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Sunday, October 1, 2017







A Cajun Christmas Killing: A Cajun Country Mystery
Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Crooked Lane Books (October 10, 2017)
Hardcover: 304 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1683313052
E-Book ASIN: B06XW23LPG
Maggie Crozat is back home in bayou country during the most magical time of the year. In Pelican, Louisiana, Christmastime is a season of giant bonfires on the levee, zydeco carols, and pots of gumbo. Except, this year, the Grinch has come to stay at the family-run Crozat Plantation B&B. When he floods travel websites with vicious reviews, Maggie thinks she’s identified him as rival businessman Donald Baxter. That is, until he’s found stabbed to death at Maggie’s workplace. And Maggie and her loved ones become top suspects.
The Crozats quickly establish alibis, but Maggie’s boyfriend, Detective Bo Durand, remains under suspicion. With Bo sidelined during the investigation, Maggie finds herself forced to work with an unlikely ally: longtime family enemy Rufus Durand. Her sleuthing uncovers more suspects than drummers drumming, and lands her in the crosshairs of the murderer.
The sleigh bells are jingling, and the clock is ticking for Maggie and Rufus, who must catch the killer or it will be the opposite of a Joyeux Noël in A Cajun Christmas Killing, the recipe-stuffed third installment of USA Today bestselling author Ellen Byron’s Cajun Country mysteries.

What I Thought:

This is the third installment of the Cajun Country Mysteries, and it was my favorite so far.  I enjoy reading this series as I enjoy the descriptions of the culture.  I really liked reading about Cajun Christmas customs.  The plot of this one was well written and very believable and the mystery was superb and kept me guessing till the very end.  This book flowed so well, that it was over before I was ready for it to be over.  I really like the characters in this series, especially Maggie.  I look forward to more in this series. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book. 



About The Author
Body on the Bayou, the second in Ellen’s Cajun Country Mystery series, won the Left Coast Crime Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery, and was nominated for a Best Contemporary Novel Agatha Award. Her debut book in the series, Plantation Shudders, made the USA Today Bestsellers list, and was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards. Ellen is also a recipient of a William F. Deeck-Malice Domestic Grant from the Malice Domestic Convention. Her TV credits include Wings, Still Standing, and Just Shoot Me, as well as network and cable pilots. As a journalist, she’s written over 200 magazine articles for national publications. Her plays, published by Dramatists Play Service, include the popular Graceland and Asleep on the Wind. A native New Yorker and graduate of Tulane University, Ellen lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband, daughter, and the family’s spoiled rescue dogs.
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HAPPY CAJUN CHRISTMAS!



That’s what the lit-up decoration read on the front lawn of a ranch house across from the Mississippi River in Gramercy, Louisiana. It was Christmas Eve and my husband, daughter and I were there at a party to watch the Bonfires on the Levee.

Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, families and friends come together to build giant thirty-foot high log pyramids on the river’s levees north of New Orleans. Some builders get adventurous and building their bonfires in unique shapes. The year we were there, one bonfire was built in the shape of a pirate ship. Some bonfires are simply stacks of cane reed covered with firecrackers. At 7 p.m. on Christmas Eve, the bonfires are lit, and flames reach high into the sky. There are a variety of theories about the tradition’s origin. The most popular explanation is that the bonfires guide Papa Noel’s way to the homes of Cajun children.

While the bonfires are probably Cajun Country’s best-known holiday tradition, there are others unique to the area as well. CAJUN NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS is Cajun Country’s own version of the famous tale. It’s written in the Cajun dialect; rather than reindeer and a sleigh, alligators pull “Papa Noel” along in a small boat. Christmas caroling in Cajun parishes includes traditional French songs as well as English and American. And no holiday in the region is complete without fantastic food. From Christmas Eve to New Year’s Eve, a meal might include gumbo, oyster stuffing, a turducken – a turkey stuffed with a duck that’s stuffed with a chicken – and pralines for dessert. During the bonfire party we were lucky enough to attend, there were three kinds of jambalaya, three kinds of gumbo, and even alligator soup. (Confession: that’s the only one I skipped.)

When the bonfires were reduced to embers and the wonderful party was over, we waddled off to Christmas Eve Mass at the local church. The pews were full, which thrilled the priest, and we were warmly embraced by the parishioners, even though my family and I were strangers in town.

The bonfires, the food, the festivities… I have wonderful memories of our Christmas in Cajun Country. You’ll find many of these real-life moments translated into fictional ones in my new book, A CAJUN CHRISTMAS KILLING.




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