Document Type



Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


Creative Writing

First Advisor's Name

Lynne Barrett

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee chair

Second Advisor's Name

John Dufresne

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member

Third Advisor's Name

Meri-Jane Rocheson

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee member


mystery, New Jersey, revenge, corruption, family ties, friendship, memory, crime, betrayal, redemption

Date of Defense



A SINGLE REGRET is a murder mystery set on the post Hurricane Sandy Jersey shore.

At thirteen, Jimmy Miller killed his father in retribution for murdering his mother. Twenty years later, he returns home because of the murder of his childhood best friend, Dillon Abernathy. Jimmy learns that Gavin, a classmate turned junkie, is charged with murdering Dillon, a scenario Jimmy doesn’t find plausible, so he decides to pursue leads the police won’t.

Told in first person past tense, A SINGLE REGRET follows Jimmy as he unearths the secrets behind his friend’s death and also learns the truth behind the destruction of his own family. As in Dennis Lehane’s Mystic River, the novel examines how childhood ties shape perceptions in ways that are both true and false. Jimmy is forced to evaluate his own sense of bitterness and learn how to forgive his own mistakes and those of others.



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