West Springs, Missouri. An interview with new resident, Lyssa Winfield, by West Springs Gazette reporter, Sue White.
SUE: Your story is set close to our town of West Springs here in the Missouri Ozarks.
LYSSA: My life is set in the Missouri Ozarks. I’ve loved these beautiful, spooky old hills since I can remember. My grandparents had a farm here, which they left to me. That’s sad because they’re both gone and I miss them so much. It’s also exciting because of the responsibility. Most of all, it’s humbling because they loved me enough to trust me with it.
SUE: I’m sorry for your loss. They left you something besides the farm, didn’t they?
LYSSA: They couldn’t have known the whole extent of what they left me, and the trouble it made. I’ll bet you’re talking about Gabe, though. Aren’t you?
SUE: Of course.
LYSSA: I’d better give you some background. I never have been and never will be a city girl, even though my parents tried to make me into one. Technically, I grew up in St. Louis, but my heart lived on the farm. All of my best childhood memories include the farm and my Grands. Unlike my parents, my Grands never tried to make me something I wasn’t meant to be. Well, on the next farm over there was a boy named Gabriel. We all called him Gabe. Anytime I was with my Grands, he was around. Since I never had brothers or sisters of my own, I adopted him into that role. We played and fought and played some more, just like real siblings. Then we grew up, and apart. I missed him.
SUE: Then you moved back to the farm after you inherited it and there he was.
LYSSA: Yes, only he wasn’t the same carefree, sunny Gabe I knew when we were kids. He had some deep trouble eating at him, something I’d never seen before. I was determined to find out what it was and help him if I could.
LYSSA: And you’ll have to read the book to find out what happened with that. I will tell you that it took me into situations I never would have believed possible. I’m still not sure I believe some of it. Gabe always did believe in elves, though.
LYSSA: Sorry. Maybe I shouldn’t have mentioned that. That Parker woman made me promise not to give too much away, but whatever she thinks, I’ve got to say this: Don’t count on seeing pointy ears. You can’t recognize them that way.
SUE: Uh… Ok. The book, Donovan’s Dream, is listed on the publisher’s site as a fantasy romance, but I noticed on Parker’s website (http://donnaparker.w4aw.org) she calls it an Ozarks fairy-tale mystery. Which is it?
LYSSA: It’s all of those, and a few other things besides. The romance part is very old-fashioned—nothing that would make the Grands or Aunt Maggie blush—so if you like “steamy”, you might want to find something else to read. The book does have mystery upon mystery.
SUE: And the fairy-tale part?
[Lyssa just smiles and Sue moves on]
SUE: Who is the Donovan in the title?
LYSSA: That, my friend, is a big chunk of the mystery—the thread that ties the whole story together.
SUE: Will there be another book about you?
LYSSA: I’ll be happiest if there isn’t. I know the author is working on books about some of the other characters in the story—Roan and Eamonn and their dead sister in one, and Clementina and Robbie in another. Maybe someday you can interview them… well, except for the dead sister.
SUE: I think we’ll call it quits with that. Thank you for your time, Lyssa.
LYSSA: Sorry I couldn’t tell you more, but reading the book wouldn’t be any fun if I did, would it? Thanks for asking, though.