Welcome Guest Author Edith Maxwell & An ARC Giveaway!

Judy Penz Sheluk reporting in…July 14th is my author rotation date for this multi-author blog, but as luck would have it, July 14th is my birthday (I won’t tell you which one) AND I’m going to be on vacation with very patchy internet (that’s my story and I’m sticking to it). Fortunately, my friend, award-winning author and the awesomely talented Edith Maxwell has agreed to fill in for me. Not only that…she’s offering an ARC (Advance Reader Copy) giveaway of her latest book, Death Over Easy, for one lucky commenter. Can I pick a guest author or what? Take it away, Edith! 

Where Did Birdy Come From? by Edith Maxwell

I’m delighted to be back on this lovely pet-centered blog. Thanks to Judy for inviting me! I’ve saved my last advance copy of Death Over Easy (release date July 31, 2018) for one commenter here today, and I’m hoping whoever wins it will love the read and be eager to post a positive review.

I want to introduce you to the foundling kitty in my Country Store Mysteries. He’s named Birdy and he waltzed into book one, Flipped for Murder, this way:

I fastened on my helmet and was about to throw a leg over the cycle when I heard a plaintive sound from the antique lilac a long-dead shopkeeper must have planted a century earlier. I heard the sound again. It was coming from under the bush, whose leaves had turned a winey deep red. I leaned the bike against the wall and squatted to look.

 A forlorn cat huddled there, its long-haired black coat lightened by a white face with one black eye patch. I’d never seen it before.

 Hey, kitty cat. Come here.” I scratched the ground in front of me. “It’s okay.”

 The cat made its way slowly toward me. But when I reached out to pet it, it retreated under the bush again, keeping its eyes on me with a hungry look. I stood, watching it.

 Whose kitty are you? And why are you afraid?” When I got no response, I unlocked the door and filled two small dishes, one with milk and one with water. I set them on the ground near the bush, made sure I locked up again, and set off down Main Street.

My protagonist Robbie Jordan names him Birdy because he chirps when he purrs. I named my real life rescue cat Birdy, whom I had for fourteen sweet years, for exactly that reason. Always curious, always playful, he never slowed down until he got very sick and died in two short weeks a year ago. I still miss his youthful energy around the house.

In the series, Birdy has a cat door and gets to go in and out at will during the day, although Robbie locks him into her apartment at the back of her country store restaurant, Pans ‘N Pancakes, at night. He’s not supposed to be in the restaurant for public health reasons, but when she’s doing prep after hours, she lets him browse and supervise. He, like the real Birdy, is fast and endlessly curious, and the other side of a closed door is always more interesting.

I’m delighted Kensington puts Birdy on the cover of every book. In the new book, he’s even in one of Robbie’s B&B rooms, which is strictly forbidden. Did I say he was sneaky? The artist’s rendition isn’t exactly true to his handsome looks, but it’s close.

I set several scenes in Death Over Easy at the Bill Monroe Music Festival grounds, which are in Beanblossom in southern Indiana. Yes, that’s the name of a real town, and it has its own covered bridge, just like in New England, where I live. Too bad a murder victim turns up in the bridge…

I hope you enjoy the read. I love writing this series and being back in the region where I lived for five happy years in my late twenties, and where my Maxwell ancestors settled two hundred years ago.

Readers: Which covered bridges have you traveled through? Have you had tuxedo cats, and if so, what are their names? Or just ask me a question – I promise I’ll answer.

About the author: Agatha- and Macavity-nominated author Edith Maxwell writes the Local Foods Mysteries, the historical Quaker Midwife Mysteries, and award-winning short crime fiction. As Maddie Day she writes the popular Country Store Mysteries and the new Cozy Capers Book Group Mysteries. She is president of Sisters in Crime New England and lives north of Boston with her beau and two elderly cats. She blogs at WickedCozyAuthors.com and KillerCharacters.com. Read about all her personalities and her work at edithmaxwell.com, and please find her on social media – she loves to talk to readers.

Here’s a glimpse of what you can expect from Death Over Easy: Restaurateur Robbie Jordan is ready for the boost in business a local bluegrass festival brings to South Lick, Indiana, but the beloved event strikes a sour note. The celebration is cut short when a performer is found choked to death by a banjo string. Now all the banjo players are featured in a different kind of lineup. To clear their names, Robbie must pair up with an unexpected partner to pick at the clues and find the plucky killer before he – or she – can conduct an encore performance.


Leave a comment for a chance to win an ARC of Death Over Easy! 

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46 thoughts on “Welcome Guest Author Edith Maxwell & An ARC Giveaway!”

  1. Linda Herold is the randomly selected winner! Congrats, Linda, and thanks to everyone for stopping by. I wish I had a copy for each of you. ;^) Please be in touch.

  2. I love tuxedo cats. Actually, I love all cats. Unfortunately, I’m also allergic to them. Can’t have a cat in the house, but currently feeding several outdoor cats and kittens. I play with them, go inside, wash up to the elbows and take an allergy pill. But, they are so worth it! Can’t wait to get acquainted with Robbie and Birdy. Thanks for the chance to win.

    1. I am mildly allergic to my own cats, Pat – I always wash my hands after I pet them. Glad you have found a solution that works for you.

  3. I have an all black cat named Romeo Luigi. Presently my family is fostering a litter of 6 kittens and their mother. Mother is a tabby – tortie and three kittens are tabbies. The other three include a tortie, a kitten that looks like a younger Grumpy cat and lastly but not least a beautiful black and white tuxedo. We have named him, Tux and he seems to like it. Thanks for the chance to enter your giveaway. I am a big fan of Edith Maxwell.

  4. Thanks to Leslie Budewitz posting about this, I have added your books to my “To Read” list – they sound great !

  5. I’ve never had a cat. I have also never gone through a covered bridge. I guess I have some catching up to do.

  6. I love black and white cats. My cat Lucky passed away last year! He was a wonderful cat!!

    1. Linda, you are the randomly selected winner! Please check your email.


  7. I have traveled through several covered bridges on a trip to Vermont and New Hampshire several years ago. Also there is a beautiful covered bridge in Lucerne,Switzerland. A friend and I walked through it on a trip to Europe. I love this series…thanks for the chance to win the ARC.

  8. I fell in love with covered bridges when I read Bridges of Madison County and then saw the movie. I have been to several ones here in Indiana. I would love to travel the country looking for, and photographing, them.
    Thank you for the giveaway. I love your books!

    1. Debbie, have you seen the Beanblossom bridge, or the Brown County State Park double covered bridge? They are both in my books!

  9. I love this series!! I can’t wait to get my pre-ordered copy of Death Over Easy!!! And I love that Birdie is a rescue!

  10. I’ve only traveled one covered bridge on the way to my uncle’s wedding. And that was 12 years ago. I’ve had a lot of cats in my lifetime and none of them were tuxedo. Our cat now is the closest as he’s black and white. To visualize, his name is Oreo, but we say he has way more frosting than cookie. Thanks for the blog post!

  11. There is a covered bridge in Long Grove IL that was just restored and reopened to traffic. I have never had a tuxedo cat, but I have two rescue cats, Hamilton and Jefferson. They are so much fun.

  12. I wish I could have a cat. My husband is deathly allergic. :/ But we have a sweet dog named Lenny. And I can read about kitties in books like yours.
    Thank you

  13. Thanks for sharing about Birdie, Edith. It is always fun to learn about others’ pets. In my early years of marriage, we had a wild Siamese cat. She could run like wild fire inside the house, disrupting our furniture and frighting any baby sitter we had over.

  14. I love hearing about a new cat mystery! I just adopted a 10-year-old tuxedo male kitty the other day. He is also very curious and is having the time of his life exploring my big old Victorian house.

  15. Hi Edith – I love cats and my current kitty companion, Lucy (a long-haired tricolor), just strolled into my backyard as a very, very tiny kitten and never left. Could not have been the kitty treats I gave her, could it? 🙂 Love that Kensington includes Birdy in every cover. What a great remembrance for the real Birdy. Oh, and what a nice “one-liner” of the book. I immediately visualized the setting and story.
    Shea E. Butler

  16. Birdy sounds like a wonderful character for your series, Edith. I love covered bridges but have yet to see one as we didn’t have them in the Canadian prairies. Your books sound wonderful. All the best.

    1. My pleasure – happy birthday a couple of days late! (Sorry my calendar reminder didn’t work very well…)

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