A day in the life of Maggie Crozat by Ellen Byron

Night falls, and the bonfires on the levees north of New Orleans start to catch fire. One by one, flames lick through the thirty-foot high structures. Onlookers cheer as bonfires covered with strands of firecrackers crackle and explode. I don’t cheer. I’m too busy running.

I dash past one conflagration after another, my arms scalded by flaming ash, running from a murderer who’s already claimed one victim. I have zero desire to be the next. I scream for help, but no one can hear me over the roar of flames. As I race by with my nemesis on my heels, people whoop and holler. They think it’s a game. “Laissez les bon temps rouler!” someone calls. Let the good times roll.

I scream as the firecrackers on another bonfire set off a rat-a-tat-tat that sounds like a semi-automatic weapon. If the murderer on my tail decides to use a gun, no one will even notice. Out over the Mississippi River, fireworks burst in the sky and color rains down. At this point the levees could be a battlefield. I’m battling to stay alive.

I slip in the wet grass and twist my ankle, then limp into the shadow of an unlit bonfire to nurse the injury. Flames suddenly wrap around the side of the structure and head toward me. Hiding behind what’s basically a giant matchstick? Not a good idea. I take off again, ignoring the pain. At least the dance exercise classes my friends Gaynell and Ione dragged me to have provided an extra dose of stamina. Who knew learning how to jeté in BalletBod would come in so handy?

The air smells like burning wood, gun powder, and beer. I’m covered with a coat of ash that’s been turned to glue by a steady light rain that won’t let up. It’s going to take scrubbing with steel wool to get the gunk off me – if I’m lucky enough to survive the night.

This was not how I planned to spend Christmas Eve.

You can read more about Maggie in A Cajun Christmas Killing, the third book in the “Cajun Country” mystery series.

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.

Buy Link

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Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a print copy of A Cajun Christmas Killing. U.S. entries only, please. The giveaway ends October 13, 2017. Good luck everyone!

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About the author
Body on the Bayou, the second book in Ellen’s Cajun Country Mystery Series, recently won the Left Coast Crime Lefty Award for Best Humorous Mystery, and was nominated for an Agatha Award in the category of Best Contemporary Novel. Ellen’s debut novel in the series, Plantation Shudders, was nominated for Agatha, Lefty, and Daphne awards, and made the USA Today Bestseller list. Book three, A Cajun Christmas Killing, launched October 10th. TV credits include Wings, Just Shoot Me, Fairly OddParents, and many pilots. She’s also an award-winning playwright and journalist. Ellen lives in Studio City with her husband, daughter, and two spoiled rescue dogs. Visit her at ellenbyron.com.

All comments are welcomed.

42 responses to “A day in the life of Maggie Crozat by Ellen Byron

  1. Looks like a Fun Book. Thanks for sharing it. I especially Love that it’s Christmas. Going to add it ti My List. Thanks 🙂

  2. Great author! Thanks for the chance to win this!!!

  3. Love the cover, especially the dog….
    Thank you for the giveaway…..

  4. Thanks for the chance to win this giveaway. Love books set in New Orleans. Time to get started on Christmas reading.

  5. Have loved the first two books in the series and can’t wait to read this new one.

  6. Sounds like a great read.

  7. The exercpt left me breathless. Think I just found my first Christmas read of 2017!

  8. Good day Dru Ann. Thanks so much for including Ellen Byron’s book on your blog. I am not familiar with her books so it is great to learn a little about what they are like. Your blog is very much appreciated.

  9. I love the series and would kill to own this book so I can add it to my collection.

  10. I loved the first book and can’t wait for this one. What’s better than Louisiana, Cajun food and mystery?

  11. Thank you for the chance to win. This looks like a fun read.

  12. Wonderful series and great feature. Thanks.

  13. Thanks for the chance to win this book!

  14. This is an excellent series and I am excited to know the latest is out and ready. (Thanks Dru Ann for reviewing it over the weekend and letting your readers know about it!) Thanks to Ellen for her generous chance to win the book. ❤ 🙂

  15. Great review I’m looking forward to this, thanks

  16. Wow, what a great day in the life of Maggie Crozat, Ellen & Dru Ann — it had me on the edge of my seat! I can’t wait to read A Cajun Christmas Killing ~

  17. Brian Frauenknecht

    I am even more excited to read this now that I have read the above. I have loved the first 2 books in the series and can’t wait to read this one. I hope there will be many, many more to come. Thank you for the chance to win.

  18. This sounds so good! I’ve heard about the bonfires on the levees for years but never got to go see any. Darn it.

  19. What a cute cover on this new book!!! It sounds so exciting! Looking forward to reading it. Sure would love to win it!

  20. Love, love, love this series!!! Would love to win a print copy of A Cajun Christmas Killing. Thanks for the chance!

  21. Fire has always scared me. Running from a murderer – even scarier.

  22. Hi all! Ellen Byron here. Thanks for the wonderful comments. It was fun to write Maggie in first person for a change. Good luck! I’ll be back to check in again later. 🙂

  23. I really enjoyed the first two books in this series. Looking forward to this one too! mbradeen@yahoo.com

  24. This is a fun series.

  25. Love the excerpt.

  26. Really need to start this series. Keep it on my wishlist and then forget. Ok I forget most things, so maybe not the best way to remind myself to buy it. Thanks for the chance to win a copy!

  27. This sounds exciting! Can’t wait to read it!

  28. Hi, it’s Ellen again. Really appreciate the comments. I wrote this scene just for Dru. I hardly ever write in third person – my series is in third person – so this was a great challenge. Plus, I made it super-action-y!

  29. Sounds wonderfully exciting! Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  30. Jeanie Dannheim

    This sounds great! I have not heard of this holiday – guess that since I have not been to Louisiana, that’s why! Would love to learn more about the unique Cajun culture through your eyes and words! I like this cover the best of your three books. Thank you for the chance to win!

  31. I love this series and can’t wait to read about Maggie’s Christmas cozy adventure!!

  32. I spent one Christmas in New Orleans so I’m interested in this setting.

  33. Sounds great!! Thanks for the chance!

  34. I adored Louisiana and Cajun cooking when we were there. “Body on the Bayou” was great reading. I want to read “A Cajun Christmas Killing.”

  35. Mary Jane Hopper

    I enjoy the stories about things in the LA bayou country and this series sounds great.

    Sent from my iPad


  36. Sounds really good and I love the cover!

  37. Hi all! Ellen Byron back for a final visit. Thanks again to all for the great comments and support. I hope you enjoy the book as much as you enjoyed this post. It’s different – third person and less action-y. Except in the end – a big chase scene during the bonfires on levee! Which I got to experience firsthand. I wrote all the details into the book. Goodnight and laissez les bon temps rouler – let the good times roll!

  38. A Christmas mystery set in the Bayou…..sounds like a fun read. Love these books!

  39. There’s always something going on in NOLA! And interesting traditions too! Looking forward to the new book!

  40. Thanks for the heads up. Poor Maggie. Would love to see how this turns out. Hopefully sooner. Rather than later

  41. **** WINNER ****
    A Cajun Christmas Killing is Brian Frauenknecht

  42. Brian Frauenknecht

    Thank you Dru! I have responded back to your email with my address and name. I can ‘t wait to receive this book!

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