Monday, April 15, 2013

Featured Book: Murder is Ugly

I love doing character interviews, and I'm happy to have Jinx Delaney here today to talk about her new mystery novel, Murder is Ugly, by Price McNaughton. The book was released on April 9 by Talebearers Publishing.

About the book:

When Jinx Delaney accepted her friend Brynn Brookefield's invitation to spend the summer with Brynn and her family, she expected a relaxed, fun, horse-filled getaway that would hopefully help her find direction and get her life back on track. However, upon her arrival at the Brookefield’s exclusive community, she begins to suspect that not everything is as perfect as the members of the wealthy, picturesque neighborhood would like her to believe. Jinx finds herself embroiled in a web of suspense and deceit as a series of grisly crimes sweeps through the community, revealing dark secrets and tearing apart the residents’ seemingly perfect lives. As neighbor turns against neighbor, Jinx begins to realize that when it comes to high society, murder really is ugly.

Set against a backdrop of a historic, Old South community and a high class horse barn, McNaughton weaves a riveting tale of murder and suspense, filled to the brim with twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the end, while skillfully painting the ironic tale of a community whose beauty lies only skin deep.

About the character:

Jinx Delaney is a recent college graduate who is looking for her purpose in life. She loves her horse, Ranger, and dreams of competing with him professionally, but she’s not sure what direction to go in. When she visits her sorority sister, Brynn Brookefield, for the summer, she finds herself swept up in mystery. The historic homes in the closed community her friend calls home are filled with secrets and gossip. Jinx finds that her summer may be more than she bargained for when one of the neighbors turns up dead.

Character Interview with Jinx Delaney

How did you first meet Price?

Well, Price had me in the back of her mind for quite some time. A mystery presented itself to her and then I rumbled up in my old blue and white truck, ready to solve it.

Want to dish about her?

She’s nice, but a tad forgetful. She changed my name several times, and I still have trouble going by the new one, though it does have special meaning.

Did you ever think that your life would end up being in a book?

Not at all! I find that my writer and I are very alike, so I thought I would end up more like her. Definitely not involved in mysterious deaths and a secret community.

Tell us about your favorite scene in the book.

I think the night of the party was pretty special to me. I had never seen anything like it so it made a big impression. But that walk home in the rain...Brrr!

Did you have a hard time convincing your author to write any particular scenes for you?

No, she was willing to put me in pretty much every scene. I’m a little nosy, so it was easy to squeeze myself into some tight situations. In the future though, I want more time with Ranger and a stronger focus on our upcoming competitions. She’s assured me that it shouldn’t be a problem.

What do you like to do when you are not being actively read somewhere?

I love riding! I can’t wait to start hauling Ranger to some local shows, but I’ve got my eyes on the big time. Maybe you’ll see the two of us in lights someday.

If you could rewrite anything in your book, what would it be?

It was hard on me to lose my newfound friends. I’d like to write them back to existence, but Price has told me that mysteries don’t work that way.

She's right. Tell the truth. What do you think of your fellow characters?

To be perfectly honest, I don’t care for many of them. In Murder is Ugly, I really only know one person, my sorority sister, Brynn. I find this closed community and some of the people who live in it to be a bit creepy.

Do have any secret aspirations that your author doesn’t know about?

I’d love to try some trick riding.

If you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?

Exactly what I’ve been doing this summer. Riding in the morning and swimming in the afternoon.

What impression do you make on people when they first meet you? How about after they've known you for a while?

I think they think of me as sweet and innocent, but after they’ve known me for a while they find that I’m much more clever than they thought.

Ah, one of those. What's the worst thing that's happened in your life? What did you learn from it?

It’s hard to name just one thing, but knowing someone who was murdered was pretty terrible.

Tell us about your best friend.

Brynn is hilarious. She’s loyal and sweet. She’s also great with her horse, Banshee. We have so much fun together. 

What are you most afraid of?


Are there a lot of murders in your town?

No, not in my hometown, but I have found that there have been a lot of deaths in Brynn's neighborhood. It's rather odd, now that I think about it.

Yikes. What’s the best trait your author has given you? 

I think my best trait is that I’m very down to earth.

What’s the worst?

My worst trait is definitely my overactive imagination.

What do you like best about Max? Least?

Brynn’s brother Max is fun, loyal, and handsome, but he’s also very mysterious. It’s hard to figure him out.

Honey, all men are hard to figure out. He sounds like a keeper to me. How do you feel about your life right now? What, if anything, would you like to change?

I’m in a strange place. I’m trying to figure out what I’m going to do with my future. It’s definitely time for a change. I would like to start competing with Ranger and work my way up to the pro level.

What aspect of your author’s writing style do you like best?

I like the way she describes spooky scenes.

If your story were a movie, who would play you?

My author!

Describe the town where you live.

The town where I live is very boring, so I’ll tell you a bit about the community instead. It’s closed off and everyone here seems to be rich. You would have to be to afford the upkeep the community demands. Everyone spies on their neighbors, and I’ve never seen people pass more judgement on others than here.

Describe an average day in your life.

Right now, I wake up, go jogging with Brynn, go horseback riding, hang out by the pool, and attend community functions. But after this summer, I don’t know what it will be like.

Why? What happens after summer?

After this summer, I'll have to make new plans. The Brookefields have kindly had me as a guest, but I'll have to leave soon. I'm not sure what I'm going to do or where I'm going to go as of right now. Hopefully, it will come to me.

Will you encourage your author to write a sequel?

Of course! Ranger and I have a lot of stories and adventures left in us. She can’t give up on us now.

Well, good luck wherever you end up. I hope murder doesn't follow you, but if it does, and you end up in another book, come back to tell us about it, okay?

About the author:

Price McNaughton was born and raised in a small town in Tennessee. A childhood steeped in the stories and legends of her ancestors as well as the southern way of life led her to carry on the tradition and become a storyteller herself. After years of traveling and working at a variety of jobs, she has finally returned to her roots and devoted herself to writing. A Vision of Murder is her first book.

Note: A Vision of Murder is free on Kindle today, April 15!

Connect with Price:
Blog / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads

Buy the book:
Amazon / Barnes & Noble

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