Romaine Wilder, big city medical examiner with a small town past, has been downsized and evicted. In steps her “Auntie Zanne,” with a plan to save her. But that plan involves going back to her hometown, Robel, in East Texas, and that’s the last place Romaine wants to be. Leaving the man she’s dating, and the life she’s worked hard to build, she plans her escape as soon as she arrives.
Suzanne Babet Derbinay, proprietor of the Ball Funeral Home, has left behind her French Creole upbringing and traded it in for Big Texas attitude. She’s a member in a number of ladies’ auxiliaries and clubs, including being in charge of the Tri-County Annual Crawfish Boil and Music Festival. Hanging on to the magic of her Louisiana roots, she’s cooked up a love potion or two, and now she wants nothing more than her niece, Romaine to settle down, get married and have children. Luckily, she knows just which brew to concoct – if she could only get Romaine to drink it.
But both of their plans are derailed when the Ball Funeral Home, bursting at the seams with dead bodies, has a squatter stiff. Dead Guy is a problem. Auntie Zanne can’t abide by a murderer using her funeral home as the dumping grounds for their crimes, and Romaine doesn’t want her newly elected cousin, Sheriff Pogue Folsom, to fail on his first murder case so they set off to solve it.
With a dash of humor, a dollop of Southern charm, and a peek at current social issues in the mix, it’s can’t help but be a fun romp around East Texas to solve a murder mystery of the cozy kind!
Write what you know. Do what you are passionate about. Old adages that express a worthy truth about being a writer. But I can’t say that I write with either of those in mind. That’s because I write about murder!
Cozy mysteries to be exact. And thankfully, other than what I write in my books, I don’t know much about murder, and I am definitely not passionate about it. I can say that I am passionate about mystery and intrigue and have found that even everyday life is full of it, and that’s probably why I write mysteries. It may not be easy for all to see, but it is how I observe things - with wonder and curiosity.
I think what I have come to realize is that my writing is an exercise in life, not whodunits that fill the pages of my books. As I walk through my day I see the stories I want to write about unfold right in front of me. Why is that baby still crying when her mother is rocking her so gently trying to soothe her? Did she just fall? Is she not feeling well? Why does the guy sitting in that booth keep looking at his watch. Is he waiting for someone who is late? Or, waiting for the right time to make the phone call he thinks may change his life?
People are endlessly interesting and their daily lives brim over with fascinating experiences, and then I get to add even more to their predicaments when I weave my stories around what I’ve seen. No, I don’t write what I know, but I try to write my stories filled with the personalities and experiences of people I meet and speak with. The incidents that I see unfold in news clips and overhear in conversations in crowded restaurants. Stories passed on to me by family and stranger alike. I want to include in my stories the things we all know.
In my new book, Secret, Lies & Crawfish Pies, there is a little murder, a dollop of humor and Southern charm, and, I hope, a whole lot of the character that we see in people all the time. In the book, I deal with depression, love, and change among other things. I hope you enjoy it.
Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit my website, www.abbyvandiver.com. I love interacting with my readers.
WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLING AUTHOR, Abby L. Vandiver loves a good mystery. Born and raised in Cleveland, it’s even a mystery to her why she has yet to move to a warmer place. Abby loves to travel, and curl up with a good book or movie. A former lawyer and college professor, she has a bachelor's degree in Economics, a master's in Public Administration, and a Juris Doctor. Writer-in-Residence at her local library, Abby spends all of her time writing and enjoying her grandchildren.