Doylestown resident Sandra Carey Cody’s delightfully meddlesome amateur sleuth is at it again. This time, in a prequel to her popular trilogy, “Left At Oz,” Cody pits Jennie against a murderer who seems intent on destroying Jennie’s own family and happiness by cleverly pinning the murder of a young girl on Jennie.
In this prequel, introducing Jennie to the readers, she launches her own investigation after being frustrated by the suspicions and seemingly wrong-headed actions of the police. As a long-time mystery reader, and one who can usually pinpoint the culprit pretty early on, I must say I was very near the end of the book before I even considered the correct culprit.
The plotting is extremely well done and the writing is seamless with strong, believable characters.
Though Ms. Cody has several books available on E-books through Amazon Kindle, including one, “Love And Not Destroy,” set in Doylestown at the Mercer Museum, “Left At Oz” and the other Jennie Conners mysteries are published by Avalon, a trade publisher which primarily sells to libraries. Avalon, which publishes 60 books a year, specializes in ‘G’- rated mysteries and love stories.
Marketing to other outlets is up to the author, and Cody has arranged for her work to be available at the Doylestown Bookshop, where last summer she did a book-signing event. She has also had two signing events at the Doylestown Library.
In her eighth year as a published author, Cody is a member of the Delaware Valley chapter of “Sisters In Crime,” which meets monthly for authors and would-be authors to discuss the various challenges and pitfalls of writing and being published.
“We often have speakers at the meeting; other authors, publishing representatives, and agents, who give us valuable input,” she says.
New members are always welcome to come and learn.
Born in St. Louis, Cody attended Washington University, married the love of her life, and moved to Memphis, where the Jennie Conners mysteries are set, then on to Baton Rouge, and eventually to Doylestown, where she worked as a legal secretary.
Now retired, Cody volunteers at the Doylestown Library and teaches Sunday School at the Doylestown United Methodist Church.
Her primary advice to would-be authors is simply “never give up.”
PHOTO CAP: Sandra Carey Cody