In late October, I had the pleasure of going down to the Low Country Master Class Retreat where I met some fabulous people, including today’s guest, Cathy Perkins! Cathy is here to tell us about her latest release, HONOR CODE.
Take it away, Cathy!
Thanks for inviting me to join you on your blog today, Caridad. Donating the proceeds of your new book, The Prince’s Gamble is a wonderful “give-back” to your community and I hope conditions continue to improve as the rebuilding moves forward.
Just as The Prince’s Gamble was a new direction for you, Honor Code presented a new challenge for me. I’ve always written twisty novels with multiple suspects, numerous red herrings and a few subplots just in case things aren’t complicated enough. A novella was charting new territory.
Novellas fill that gray area (whatever shade you want it to be) between short story and novel. While I usually write complex subplots, with this novella, I stripped those out to focus on the central story and theme. In Honor Code, the story revolves around the way the three main characters choose to live their lives—their code of honor.
Or lack of one.
Here’s a little blurb for HONOR CODE:
In a small southern town where everyone knows each other’s business, veteran detective Larry Robbins must solve the disappearance of eighty-year-old widower George Beason.
When evidence arises that Beason may have left town on his own, it would be easy for Robbins to close the case, but his gut instinct tells him more’s at stake. As he uncovers clues about Beason’s deceased wife and his estranged daughter, Robbins must untangle conflicting motives and hidden agendas to bring Beason home alive.
With HONOR CODE, award-winning author Cathy Perkins delivers a mystery NOVELLA linked to her mystery novel, THE PROFESSOR.
Robbins looked across Miz Rose’s breakfast table at the toddler.
Tasha cut her eyes and smiled, a natural flirt.
Her daddy’s gonna need a shotgun when this one gets older, he thought—then remembered she didn’t have a daddy.
Daintily pinching the Cheerio between forefinger and thumb, Tasha offered him a cereal circle. Mouth open, he lowered his head. She dropped the Cheerio inside. He kissed her fingers in return, a loud smack that drew laughter.
“Don’t you be encouraging her,” Miz Rose said. “Tasha, you eat that cereal. And use yore spoon.”
The child jammed the spoon into the bowl, spilling more cereal onto the highchair tray, then lifted the mounded spoon toward her mouth.
“That’s right.” Miz Rose turned back to the sink and tackled the older kids’ breakfast dishes. Sunlight reflected off the glass beads in her hair. Overnight, she’d braided her hair into a bunch of cornrows, a sure sign she was worried.
Robbins sipped his coffee, watching both Tasha and her. Two months ago, when he and Child Services dropped the toddler off with Miz Rose, the kid had been a clingy, weepy mess. “Tasha seems happy.”
“She just need to be where folks ain’t angry.”
“Don’t we all?” Robbins considered the mood at home. The tension level there needed to drop below an “orange” threat level, but how was he supposed to change Sharon’s attitude?
“Most peoples forget to think about the other person,” Miz Rose said.
Robbins sat back. The woman had an eerie ability to say things that mirrored his thoughts.
Miz Rose had a point, though. How often did he consider Sharon’s feelings?
What would make her happy? Other than him taking out the trash and cutting the grass? He slurped more coffee. To be fair, how much of the tension in the house was his fault?
Miz Rose dried her hands and stepped across the kitchen. The place—the house and the furniture—was old and worn, but other than the area right around the highchair, it was clean. She wiped Tasha’s grubby face and hands, then plucked the toddler from the high chair and kissed her chubby cheek.
Tasha leaned into Miz Rose, molding against her body, stuck her finger in her mouth and sucked—the picture of contentment.
“I ‘spect you didn’t come over here for my coffee or to check on this chil’. You hear anything about George Beason?”
About Cathy Perkins
Cathy Perkins’ award-winning suspense writing lurks behind a financial day-job, where she learned firsthand the camouflage, hide in plain sight, skills employed by her villains. Born and raised in South Carolina, the setting for HONOR CODE and THE PROFESSOR, she now lives in the Pacific Northwest with her work-a-holic husband and a 75-pound Lab who thinks she’s still a lap-puppy. You can learn more on her website http://cperkinswrites.com
To purchase HONOR CODE, please visit one of these online retailers:
Thank you for taking the time to visit with us, Cathy! I wish you all the best with this latest release.