RCMP Const. Danutia Dranchuk is trying to solve a murder in Metchosin. A body was discovered at Sitting Lady Falls at Witty’s Lagoon.
Thankfully, the murder and tale are fictional as part of Victoria author Kay Stewart’s new book Sitting Lady Sutra.
“I wanted to find a place where a body could be undiscovered for a matter of weeks,” Stewart said. In the story the body is discovered on an old trail with a little gully and a bridge, the story is set in 1996.
After writing that portion of the book Stewart discovered a new trail was build at Sitting Lady Falls, in 1996, and the former trial was closed, making her story historically plausible.
This is the second novel in a series where the main character Dranchuk investigates crimes.
The first book A Deadly Little List, Stewart co-wrote with her husband Chris Bullock.
“The advantage of writing with someone is it’s fun to to the research together,” Stewart said.
This book she worked on the project solo.
“Working on my own, gave me the opportunity to make it my own vision,” Stewart said.
While the book does include murder and other frightening things, Steward is careful how she tells the story.
“I don’t go into real gory details about them,” she said. “I have to find a realistic way to portray what’s going on without scaring myself or the reader.”
Most of the story takes place in Metchosin and mentions the William Head Institution, Beecher Bay First Nation and popular roads such as Rocky Point Road and Lombard Drive.
Other landmarks are mentioned but the names have been changes such as My Chosin Cafe is called The Crossroads and WestMont School is called the Montessori school. By changing names of places, Stewart said she gets to be more creative when developing them in the book.
“I really love the area,” Stewart said. “The falls are so beautiful.”
Other than being a book on crime, Stewart likes to being social issues into her books as well. In Sitting Lady Sutra, she brings in the issues of restorative justice.
“It brings in the question of finding the bad guys and locking them up. Then they come out of prison and have to cope with their life,” Stewart said.
She began researching for the book in 2004 and it was published in 2011. Sitting Lady Sutra is a crime novel that focuses on police procedure. Crime stories and detective work has always been an interest for Stewart.
“I grew up reading Nancy Drew novels. I was always reading mysteries, they are favourite to read,” Stewart said.
She is already working in the third book in the series. This one is set in The Peak District in England were Dranchuk goes for training.
“She is driven by a desire for justice, but also has to come to terms with issues from her past and relationships with men,” Stewart said,
Stewart will be the Metchosin Community House, 4430 Happy Valley Rd., Feb., 16 from 7-9 p.m. to discuss her book, her research and read a selection from the book.