🗣️ Come listen to — or watch — Episode 13 of my podcast, 12 Minutes (or less!) with the Author. Shari T. Mitchell’s latest book, Fatal Vow, book three in the Marnie Reilly Mysteries, was released on Thriller Thursday, June 20, 2023. I was lucky enough to catch Shari for an interview before she headed off for a much-deserved vacation to talk about this latest installment in her series. Transcript and link to the Spotify podcast episode below. The podcast is also on YouTube (video below).
Episode 13, on Spotify: https://spotifyanchor-web.app.link/e/Ggd7QMo9vBb
This podcast episode is available on YouTube as well. Find it here: https://youtu.be/meBf-fp2n-w
Want to read my 5-star review of Fatal Vow? Click here!
Find Shari T. Mitchell and Her Books:
About Fatal Vow, by Shari T. Mitchell
When a long-held truth hides a sick, twisted lie, will the psychic psychologist’s greatest enemy save her from a fate worse than death?
The last year has been an absolute shitstorm for psychic psychologist Marnie Reilly. Desperate to protect her loved ones from the evil stalking her, she fled her hometown of Creekwood, New York.
It’s the first day of Summer and she’s back in town to make amends and take control of the chaos of her past. But her greatest enemy is hot on her heels with an axe to grind. Or is that just an illusion created by a madman?
Praise for Fatal Vow
“Creekwood is one deadly town, but Marnie Reilly isn’t letting a maniacal killer get away with it. A great cast of characters, a solid plot, creepy scenes, and dogs! What more can a mystery/thriller reader ask for? Why, a great ending, of course — checkmate! You won’t forget it!” — Chronicles of Crime, Victoria, BC, Canada
“Author Shari T. Mitchell has me hooked! If you love thrillers, this series belongs on your bookshelf. Fatal Vow delivers a stunning conclusion to a complex storyline spanning three books while expertly setting the stage for book four. I’m eagerly awaiting the next release.” — T.L. Brown, Door to Door Paranormal Mysteries
Welcome to 12 Minutes (or less!) with the Author. I’m your host, T.L. Brown, but you can call me Tracy. Let’s get started.
T.L. Brown: Hey there. Welcome to another episode of 12 Minutes (or less!) with the Author. Today. I’m so excited because we have Shari T. Mitchell. She’s the author of the Marnie Reilly Mysteries thriller series, which includes Divine Guidance, Torn Veil, and Fatal Vow.
Raised in Northern New York State, Shari’s hometown and surroundings are the inspiration for her series’ fictional town of Creekwood, New York — which is located somewhere in the Adirondack Mountains. While Shari loves developing multidimensional characters with whom her readers can relate, her passion is plotting the twists and turns of a mystery. It feeds her analytical and creative mind.
She lives in North Carolina and shares her home with her partner in crime, Harper, and their crazy rescue dogs, Dougal, Callee, Midge, and Mags. A thirty-plus-year marketer, Shari loves spending time with her family, cooking, hiking, traveling, gardening, and reading. She is often heard chatting with her characters because they natter at her constantly!
You can learn more about Shari at ShariTMitchell.com — and that link can be found in the podcast description along with her socials.
Shari, welcome. It’s so exciting to have you on the show.
Shari T. Mitchell: Hello, how are you?
T.L. Brown: I am doing very well. I am thrilled because the third book in your series, Fatal Vow, has just been released. I have your series — Divine Guidance scared the bejesus out of me. I know it’s the joke, but it’s the truth. Torn Veil — fabulous, excellent second-in-series. And now Bing! [Points to book cover magically appearing on the screen.] We’ve got Fatal Vow. I’m so excited that I was able to read an advance copy. And you hit this one out of the park. So tell us about your latest mystery thriller, Fatal Vow.
Shari T. Mitchell: Fatal Vow brings all of those little Easter eggs that I dropped in Divine Guidance and Torn Veil all together in this one. It’s a huge story. It’s quite complex. But Marnie Reilly, my main character, is a psychic psychologist. She has been through an awful lot in her life, and the past year has been a shitstorm. She’s got a stalker. She’s got a few really horrible people wandering around her life. Creekwood is fraught with murder. Every corner you turn, there’s a body (laughs) — not quite that bad, but it very much is the coming together of the first two books. Everything is explained. But don’t worry. There is a fourth on the way because when I leave people with a cliffhanger, I have to come back and tell them what’s going on.
T.L. Brown: And as a fan, thank you for that. Because, as I said, I’ve read the advance copy, and yeah, I can’t wait. I can’t wait to read number four.
Shari T. Mitchell: Murder, mystery, mayhem, border collies. Cute detectives. Your boyfriend, Danny Gregg.
T.L. Brown: Very cute.
Shari T. Mitchell: It’s a big story. There were a lot of pieces to pull together, and I think that readers… (pauses) Most of the time with mine, it isn’t who you think it is. And this is definitely an “it isn’t who you think it is [story].”
T.L. Brown: I was really surprised. I like to think that I kind of…If you’ve read the first two books — obviously you should — you say, Oh, okay, I think I know where she’s going to go. Then I’m like: Oh, I so did not see that coming! And it worked, and it was great. It either works or it doesn’t. And it really worked. I was very caught up in the whole story.
Shari T. Mitchell: For me, I always want to make sure that when someone picks up one of my books, whether it’s Divine Guidance, Torn Veil, or Fatal Vow, I don’t ever want them to be lost. With Torn Veil, I gave a lot of backstories, so if they hadn’t read Divine Guidance, it was okay. Same thing with Fatal Vow. I’ve given enough backstory that if they haven’t read the two previous ones, they’re going to be okay. However, you should read the two previous books.
T.L. Brown: You should; I agree. I think you could pick up this third book and really still have a great reading experience. But to have the best reading experience, reading the first two — Divine Guidance and Torn Veil — that’s what you need to do. Tell me…
Shari T. Mitchell: Well, that’s…
T.L. Brown: Oh, I’m sorry. Go ahead!
Shari T. Mitchell: Watching the characters develop — I think that is really interesting.
T.L. Brown: And you have created some of my favorite characters. One of my book boyfriends, of course, Danny.
Shari T. Mitchell: Thank you.
T.L. Brown: But your whole cast of characters is very complex and deep. And since this is your third book in your Marnie Reilly Mysteries, tell me, what was the biggest challenge you had writing this book, compared to the first two?
Shari T. Mitchell: Memory. (laughs) I have developed what’s called the Marnie Reilly Mysteries Encyclopedia. All of my characters, all of the places, all of the plot in one place, so that while I’m writing, I can go back and reference it. Because, you know, didn’t you say somebody’s eyes were this color in that one [book], but now you’re saying it’s…? I mean, I haven’t made that mistake because the color of my character’s eyes — the description — is quite precise. But it’s remembering all of the bits and pieces so that everything ties together in a nice tidy package. That’s the hardest… And time! Finding the time to write. I know some people think it sounds easy, but 90,000 words is a lot. And when you write 90,000 words, you’ve normally written 130,000 words and edited out a lot. So, it’s not a small feat to write 90,000 words — and put it in a book!
T.L. Brown: I agree! And I think that as you write in a series…I did the same thing. You seem to write more because you do have so much to build off of from your first two books. So yeah, I can definitely see [how this happens].
Shari T. Mitchell: Absolutely.
T.L. Brown: Tell me, what’s in store [for readers]? Now that we have book three — yay! — tell me what’s in store for Marnie and crew in book four if you can. At least give us a hint.
Shari T. Mitchell: So Divine Guidance is set at Thanksgiving. Torn Veil is set at Christmas. Fatal Vow is set at the 4th of July, and now we come to Halloween — which seems so appropriate for a mystery thriller.
T.L. Brown: You bet.
Shari T. Mitchell: Marnie is going to be obsessed with building a hay maze — a promise that she made. And no doubt, there’s probably going to be a body found in there at some point, but I haven’t gotten there yet. It’s all going to be about Halloween, and it will come to a head on Halloween. I couldn’t think of a better holiday. I can’t say more because it’ll give so much away from Fatal Vow. But book fours…Obviously, it’s going to be a big one, too, because it’s got to tie in the Easter eggs that I dropped in Fatal Vow — and there are a lot of Easter eggs — plus the novella/short story (The Island) that’s at the end of Fatal Vow. That short story has given a lot of where the next book goes. So, make sure you read it!
T.L. Brown: Absolutely!
Shari T. Mitchell: The Island is really, really important. That’s all I can say.
T.L. Brown: This has been fantastic. We’re coming toward the end of the podcast episode, so first, let me tell people where to find you. Thank you, Shari.
Shari T. Mitchell: Thank you so much!
T.L. Brown: Oh, you’re very welcome! People can get your fantastic series, but let’s just go back to right here (points to book): Fatal Vow can be found on Amazon. The ebook is also available in Kindle Unlimited. The paperback is on Amazon, but it’s also distributed through other online retail outlets. Down below, you’ll find a link to Shari’s website, a link to Amazon, and a link to many of her socials. Shari is on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Goodreads, and Threads. All those links are below. Shari — I’m Fan Girling! Woo! You are one of my favorites!
Shari T. Mitchell: Thank you! I love your series. You’re one of mine too.
T.L. Brown: Ohh, well, thank you. Thank you so much.
Shari T. Mitchell: Thank you.
T.L. Brown: You’ve been a great support, and I’m glad we met! Listeners, watchers: thank you so much for joining us today, and I’ll see you on the next episode of 12 Minutes (or less!) with the Author. Have a great day. Bye bye.
Shari T. Mitchell: Cheers!
This has been 12 Minutes (or less!) with the Author. Thanks for listening to today’s episode. Hope you can join me for the next one. Until then, this is Tracy, AKA author T.L. Brown signing off.