Since the onset of WWII, Agnes Agatha Odboddy, hometown patriot and self-appointed scourge of the underworld, suspects conspiracies around every corner…stolen ration books, German spies running amok, and a possible Japanese invasion off the California coast.
This seventy-year-old, model citizen would set the world aright if she could get Chief Waddlemucker to pay attention to the town’s nefarious deeds on any given Meatless Monday.
Mrs. Odboddy vows to bring the villains, both foreign and domestic, to justice, all while keeping chickens in her bathroom, working at the Ration Stamp Office, and knitting argyles for the boys on the front lines.
Imagine the chaos when Agnes’s long-lost WWI lover returns, hoping to find a million dollars in missing Hawaiian money and rekindle their ancient romance. In the thrilling conclusion, Agnes’s predictions become all too real when Mrs. Roosevelt unexpectedly comes to town to attend a funeral and Agnes must prove that she is, indeed, a warrior on the home front.
Q: Can you tell us a little about yourself, Mrs. Odboddy?
Call me Agnes. I live with my Siamese cat, Ling-Ling, and my granddaughter, Katherine. She works at the Curls to Dye For beauty salon here in Newbury. I keep busy doing volunteer work and as I’m sure you’re aware, every citizen must to be on the look-out for Nazi spies and conspiracies.
Q: Tell us about your volunteer work.
I serve cookies at the military base USO several times a month, just up the Northern California coast. I also roll bandages at the hospital and work on the paper drive. Our church knits socks for the military. Probably my most valuable service as a home town patriot, is on the coast watch every other Wednesday. And, you wouldn’t believe how that turns out!
I also mail out ration coupon books. In fact, this week, I realized that someone is stealing and selling ration books from the mailboxes at empty houses. It’s sure to be a black market conspiracy. My friend, Jackson Jackson, and I will wait by the empty house tonight and we’ll catch the thief in the act.
Q: I can see how that might go wrong. Are you sure that’s safe?
Really, young lady! Where is your spirit of adventure?
Q: Okay, fair enough. Tell me why you think there are conspiracies and spies─
Oh, yes. Nazi spies. It’s that Sofia Rashmuller, the new gal at the First Church of the Evening Star and Everlasting Light. She’s a Nazi spy. Her dyed red hair is a dead giveaway.
Q: But your hair–
I beg your pardon! I do NOT dye my hair. I may freshen it from time to time with a henna rinse but I would never dye my hair. Fast women and European spies do that. I should know. I saw enough of them during WWI when I worked as an undercover agent for the USA. Of course, I was much younger then, but we saw some action, and I lived to tell about it.
Q: A WWI secret agent? Can you tell us about that?
Of course not! If I told you the details, I’d have to kill you.
Q: Really? So have you ever killed anyone?
Don’t be ridiculous… Well, there was that one time… Never mind. Next question?
Q: So, what else might our readers find interesting in the Mrs. Odboddy mystery adventure?
Everything was rationed. Tires, shoes, food, gasoline, just everything. Imagine. Coffee was rationed to one pound per adult every six weeks! And the price of eggs! Actually, I’ve solved that problem. I’m getting six chickens this afternoon. I’m not quite sure what I’ll do with them until Saturday, when my friend is building us a coop. Guess we’ll just have to stick them in the bathroom. Hope Ling-Ling doesn’t get obsessed with chicken tartare. (spoiler alert!)
Q: In the bathroom?How is that going to work?
Why not? They’re just chickens, after all. What could possibly go wrong?
And I didn’t even mention my old WWI boyfriend coming back to town, wanting to reignite a romance. But, you’ll have to go to Amazon and buy the book if you want to know more about the ration book caper, stolen Hawaii money, chickens in the bathroom, and my old boyfriend. Life is very exciting in Newbury.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elaine is a member of Sisters in Crime, Inspire Christian Writers and Cat Writers Association. She lives in No. Calif with her husband and four house cats (the inspiration for her three humorous cozy cat mysteries, Black Cat’s Legacy, Black Cat and the Lethal Lawyer, and Black Cat and the Accidental Angel).
Mrs. Odboddy’s character is based in no way on Elaine’s quirky personality. Two more Mrs. Odboddy adventures will publish in the near future. Many of Elaine’s short stories have appeared in magazines and multiple anthologies.
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