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Mysteries « Sandra Brannan: Author of the Liv Bergen Mystery Series

Tag Archive for 'Mysteries'

Sixth In The Series…

So excited to give birth to my 6th book in the Liv Bergen family!

Jacob’s Descent was released in March, 2016, and I have been so fortunate to receive quick and passionate responses from all my fans.

Growing up Catholic and now a Lutheran, I was somehow surprised to learn that priests in my hometown would choose to spend their free time reading mysteries, shocked to learn they were reading MY mysteries.  A priest who is no longer with us asked me to write a Liv Bergen incorporating a real mystery, the murder of a priest in Deadwood in the early 1920’s.  Because it was true crime and I am nothing but a fictional crime writer, I resisted.

Then, a second priest who was also a family friend, told me the first priest had said I would be writing a book on the cold case of Father Belknap’s murder.  I told him under no uncertain terms would I write a book about a true crime, feeling I could not do justice to the man, nor could I speculate on such a serious matter.  Instead, I write for fun, choose fiction, largely because my mind can’t handle true crime.

When he died, the monsignor asked me to write the book, told me the first two priests had told him about our discussions.  I explained that I had told them no, that I understood that their goal was not to solve the case, but to raise awareness about his death because they were hoping to nominate Father Belknap as a candidate for sainthood, which has a requirement of dying from an extraordinary act of faith at least 100 years earlier.

Monsignor O’Connell was insistent.  So I wrote the book under the condition that he read the first draft, help me get the storyline straight as to the life as a priest, and that he allow me to name both characters after him.  He agreed.

We recently lost the monsignor, but not before he read and blessed Jacob’s Descent.  If you enjoy the book, thank him.  If you don’t, blame me.

Thank you for choosing Liv AGAIN!

Jacobs Descent

Bachelors Of A Different Kind

Living in the Dakotas certainly has its privileges.  Cold, yes.  But who gets to experience what it might have been like in the late 1800’s in the Wild West hunting buffalo?

Twice, I’ve had the distinct pleasure of observing how the unofficial national animal, the American bison, gathers in families and as bachelors during hunts.  Amazing how the matriarch of the family senses danger and spearheads a run, protecting the younger bulls in the center of the stampede.  Elsewhere on the tens of thousands of acres, the older bulls, which hang out as bachelors, respond quite differently when sensing danger.   Aggressive, standing their ground.  As a mother, it was nerve-racking to watch as my “little boy” crept up on the herd of bachelors.

Tatanka, the Great American Bison

Tatanka, the Great American Bison

 

Tatanka, the Great American Bison

Tatanka, the Great American Bison

We took our youngest son out this weekend to learn how to hunt an older bull and dress him out, just as the pioneers and Lakota Sioux of the old west had to do in earlier days.  Like a modern day John Dunbar from Dances With Wolves, inch hunter’s knife. He’s not so little anymore and it was as much a rite of passage for me —  the mamma, wanting desperately to gather him up and run, rather than letting him stand his ground — as  it was for him, a grown man at 18.

The meat will provide meals for hundreds and for a young man who came from an orphanage in Vietnam where food was limited, he is grateful to call his home America, where the buffalo roam.





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