Greetings, dear reader. My name is Rose Carroll, and I am a midwife. I bicycle about our bustling mill town of Amesbury, delivering babies and guiding the health of pregnant ladies. I am twenty-four, which is getting along for a single lady in 1888, although I’m not entirely single, having a handsome and open-minded beau in the person of David Dodge, a doctor from neighboring Newburyport.
As I reside with the family of my late sister, my day always begins with stoking our wood cooking stove and helping my eldest niece, Faith with the porridge for the four younger children and my moody brother-in-law. Once they are all off to school and jobs, I begin my own work of receiving pregnant clients in my parlor.
After a terrible case of arson burned down many of the carriage factories in our town here in the northeastern corner of Massachusetts, I discovered I am rather adept solving crimes, too, so my day might include acting the amateur detective. I am a forthright type by nature, and when a murderer has the gall to do the deed to one of my clients or someone with whom they are associated, I feel called to assist the police with their investigation. Detective Kevin Donovan can’t very well go sticking his nose into a laboring woman’s bedchamber now, can he? The secrets women tell during their confinement can be quite revealing.
Thee must know that a day in my life also always includes the possibility of a husband or servant summoning me with great urgency to a birth. Off I go, birthing satchel in hand. Sometimes I remain throughout the night. In my experience, babies often choose to make their entrance into our world shortly before dawn.
Thee might already have understood by the manner of my speech that I am a member of the Religious Society of Friends. I struggle a bit with the patience required for discernment, the prayerful waiting we practice in order to understand the way God wishes us to go. But I am a firm believer in the values of simplicity, equality, and peaceful ways that my faith espouses. I strive to conduct my life accordingly.
My delightfully quirky friend Bertie Winslow, postmistress, has also shown a talent for detecting. Some of my days include discussing cases with her, which can turn into quite the adventure.
The best end to my day is when David comes calling in his handsome doctor’s buggy and takes me for a ride down to the moonlit Merrimack River. I imagine we shall meet with some opposition as our courtship continues, both from the elders of my Friends Meeting, since David attends the Unitarian Church, and from his high-society mother. But we shall meet those obstacles with hands clasped in love.
Delivering the Truth is the first book in the NEW Quaker Midwife mystery series, published by Midnight Ink, April 2016.
Quaker midwife Rose Carroll discovers dark secrets in 1888 Massachusetts
For Quaker midwife Rose Carroll, life in Amesbury, Massachusetts, provides equal measures of joy and tribulation. She delights in attending to the needs of mothers and newborns even as she mourns the recent death of her sister. Likewise, Rose enjoys the giddy feelings that come from being courted by a handsome doctor, but a suspicious fire and two murders leave her fearing for the well-being of her loved ones.
Driven by her desire for safety and justice, Rose Carroll begins asking questions related to the crimes. Consulting with her friends and neighbors―including the famous Quaker poet John Greenleaf Whittier―Rose draws on her strengths as a counselor and problem solver in trying to bring the perpetrators to light.
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About the author
Agatha-nominated and Amazon best-selling author Edith Maxwell writes the Quaker Midwife Mysteries and the Local Foods Mysteries, the Country Store Mysteries (as Maddie Day), and the Lauren Rousseau Mysteries (as Tace Baker), as well as award-winning short crime fiction. Her short story, “A Questionable Death,” is nominated for a 2016 Agatha Award for Best Short Story. The tale features the 1888 setting and characters from her Quaker Midwife Mysteries series, which debuts with Delivering the Truth on April 8.
Maxwell is Vice-President of Sisters in Crime New England and Clerk of Amesbury Friends Meeting. She lives north of Boston with her beau and three cats, and blogs with the other Wicked Cozy Authors. You can find her on Facebook, @edithmaxwell, Pinterest, and at her web site, edithmaxwell.com.
Readers: What would thee like to know about Quakers, midwifery, or life in my exciting era?
Giveaway: Leave comment below for your chance to win a print copy of Delivering the Truth. US entries only, please. The giveaway will end April 15, 2016 at 12 AM EST. Good luck everyone!
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