Donald F. Averill
Love and mystery have a way of intertwining in unexpected ways in life. In Donald Averill’s short story collection, he traces a journey through the lives of vibrant characters driven by love who suddenly find themselves in the midst of intriguing situations. In “Missing Notes,” a music department graduate student finds an intriguing composition in an old notebook and begins a search for the author. When she and another student look for a missing notebook, they find themselves implicated in a murder investigation. “The Canoe” sees retired mathematician and widower Samuel Kelly recalling past experiences involving his family canoe after seeing a canoe for sale. Following the sale of the canoe, Sam and a former girlfriend rekindle an old relationship and get involved in a holdup. In “Hidden Talents,” Clay Coleman, a young physician, misses a turn and arrives at a secluded farm house where he is attacked. Suffering from amnesia, he works his way along Interstate 84 helping people with medical problems—while his wife searches desperately for him. A seven-year-old boy who thinks he is just living a normal life in 1949 soon realizes that the only way to find out any answers about his grandpa’s past is to ask good questions in “The Pumpkin Tree.” Missing Notes, Hidden Talents, and Other Stories shares four charming stories with important messages about perseverance, courage, and, most importantly, love.