MURDER OUTSIDE THE BOX with Saralyn Richard
MURDER OUTSIDE THE BOX with Saralyn Richard
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The Big Thrill Discusses MURDER OUTSIDE THE BOX with Saralyn Richard


The serene Brandywine Valley wakes up to an intoxicating double crime: a baby abandoned on the porch of a caretaker’s cottage, and a young post-partum woman murdered on the estate of a billionaire scotch whiskey magnate. Detective Parrott’s instincts tell him the two crimes are connected, but the evidence points him in directions that are both baffling and personal. Parrott searches for answers in both high and low places, including his own office. As he races to find the truth about the baby’s origin and best placement, he untangles chilling murder clues that implicate people who harbor secrets that even their positions of power and trust can’t protect. Once again, Parrott may have to risk his reputation—and even his life—to uncover the real story.

Author Photo: Saralyn Richard

Saralyn Richard

Saralyn Richard recently sat down with The Big Thrill to discuss her latest Detective Parrott Mystery, MURDER OUTSIDE THE BOX.

Can you pinpoint a moment or incident that sparked the idea for this book?

I read a statistic from a study by the National Safe Haven Alliance, over 22,000 babies are abandoned to hospitals each year in the United States. I also read that approximately ten percent of American women between the ages of 14 and 44 are infertile. The irony of those who don’t want babies vs. those who do fascinated me, and I was compelled to write about it.

A novel is such a major undertaking; there’s the writing of it, of course, then you’re spending months and months revising, polishing, and then promoting it. How did you know this was the book you wanted to spend the next couple of years on?

The book’s premise and the characters who inhabit this mystery are rich and varied. I knew the storylines would be dynamic and thought-provoking throughout the process.

Were there any particular books, movies, or songs that were knocking around in your head while you were writing this one?

The previous three Detective Parrott mysteries hovered over me as I wrote this fourth one. A few characters make repeat performances, and Parrott’s evolution from one book to the next is a joy to behold.

When you first created your protagonist for this book, did you see an empty space in crime lit that you wanted to fill? What can you share about the inspiration for that character?

Again, Parrott is an evolving character. His first appearance in Murder in the One Percent as a rookie detective serving the ultra-wealthy Brandywine Valley, depicts him as a naive, but dedicated outsider, undaunted by the machinations of the one-percenters. Throughout the series, Parrott matures. As he begins to fit in more, he faces different challenges. The plot of each book weaves its way through Parrott’s personal life, revealing unexpected insights.

In addition to a great read, what do you hope readers will take away from this story?

The book portrays issues about marriage, fertility, and doing the right thing that transcend race, gender, age, and social class. Some are age-old, and some are modern and high-tech. I hope readers come away with understandings that enrich their own experiences.

What can you share about what you’re working on next?

Right now I’m working on some short stories. Next I want to tackle writing a screenplay.


Saralyn Richard writes award-winning humor- and romance-tinged mysteries that pull back the curtain on people in settings as diverse as elite country manor houses and disadvantaged urban high schools. An active member of International Thriller Writers and Mystery Writers of America, Saralyn teaches creative writing and literature. Her favorite thing about being an author is interacting with readers .

To learn more about the author, please visit her website.