And just like that… a new book for you 🥂

Yes, I have been writing away this year. It was only January when Monsieur Moonlight shined his light on the world. And now, I have a new one almost wrapped up in a bow, coming out July 19. The Last Letter from France is the Bennett Sisters Mystery #20… yikes! It will be available first on my store, shop.lisemcclendon.com, then on other retailers on August 2.

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So what is this new one about? Well, a fan, Allison J, wrote to me about the two decrepit little cottages that Pascal bought for Merle a few books back. When, she asked, was Merle going to remodel them? Good question! And also, how to make a mystery out of a messy project like renovating a 200 year old cottage (or two)? I contemplated that and came up with a plot. You can read about it over on my website at https://lisemcclendon.com/book/preorder-now/  You can’t preorder on my website for the July 19 release but you can preorder on Amazon if you wish. https://amzn.to/4br043u

 

 

 

The story deals with curiosity, the power of it, the manic strength of it at times, the way it grabs a person and won’t let go. That happens to Merle when she finds a packet of old letters in one of the cottages. Her sister Stasia is helping her with the renovation and dubs the cottages Cleo and Gladys.

 

“Their names came to me. This one is Cleo. She’s worn but very French. Still a bit of a flirt. That one—” She gestured at the other cottage through a small, dirty window. “That one is Gladys. Plain old Gladys. Ready for one last swing around the dance floor. Maybe.” She laughed at Merle’s expression. “Cleo and Gladys: unless they, or you, tell me otherwise.”

Gladys is a mess, full of smelly rodents and rainwater. It will take a monumental task to get her ready for tourists. Cleo, on the other hand, is not so bad. Uncomfortable during a heat wave perhaps but not awful. So the sisters set to work on Cleo but accidentally come across the letters in a cupboard in the other cottage, Gladys. These letters become the mystery in the story, who wrote them, who received them, who left them in France and what happened to them over a hundred years before, during World War One.

So we get to dig into history, into World War One, into England, into France, and yes, even Americans like Merle Bennett and her sisters. Merle’s curiosity about these people, about the origins of the letters and the fate of the writer and his girlfriend, run the story. She won’t give up. She can’t.

I used a quote to illuminate curiosity, written by Albert Einstein, as an epigraph to the book.

I hope I’ve made *you* curious! Be sure to preorder on Amazon or buy July 19 on my store. I will be sending out a newsletter on the 19th… watch for it!

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