Death of a Mystery Writer

By Meredith Phillips

It is my sad task to report the recent death of our forthcoming author, Tony Hays, at age 58. His mystery, Shakespeare No More, will be published next September.

The only information on his death that I have is from the funeral home’s obituary,!/Obituary

Since last fall, Tony, a Tennessee native, had been living in Saudi Arabia, teaching English as a second language. He contacted us frequently by email concerning the editing, proofs, and cover of his book. The last time we heard from him was a few weeks ago, when he said he was going to Luxor in Egypt on vacation. According to the obituary he fell ill there and died. I was concerned that he hadn’t been in touch, and when his monthly blog post didn’t appear today I asked our blog web maven Sue Trowbridge if she’d received it. Somehow she found the link above (which doesn’t come up from just Googling his name).

I never met Tony in person, and knew him only through emails. He was charming, collegial, and very cooperative in doing anything possible to benefit the book, and make it the best it could be. He was quite a scholar on Shakespeare and various theories on his possible murder. This was the first in a projected series about Shakespeare’s friend, a Stratford constable. Tony had written a previous four-book Arthurian mystery series that garnered nine starred reviews and an award nomination. He will be missed from the company of historical mystery writers, as well as by other colleagues, friends, and family.

Meredith Phillips, Editor
Perseverance Press/John Daniel & Co. /


4 Responses

  1. This is indeed a sad loss. Writers live on through their books and stories. We will catch up to Tony in the fall when we read his new book.

  2. Well said, Wendy. I will look forward to reading Tony’s book.

  3. I, too, will want to read his new book–and will order it directly from Perseverance. Several years ago my spouse and i visited Luxor, a labyrinth of great haunting pillars a bit like Stonehenge. A place of mystery. How strange that he should die there. And how terrible–and how young he was. A loss for us all.

  4. Thanks, Wendy, Janet, and Nancy for your condolences.

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