In Murder on the Mountain, when Kyle and Wesley are being transported to the summit of Mount Washington on a cold, foggy October night to investigate the murder of Stuart Warren, the train passes by the memorial to Lizzie Bourne. It’s mentioned in passing, but let me take this opportunity to tell you why that memorial is there.
On September 14, 1885, a 23-year-old woman named Lizzie C. Bourne attempted to climb Mount Washington with her cousin, Lucy Bourne, and her uncle, George Bourne. They followed the Carriage Road. However, that was only half constructed at the time, so the second leg of the trip would have been grueling. It’s now believed Lizzie had an undiagnosed heart condition, as well.
They began the climb at 2pm, and by 4pm they were halfway up the mountain. In those days, there was a hotel at the summit called the Tip-Top House, so if they’d been able to make it that far, they would have had a warm bed for the night. Unfortunately, they were hit by a sudden gale, and clouds descended, making it impossible to see the way to the summit. As night descended, the temperature dropped below freezing.
The girls became too exhausted to continue, so they lay down and George busied himself building a rock wall to shield them from the winds. He labored at this until late into the night, at which point he lay down beside the girls. But when he took Lizzie’s hand to comfort her, he found that it was cold. She’d died quietly in her sleep.
In the morning, the sun rose, revealing that George and the girls were within sight of Tip-Top House, where they could have spent the night, warm and safe.
Lizzie Bourne was not the first person to die on Mount Washington, but a young woman dying so close to safe haven struck a chord with people. A rough stone monument was built to commemorate her, and later replaced with a more permanent structure. Her portrait now hangs in Tip-Top House, which is now a museum.
For the next four weeks, Murder on the Mountain will be touring the blogs of several MM Romance authors, providing . If you leave an email address in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, you’ll be entered into a drawing for either a free copy of Murder on the Mountain or a $40 gift certificate to Dreamspinner Press!
To visit more blogs on the blog tour, go to: http://jamiefessenden.com/2014/08/22/murder-on-the-mountain-blog-tour/
When Jesse Morales, a recent college grad who aspires to be a mystery writer, volunteers to work on the summit of Mt. Washington for a week, he expects to work hard. What he doesn’t expect is to find a corpse in the fog, lying among the rocks, his head crushed. The dead man turns out to be a young tourist named Stuart Warren, who strayed from his friends while visiting the mountain.
Kyle Dubois, a widowed state police detective, is called to the scene in the middle of the night, along with his partner, Wesley Roberts. Kyle and Jesse are instantly drawn to one another, except Jesse’s fascination with murder mysteries makes it difficult for Kyle to take the young man seriously. But Jesse finds a way to make himself invaluable to the detective by checking into the hotel where the victim’s friends and family are staying and infiltrating their circle. Soon, he is learning things that could very well solve the case—or get him killed.