Our guest blogger today is popular mystery and romance writer Maggie Toussaint who talks about her brand new Five Star/Gale mystery:
In Gone and Done It, sleuth Baxley Powell has her hands full with her Pets and Plants business, raising a preteen, and trying to remove her name from the suspect list. A young woman was found murdered under a tree Baxley recently planted, along with Baxley’s trowel.
Petsitting clients keep dumping their animals on her. Softhearted Baxley can’t turn her back on a four-legged pet in need, especially if it’s temporary.
Muffin is a furry Shih Poo who belongs to a friend of a friend. This tiny bit of fluff came to stay with Baxley temporarily and immediately claimed her daughter Larissa’s lap. Muffin’s full name is Stud Muffin. Muffin is savvy enough to hide when there’s trouble.
Elvis is a quivering
Baxley is holding for a jailed felon. He was keeping the little guy penned up
in the house with the church’s holy rattlesnakes. Poor Elvis was a bundle of
nerves by the time Baxley found him. Elvis took one look at Larissa and jumped
in her arms. His feet have hardly touched the ground since he moved in.
Baxley pet sits for dogs and cats and the occasional iguana or bird, but she draws the line at snakes. If you need someone to care for your pet snake, you have to call someone else.
Unfortunately for Baxley, another person on the suspect list knows of her fear of snakes. When Baxley won’t do his bidding to use her special skills to help him out of his online gambling problem, he decides to get even.
Here’s a snip from Gone and Done It mid-story after Baxley’s two dog alarm system goes off. She steps outside, armed and anxious:
“This was crazy. I was in my backyard. There was no visible threat. But I couldn’t calm my nerves. My terror seemed elemental, instinctive. A few more steps and I’d be safe inside my truck.
Unlocking the door, I swung my backpack around to rest on the passenger seat. I climbed in holding the Glock. I didn’t want to let go of it, but I couldn’t drive holding the gun. I’d shoot myself for sure. I should put it somewhere—the glove box, under the seat, or in my backpack.
On my next inhalation, I became aware of an odd smell. A musky smell. Concurrently, I realized the passenger side window was rolled down because a strong cross breeze flowed through the truck since I hadn’t closed my door. I hadn’t left that window down. Someone had done that. Someone had been in my truck.
I should have come out of the house in a tight crouch, firing off random shots into the air. Out of the corner of my right eye, I saw movement. Bright patterns of color. Then I heard an ominous rattle….”
Gone and Done It is available in Kindle format and in hardcover.
More info at Maggie's Website
Southern author Maggie Toussaint loves to blend murder and romance in her fiction. With eleven published books to her credit, her latest release is Gone and Done It, a paranormal mystery. Coming in late August is Rough Waters, a new romantic suspense in her Mossy Bog series. Maggie likes yoga, beachcombing, and music. Visit her at www.maggietoussaint.com.
Feel free to leave comments or questions for Maggie!