Black Cat Knocks on WoodI’ve always loved visiting the Texas Hill Country where my Aunt Rowe owns Around-the-World rental cottages. When I decided to take the plunge and leave my paralegal job in Houston to write mystery fiction full-time, she encouraged me to come and live in her Monte Carlo cottage. After all, she has eleven other cottages named after foreign cities to rent to vacationers, and she insisted she could spare one for as long as I choose to live there.

My cottage is situated in the perfect setting for a creative mind with the gurgling of the Glidden River right outside the window. Things were even more perfect once Hitchcock, my black cat, showed up on my window sill, then stayed to live with me full-time. At first it seemed like everyone in town called him the Bad Luck Cat. Some actually believed he would cause them bad luck, so I spent a lot of time convincing people there is definitely no truth to that crazy superstition. Hitchcock does require some watching, though, because he’s bound to look for trouble – or at least point out trouble to me – every chance he gets.

Speaking of trouble, Aunt Rowe is more of a challenge to keep an eye on than the cat. She and her gal pals have decided to participate in the Lavender Senior Pro Rodeo, which I say is for former professional rodeo performers who are now seniors – not for seniors who think performing in the rodeo would be a hoot. Aunt Rowe isn’t the type to listen to reason or to worry that she or one of her friends might break their neck. They’ve signed up for goat tying, of all things. I can barely tolerate the thought of cruel animal treatment at rodeos, much less be acquainted with people who take part in the activities, but once Aunt Rowe makes up her mind about something there’s no stopping her.

Pearl Hogan, one of Aunt Rowe’s friends and owner of the candy store Sweet Stop, is distracted big time from practicing for the rodeo when she finds local realtor Crystal Devlin dead. The two women had a beef over the sale of some property, and Crystal has been on Pearl’s black list. When Pearl found the dead woman I had no idea she called me first instead of nine-one-one. I mean, who does that? Pearl claimed I needed to know first that she saw a black cat run through the building where the body was found.

Yes, I can appreciate the fact that Pearl was trying to save Hitchcock’s reputation. No, I don’t want to get involved in solving Crystal’s murder. I need to keep Aunt Rowe safe from the unsavory rodeo cowboys who give me the willies. Even the clown – he may be handsome, but I don’t find him one bit funny. I’m on a mission to finish editing my book since my agent passed on a potential publisher’s critique with suggestions for rewrites. This is a huge step toward finally becoming a published author. The bottom line, though, is I can’t manage to keep my nose out of a mystery to save my life. That’s where Hitchcock comes in – he watches my back as much as I watch his, and I will proclaim far and wide that he’s my good luck cat.


The Black Cat Knocks on Wood is the second book in the Bad Luck Cat mystery series, published by Berkley Prime Crime, June 2016.

The author of Black Cat Crossing is back as mystery novelist Sabrina Tate and her cat Hitchcock find themselves roped into another dangerous murder case. . .

Sabrina finds it difficult to work on her latest suspense novel when her Aunt Rowe’s antics keep tying up her thoughts. This time Rowe and her fun-loving friends have decided to compete in the upcoming Texas Hill Country Senior Pro Rodeo. The problem is these women have little to no experience with lassos, bulls, or even horseback riding.

Before Sabrina can keep the stubborn seniors from mounting their steeds, she’s sidetracked by a bigger problem. An uppity local business owner is found dead in an accident—right after a black cat was seen in her office. While the townsfolk think the bad luck cat has struck again, Sabrina suspects there might be something more murderous afoot. With a twisted killer on the loose, she’ll have to round up clues quickly before she or her aunt are steered straight into the path of danger. . .

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About the author
Kay Finch grew up on a Pennsylvania farm, but she moved to Texas and discovered her favorite vacation spot, the Texas Hill Country. Kay is the author of the Bad Luck Cat Mysteries, including Black Cat Crossing and The Black Cat Knocks on Wood. She’s a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and the State Bar of Texas Paralegal Division. Kay lives with her husband, a rescue cat, and two wild and crazy rescue dogs in a Houston suburb. Visit the author at kayfinch.com.
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