Rhapsody in Red by Donn Taylor

That Wednesday, two weeks before Thanksgiving, was a bad day to find a corpse on campus.


Preston Barclay is a self-made recluse (and he likes it that way). Teaching college history allows him time to grieve the loss of his pianist wife and find relief from the musical hallucinations that have been playing in his head since her death. But when he and headstrong colleague, Mara Thorn, discover the body of another instructor on campus, Press’s monotonous solitude is shaken up.

When the preliminary evidence singles out Press and Mara, they must take some chances (including trusting each other) to build their own defense—by bending the rules just a little bit.

They form an unlikely alliance to stay ahead of the police, the college’s wary and incompetent administration, and whoever is trying to get away with murder. Or else they both might end up unemployed, behind bars, or worse…


Donn Taylor led an Infantry rifle platoon in the Korean War, served with Army aviation in Vietnam, and worked with air reconnaissance in Europe and Asia. Afterwards, he completed a PhD degree at The University of Texas and taught English literature at two liberal arts colleges.

He and his wife live near Houston, Texas, where he writes fiction, poetry, and articles on current topics.


The symphonies that constantly play in a stodgy professor’s head provides a wonderful background in this delightful novel. Professor Prescott Barclay is a man who’s just a little too comfortable grieving his late wife – that is until he and a beautiful new professor stumble across a murder.

Donn Taylor’s characterization of Prof. Barclay is perfect – from his wrinkled brown suit to the musical pieces humming under his thoughts to his use of what I call “five-dollar words.” But don’t worry about being bored with all the academia, this professor has a past that makes him perfectly suited to solving this mystery.

If you like to read cozy mysteries in the Agatha Christie tradition, there’s something here for you. You’ll find comedy, romance, tea parties, and, of course, murder. But if you’re still not sure, you can read an excerpt here. (Be sure to scroll down to read the 1st chapter.)

If you do check it out, let me know what you think, OK?


4 thoughts on “Rhapsody in Red by Donn Taylor

  1. girlforgod says:

    Just wanted to let you know that I moved “blessings and struggles of single moms” over to wordpress under a new name. Hope you will stop by and check it out. God Bless, Robin

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