You are currently viewing A New Academic Cozy Mystery: Shakespeare and Murder!

A New Academic Cozy Mystery: Shakespeare and Murder!

A Brand New Academic Cozy Mystery!

I love to read about crime on campus! There’s nothing better than a good academic cozy mystery.

Whether you are already a fan of the Professor Prather Mystery Series or this is your first introduction, you’re going to love hanging out with Professor Emmeline Prather and travel along with her as hijinks, murder, and . . . Shakespeare! ensue.

The Author

Academic Cozy Mystery Author
© Julie Prairie Photography 2016

Mary Angela is the author of the Professor Prather and Happy Camper (Kensington 2020) cozy mystery series.

When Mary isn’t penning heartwarming whodunits, she’s teaching, reading, traveling, or spending time with her family. She lives in South Dakota with her husband, daughters, and spoiled pets.

Mary is represented by Amanda Jain at BookEnds Literary Agency.

Find out more about Mary by clicking on her name or photo or any of the following links: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads.

To learn more about one of Mary’s previous books – her holiday cozy A Very Merry Murder click on the link here.


The Book

Academic Cozy Mystery
Book 4

Everything’s coming up roses for Professor Emmeline Prather. Her first scholarly book is finished, spring term is coming to a close, and her love life is blossoming. Then the festival surrounding the exhibit of Shakespeare’s First Folio opens, bringing with it a tempest more dramatic than the bard’s.

In his panel presentation, actor and grad student Tanner Sparks contends Shakespeare isn’t Shakespeare, boasting that he can prove the long-debated theory that an aristocrat actually penned the sonnets and plays. His bombshell sets off an acrid debate among scholars. But were they upset enough to kill him? That’s what Em wonders when Tanner is found dead in Shakespeare’s Garden, his macabre pose inspired by a scene from Hamlet.

At her department head’s urging, Em sets out to find the killer. Suspects abound, and Em finds herself targeted by Shakespeare-themed threats. Undaunted, she persists, determined to solve the case before the end of the semester.

To buy the book, click on any of the following links: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, and IndieBound

The Interview

The fourth book in your Professor Prather Mystery Series launched November 12. What have you enjoyed most about writing a series? What has been the biggest challenge?

I’ve really enjoyed seeing the characters change and grow. Emmeline despised Mrs. Gunderson in book one. Now they’re practically besties!

One challenge has been staying on a small, midwestern campus. It’s a remote, friendly location. Inventing murders can be hard.

An Academic Cozy Mystery is a subset of a subset. A cozy mystery uses an amateur sleuth and no graphic sex or violence. An Academic cozy is set on a college or university campus and involves that community.

How have you grown as an author over the course of writing four successful novels?

I’m better at planning than I used to be. Having more work to turn in has forced me to be a better planner—and plotter. I use outlines now, and I spend a lot less time rewriting.

You have a brand new series coming out. Tell us what we can anticipate from your new books?

I’m really excited about my new Happy Camper series (coming from Kensington Nov. 2020). I love Black Hills National Park, so setting a series there is a dream come true. I’m from South Dakota and have been to the area many times.

Readers can expect a fun setting: the eclectic Happy Camper gift shop in the fictional small town of Spirit Canyon. They can also expect a sassy shop owner, Zo Jones. I hope readers love her as much as do.

Cozy Mystery location
Beautiful South Dakota

“Writing a new series has opened a door I didn’t even know was closed.”

What was it like starting a new series after so many years focused on Professor Prather?

In some ways, writing Professor Prather was easy because I thought of the series as an extension of my experience as a college teacher. But it was also limiting.

Writing a new series has opened a door I didn’t even know was closed. I think of myself more as a writer than a teacher now. It’s a big difference.

What can we find you doing when you aren’t writing or reading?

Working on homework with my daughters, Madeline and Maisie, or running them to practices or events. Maisie is in the Nutcracker ballet, so that has kept us busy lately. I also love to bake.

Don’t miss Mary Angela’s newest series – a departure from her Academic Cozy Mystery history . . .

What are you working on now?

I’m working on a short story and book two of the Happy Camper series. It’s set during Halloween, which is perfect for Spirit Canyon.

Final words of wisdom:

People say write every day, but I would say spend time with your characters every day.

When you decide to publish, find someone with experience, and ask him/her for help. Don’t submit your work without a plan.

Thanks for hanging out with us on my blog! Can’t wait to delve into Coming Up Murder, I love a good academic cozy mystery – I’ve got my copy, readers, do you have yours?

Header Photo by 12019 on Pixabay. For more information, click the link here.

South Dakota photo by Sspiehs3 on Pixabay. Fore more information, click the link here.

Elena Hartwell

Author and developmental editor.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Judi Lynn

    I really enjoyed the interview. Great questions and thoughtful answers. I think stretching yourself as a writer by writing outside your comfort zone gives you more freedom and expertise. The new series sounds great!

    1. Elena Hartwell

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it Judi. And I agree with you on all points, definitely great to stretch and I can’t wait to read her new series too!

Leave a Reply