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Marsh Madness

Caroline Cousins

John F. Blair, Publisher
$16.95 paperback
5 ½ x 8 ½     
192 pages
Published in 2005

Spring in the South Carolina Low Country, the azaleas are in full bloom, and the tourists are flocking to Pinckney Plantation.

But so is trouble. Ex-beauty queen and wannabe actress Mary Mar (nee Mary Martha Futch) has returned to Indigo Island to play a starring role in a relative’s wedding. But she claims that someone is trying to kill her.

Cousins Lindsey and Margaret Ann don’t have time for a diva receiving death threats. After all, Margaret Ann’s directing the wedding of the year at Pinckney, where Lindsey’s temporarily in charge.

But when a dead body turns up at the Gatortorium, the island’s newest attraction, and Mary Mar goes missing, the cousins once again don their sleuthing caps. Margaret Ann’s younger sister Bonnie, who is back home for spring break, is also happy to help, as long as she can eat lunch first.

The engaging detective trio returns in another tale of Southern mystery and manners. Secrets from the past compete with present-day perils as the cousins contend with tourists, termites, kidnappers, and killers—as well as another ghost at Pinckney Plantation.


“Mayhem with a Southern accent.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Carl Hiaasen meets Anne Rivers Siddons in this lively new Southern cozy.” —Orlando Sentinel
“In the pseudonymous Cousins's fizzy second adventure (after 2003's Fiddle Dee Death), South Carolina cousins Lindsey Fox, Margaret Ann (‘Mam’) Matthew and Bonnie Lynn Tyler get together for a grand wedding at Pinckney Plantation on Indigo Island. When one of the bridesmaids, aspiring actress MaryMar Futch, goes missing and her look-alike assistant is found unconscious, the three amateur sleuths soon find themselves tangled in a kudzu-like mystery. The pace quickens after the assistant dies and someone steals Mam's identity. When MaryMar shows up claiming she's being stalked, Lindsey's not-so-secret beau, Maj. Will McLeod, hides MaryMar at Lindsey's for safekeeping. As Mam goes overboard on the wedding floral arrangements, MaryMar tries to seduce Will and puts on beauty queen airs. Lindsey tries to keep life on an even keel, but is plagued by jealousy and insecurity. Full of Southern charm, Low Country imagery, snappy humor and the requisite secrets and lies, this cozy shows that three heroines aren't too many; they are a triple treat.” —Publishers Weekly
“Three cousins, Lindsey, Margaret Ann (‘Mam’), and Bonnie, solve a murder on the fictional island of Indigo, South Carolina, in their second adventure. When they attend the opening of the Gatortorium, they find a woman passed out in one of the public bathrooms. The woman, Lorna Spivey, who later dies, turns out to be the look-alike and personal assistant of former beauty queen Mary Martha ‘MaryMar’ Futch. While the police investigate, Lindsey must keep the annoying MaryMar hidden in her home to protect her from the person who may be trying to kill her. The cousins make amiable cozy characters, with plenty of humorous banter, and the author evokes a strong sense of place. (The details of the extravagant wedding Mam is planning with the demanding mother of the bride provide an entertaining diversion.). . . . This is an enjoyable romp written by three women who are themselves cousins.”