Oh, happy day! Kelly O’Connell is back. Well, sort of. Keisha tells the story in my new novella, The Color of Fear. You can find it as an ebook on a wide variety of digital platforms—Kindle, Kobo, B&N, Sony, Apple and others. In print, it’s available from Amazon.
The Color of Fear marks my return to mystery fiction and the Kelly O’Connell series after an absence of more than a year. Some of you know that two major, traumatic events kept me from my computer: complicated hip surgery, which followed several months of undiagnosed but excruciating pain, and the move from my three-bedroom house to a 600 square-foot cottage. Surgery in January took away the pain, and I am feeling strong and healthy, but I can’t yet walk without a walker and am not allowed to drive a car. I remain highly optimistic that those things get a little closer every day.
The move to the cottage was my choice and remains my delight. I love my little hideaway and am almost perfectly comfortable with everything I need—living area, office, fancy bathroom, bedroom, and kitchen area. Only the kitchen leaves me wanting more. Because of zoning restrictions, I have neither stove nor oven, but I am learning to make do with an amazing magnetic hot plate—and the oven in the main house where my daughter and her husband and son now live.
As I told the doctor recently, I’m writing, I’m cooking, and I’m wearing make-up again. All sure signs of recovery. The Color of Fear is the first thing I’ve written from start to finish since the surgery, except for blogs.
The Color of Fear also marks a return for Kelly O’Connell, who took a year or more out to have a baby—Cynthia Grace Shandy. Keisha kept the real estate office running, so it’s only fitting that this time Keisha narrates the short tale wherein Kelly and her family live under the threat of infant Gracie’s kidnapping. The story serves as a reprise of many of the previous novels in the series, as Keisha, in her search for the kidnapper, recalls Kelly’s earlier adventures.
Keisha remains outspoken and independent and her voice is clear and strong as she balances her need to protect Kelly and her family with her love for new husband, José Thornberry. Some but not all of Kelly’s friends and foes from previous stories appear here, along with such new characters as Clyde, the guard dog, and Cowboy, the homeless guy with a soft heart.
I hope you’ll all welcome Kelly and her clan back into your hearts.
Next on my agenda? A sequel to The Perfect Coed. First draft is written, and I’m about to begin editing, aiming for publication in September.
To those of you who are my readers, thanks for sticking with me for my year out, probably one of the most difficult years of my life. I’m so glad to be back with you.