Kittanning author Boarts debuts second novel
If a cozy Christmas sounds appealing to you, Kittanning author Jeff Boarts may have just the thing to make it happen.
Boarts brings his second novel, “Merry Merry Murder,” to Kittanning News from 5 to 8 p.m., Friday for purchase and signing.
Described by Boarts as a “traditional cozy who-done-it,” the story, set in 1954 Kittanning, follows the form of literature known as “cozy.” Boarts further explains:
“These are the type of books written by Agatha Christie — very little blood, violence or bad language.”
But readers will be given a lot to ponder as they attempt to discover the truth behind a mysterious murder.
Because “Merry Merry Murder “is set locally, readers will probably recognize the similarities between the places in real time Kittanning and the town of Boarts' creation, but that is where the likenesses end.
“I was asked if the characters in my first book (‘A Flash of Murder') were based on anyone that I or they may know,” Boarts says, “and they're not. This book is no different.”
Although Boarts' characters are fictitious, this author has chosen to continue to make sense of the mysteries through protagonist George Cooper, a local newswriter, who is complemented by his wife, Ruth.
Despite continuity of characters, the books are not sequential. In fact, “Merry Merry Murder” was written first, though published second.
“It took me four to five years to write ‘Merry Merry Murder,' ” he says. “I was politely refused by several publishers.”
It was advice from fellow members of Pennwriters, a statewide association of wordsmiths, that helped Boarts to retool the manuscript.
“I learned that my original work was twice as long as it should be. It took me another year to cut characters and scenes to make it a manageable size.”
But, the year of editing did not begin until Boarts had seen “A Flash of Murder” to completion.
Once able to revisit George, Ruth and 1950s Kittanning, Boarts can say “it's a much better book now.”
So, share in some hometown excitement, cozy up with a copy of “Merry Merry Murder” and have a Merry Christmas.
Copies of both of Boarts' books are available at Kittanning News on Market Street.
Diane Acerni is a Leader Times correspondent.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Program helping Armstrong jail inmates earn GED diplomas
- Narcotic delivery to Armstrong jail foiled; two charged
- Couple ends long, fruitful work on Ford City library board
- East Franklin artist featured at Crooked Creek’s monthly speaker program
- Conflicting stories leave police seeking answers in Ford City shooting
- Apple butter festival keeps tradition alive
- 6 high school bands marching in West Shamokin at annual show
- Former police chief files federal lawsuit against Pine Township, Worthington borough
- Ford City man sentenced to prison for role in fatal beating