@Archaeolibrary, @gayleenfroese, #Showcase,
Can a disillusioned former cop track down a missing girl before it’s too late?
Seven years ago, criminologist Ben Ames thought he’d change a big city police force from the inside. He failed. Now he’s a private detective trailing insurance frauds and cheating spouses through the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Like police work, the job would be easier if he didn’t have a conscience.
When university student Kimberly Moy goes missing, her sister begs Ben to take the case. But before Ben can follow up on any leads—What does the Fibonacci series have to do with Kim’s disappearance? What do her disaffected friends know? And where is her car?—chance and bad timing drop his unexpected ex, Jesse, into the mix.
Ben doesn’t have time to train Jesse into the junior PI he seems determined to become. Amateur sleuths are always trouble. Unfortunately, this is turning out to be the kind of case that requires backup, and his intuition is telling him Kim’s story may not have a happy ending....
The Girl Whose Luck Ran Out is the enthralling first book in the Ben Ames Case Files, a mystery series with a distinctly Canadian flavour. Author Gayleen Froese, winner of BookTelevision’s Three Day Novel Contest, delves deep into the flaws of humanity and delivers an immersive story fraught with twists and danger. If you like private detectives, bickering partners, and vividly drawn settings, you’ll love The Girl Whose Luck Ran Out.
I’m Gayleen Froese, literary agent for private investigator Ben Ames. You probably heard about that case he had in the Rockies last year. Well, he’s written a book about it, called The Girl Whose Luck Ran Out, and it’s coming out June 14. Ben doesn’t love being interviewed but he has reluctantly agreed to answer some questions for The Archaeolibrarian. His boyfriend Jesse Serik (you’d know him as the musician Jack Lowe) came along to provide a different perspective.
The Ben Ames Interview
In what situation is your self-esteem most at risk?
Ben: What the hell kind of a question is that?
Jesse: It’s a personal question. I told you they would ask personal questions. Tell them what you pride yourself on.
Ben: I guess… I try to do an honest job. Take the case. Solve the case. Don’t run up the bill unnecessarily.
Jesse: And if you can’t solve the case?
Ben: I don’t like it.
Jesse (to The Archaeolibrarian): There you go.
What are you keeping a secret?
Ben: A secret? You know what a secret is, right? It’s a thing you don’t tell the press.
Jesse: I have to agree with him on that one.
What are you lying to yourself about? To others?
Ben: Okay, seriously, is this an interview or are you trying to burn my life to the ground?
Jesse: Ben prefers to be honest. Sometimes he could be a little less honest.
Ben: Right. Of course you think honesty is over-rated.
Jesse: Let’s not do this here.
Is there anyone in your life that you are attracted to?
Ben: Obviously my boyfriend. It’d be awkward if I wasn’t.
Jesse: For me, too.
What scares you about this person?
Ben: He doesn’t take my job seriously. He doesn’t understand that it can be dangerous. He thinks he can jump in and `help’ anytime.
Jesse: See, it’s funny you say that because I’m not the one who got cold-cocked—
Ben: You only brought that up because you wanted to say “cock.”
What do you think he can do for you that no one else can?
Ben: My laundry.
Jesse: Hilarious. I do not do his laundry.
Ben: I’m able to live in the same house with him without wanting to bury him under a construction site.
Jesse: That is unusual for Ben. That’s a fair answer.
What does this person know about you that no one else does?
Ben: I have no idea. I don’t know what people have noticed about me. My friend Kent has been in my fridge about a hundred times. But does he know what brand of mustard I buy? Jess, do you?
Jesse: Yes. I pay attention.
Ben: He does. He probably knows a lot of things.
Jesse: I know him pretty well.
How do you decide if you can trust someone?
Ben: I give them a little rope, like, I trust them for four years, and I see if they ditch me without saying goodbye.
Jesse: We’ve discussed this.
Ben: We have. I’m sorry. That wasn’t fair.
Jesse: Ben has issues. Some of that’s on me. We’re working on it.
How do you know you love someone?
Ben: I mentioned the whole not burying Jess under a construction site thing, right?
Jess: He’s a romantic. Look, you just know, don’t you? If you’re not sure, you don’t. You should never have to talk yourself into it.
What parts of loving come easy to you? Hard?
Ben: … what?
Jesse: He’s great at looking after other people, less good at letting other people look after him.
When you walk into a room what do you notice first? Second?
Ben: I scan for threats. I’m not paranoid. It’s just second nature at this point. Then what I notice depends on what the situation is. Am I meeting someone? Am I on a case? Am I shopping for something?
Jesse: Other people say things like, “My eyes are always drawn to my boyfriend, even in a crowd.”
Ben: If you wanted to date an obsequious jackass, you’ve had plenty of opportunities.
Jesse: That is painfully true.
What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you?
Ben: This interview.
Jesse: I think any situation where he has to talk about himself. Like, not his job. He’ll talk about that. But feelings.
How would you change the world? The things around you? The people around you?
Ben: You can’t.
Jesse: It’s sad to hear you say that.
Ben: You always told me that. In university.
Jesse: I know, but it’s sad you’ve found out.
What’s your greatest source of joy?
Ben: A job well done.
Jesse: He means anything he does. He likes to be good at things.
Ben: And thorough.
Jesse: Can confirm.
If you could change anything about your life, what would it be?
Ben: I wouldn’t be someone that people want to interview.
Jesse: This is about his case hitting the news.
Ben: And dating a rock star. It has never been my dream to be on $@#%-#%@%*$@ Buzzfeed.
Jesse: We’re the flavour of the month. It’ll pass.
Ben: In the meantime, I have to tail suspects.
Jesse: Didn’t you tell me once that a good detective should be able to go unnoticed no matter what?
Ben: You have a hell of a nerve, remembering things I actually said and repeating them back to me.
Jesse: I’m not the one who decided to write a book about the case.
Ben: I just want to tell it the way it happened. I’m tired of people getting it wrong.
Jesse: You know that can’t actually be prevented, right? It doesn’t matter how hard to you try to control a story. People are going to tell it their own way.
Ben: Let me live in a dream world for now.
Gayleen Froese is an LGBTQ writer of detective fiction living in Edmonton, Canada. Her novels include the upcoming The Girl Whose Luck Ran Out as well as Touch, and Grayling Cross. Her chapter book for adults, What the Cat Dragged In, was short-listed in the International 3-Day Novel Contest and is published by The Asp, an authors’ collective based in western Canada.
Gayleen has appeared on Canadian Learning Television’s A Total Write-Off, won the second season of the Three Day Novel Contest on BookTelevision, and, as a singer-songwriter, showcased at festivals across Canada. She has worked as a radio writer and talk-show host, an advertising creative director, and a communications officer.
A past resident of Saskatoon, Toronto, and northern Saskatchewan, Gayleen now lives in Edmonton with novelist Laird Ryan States in a home that includes dogs, geckos, snakes, monitor lizards, and Marlowe the tegu. When not writing, she can be found kayaking, photographing unsuspecting wildlife, and playing cooperative board games, viciously competitive card games, and tabletop RPGs.