The new mystery series – the Hunter Rayne highway mysteries – features a long-haul truck driver as the ‘semi-professional’ detective. Thanks to recent reader Steve for the following comment:
Never thought I would enjoy a truck driver based mystery, but I sure did.
I wasn’t surprised. When I chose to write about a trucker, I knew that some readers would hesitate to pick up a book featuring a truck driver. Why would that be? Seems there’s a perception out there, especially among women, that a book with trucks in it must be a book for boys. What!?
Hey! Truckers are real people, too. Truckers can be men or women, young or old, with interesting lives, interesting loves, strong emotions, and fascinating hobbies. Truck drivers can be talented, attractive (wasn’t Elvis?), complicated people. Some truck drivers of today are a lot like the cowboys of yesteryear – hard working, solitary individuals with interesting pasts and complex relationships, which can add up to a touch of romance.
Elvis Presley drove a truck before he became famous. You might be interested to know that several other famous people were truck drivers at some point early in their careers. Take for instance, Liam Neeson, the actor. A hunk, or what? And Chevy Chase, a very funny man. For those of us who were around to appreciate their best years, how about Charles Bronson and Sean Connery? And Richard Pryor. And Rock Hudson. Who wouldn’t want to read about truck drivers like those guys?
But famous truck drivers weren’t all actors and singers. How’s this for murder mystery fans? Another man who drove a truck before he came famous was Peter Sutcliffe. Who was he, you ask. Peter Sutcliffe was – mwah-hah-hah – the Yorkshire Ripper.
Another reader recently commented:
… the whole time I was reading this book I thought R.E. Donald was male. For a guy, he did an excellent job of getting the female characters right. The introspectives and actions of all characters give readers a full understanding of their motives. That was unexpected from a male author in a mystery involving truck drivers. I’m sorry, Ruth E. Donald, for presuming you were a man. It’s a compliment to you that I read the book with such interest that I didn’t read “about the author” first.
Thank you, Goodreads readers Steve and Ginney, for the compliments. They were reading my first Hunter Rayne highway mystery Slow Curve on the Coquihalla. Another Goodreads reader, Pat, had this to say about the second novel Ice on the Grapevine (ahem! a finalist for the 2012 Global Ebook Award for Mysteries) :
The plot and situations were intriguing, and kept me guessing to the end. I found the characters very believable, especially the women. There even were traces of humor and romance. I’m curious to see how Hunter and the other characters develop as the series progresses…. R.E. Donald is definitely an author to revisit.
Thank you, Pat. Comments like yours keep me happily writing more. It’s nice to know that more readers are discovering that a truck driver can make an intriguing hero.
So please keep in mind, mystery lovers, you can’t always judge a book by its cover. Take a closer look at the person behind the wheel next time you pass a big rig on the highway. He – or she – might just be famous one day.
Note: Both novels are currently featured as Giveaways on Goodreads.