It’s a great pleasure to welcome author Michael Craft for the latest One Thing or Another interview. I’ve known Michael for several years now, since his short story Frog Legs appeared in an anthology I published and edited. It was also my first encounter with his characters Marson Miles and Brody Norris, who later became the central characters in his novels Inside Dumont: A Novel in Stories, and his latest, the murder mystery FlabberGassed: A Mister Puss Mystery.
Listen in as we talk about Michael’s life, career, books and plans for the future.
In the idyllic little town of Dumont, Wisconsin, wealthy widow Mary Questman adopts an exotic stray cat, Mister Puss, who begins to talk to her. At least she thinks so. Mary’s young friend, gay architect Brody Norris, soon finds another reason to worry about Mary’s judgment when she decides to help finance a bizarre weight-loss enterprise called FlabberGas, the invention of a flamboyant local dermatologist, Dr. Francis Frumpkin.
Brody’s skepticism is partially overcome when Dr. Frumpkin commissions him to design the first of a planned chain of FlabberGas clinics. But then, during a public demonstration of Frumpkin’s gimmicky new treatment, a volunteer is gassed to death in a hideous mishap that turns out to be no accident. It was murder, all right. Suspects abound. And Brody is drawn into the role of amateur sleuth, assisting Sheriff Thomas Simms.
Funny and tender, thoroughly tangled, with a chilling motive at its core, the mystery comes to a jolting conclusion when Brody pieces together tiny, overlooked details and helps Sheriff Simms name the killer. Along the way, though, Brody himself gets a little help–or so it seems–from the chatty Mister Puss.
Arriving in early 2019 as an audiobook performed by Jason Frazier
Michael Craft is the author of 15 published novels, including the highly acclaimed Mark Manning mystery series, three installments of which were honored as finalists for Lambda Literary Awards. His latest title, “FlabberGassed: A Mister Puss Mystery,” marks his return to the gay-mystery genre — with a decidedly quirky twist. Craft grew up in Illinois and spent his middle years in Wisconsin, which inspired the fictitious small-town setting of his new book. He holds an MFA in creative writing from Antioch University, Los Angeles, and now resides in Rancho Mirage, California. In 2017, Michael Craft’s professional archives were acquired by the Special Collections Department of the Rivera Library at the University of California, Riverside. Visit the author’s website at www.michaelcraft.com.
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