The Body in the Bed is a suspenseful whodunit mystery set in exotic Montevideo, Uruguay. Murder and espionage are seamlessly mixed with the political and cultural aspects of modern day life in Uruguay. The protagonists include Los Angeles based private detective Roger Bowman, his wife, Biochemist Suzanne Foster, Paraguayan policeman and international spy Eduardo Gomez, and of course The Body in the Bed, who we meet very early in the story. Who killed him and why? The reader will not only enjoy a good mystery, but will smell and taste (at least virtually) the local foods and wines of Uruguay, visit the local attractions of Montevideo, and learn a little history of a small corner of South America half a world away from the United States. The plot is carefully researched and based on real events occurring in today’s news. The Body in the Bed is part of the author’s South American mystery series, all e-books available on-line from Amazon’s Kindle Store. Each book in the series can be read on its own, in any order.
Targeted Age Group:: Adult
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
The author has lived in Montevideo so the settings are authentic. I enjoy sharing my experiences in places our readers may not have visited, and may never visit, as backgrounds for the Roger and Suzanne mystery series. This particular book’s plot is based on the historical and current relationship between Uruguay, traditionally friendly to the United States but totally independent in its foreign policy, and Iran, one of the countries least friendly to the United States for at least two generations. I enjoy starting my plots with a factual basis, even if my creative imagination may take us into situations and action far from what might reasonably occur in the real world settings of the stories.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
The book is part of a series. Several of the characters (Roger, Suzanne, Eduardo, Martin, and “the Body”) are old friends from previous books in the series, especially “The Ambivalent Corpse”, so were already there in Montevideo to be used as part of the story. The remaining characters are products of my imagination, invented for the occasion, or based upon fictional combinations of physical and behavioral characteristics of some of my old friends and acquaintances from Montevideo.
My wife, Suzanne, and I both had the same e-mail on our computer, an ultra-fancy invitation to next week’s gala event in Montevideo, the capital city of Uruguay. In the most formal of Spanish, The Intendencia de Montevideo invited us to a dinner hosted by the Mayor and Police Chief to celebrate the upcoming promotion of Martin Gonzalez to the rank of Chief of Detectives. Martin was a special friend of ours, and this was a very significant and well earned career advancement for him. I was tempted to say yes to the invitation if Suzanne agreed to join me for the occasion.
I waited until our dinner at home in the huge house in Beverly Hills, California that Suzanne had inherited from her father after his murder, when we first met, to ask her. She looked surprised for a moment before putting down her knife and fork and replying.
“I was looking for an excuse to suggest that we go to the celebration, but thought you might be too busy or just not want to do all the formalities they’ll expect. Let’s do it! But I have to admit, there’s a nitpicky little voice inside my head asking whether we’ll get as far as the hotel in Montevideo before we discover the first dead body.” Suzanne rolled her eyes and grimaced as she obviously remembered discovering the grisly scene of the dismembered body in the park the first time we had come to Montevideo.
That earned a smile from me, probably because I’ve gotten so used to seeing dead bodies in my former career as a homicide detective on the Los Angeles Police department and my present work as a private detective. “Well, so far we’ve gotten registered at the hotel once before we found the body and we’ve been told about the body before we ever got to the hotel the other time. I guess that makes the answer to your question that it’s a 50-50 chance either way.”
About the Author:
The author is a Professor of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine at the University of California’s Medical School at Davis, near Sacramento in Northern California. Jerry writes “tweener” mystery books (hard boiled stories that follow the cozy conventions of no graphic sex and no cussing) that are fast moving and entertain the reader, while introducing the readers to a region where he has lived and worked that is a long way from home for most English speakers. He and his wife lived previously in Salta, Argentina and Montevideo, Uruguay for several months each. Jerry selected the most interesting South American locations he found for Roger and Suzanne to visit while solving miscellaneous murders. Montevideo, Salta, Machu Picchu, the Galapagos Islands, and Iguazu Falls are also characters in these books, and the novels portray these places as vivid and real. Jerry and his wife Elaine breed prize-winning German Shorthaired Pointer dogs; Elaine also provides technical advice for Jerry’s novels like The Deadly Dog Show and editing for all of the books.
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