Thursday, August 25, 2011
by Jean Henry Mead
Severe weather can be a great antagonist in any genre, especially mysteries and all its subgrenres. I use weather often in my novels: pea soup fog, rain, blizzards. floods, tornadoes or high winds because weather creates drama and pits humans against nature.
Diary of Murder begins in a Rocky Mountain blizzard while Dana Logan and her friend Sarah Cafferty are vacationing in Colorado and learn of Dana’s sister’s death. Her husband claims it was suicide but Dana knows better and drives their 37-foot RV through a storm, which no one in her right mind would attempt, but I wrote that scene from experience.
In Murder on the Interstate, Dana and Sarah discover the body of a young woman in her Mercedes convertible during a rainstorm in northern Arizona. Later, they’re caught in a flash flood in a rented Hummer while pursed by a serial killer during a severe downpour. They have to be rescued by helicopter but they’re still not out of the woods.