Monday, April 6, 2020



In ancient Greece, the chimera was a bad omen. In Why Me?, it's a motive for murder. Bryn Baczek, a Seattle consultant, is vacationing in Scotland, hiking alone in a downpour, surrounded by midges, when she sees a body at the bottom of a ravine. Before she can return to the scene with the mountain rescue team, the body disappears. She learns that he was a scientist and that his laptop containing his cutting-edge research has disappeared. Rumors that Bryn has the laptop make her a target.

Book Details: 

Title: Why Me? Chimeras, Conundrums and Dead Goldfish

Author: Charlotte Stuart

Genre: mystery/modern cozy

Publisher: Taylor and Seale (November 2019)

Print length: 247 pages


A few of your favorite things: watching the patience of herons, waiting for their breakfast, to swim by. Laughing with friends. Swimming in a lake.
Things you need to throw out: corporate wardrobe, ancient spices that I used once for recipes I never made twice, moldy smelling children’s books from my childhood.

Things you need in order to write: a computer and a cup of coffee. And a good night’s sleep.
Things that hamper your writing: the captivating view from my office window. Guilt over not doing the “should do’s” of daily living from my lengthy “to do” list.

Things you love about writing: getting lost in another world in which anything’s possible.
Things you hate about writing: trying to keep all the online file folders organized so I can retrieve information easily and remember which “update” is the most recent!

Things you love about where you live: living on the water is always interesting – birds, boats, kayakers, seals, otters, orcas . . . there’s always something to look at and, at the same time, there’s always that moment when you realize you’ve missed an opportunity to take the perfect picture.
Things that make you want to move: fear of rising water due to climate change and living a ferry ride away from friends and family.

Things you never want to run out of: popcorn, coffee and the ability to find humor in everyday life.
Things you wish you’d never bought: cleaning supplies – they make me feel guilty for not cleaning more often.

Words that describe you: short, stubborn, competitive.
Words that describe you but you wish they didn’t: short, stubborn, competitive.

Favorite foods: prawns, wild blackberry pie, apples picked fresh from the tree, homemade bread (if someone else makes it).
Things that make you want to throw up: oysters, head cheese, and anything the color and texture of oysters and head cheese.

Favorite smell: coffee when the container is first opened and the beach at low tide.
Something that makes you hold your nose: some political pundits, especially those I disagree with.

Something you like to do: read outdoors on a warm sunny day, while sitting in a comfortable chair in the shade.

Something you wish you’d never done: I set an unofficial Guinness Record by spending five hours on Queen Charlotte Sound in a sailboat while holding a bag of vomit because I was too sick to get up and dispose of it.

Things you always put in your books: family foibles, friendships, animals, and humor.

Things you never put in your books: graphic depictions of violence and sociopathic serial killers. Those are worlds I don’t want to spend time in.

Things that make you happy: feeling productive, being around upbeat people, a walk in the woods, quirky Facebook and Twitter posts, a good detective TV series.

Things that drive you crazy: sensational and misleading headlines, people who don’t pick up after their dogs, the ragwort invasion of my front yard, some relatives who shall remain nameless, long “to do” lists.

Proudest moment: when I walked out of my orals for my PhD and knew I’d aced it.

Most embarrassing moment: I’ve had several. One was falling down on the stage after playing a solo at my high school graduation and having to walk back to my seat in the last row in the auditorium listening to “Oh, poor Charlotte” as well as hearing snickers and giggles.

Best thing you’ve ever done: marry my husband. He’s a risk taker and embraces change. Without him I never would have left a tenured teaching position to spend a year bumming around in a sailboat. I wouldn’t have spent another year helping him build a sailing/fishing boat. And I wouldn’t have traveled to Alaska by boat to go commercial salmon fishing.
Biggest mistake: not focusing on mystery writing full time until recently. When I think of all the fun I’ve missed!

The last thing you did for the first time: went to a wine and paint party. 

Something you’ll never do again: go to a wine and paint party. (Even though I did manage not to dip my paint brush in my glass of wine.)


In a world filled with uncertainty and too little chocolate, Charlotte Stuart, PhD, has taught college courses in communication, gone commercial fishing in Alaska, spent time as a management consultant, and was a VP of HR and Training for a large credit union. Her current passion is for writing lighthearted mysteries with a pinch of adventure and a dollop of humor. When she isn’t writing, she enjoys watching herons, eagles, seals, and other sea life from her Vashon Island home office.

Connect with Charlotte:
Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads 

Buy the book:
Amazon  |  Barnes & Noble

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