When the idea for my current book, DEAD IN THE WATER, came to
me I knew I wouldn’t have to do much research. And I didn’t. In June 2015, an
EF3 tornado tore through my hometown of Coal City. My mother and nearly all my
relatives and friends had damage to their homes. Although I had been through
many tornado watches, warnings, and touch downs, this was by far the most
My husband and I rode out the storm in the next town over, huddled in our
laundry room desperately attempting to get information from our weather radio.
The only contact I had was one cousin whose texts miraculously were getting
through to my cell phone. This experience, as well as the immediate aftermath,
was incredibly emotional, shocking, and more than a bit eye-opening.
During the next few days, with many of the townsfolks without electricity,
water, or shelter it was interesting to see how people reacted. Some were a
godsend and others were sent from the other, hotter, region.
As my husband and I worked the rest of the summer helping our friends and
relatives with everything from removing debris to dealing with their insurance
companies, I began to think about how the characters in my fictional town of
Scumble River would behave.
Once I had that thought, I immediately started collecting newspaper clippings
and taking notes. I still wasn’t sure how the story would unfold, but I knew
that in Scumble River it would all lead to murder.
As I started to write DEAD
IN THE WATER, I came up with the five worst things to have happen during and
after a tornado.
Formulating this “do not” list helped me understand what I wanted the underlying
theme of my book to be. Because, although I like to go for the laughs, I love
when my readers go away thinking about the moral of the story, as well. I hope
some of you will join Skye in her new adventure, DEAD IN THE WATER, and see
just how truly bad a tornado can be.
Welcome Back to
Scumble River #1
The first book in a brand new series featuring New York Times bestselling
author Denise Swanson's beloved Scumble River setting and characters, Dead in
the Water is a gripping mystery that won't let you go until you've turned the
A twister, a kidnapping, and a murder―oh my! Scumble River may never
be the same.
For school psychologist Skye Denison, there's certainly no place like home.
When a violent tornado devastates her small hometown of Scumble River, she
can't see how the community will ever recover―especially since town
councilman Zeke Lyons appears to have perished in the twister.
But things get even worse for Skye when her police chief husband, Wally,
disappears in the midst of investigating Zeke's death, and evidence arises
pointing to foul play. Did Zeke really die in the storm, or was he murdered?
And could Wally be next on the criminal's hit list?
Mystery Woman Sleuth
| Mystery Cozy
[Sourcebooks Casablanca, On Sale: September 5,
2017, Mass Market Paperback / e-Book, ISBN: 9781492648321 / eISBN:
New York Times best selling author Denise Swanson writes from
her personal experiences as a school psychologist and small town resident. Her
plots are inspired by incidents that occur in her own life. Her books have been
nominated for the Agatha, Mary Higgins Clark, RT, and Daphne du Maurier Awards.
Denise lives in Illinois with her husband, classical music composer,
David Stybr, and her black cat, Boomerang.
-- New York Times bestselling author Denise Swanson currently writes the Welcome Back to Scumble
and the upcoming Chef-to-Go mystery series, as well as contemporary
romance. She has also written the Scumble River
and Deveraux’s Dime Store
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