Excerpt from Blooded in Sleepy Hollow chapter One

Kick Groves on the morning her son went missing

Picking up the receiver, I slowly lowered myself to the sofa. A way, bubbly voice, filled my ears. It was my sister.ma who was traveling in the UK on sabbatical. It was after noon there but she knew how I.likes to have the house to myself when Ken was on his morning jog and the kids were off to school. In a perfectly calm voice, I answered her ‘What’s up?’ with ‘nothing much.’

There was nothing happening. I was missing something. Not my son, but the perfectly reasonable explanation as to why he wasn’t in his bed or at the breakfast table and so on. No reason to worry Emma. This was all a misunderstanding. ‘I am happy you are having such a good stay. How good to hear your voice. Do I detect a bit of a British accent, Em? How interesting visiting Sutton Hoo must be. How I wish I could be there with you.’

When Jocasta died

Brenda (Bubbles) and Kendall get high on pot in an upper room in her black Baptist church where her uncle is the minister. This is very atypical of both of them but Kendall’s missing son and Bubble’s niece Jocasta’s leukemia diagnosis proves too much to bear.

Scene near end of Blooded in Sleepy Hollow:

Jocasta is gone, Kendall. After all that poor child went through, the Good Lord saw fit to take her away in his ever loving arms. I thought, even after she was gone, that He was going to appear to say, ’Talitha koum!’ and that little Jocasta would rise up and run into His outstretched arms. I wouldn’t be jealous, Ken, but I would say, ’Please, when you are done holding my baby, let..me have a chance.’

’He would Bubbles. You know He would. But that’s not what happened.’


My God, this book was in pieces. A hopefully touching scene: little. Mattie Groves at eight eats chocolate ice cream with chocolate sauce and his mother stands and beams. She doesn’t go to get a camera: this precious moment is one for the heart.

At five he romps on the beach on Iona as his grandma returns to her Scottish roots. He collects shells while his baby sis Kelley kicks in his mother’s tummy.

But there was no place for these scenes which were written out in careful detail.

Until the fate-filled night when Father Basil stands like The Exorcist’s Father Merrin in a pool of light under Kick’s window. Then in between words no one wants to hear, memories fill in the silence.

Trouble is a roughhewn mosaic which will require a year of polishing and shaping.

Believe it or not: picture of bathroom floor six years ago

Father Basil, Kendall and the Mysterious Xmas Child

🎄 Christmas comes to town in Blooded in 💤 Sleepy Hollow 🎃 and –

Mattie Groves is still missing. Dad Kendall has memories of Father Martin back when he was an altar boy. When he falls while out jogging 🏃 he winds up in the ER with a concussion. He thinks of Father Basil 🌿 coming to give him the Last Rites and how he will strangle him down to hell.

Mother Kick, grandmother Adaira, Auntie Em and little sis Kelley start to get some Christmas spirit. While decorating and writing cards, Kick finds herself alone. Even the animals are 💤 asleep. ‘Could you not watch with me little apostles,’ she asks.

The ☎️ phone rings. Someone is promising to deliver a mysterious child to St. Rafe’s on Christmas Eve says Detective Vince. Rumor is catching fire on social media.

Detective Vince based on the retired Bananas cop of 💤 Sleepy Hollow 🎃 & Spring Valley

Working away. Thanksgiving is here in the book Bloodes in Sleepy Hollow. Detective Vince has heard from his daughter’s high school friend that his drug addicted Melissa eats in a soup kitchen run by a church over the river in Spring Valley. One day he goes there to throw his weight around but gets disarmed by the solid, but laid back minister. Pictures of a pint-sized quarterback baby in tiny helmet cover bulletins boards. A pond outside is turning to slush as early snow melts.

Ancestry.com DNA & The Sands of the Shore

How freeing it is to write a novel most every day where the main character Catherine ‘Kick’ Groves has a Scottish grandmother, Adaira.

My ‘ain folk’ hailed from the Glasgow area though my grandmother marries a highlander from Dundee. He had been in the Black Watch. They went all the way up to Loch Ness where my mother was born near the Black Isle but that was nothing yet. Soon they were off to America.

My mom’s mom believed in burning your bridges and going past her times in East Kilbride was tough until someone from the ‘House of Eliott’ played it all at my feet. No one besides Wilhelmina and George had gotten out of greater Glasgow.

Affairs is an island Scot and that is freeing and good.



The main character Kick has a Scottish mother Adaira who has lived with her American husband in Tarrytown for.almost forty years. Killers, including serial ones, is not a good topic for a family with a missing child to discuss but one night they get on the topic and can’t get off. From the Scottish Peter Manuel to Leopold and Loeb, they make their blood run cold. Kick always keeps Elizabeth Smart close her heart for comfort but when asked how she keeps calm to carry on she responds, ‘Insee myself in a little stone cottage on Iona where the land and sky meet the Irish Sea as the gray smoke from the chimney rises to meet God. I ensconce, ensconce? Is that a word? Well, I ensconced myself like a snail but there is light within.’