Author Name: Susan Van Kirk
Book Title: Marry in Haste: An Endurance Mystery
Book Genre: Mystery/Amateur Sleuth
Release Date: November 16, 2016
Synopsis: In 2012, wealthy Endurance banker, Conrad Folger, is murdered and his wife arrested. Grace Kimball, retired teacher, joins Detective TJ Sweeney to investigate the murder and uncovers a dark secret.
In 1893, Olivia Havelock, age seventeen, moves to Endurance to seek a husband. She finds one in Charles Lockwood, powerful and wealthy judge, but her diary reveals a terrifying story.
Two wives—two murders a century apart—and a shocking secret connects them.
Excerpt: Detective Jake Williams looked at his notebook and shuffled back a few pages. “The housekeeper, Ms. Simmons, worked here last night helping get food ready with a caterer, and then she left. The Folgers had dinner guests and, afterwards, a poker game. Anyway, the housekeeper left and came back to clean up this morning. Came in the kitchen door. It was locked, by the way, and the alarm was on.” He glanced up at TJ Sweeney, proffering a significant look. “So she shut off the alarm, unlocked the door, came in, and started some coffee for Emily and Conrad. Just as she began picking up dirty dishes, she heard screams from upstairs. She rushed up the back stairs, saw the blood on the carpet, and followed it into Emily’s room, thinking she was there. But she wasn’t. The housekeeper then saw blood on the floor of Emily’s room and on the bed.
“So Ms. Simmons—that’s her name—followed the blood to Conrad’s room, and saw Emily, in full hysteria, rocking back and forth on the floor behind the bed. She rushed in and grabbed Emily by the shoulders and hugged her, lifting her up off the floor. When she saw what was left of Conrad, she was shocked, but had the fortitude to hang on to Emily, keep their backs to Conrad, and grab the bedside phone to call 9-1-1. Amazing woman. She heard sirens very quickly.
“By the way, Emily is not even close to coherent. Officer Collier was the first one in. He moved the two of them out of the murder room and over to Emily’s bedroom. Made the necessary calls. I was on my way in to work, so I just turned around.”
“Who’s with Emily now? We’ll need to get a warrant for her clothes.”
“I sent Collier with her, and a policewoman, Eileen Randall, is meeting them at the ER. Ms. Folger’s in really bad shape. Shock. I couldn’t get much coherent out of her except for one thing.”
“What was that?”
“She repeated over and over, ‘I killed him.’ ”
About the Author: Susan Van Kirk grew up in Galesburg, Illinois, and received degrees from Knox College and the University of Illinois. She taught high school English for thirty-four years, with an additional ten years at Monmouth College. Her short story, “War and Remembrance” (Teacher Magazine), became one of the chapters in her creative nonfiction memoir, The Education of a Teacher (Including Dirty Books and Pointed Looks).
Susan’s first Endurance mystery novel, Three May Keep a Secret, was published in 2014 by Five Star Publishing/Cengage. In April, 2016, she published an Endurance e-book novella titled The Locket: From the Casebook of TJ Sweeney.