Tower Lowe Mysteries
“Something in Dulce disturbs my spirit. I look up at the sharp ridges dotted with scrubby pines, and I hear voices whispering to me.” I wrote those lines in an email to a friend. She wrote back, “That sounds like the first line to a mystery story.” Thus the Cinnamon/Burro New Mexico mystery series began. Each story is set in a different New Mexico town or city.
Dulce, New Mexico is a small town up near the northern border in the Jicarilla Apache Nation. I traveled there every week for nine months and stayed in the only hotel (sign on the door: wipe the blood off your boots) in town. The Jicarilla Apache are a welcoming people, but I was there to work in the public schools, where the usual challenges of public school were accompanied by racial and ethnic resentments. All in all, it was a tough gig, and writing In Dulce, Disturbed helped me keep my mind in order.
Zuni, New Mexico is south of Dulce and close to the Arizona border. In the year after my travels to Dulce, I began to travel once a week to Zuni Pueblo. The Zuni people have a secretive spiritual and cultural tradition, but they greet outsiders warmly, as though the secrets keep them calm and fearless. In Zuni, Zymotic revolves around Zuni medicine and loyalty.
Santa Fe, New Mexico is a tourist city known as the city different. Both a local and an international art scene thrive here, along with colonial Spanish history and Native American history. In Santa Fe, Salacious is about the under culture – the story of people who struggle to make a way in this tourist town.
Roswell, New Mexico is internationally known for an alien spaceship that was sucked up by the US military in the 1950’s. The city sits towards the southeast, a long desert ride from Santa Fe. For years, Roswell rejected the spaceship story for more sensible pursuits. But, then, the alien fans insisted on keeping the Roswell alien invasion in the news. In Roswell, Re-abducted embraces the abduction stories and the International UFO Museum to follow a curious cast of characters around the town.
Carlsbad, New Mexico is a dusty desert town south of Roswell, and the road stops there. Known for Carlsbad Caverns and a boom and bust oil industry, Carlsbad boasts wild-west energy and a penchant for lawlessness. In Carlsbad, Cavernous follows a forlorn love story, a murder in the caverns, and a few local felons who are out for a dust up in this hard-to-get-to town.
Gallup, New Mexico is where I stayed overnight for two years while I worked in Zuni. This town is featured in a rock and roll song, is home to many of the Navajo people, and suffers economically. This is the site of my first novel length mystery, In Gallup, Greed. Here, native artists set up a very successful gallery, but lose sight of principals they all hold dear. One artist is murdered and the rest of the crew search clues and their consciences for a solution to the crime.
Thanks to Jenna for the invitation to muse on these stories and where they take place. Visit towerlowe.wix.com/towerlowe for information how to get a copy of the stories or the novel.
Born in Southern Virginia, my real name is Donna Pecherer, and I am a 30 year resident of New Mexico. The Tower Lowe mystery novels grow out of my experiences here in the Land of Enchantment. I draw on all the quirky characters and endearing memories of a life spent “away from home.”
I lost my mother a5 13, and, in the mystery novels, the detectives Cinnamon and Burro seach for Cinnamon’s Momma who abandoned Cinnamon when she was only six years old.
At the end of the series, Cinnamon finds out the truth about Momma — but that story from the Tower Lowe Mystery novels isn’t written yet. Hang with Cinnamon and Burro and you’ll find out what happens.