Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, Chris Matheson Cold Case, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty-five titles across three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!
Killer Deadline marks Lauren’s first venture into mystery’s purely cozy sub-genre with a female protagonist.
Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, crime fiction, police procedurals, romance, and humor.
A popular speaker, Lauren is also the owner of Acorn Book Service, the umbrella under which falls iRead Book Tours. She lives with her husband and two spoiled rotten German Shepherds on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.
The More Characters Change…
Hair styles change. Fashion changes. Diets change. I remember when women trying to lose weight insisted that meat was the culprit to unwanted inches. Everyone would be eating big baked potatoes while dreaming of slipping into that teeny weeny bikini.
Now, meat (protein) is in. Potatoes (carbs) are out. But what doesn’t change is the search for that perfect diet.
When I was a new author honing my skills for mystery writing, I was convinced that it was possible to write book after book in a series without changing a thing—except the plotline. The characters would live in the same house. They would look the same. They don’t age. Their personalities remain constant.
My assumption was evidenced by devouring many classic mystery series in which the protagonists all remained the same from one book to the next.
Perry Mason never got married or involved in a serious relationship (I’m in the camp that was convinced it was because he was in one with Della.) His office remained at the same location. He never expanded to take on associates or get a bigger office. Della was never promoted to executive assistant.
Miss Marple never lost it when it came to her acute observation. She never ended up in a nursing home.
Nero Wolfe never went on a diet or left the house.
But we aren’t just discussing personal circumstances like moving into bigger homes or changing careers.
The character in each of these classic mystery series remained unchanged from one installment to the next. In other words, they never developed during the course of the series. While Hercule Poirot slowly grew older throughout Agatha Christie’s most famous series, his personality aka his character remained the same.
Many series writers want the next book to build on the previous installment. This forces readers to read the books in order. Imagine the confusion of watching the Lord of the Rings movies starting with The Return of the King.
Yet, for mystery authors like myself, who strive to make each mystery a standalone, it is a challenge to keep our characters the same. We want the characters to be the same person from one book to the next because we don’t want readers to be confused about changes in the characters’ circumstances.
I have discovered that this is an impossible task.
In It’s Murder, My Son, Mac Faraday was thrust into a new world. One day he was on the brink of bankruptcy. Suddenly, he comes into a fortune that many can only dream of. More than that, he discovers a birth mother who had never forgotten about him.
Through the course of the thirteen installments in the Mac Faraday Mysteries, we see Mac grow to embrace his new family and close circle of friends. He grows from the slightly awkward retired homicide detective in faded jeans to a sophisticated businessman, celebrated detective, brother, father, and husband.
Readers have seen Mac through his daughter marrying a navy officer forty-eight hours after meeting him, his geeky son embarking on a relationship with a naval academy midshipman who aspires to be the first female navy SEAL, and his half-brother dating a wide variety of women.
Through it all, Mac has remained the rock―the anchor to whom everyone goes for advice.
Archie Monday starts out the series as a hard-working editor and personal assistant to a famous mystery author. Traveling around the world with Robin Spencer, Mac’s late mother, had introduced her to elegance and luxury―an appreciation which she passes on to Mac. Her love and knowledge of literature, in particularly crime fiction, is a perfect match for Mac Faraday’s investigative skills.
In A Wedding and a Killing, Archie Monday changes up from assistant to the wealthy to become a rich man’s wife.
That is not to say that Archie spends her days getting facials and looking down her nose at the help. She continues her career as the top independent editor of mystery novels.
In The Nutcracker Conspiracy, the fourth Thorny Rose Mystery, Mac Faraday and Archie Monday leave for Europe where Archie has contracted to work with a member of the royal family on a novel. While Archie works, Mac Faraday enjoys the luxury of being her supportive husband.
Coming January 2022, in the fourteenth installment of the Mac Faraday Mysteries, A Homecoming to Die For, Mac and Archie return to Spencer after a year of living abroad to find that much has changed.
They are now godparents to David O’Callaghan and his wife’s new baby girl, Amelia Rose. That’s right, Mac’s womanizing half-brother has settled down to marry Hope. He is also the father of a teenaged son Gabriel, who he never knew he had.
Readers will find that David is much more settled and content. He is looking forward to embracing his four months of paternity leave to bond with his new family only to have murder rear its ugly head.
Mac’s son Tristan has taken the leap to become the homeowner of a lakeside home in Spencer. The older home requires massive renovations. Wouldn’t you know it—while Tristan is taking his father on a tour, contractors dig up the body of a woman in an abandoned swimming pool in his back yard.
The woman, Konnor Sweeney, had been reported missing twelve years earlier by a seasonal resident by the name of Erica Hart, a famous blogger known as the Cold Case Diva.
This investigation brings together a new team of detectives in Spencer.
Deputy Chief Bogie, who was sixty-five years old in the first Mac Faraday mystery, has married Doc Washington, the medical examiner, and retired to hang out and fish.
With David on leave, new Deputy Chief Dusty O’Meara must lead the investigation in his first murder case since moving to Spencer from Montana. Not only does Dusty have to prove himself to the citizens of Spencer, David, and the legendary Mac Faraday, but he also has to match wits with the Cold Case Diva, who is determined to get to the bottom of this mystery.
The town’s residents, David, and Mac Faraday aren’t so difficult. Even Gnarly, the town’s canine mayor, is manageable as long as he is fed and entertained. Erica Hart, Dusty finds, is more of a challenge. It wouldn’t be so difficult, if she wasn’t so gosh darn irresistible.
Name a character in the upcoming A Homecoming to Die For!
The character is an older woman—true crime author. Former nun born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She writes true crime novels about murders with a religious connection.
Enter your suggested name below in the comments. The author, Lauren Carr, will select the winning name. The winner will get a signed copy of A HOMECOMING TO DIE FOR, which will be released in January 2022.