Monday, May 2, 2011

Mitch Malone Mondays - Donna Fletcher Crow/Felicity Howard

I’m not happy. Today’s blog features the main character in A VERY PRIVATE GRAVE by Donna Fletcher Crow. Met Felicity Howard, a nun of all things studying for the priesthood. I don’t know where W. S. Gager gets these people. I don’t even go to church and she wants me to interview religious people? You can’t say Mitch Malone isn’t professional and an extraordinary interviewer. So, Felicity, what would possess an American to study in England?

Okay, Mitch, old buddy, let’s get one thing straight. I’m NOT a nun! I’m a thoroughly modern American girl who happened to grow too tall to be a ballerina and found teaching Latin in London boring. If there’s anything I can’t stand, it’s being bored. So I heard that the Church is one place you can still use Latin today and there was this really cool monastery in Yorkshire where a lot of the teachers are monks. I mean, this has to be as good as Hogwarts, doesn’t it?

And, hay, you ought to try popping into a church sometime on your day off. By church I mean a really brilliant one with smells and bells and lots of candles. That’s what hooked me— it’s better theatre than the ballet.

This mystery seems a bit like Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code, except he didn’t have a student do all the sleuthing. What made you think you could figure out who killed your favorite monk?

Well, I guess I have to face it. I have the energy. My church history
lecturer, Father Antony who can be pretty stiff sometimes, but when you catch him unawares is really the dishy vicar, has all the real knowledge. He does go on a bit, but I’ll have to admit, it’s all important to finding these jerks. And I really want to do that because Father Dominic was such an old darling. And, you see, Fr. D gave me his pilgrimage journal just before he died, so he must have thought I could do something with it. We did have this special understanding.

Now you travel with this Fr. Antony across England and Scotland. You want us to believe this is a platonic relationship? Any romance between the pair of you?

Oh, Mitch, you do ask the hard questions, don’t you? Can we just say that I’ve learned a lot from Antony and leave it there for now? I’ve really got so much to sort through and my head is in a whirl— never mind my heart.

Several times you are nearly killed in some very religious places. Was this luck, a higher power, or you just being fast on your feet?

I’d like to say it’s intelligence, but sometimes I can be pretty stupid. I’m trying to learn to look before I leap, but I suppose old habits die hard. And, I am quick on my feet. I keep up my ballet training and it can be very useful in a tight spot. Higher Power? Hmmm. Antony would say so. I’m open on the subject.

What happens next for you? Do you finish your schooling? Come back to America? Get to be a priest?

Okay, in spite of my prickly answer at first, I’ll admit I am considering becoming a nun. Don’t laugh— I just said I’m open. You’ll have to read my next adventure in A Darkly Hidden Truth which will be out this fall. Until then I’m not saying more.

I have to give old W. S. credit. I did enjoy questioning Felicity and finding out what makes her tick. You can check out her antics too. Go to Donna Fletcher Crow’s website:


  1. Thank you, Mitch. That was a really fun visit. If I ever do get back across the pond maybe we could have a cuppa together. But it may be awhile. Now Antony is wanting to drag me off to Wales to help him lead a Youth Walk. Fifteen teenagers on a Welsh mountainside--could be interesting.

  2. Yikes! 15 kids, you and the priest and you aren't going for sainthood?
    Thanks for the interview. I'll never look at ballerinas in quite the same way. Mitch

  3. Well, Donna did it in England--walked most of the way from London to Walsingham with 17 kids--and she's a LOT older than I am. (But don't tell her I said that.)

  4. Interesting interview. Donna, are you a Latin teacher in real life? I think it's a beautiful language and it's a bit of a shame it's not taught more widely. Of course living languages are more practical but a good basis in Latin helps you learn all the Western European languages.