Today JJ MacGregor is visiting Ascroft, eh? to tell us about Death by Donut, the latest novel in the Pismawallops PTA mystery series.
Welcome, JJ. Let’s get started, shall we?
Tell us about the novel that you live inside. Is it part of a series? If so, please tell us about the series too.
Hi, this is JJ MacGregor, and I’m the sleuth in Rebecca M. Douglass’s Pismawallops PTA mysteries, though I never set out to be. I live on Pismawallops Island, in Washington State. We’re way up almost in Canada, so it’s cold and wet a lot on the island, which means we have to drink a lot of coffee, which is always best with espresso brownies. My fondness for the local bakery might have been why I got messed up in this latest murder, but not even a corpse before I’ve finished my coffee will keep me away from the Have-A-Bite bakery.
Does the writer control what happens in the story or do you get a say too?
I’m pretty sure Ms. Douglass thinks she’s in charge, but I have never been good at doing and saying what I’m told to, so sometimes I get to make things happen my way. She keeps sending me back to that scary Mrs. Halsey, though. If I had my way, I’d never go near that woman again, ever.
How did you evolve as the main character?
I’m sure I’ve grown in a number of ways, besides the obvious one that comes from my fondness for brownies. But Kitty says that I’ve learned not to be so scared of loving people, and I admit it can feel good. I used to push Ron Karlson away when he flirted with me, but now I mean to marry him, just as soon as I’m good and ready.
Do you have any other characters you like sharing the story with? If so, why are you partial to them?
Kitty Padgett is my best friend, and I always share the fun of finding clues and sorting out the island’s problems with her. She was the first person who made me feel welcome on Pismawallops. She won’t admit it, but islanders can sometimes be a bit clannish, and it’s hard to break into their circles. She took me on because I was willing to work for the PTA, and work hard.
Or course, I’ll share any story you like with Ron Karlson. Eventually, I’ll even share my house, though probably not my espresso brownies.
What’s the place like where you find yourself in this story?
You want to know about the Have-A-Bite Bakery? I can tell you it’s the best place in the world. You walk in the door and the smell of really good coffee and the best baked goods you ever met about knocks you over. Just make sure that Jasmine fixes your espresso, never Moira. Trust me on this one.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell readers about you and the book?
Look, if you are trying to ask when the wedding will be, you can just get in line with all the others! Oh, wait. Kitty says you just want to know about the case and I shouldn’t be so paranoid.
It’s a bit of a shock in a place as small as Pismawallops when we lose one of our own, and it seems like we are always so busy, it’s hard to have to stop everything to solve mysteries. The police should do it, of course, but there’s only Ron and Karla—she’s the deputy, the only one who matters—and they can’t do everything. I just want to help out a little, and I certainly never meant to get so involved…
Well, hey, I need to go pick up the kids from school, so thanks for having me over for this visit. Stop in if you ever make it up to Pismawallops!
Thank you for answering my questions, JJ, and good luck to you and your author, Rebecca M. Douglass, with Death by Donut, the latest book in the Pismawallops PTA mystery series.
The novel is available at the following online retailers:
About Rebecca M. Douglass: Rebecca was raised in Washington State on an island only a little bigger than Pismawallops. Though she has lived most of her adult life in California, the salt waters of Puget Sound continue to call to her and she enjoys owning an island in the Salish Sea, even if she had to invent one to do so! Rebecca has written a number of children’s books as well as her Pismawallops PTA mysteries and has had short stories published in several anthologies. When she isn’t writing, she likes to spend her free time hiking and biking, and her vacations exploring the outdoor world by camping, hiking, and backpacking.