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This Point in Time by Gary Meyer

This Point in Time

by Gary Meyer

254 pages
A struggling married couple are drawn into a murder investigation.

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Category: Fiction:Mystery
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About the Book
Can murder save this marriage?

Mitch and Melody Ambrose are taking on their late 50s with all the zest of late-career boxers. Over three decades of marriage, the Massachusetts couple had transferred their once-red-hot passion for each other to the raising of two sons and the pursuit of twin careers in journalism. Along the way, regular clashes over lifestyle and child-rearing decisions, large and small, had sapped the smitten from their eyes. Now their looks were distant, their daily demeanors tolerant, just one snide comment away from disdain.

Still, a feint nostalgia and respect for the family unit — not to mention midlife inertia — kept them together. But when their treasured offspring both departed for distant colleges, Mitch and Melody came down with a particularly virulent strain of “empty nest syndrome,” one that defied the quick-fix vaccines of substitute interests or activities. Taking their chilled relations down another few degrees was the couple’s reluctant decision to end their long, award-winning careers at the local newspaper. Declining circulation along with constant changes in ownership and newsroom leadership had left a product that the Ambroses felt no longer encouraged their brand of careful, aggressive, hard-working coverage.

To keep some income flowing, Melody took a job in the planning department of their small western Massachusetts city. Mitch is working a series of part-time jobs while mulling over his future plans.

As we pick up their story, Mitch is starting a new part-time job. He is hired by Alex McMillan, a woman from Cleveland, to visit weekly with her elderly father, Charleton Paginni, a recent widower whom she has been forced to put in a local nursing home. With his three children having established their own lives in distant cities, he is in need of companionship.

Mitch and Charleton, 83, slowly develop a friendship. After several months, Charleton confides that 30 years ago he fathered a child with a student at a nearby college. He was in his 50s, the married father of three, at the time. The pregnant young woman immediately broke off their relationship. But he eventually learned she had given up the child for adoption. Once his wife passed away, Charleton decided to track down the child so he could include at least some token financial assistance for him or her in his will. Charleton first turned to his attorney for help. But the lawyer claimed he couldn’t find any trace of the youth. A skeptical Charleton now is asking his new friend, a former award-winning investigative reporter, to give it a try.

At first, Mitch’s efforts are halting but soon — as Charleton dies under mysterious circumstances — he and Melody become driven by the “assignment,” setting in motion a series of life-rattling events and revelations.

Can Mitch and Melody — with a common purpose and shared fervor once more in their lives — re-discover in each other the individuals they once loved so deeply?

Meanwhile, Charleton’s far-flung family is brought together with a common purpose of avenging their father’s death.

 

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About the Author
Gary Meyer Gary Meyer is a native of northern New Jersey who worked more than 30 years as a small-town journalist in North Carolina, Tennessee and New York, where he and his wife once owned and operated the Clinton Courier weekly newspaper. He is a graduate of Boston University and Northwestern University.

 

 

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