A Drowning At Snow’s Cut by Art Taylor

by Barb Goffman

Published in the May 2011 issue of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine


A laid-off newspaper reporter and his father take a two-day boat trip. They take provisions and all the baggage they’ve been carrying for years. The protagonist’s mother recently died, and his father is focusing on the boat – something to be excited about instead of just being sad. The son is keeping his job status a secret, not wanting to get into an “I told you so” situation with his father. Conversation on the trip is difficult, and they’re both, perhaps, a bit happy when they meet another couple, Dennis and Phyllis, to talk to upon docking for the night. Things are less happy the next morning when Phyllis turns up dead, and the father is sure Dennis did it.

This story won (tied) this year’s Derringer Award in the long-story category.