Coming Soon! Island Times Three

Island Times Three to Be Published Next Month

A Raymond Gray Mystery

My newest book, Island Times Three, is a historical mystery with two different locales.

The novel opens in 1952 Manhattan where Raymond Gray, a private investigator, first learns about his newest case. And it’s a dandy!

When we catch up with Raymond in Chapter 2, he’s on a mail boat, the Santiva, headed to Sanibel Island in Florida.

The bulk of the scenes take place on the island, and I was grateful for its remoteness and sparse population in 1952.

To write that a lot of research was necessary to write the story is an understatement. And I conducted most of my research living in SWFL in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma when we had no power. Our generator did keep our lights going, and I was glad for it!

What the Heck Was it Like in 1952?

I collect vintage magazines, and I found a Ladies Home Journal from that year in my storage cabinet. Here are a few snapshots:

With an adorable toddler eating an ice cream cone in a cute buggy, this issue promises loads of 1952 charm!

I tend to look at the ads first, as they are a snapshot into the world that is promised on the cover. Cannon towels were first manufactured in 1887, and you can still buy them today. Here are some lovely colors available in 1952. I can imagine Raymond’s client, the beautiful Catherine Allen, would have used these towels in her vacation cottage on Sanibel.

The cottage, owned by Mr. Jim Gilbert of Franklin, Tennessee, was not decorated as in the article on the left, but perhaps Miss Allen had such furniture in her mansion in Malibu?

I know for a fact that no automatic percolator was available to Miss Allen, her daughter Sarah, and Mr. Gray in the cottage, but in the sequel, The Numbers Runner, Raymond does make sure his office has one.

And while these gorgeous dresses and coats would be worn by Miss Allen, she was much more comfortable wearing the outfits below in the tropical climate found on Sanibel Island.

Raymond Gray’s Dilemma

The detective has his work cut out for him in the first of the fiction series, and this writer knows what he’s up against (of course!). The fact that the cottage has no telephone, and he must make all phone calls from Bailey’s General Store, is obstacle number one for Raymond. And his discovery that no law enforcement exists on the island proves to be at once a hardship and an advantage.

I’m rooting for him, and I know you will, too!

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Part 1 of a series!

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