The Farran Mackenzie Lost Villages Mysteries

A Violent End (2001)

Following the death of her mother, university history professor Farran Mackenzie begins searching for her parents’ past in the Lost Villages of the St. Lawrence Seaway. Her arrival surprises the old-timers, and stirs up memories amongst the former villagers, many of whom were already rattled but the recent appearance of Farran’s father—from beneath the waters of the St. Lawrence where his body had unknowingly lain since the flooding, forty years before. Then, when a friend of her parents dies in a suspicious accident soon after her arrival, Farran is forced to put her research skills to new use, before her father’s murderer finds her. ($30.00)

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The Brother of Sleep (2004)

Farran Mackenzie couldn’t have been more surprised when Alison Perry walked into her University of Waterloo office. It had been thrity years since she had last seen her best friend in high school, and thirty years since her best friend’s father, a police officer, had been killed in the line of duty. And now Alison was asking for help in discovering who had really killed her father.

Farran has doubts about helping her long-lost friend. A lifetime has passed since Alison walked out of her life with no explanation but doubts fade when a car bomb results in the death of Sergeant Perry’s old partner, nearly killing Alison and Farran as well. Someone obviously doesn’t want them to dig up old skeletons, so Farran takes them to the only place she feels safe–the St. Lawrence Seaway. But the past keeps catching up with them there, too. A fated meeting in the local cemetery with Paul Vaughn, a police officer from Newfoundland, has Farran revisiting the origins of the St. Lawrence Seaway, a journery that turned her own life upside down only a year ago, and threatens to do so again. She feels a strange attraction to Paul, whose life seems to mirror her own, but what about Jerry Strauss, the OPP inspector to who she owes so much? Too many police officers in her life, both past and present, and too many coincidences. Farran’s heart is playing havoc with her instincts, which could prove dangerous, if not deadly. Whom can she trust? And is the truth worth the price of knowing? ($30.00)

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All Mortall Things (2006)

Inspector Jerry Strauss does not believe in ghosts.

As commander of the Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry detachment for the Ontario Provincial Police, he deals with facts, not fancies. But he and Sterling House, now a B&B in Ingleside, have a long history going back to his childhood when the house was a private home in the Lost Village of Wales. As a boy, things weren’t so black and white, and both the home and village had an unearthly air that last summer before the flooding of the St. Lawrence Seaway caused the house to be moved and the village to disappear forever. Death came to the house then, and now death has returned, nearly fifty years later. Jerry Strauss soon discovers he’s connected to both. If she were there, Farran Mackenzie would tell him to listen to the house. Inspector Strauss isn’t sure he wants to hear what it has to say. ($20.00)

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On a Darkling Plain (2009)

So much for a summer of light emotional entertainment.

In the month marking fifty years since the inundation of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the remains of a young man gone missing during the Project days surface near Old Iroquois and stir up a hornet’s nest on both sides of the river. While dodging a cold-blooded killer, her approaching fiftieth birthday, and emotional commitment to Inspector Jerry Strauss, Farran Mackenzie faces reconnecting with the daughter she gave up twenty-six years before–and the dark secret that drove them apart in the first place. ($30.00)

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All My Worldly Goods (2017)

The Seaway Valley’s Queen of Crime returns with a sweeping tale of generational secrets and murder.

When Farran Mackenzie begins a genealogical search into her grandmother Evian’s past, she finds more questions than answers buried in a murky chapter of Canadian history: the British Home Children. A visit from an unexpected family connection shines a new light on Evian’s sudden death in the 1950s, suggesting a disturbing truth. When death arrives on the doorstep, Farran must use all her research skills to piece the past together—from the streets of WWI England, to rural post-war Ontario, to Depression-era Lost Villages and the origins of the St. Lawrence Seaway—before murder strikes again in real time. ($25.00)

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All Will Fall Together (2021)

With Jerry Strauss arrested for murder and her daughter back in her life bringing emotional baggage and possible personal danger, Farran Mackenzie battles her most challenging “blast from the past” since her arrival in the Seaway Valley: the return of the Moccasin train from the mists of time, a thundering phantasm that brings remembered fear and inexplicable deaths to the last generation from the Lost Villages. ($25.00)

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The Last Wave By (2022)

In this seventh and final novel, Farran Mackenzie must unmask a silent serial killer whose trail of death goes back to the days of the St. Lawrence Seaway and Power Project. With Jerry Strauss facing murder charges, Farran’s family and friends race against time to close the loop around the guilty party. And there is nothing more deadly than a trapped animal… ($30.00)

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