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  • Writer's pictureSusan Rowland, Author

Because Families can be murder!

Susan Rowland’s fictional detective Mary Wandwalker is back. Murder on Family Grounds: A

Mary Wandwalker Mystery, goes back to the origin story of the triple goddess detective. ‘She’

arises in a mystery that examines the element of earth, which C. G. believed means family

ground in the deep psyche. Indeed the novel not only digs into the traumatized earth of Mary,

Caroline and Anna, it also mines the complex architecture of their families. Families are the

ground from which our psyches grow. But what if the family of birth tries to strangle that growth

in the name of social status or patriarchal inheritance?

Also, family as institution exists in the underworld as the crime family. In some cases,

crime families produce children as more indentured labor. Mary Wandwalker’s quest for her own

long lost son will take her to the deepest shadow of his paternal family, the Falconers. If the

depth psychology shadow of patriarchal aristocracy reaches into chattel slavery, might the

twentyfirst century witness the return of that repressed heritage? The sins of the past result in

murder, a literal and symbolic blood letting.

Only the triple goddess, it seems, has sufficient diffused feminine powers to re-make the

family. Will Mary, Caroline and Anna be able to constellate the goddess? Can power be

transformed into love? Can marriage equality serve psychological and familial renewal?

Set in the United Kingdom, Susan regards this story as her tribute to marriage equality in

the US and the UK. What arose from the writing methodology of Jungian Arts-Based Research

are tiny, incomplete strategies acknowledging the legacy of slavery on our family ground.


Who is killing off members of the Falconer family and why? Such is the challenge confronting

highly skilled, extraordinarily intuitive Mary Wandwalker when she finds herself single, sixty

and jobless. Long ago as an Oxford student with an unplanned pregnancy, Mary knew the

Falconers as the family who refused to help when her fiancé, David Falconer died in a car crash.

Now the baby boy she gave up for adoption is a policeman, George Jones, and he wants to meet

her. Can Mary bring herself to confront her past? She must, for lost in her memory is a clue that

could save her son’s life.

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