Interested in a mystery set in an exotic setting? See what readers are saying about Fireweed Glow.

Set at post-eruption Mount St. Helens, it is the first of a series with twenty-something aspiring journalist Torrie Madison:


"Des Moines English and Spanish teacher Jeanette Chaplin’s Fireweed Glow is a mystery that combines a human whodunit with an ecological puzzle.  The setting is Mount St. Helens in Washington, 15 years after the volcano literally blew its top . . . . [T]he surrounding forest, wildlife and recovering mountainsides form a character in Fireweed Glow as important as any of the scientists, rangers, campers and bad guys that people the book. To clear her own name—as the last person to see one of the victims—Torrie must keep one step ahead of the villains.

After reading this book campers may keep a closer eye on seemingly benign bees, gophers and plants that glow in the moonlight."


Ellen Heath, “Homegrown Writing” columnist

The Des Moines Sunday Register


     "As a classical mystery, Fireweed Glow has it all: an engaging young sleuth (Torrie Madison), a nasty bunch of villains, and a page-turner of a plot. Best of all, Fireweed Glow is set in the Mount St. Helens area—a perfect spot for the playing out of an eerie, but believable, story of nature’s mutations fallen into the wrong hands."

Sharelle Moranville, Children’s author

Her first book was The Purple Ribbon, from Holt.


"Fireweed Glow satisfied my mystery-reading habit. I read it in two days (and I was not on vacation—I should have been doing homework). The plot was twisty, the characters intriguing, and I couldn’t wait to see if my heroine could solve the puzzle. I never finish a book in two days, but this one forced me to keep reading. Another giant pleasure was the way Chaplin used the flora and fauna of Mount St. Helens. I want to see it myself now."


Bruce Hann, Retired college instructor.

Instructor of Detective Fiction course since 1971

Des Moines Area Community College, Ankeny, Iowa


    Torrie Madison, young journalist who was once told she had more luck than sense, visits her cousin in Washington State, and a simple vacation turns into an intrigue of mountains, murder, and inexplicable mutations.  Author Jeanette Chaplin, a knowledgeable Pacific Northwest hiking enthusiast, takes us on a suspenseful ride through the ruins of Mount St. Helens, and into the world of botanical terrorism, then rewards us with a riveting climax—a face-to-face confrontation with one of Torrie’s evil antagonists.


Linda Pratt, Freelance artist

Dubuque, Iowa


    “Please, Mom!” I begged. “Just one more chapter!

These were my thoughts as I read Jeanette Chaplin’s Fireweed Glow. The plot, which made me ponder the evidence, was intense and gripping. The mystery, very dark and subtle, slowly came to light. Because Torrie, Brad, and Tasha made a nifty team, their constant danger was exhilarating. The scenery sprang from the pages as it grew around me!

My thoughts were jerked from the tale as Mom said firmly, “Just one more chapter.”


Emily Kramer, Fifth grade homeschooler

Producer, screenwriter, Young Thespians of Central Iowa


     When was the last time you read a description of the daylight moon? The moon hung listlessly in the mid-morning sky?a translucent gauze echo of the full brilliance it had displayed the previous night? 

When was the last time you had a feeling of déjà vu while reading about generally inexplicable subjects such as science and the environment?. . . plants that can only germinate after an immense amount of heat has softened the hull of the seed?

Fireweed Glow is a mystery in motion. The citizens in this fictional world take you from the city to the mountaintop along winding roads, dirt trails, and washed out bridges. Some visit outposts, cabins, lakes and rivers while others hide and hold secrets. Some live up there. Some die up there. And everything is active. Including the moon?

I look forward to the sequel.


Frank F. Martinez, Cox Meadows Block Watch Captain

Phoenix, Arizona