No Way to Die: A Ming Dynasty Mystery
by P.A. De Voe
I am pleased to welcome P.A. De Voe to Escape With Dollycas today!
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am an anthropologist and Asian specialist. I write contemporary cozy mysteries, as well as historical mysteries and crime stories immersed in the life and times of Imperial China. I am a Silver Falchion award winner and an Agatha and Silver Falchion award finalist. I am a member of Sisters in Crime National and Guppy Chapter, the Short Mystery Fiction Society, St. Louis Writer’s Guild, Saturday Writers, the Historical Novel Society, and Mystery Writers of America/MWA Midwest.
I live in the Midwest with my husband and a feral cat that came in from the cold. Although I spend most of my time writing, I also enjoy spinning yarn, knitting, and making bears from vintage furs.
What are three things most people don’t know about you?
- That I spin my own wool, alpaca, and angora yarn on a beautiful wheel made just for me.
- That I make bears from vintage furs I find in antique shops. I only use vintage furs that are torn and not readily wearable anymore.
- That I love to bake, especially to make breads from heritage grains, whole wheat and rye flours.
What is the first book you remember reading?
Nancy Drew. My Dad bought a book for me when I was home sick. I also read the Cherry Aims books.
What are you reading now?
I’m rereading Tony Hillerman’s books.
What books have most inspired you?
It’s hard for me to say what books have most inspired me, however, I do remember the impact Ernest Hemingway’s style of writing had on me. He used a clean, simple style to tell wonderful stories.
What made you decide you wanted to write mysteries?
I like reading mysteries. For a long time, however, I didn’t think I could actually write a mystery. Eventually, I decided to give it a try and find it a constant challenge, which I enjoy.
Do you have a special place you like to write?
I have an office in my home. I am surrounded by my books. It’s a happy place.
Where do the ideas for your books come from?
My Chinese historical fiction comes from reading court cases from Imperial China. I also read broadly covering a wide range of topics, such as letter writing, popular fiction, medicine, law… All of this helps fill in information on how people lived at that time.
Is there anything about writing you find most challenging?
For me, doing research for a story easily is the most fun. Therefore, it can sometimes be difficult for me to put my books aside and start writing an outline for the next novel or short story.
What do you think makes a good story?
First, a story has to be entertaining. Second, the readers have to be able to relate to the characters at some visceral level.
Which, of all your characters, do you think is the most like you?
None, really. Quite frankly, I’m not interesting enough to carry a whole story. Plus, I am too American to be anything like my Chinese characters. J
No Way to Die is an amateur sleuth/cozy mystery set in a different time and place from most cozies. Rather than a contemporary setting, No Way to Die’s story takes place in the 14th century. And, whereas most cozy mysteries take place in the US or England, No Way to Die’s story is set in Southern China.
What’s next on the horizon for you?
I am currently putting together a collection of my Judge Lu short stories. At this time, they are spread out over various anthologies and an e-magazine. I hope to have the collection out within the next several weeks.
I am also working on the third novel in the Ming Dynasty Mystery series. This novel will come out next year.
About No Way To Die
No Way to Die: A Ming Dynasty Mystery
Historical Cozy Mystery
2nd in Series
Drum Tower Press, LLC (April 18, 2019)
Paperback: 210 pages
Digital ASIN: B07PWJ715D
Through mystery and intrigue, No Way To Die transports the reader into the complex and engaging world of early Ming China.
When a peddler finds a partially mutilated body of a stranger, the unlikely duo of a young scholar and a local women’s doctor once more join forces to discover who killed him and why. In probing the highly gendered world of early Ming China, unanticipated questions surface, complicating their investigation.
As their case rapidly transitions into the unexpected, they find all roads leading away from the victim, forcing them to consider alternate routes. Was the death the result of inexorable bad karma and beyond their purview, or merely the result of mortal foul play? Was the murdered man the intended victim? If not, who was and why? The investigation leads to a growing list of potential suspects: a lustful herbalist, an unscrupulous neighbor, a vengeful farmer, a jealous husband, a scorned wife, and a band of thieves. Who is innocent and who is the culprit? To solve the murder and bring peace to the victim’s spirit, the duo must untangle the truth and do it before the murderer strikes again.
Praise for No Way to Die: A Ming Dynasty Mystery
by P.A. De Voe
If you love Historical Cozy mysteries and the Judge Dee stories then this is the series for you!
~A Wytch’s Book Review Blog
I loved the mystery and was able to follow the clues, though there are certainly quite a few red herrings thrown in to throw us off! The historical accuracy in No Way to Die enthralled me . . .
~Christy’s Cozy Corners
More About P.A. De Voe
P.A. De Voe is an anthropologist with a PhD in Asian studies and a specialty in China. She has authored several stories featuring the early Ming Dynasty: The Mei-hua Trilogy: Hidden, Warned, and Trapped; the A Ming Dynasty Mystery series with Deadly Relations and No Way to Die; Lotus Shoes, a Mei-hua short story; and a collection of short stories: Judge Lu’s Case Files, stories of Crime & Mystery in Imperial China. Warned won a Silver Falchion Award for Best International Mystery; Trapped was a finalist for an Agatha Award and for a Silver Falchion Award. Her short story, The Immortality Mushroom, (a Judge Lu story) was in the Anthony Award-winning anthology Murder Under the Oaks edited by Art Taylor.
TOUR PARTICIPANTS – Please visit all the stops.
December 9 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
December 9 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 9 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – REVIEW
December 10 – Elizabeth McKenna – Author – SPOTLIGHT
December 10 – Diane Reviews Books – GUEST POST
December 10 – My Reading Journeys – SPOTLIGHT
December 11 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT
December 11 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW
December 11 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – GUEST POST
December 12 – StoreyBook Reviews – GUEST POST
December 12 – MJB Reviewers – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 13 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT
December 13 – Ascroft, eh? – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 14 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW, GUEST POST
December 14 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 15 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
December 15 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW
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