Critical praise for Christy!

For "Murder Hooks a Mermaid:"
"Author Christy Fifield creates the kind of characters that stay with you for a long time. Fifield’s new Haunted Souvenir Shop mystery, Murder Hooks a Mermaid has it all: a sunny, relaxed setting, captivating locals, delicious food, and—of course—murder! Delightful amateur sleuth Glory Martine is back with her wisecracking parrot and charming group of friends in this thoroughly entertaining adventure. Don’t miss it."—Julie Hyzy, National Bestselling author of the Manor House Mysteries and the White House Chef Mystery series
"A whodunit with a dose of the supernatural, "Murder Hooks a Mermaid" is a worthy successor to the series opener and showcases Fifield's talents for plotting, characterization and humor." - Richmond Times-Dispatch
"Quirky and unique, a heroine for whom you can't help but root. The story sucks you in." - The Maine Suspect
"With a lovable cast of characters, good conversations and a great setting, this well-written book is a terrific read." -- Dru's Book Musings

For "Murder Buys a T-Shirt:"
A refreshing new sleuth! - Lynne Maxwell, Mystery Scene Magazine
"A fun book that will make the dreariest of days a little brighter! Socrates' great Book Alert" - Socrates' Cozy Cafe
"An entertaining and clever Florida whodunit" - Harriet Klausner
"Hilarious! A great murder mystery with well-written characters" - Paranormal & Romantic Suspense Reviews
For the Georgiana Neverall Series:
"Christy Evans will find legions of fans with this new series" - Sheldon McArthur, Lincoln City News Guard
"Funny and entertaining -- a solid mystery filled with likable characters." - RT Book Reviews"
Cute cozy mystery debute -- wry humor -- adorable dogs" -Publisher's Weekly
"Will have you giggling out loud! Four Stars." - Kathy Fisher, The Romance Readers Connection"The Book is good! Keep them coming, Ms. Evans!" - Mystery Scene
"Evans delivers a fast-paced mystery with admirable finesse!" - Sharon Galligar Chance,
"Christy Evans has a hit on her hands" - Harriet Klausner,
"Christy Evans is aces. I'll be very suprised if Sink Trap isn't an instant hit with cozy readers!" -

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Meet Georgiana Neverall!! (Read the opening to "Sink Trap!")

A Dirty Business

Always keep a Tyvek jumpsuit and a dust
mask on hand. Both can be purchased at
most hardware and home supply stores. You’ll
be glad to have them when you have to crawl
underneath the house, or through the attic.
When dirt and worse are flying everywhere, it’s
handy to have a tough outer layer to repel it.
—A Plumber’s Tip from Georgiana Neverall


“Georgiana? Georgiana Neverall , is that you under there?”

My mother, Sandra Neverall, the doyenne of Whitlock Estates Realty and one of the more demanding customers of Hickey & Hickey Plumbing, stood in the doorway. Her stylish stiletto heels, the only part of her visible from my position under the utility sink, looked impossibly out of place on the dirty concrete of the warehouse floor.

My mother could turn a simple hello into a referendum
on my entire life. “Yes, Mother. Who else would it be but
your only daughter?”

I regretted it the instant the words left my mouth. She
knew how to push my buttons, and I knew she knew, but it
didn’t stop me from rising to her bait.

“We-l-l-l-l . . .” She dragged the word out, and I could
picture her arching one perfectly penciled eyebrow. “I’m
really not sure. My daughter spent a fortune on a degree
from Cal Tech. I’d hardly expect to find her in ragged
coveralls under the utility sink of a filthy warehouse, now
would I?”

I bit back the impulse to answer in kind. We’d read that
script too many times already. I’d recently discovered I
liked wearing coveralls and crawling under sinks, and she
thought I should wear aprons and serve meatloaf to an
adoring husband. Or at least make some use of that pricy
college degree.

“And yet, you have.” I abandoned the stubborn pipe
joint and wiggled out from under the sink, standing up to
face my mother, work boots to stilettos. “So, what was so
important that you dragged yourself all the way out here
to find me?”

She widened her eyes in an attempt at innocence. She
held the expression for a few seconds, but then realized I
wasn’t buying her act and gave it up.

I love my mother, and I truly believed she loves me.
But that didn’t mean we dropped in on each other, or
palled around together.

Or understood each other.

To tell the truth, I was surprised she even knew where
to find me.

“I went by that charity house first. I assumed you were
there.” She refused to call the project by its proper name,
Portland Homes for Help.

“I finished there before I came to work.” For a moment
I remembered the rich odor of fresh-cut pine and the scent
of new carpet. The house was nearly done, smelling like
hope and the promise of help for one deserving family.

“It’s charity, Georgiana,” she said, as though reading
my thoughts. She says that’s a mom talent that never goes
away. She’d been really good at it when I was a teenager,
but you’d think it would lose its potency when I passed

Apparently not.

But it explained how she found me. The Homes for
Help crew ratted me out.

I nodded, bit my tongue, and waited for her to go on.

“I’m on my way out to the Clackamas Commons Development,”
she finally continued. “Gregory and I.” She
always referred to her boss as Gregory, not Mr. Whitlock,
and I wondered for a moment about the apparent level of
familiarity before I focused back on her words. “—so
we’re going to take over sales for all three hundred units.”

“Great, Mom. Really. If anyone can sell those places,
it’s you. I can picture the commissions stacking up.” I
grinned at her, to let her know I really was pleased. “But
you didn’t need to come all the way out here to tell me
that. You could have called.”

“It was on my way,” she lied, waving a freshly manicured
hand in dismissal.

Plum Crazy. The color registered without thought. I
hadn’t had a manicure in over two years—not since I left
the high-wire act of corporate competition—but it used to
be my favorite color. And it described perfectly the way
my mother made me feel.

I turned away and crouched back under the edge of the
sink. “That’s great news, Mom. Thanks for telling me. But
I need to get back to this job.”

I really didn’t expect it to work, and it didn’t. But it did
make her get to the point. Finally.

Her tone became all-business, as though someone had
thrown a switch. I found her ability to change so abruptly
a tad creepy. Then again, it was a useful talent.

“I just talked to Barry,” she said.

So she’d come to see my boss, Barry the Plumber, not
me. “He promised me the two of you would get this inspection
done by tomorrow.” She glanced around the warehouse,
her nose wrinkled in distaste. “And he said he’d
start on the house as soon as you finish here.”

She paused and I hoped we were finished, but she had
one more zinger before she left. “I asked for you on this
one, Georgiana, because I know you need the work. I just
hope you don’t waste too much time on that charity house
when you have a paying job waiting.”

She walked away, her heels clicking loudly in the
empty space, and I wiggled back under the sink. Charity, I
reflected, was not one of Sandra Neverall’s strong suits.

Be fair, I reminded myself, as I went back to work on
the corroded pipes. Charity was what forced her to go to
work after my dad died. The beloved Dr. Neverall of Pine
Ridge, Oregon, had treated his patients for free, and left
his widow with a stack of unpaid bills, and a load of resentment.

I promised myself I’d cut her some slack.

Or at least I’d try.

(Click to continue...)

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1 comment:

  1. I can't wait to get this book! I love mysteries with interesting characters and this is definitely one. I hope you are planning to write a whole series so we can get to know this character better. Way to go Chris! Great job.