Meet the “Cozy” Mystery Writer

Author Karen Shughart seated outside at Hedges Nine Mile Point Restaurant in Webster, NY. 

In Karen’s  Edmund DeCleryk mystery books, the fictitious eatery, Rumrunners is where retired  police chief and criminal consultant Ed DeCleryk and his wife, Annie have dinners with friends. It is loosely based on Hedges. Behind Karen is a small cove that comes in from the lake which she reveals will be featured in her next book. 

by Laurel C. Wemett

Karen Shughart is arguably one of the busiest writers in the scenic village of Sodus Point, NY, a location on the southern shore of Lake Ontario. It offers her plenty of inspiration for the stories she crafts. All books in the author’s Edmund DeCleryk series  take place in the fictional village of Lighthouse Cove, NY, which is very much like the lovely village in which the Shugharts now live.  

After retiring from a career in education, journalism, public relations and non-profit management, Karen decided to try her hand at writing cozy mysteries, a subgenre of crime fiction. The books are described as “cozies,” meaning there is no explicit sex or violence in the books and so are “very clean mysteries, with a lot of community and a lot of family ties,” explains Karen.

Shughart has three Edmund DeCleryk books to her credit: Murder in the Museum, Murder at the Cemetery and Murder at Freedom Hill, The books’ protagonist DeCleryk, is a retired police chief and criminal consultant who assists the local police force to apprehend the murderer(s). He receives considerable help from his savvy wife, Annie, who is head of the local historical society.

All three books are maritime-themed with an historical backstory that is related to why the victim was killed. In addition to the historical subplots at the end of the book there are some of the mouth-watering recipes prepared by the sleuth's wife.  

Read a review of the latest in the series, Murder at Freedom Hill, in the May-June issue of Life in the Finger Lakes.  It recently won the International Firebird Book Award for best mystery and placed third in best fiction.

Reviews of Karen’s other two mysteries can be accessed by searching Karen Shughart on the Life in the Finger Lakes website.


Where you can meet the author: 

June 22 - noon- book signing Go Getters Club at the Church of the Epiphany, 105 W. Main Street, Sodus, NY

July 8 - 1-3 p.m. and August 12 1-3 p.m.    Book signing at Sodus Bay Outfitters, 8487 Greig St. Sodus Point, NY

August 5- all day- panelist at  Murder as You Like It mystery lovers' conference- sponsored by the Mechanicsburg Mystery Bookstore at the Shiremanstown United Methodist Church -125 E Main St, Shiremanstown, PA 17011

September 16- 11- 2 p.m. Book signing, Heritage Square Museum, Ontario Center Rd., Ontario, NY

September 19 -11:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m. Books Sandwiched In- Book Talk and Signing- Sodus Community Library, 17 Maple Ave. Sodus, NY 

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