Have you ever loved a place so much that you just had to tell the world about it?
Heath Boice-Pardee, RIT’s interim vice president for student affairs, feels exactly that way about Ocean Grove, N.J., the setting for his book series, Ocean Grove Mysteries, available on Amazon.com.
Douglas Carter-Connors, dean of students at Asbury College, is the crime solver in the series; he uses his “pseudo” detective skills to search for a missing college student and her mother in the first novel, Missing by the Midway. In the second novel, Buried by the Boardwalk, the discovery of a skull leads Carter-Connors to uncover a secret society and a plot threatening the campus and the town.
Boice-Pardee, who writes under the pen name Heath P. Boice, lived in Ocean Grove for several years while working at Monmouth University. He recently began writing the third novel in the series, Counterfeit by the Coast, which will be published sometime next year.
“Ocean Grove Mysteries is an homage to one of my favorite places in the world,” said Boice-Pardee. “My goal was always to write novels that encourage readers to curl up and remember sea breezes and summertime memories of the shore.
“There was something special about living and working at the shore,” Boice-Pardee added. “People who know of Monmouth University may see some similarities with Asbury College—but all of the stories are fictitious, of course. Ocean Grove Mysteries are for anyone who loves Ocean Grove, N.J., the Jersey Shore, college life and cozy mysteries. A little town with a boardwalk, a college campus with weird events, and a detective who is making everything up as he goes along? Sound funny? I hope so.”