James as the amateur sleuth. The first Victoria James novella is called Murder Under Twin Oaks, and is under the author name of C.Z. Brackett. I’ve also written two illustrated children’s books including Little Pearl’s Circus World, the winner of the 2015 Georgia Author of the Year Award. It’s based on the true story of my great-grandmother, Pearl Clark LaComa, who started performing at the age of 4 in a circus owned by her father.
Murder under the Magnolias is available HERE on Amazon.
Thanks, Charmain! Can’wait to take a swing at this one. -LBT