By Monique Demarais and Jeanice Davis
The case has been closed on the unnamed mystery novel writer residing at RSU. Nathan Reynold’s representative, Quentin Taylor, admitted he was the novel’s author.
Reynolds is the pseudonym used by Taylor, and name of The Black Valise main character.
“For the last dozen years or so I’ve been active in academic writing and publishing. I don’t really have any hobbies outside of writing and travel,” said Taylor, so he decided to try his hand at fiction writing.
Taylor said he worked on The Black Valise for three years before writing the story in a three-month time span.
Taylor describes the novel as burlesque with elements of the mysterious. The story is set in the late 1800s and revolves around Reynolds, who is an attorney, and his troublesome involvement with a secret society known as the Long Pagan Knights.
“On the surface, it’s a mystery novel, full of intrigue and adventure” Taylor said. “But it’s really a work of irony and satire. That’s what sets it apart and makes it interesting for the sophisticated reader.”
According to Taylor, the novel is targeted towards anyone with at least a sixth-grade reading level, a free ten dollars, and an appreciation of belles letters (a style of writing regarded for its aesthetic value).
The novel is part of a projected series of books to be authored by Nathan Reynolds, including Crown Loyal and The Famillionaire.
“I wrote The Black Valise in order to try something different. I’ve been reading classic novels for years and thought I’d try my hand at writing something passable,” said Taylor.
Taylor is originally from Kansas City, MO, and before moving to Oklahoma and joining RSU in 2001, Taylor lived in Texas and California. He teaches courses in history and political science.
He said he began his teaching career with the intention of teaching high school, but after his stint of student teaching decided to become a professor.
“I enjoy it,” said Taylor, “and it’s nice to be compensated for it.”