This post originally appeared on Dollycas’s Thoughts September 14, 2011.
I am really excited about today’s guest and contrary to what you may have heard just because my cats Sherlock and Professor Moriarty look just like Owen and Hercules on the cover of Sofie’s books Curiosity Thrilled the Cat and the latest Sleight of Paw they have no magical powers unless hiding from an almost 4 year old little boy is magic. Kathleen’s cats are really magical and I love them!!!
Now back to Sofie, she is a wonderful writer and I am so glad she is because as you will see in her post below her life could have turned out quite differently.
Thanks Lori, I am happy to be here today!!!
My Life As An (Almost) Criminal
I get asked at least once a week why I like to write mysteries. And generally I talk about my love of puzzles, my strong sense of right and wrong, my interest in the psychology of the criminal mind, and even my control freak personality that likes to make everything work out just so. And all of those reasons are true. But it’s also possible that my interest in mystery writing comes from an event in my childhood. Yes, I was almost a criminal. In fact if I’d had more upper body strength at six I could be making license plates in the big house instead of writing books on my computer.
First some background. As a child I spent a lot of time with the sons of my mother’s closest friend. Let’s call them Bill and Stephen because, well, those are their names. Bill’s a year older than I am, Stephen is a year younger, the baby of the family. They lived up a winding dirt road, across from woods that led up a slope to an open blueberry field. There were scrabbly bushes and a small pond just beyond their backyard. At the bottom of that narrow, dusty road was a little country store.
We weren’t allowed up in the blueberry field by ourselves. We weren’t allowed down at the pond by ourselves. We certainly weren’t allowed to walk down that road that wasn’t much more than two parallel ruts in the dirt to the store at the bottom. So of course we did all of it. We caught frogs at the pond and shoved them down each other’s shirts. We threw handfuls of mud at each other. We ate berries until our mouths were purple blue. We foraged in the ditch on both sides of the road, looking for pop bottles tossed out of passing cars, until we had enough to exchange for a popsicle. And every once in a while we’d hide and scared the crap out of Stephen because wasn’t that the point of having a little brother, even if he wasn’t yours?
The thing is, little brothers, no matter whose little brothers they are, will only take that for so long and then they will RAT YOU OUT. Which is what Stephen did one summer day.
Remember that strong sense of right and wrong I mentioned earlier? It was a lot stronger when I was six, especially with respect to tattletales. So when I found out what Stephen had done I took action.
I hit him with a hammer, smack in the middle of his forehead. I was saved by three things. One, it was a kid sized hammer. Two, I really had no upper body strength and I had a swing like a girl because, well, I was a girl. And three, Stephen has always had an extremely hard head.
So I didn’t kill him. In fact I maintain I didn’t even really hurt him other than the small divot the hammer left in his forehead. Of course my mother didn’t see it that way. Neither did his. I don’t remember what the punishment was, but I was a law-abiding citizen from that day on. I stopped committing crimes and started making up stories about them.
Stephen never ratted anyone out again as far as I know. Today he’s about the size of a defensive lineman and I’m pretty sure he could squeeze my head between his thumb and forefinger and make my brains come out my nose. So I’m planning on sticking to writing about crimes. Although, I do still have that hammer.
Oh My Gosh, this story had me laughing so hard! I am so glad you are a writer and not a criminal. I would miss your stories!!! Thank you Sofie for being here today!
Want to find out all about Sofie be sure to visit her web page!
Published by New American Library
A Division of the Penguin Group
Second in the Series
Agatha Shepherd was an educator and over the years she helped almost everyone in town in one way or another. When she is found dead outside a local cafe people are certainly shocked. Who would do this and why???
Kathleen hopes that with the help of her feline friends and maybe a little assistance from a handsome detective she may find the answers. Of course having a cat that can walk through closed doors and another that can become invisible at will makes Kathleen investigation a little easier as long as no one notices their cute little tricks. You won’t believe the secrets a cat can cough up.
Cats are so much fun and they convey so much with a flick of the tail, a certain meow, or a twitch of the ear. Magical cats are even more special. It’s difficult enough to write for people, there is a special place in my heart for authors that write for animals. All the characters are well written in this story. The mystery is also extremely well written with many suspects and motives. The very first chapter had me laughing out loud and the humor in continually interspersed throughout the story. The friendships Kathleen has made in Minnesota are going to be lifelong and I am sure one special one will continue to develop making it very hard to leave when her short term contract with the library is complete. I plan to enjoy many more trips to Mayville Heights!
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Obsidian. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”