Summer isn’t the same without a week, or more at the Chautauqua Institution (CHQ) in New York State.
In 2020, I was scheduled to instruct dance, for my thirteenth “Season” over the Fourth of July, my favorite week. The Covid pandemic hit, and cancelled the Institution’s “Season.” Due to uncertainty over the virus, the 2021 “Season” was altered. Not being at my “happy place” has made me sad.
The Chautauqua Institution is like a modern Brigadoon. The campus-like grounds come to life during the nine-week summer “Season.” For nine weeks, the grounds become a gated community of intellectual and artistic pursuit. For a fee, guests may partake of thought-provoking lectures by world-renowned speakers, enjoy the resident opera, ballet, and theater companies, enjoy the symphony, a movie at the Cinema, take classes, swim or boat on the lake, or just relax on the sprawling grounds. Lovely inns and hotels offer rest, while shops and restaurants are fun activities.
The Institution holds a special place in my heart. For me, it is a respite from the harried and angry “real world.” There is an old fashioned, clean, safe and friendly vibe. It’s a place to slow down, get away from the computer and cell phone, to relax and recharge.
Since I couldn’t be at CHQ physically, I was able to visit “mentally.” Being an author has its advantages. I relived a visit to the Institution by writing about it. Having authored one romantic suspense novel set on the scenic grounds, I decided to write a related second, creating a series. My novel, “A Cloud Over the Sun was born.” Incorporating the Honeysuckle Inn, and characters from the first book, I created a second. Whereas the first novel was about an F.B.I. agent seeking a “black widow” serial killer, the second premise is different.
“Patrol officer, Fred Winfield and her K-9 partner, Titan, are recovering from a shooting, at the Chautauqua Institution, where she is being stalked by the shooter, an ex-lover and notorious drug kingpin.
James Kilbane is an F.B.I. agent on leave, facing his own demons. Fellow agent, Darrin Carter invites him to recover at the Honeysuckle Inn, on the grounds of the Chautauqua Institution.
Can a friendship between two shattered people turn into love, under the dark cloud of fear?
Can a stalker be stopped before another tragedy strikes?”
The novel is available at Amazon, or wherever books are sold in electronic and print formats: