The mystery’s puzzle can be introduced early like in Murders at Hollings
General. Below are excepts from the first pages of this novel.
First, a hint
Dr. David Brooks remembered the man behind the surgical mask as shorter and left-handed.
“Strange,” he whispered, turning to Dr. William Castleman, the young Director of Emergency Medicine, “back in the Navy, he was a little man…"
Second, set the stage
They sat together in the center of the first row overlooking Suite 7, the surgical amphitheater of Connecticut’s venerable Hollings General Teaching Hospital, on a viewing balcony crowded with doctors, nurses, medical students, administrators and news reporters. Frozen forward, eyes homed in on the operating surgeon, their breathing stalled for a collective silence. Before them, bright lights reflected off an otherwise invisible glass partition. On the wall, a clock’s second hand cogwheeled to precisely three thirty. The balcony smelled scrubbed and antiseptic.
Third, describe the scene
“Ladies and gentlemen, I’m Virginia Baldwin, the Nursing Supervisor of our Surgical Department. We’re indeed honored to have Dr. Raphael Cortez here with us today. He’s about to make his initial abdominal incision and the pancreatic transplantation will begin."
Fourth, set the timing.
Castleman stretched up and cupped his hand around David’s ear. “Doesn’t a doctor like Cortez deserve prime time-like eight in the morning? Why three-thirty?”
David cupped back, “He may be famous, but he’s just a visiting dignitary"
David pushed down on his feet, leveraging his six-five frame for a better view of the surgery forty feet away. He saw the surgeon’s eyes flit over the abdominal cavity, toward his assistants and back. They tugged on retractors and applied internal sutures while a nurse dabbed the surgeon’s forehead.
Finally, the murder…
Then there is confusion.
The Chief said, “Christ, let me get in there!” He ran around to the left of the table and tried to muscle aside the operating surgeon.
Good luck, Jerry