My husband is my consistent beta reader for all of my books. When he read my newest release, one of his comments, “I didn’t know you knew so much about architecture,” made me smile. Research, my dear. I believe a good fiction story has to have the details to make it real for the reader.
The MacKenzie Chronicles stories require me to research a wide variety of subjects, and, luckily, I have a connection to each one. That could be why I haven’t minded researching for this series. This part of writing used to be one of my least favorite tasks, but the subject matter for The MacKenzie Chronicles is right up my alley.
Pulling a few of the file folder names from my Research File: clairsentience, Jerome, AZ, auras, 1960s slang, hippies, 1920s architecture, flora and fauna, Jerome climate, 1970s, sun/moon, present day jewel prices.
I was born and raised in Arizona and have been in and out of the state all my life. My favorite area of the state is from central to north. We live in the high desert, and we’re only thirty minutes away from the pines of the Mogollon Rim, which mean snow in the winter. I’m inspired by this part of Arizona. The MacKenzie Chronicles is set in present-day Joshua, Arizona, an 1800s mining town, turned ghost town, turned hippie haven, and now a tourist town, hanging on the side of Spirit Mountain. The past always plays a part in the present.
My inspiration for Joshua and the stories of the MacKenzie family is a real-life Arizona destination, Jerome. Once dubbed “The Wickedest Town in the West,” the history is rich with tales of mining, brothels, and ghosts from another century. Add to that history the hippie settlers of the 1960s and 1970s who revitalized the crumbling town into an art mecca. The streets are stacked on the side of the mountain. There’s a jail still intact that literally slid down the mountain decades ago. Wine, food, ruins, and adventure await the tourist. The town looks much the same as it did in the early part of the twentieth century. If you get to Arizona, you really must visit Jerome.
Mystery on Spirit Mountain is book two in The MacKenzie Chronicles. You can preorder the book right now so it will be delivered to your eReader on September 15.
The past never sleeps.
The truth never dies.
Only Harlan MacKenzie can sense the troubled history of the Big Purple House. When he’s hired to restore the historical mansion, he doesn’t foresee the secrets—secrets that entangle his family in deceit and murder.
Phaedra is selling the house that has been in her family for decades. As her friends-to-lovers relationship with Harlan escalates, she puts her values on the line and chances losing him.
After a stranger comes to town, weaving her web of deception, hell-bent on correcting an old grievance connected to the house, dark revelations of the past implode the present. Harlan and Phaedra are thrown on a dangerous path, not only risking love but possibly their lives.
And while you wait, I invite you to read the first book in the series, Secrets of The Ravine:
The lies can haunt.
The truth can kill.
When a ringer for her long-dead love walks into her life the same day skeletal remains are unearthed, Magpie MacKenzie can’t ignore the universe’s warning…solve the mystery or become the next victim.
After Lawyer Zack Peartree visits purportedly haunted Joshua, Arizona, he’s instantly drawn to the free-wheeling shopkeeper. His attraction thrusts him into a dangerous present embroiled in her past.
Using clues from her father’s life and Zack’s déjà vu moments, the couple plunge into a treacherous race to save love and avoid a murderous fate.
Brenda Whiteside is the author of suspenseful, action-adventure stories with a touch of romance. Mostly. She and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two countries. For now, they’ve settled in Central Arizona, but won’t discount the possibility of another move in their future. They share their home with a rescue dog named Amigo. While FDW is fishing, Brenda writes.
Visit Brenda at https://www.brendawhiteside.com
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