Hello, Cat. Welcome to Sneaky the Library Cat’s blog. What is your name and your author’s name?
Hello. I’m Ribbons and my author and servant is Dianne Ascroft.
Mice to meet you, Ribbons.
What book(s) have you appeared in? Please list them and their genre.
I made my debut in A Timeless Celebration, the first novel in the Century Cottage Cozy Mysteries series. This is the second novel and, of course, my input into this story is important too. Lois, the woman I share my house with, needs me to watch out for her. She doesn’t have my astute judgement.
I like your style, Ribbons, and that you’re a cozy cat like me. Please give information about your series.
It’s the Century Cottage Cozy Mysteries series. The books are set in a small town in Canada and my littermate, Raggs, and I live with widow Lois Stone. We moved from Toronto to Fenwater last summer and we’re quite happy here. As we explore our new life, we frequently encounter new adventures and mysteries to solve. Lois thinks she is doing the investigating but she would miss half the clues without our help – especially mine. Raggs can be so lazy at times. She’d rather have a good nap than get involved in anything challenging.
That sounds great. I live in a small town, too, the fictional Cobble Cove where I’m the town’s library cat, but I stay at my MC character Alicia’s house sometimes, too. There’s an inn cat who I befriended later in the series and who helps me help the human characters in our latest books.
Are you based on a real animal such as your author’s? If so, please give further details.
Yes, my littermate, Raggs, and I are based on our author’s two tortoiseshell cats, Snooks and Rocky. The ‘real’ cats, if we must use that term, live with our author on her farm and keep a close eye on her, especially at meal times. I’m much younger, more intelligent and more attractive than either of the ‘real’ cats though.
MOL (Meow Out Loud). You are quite modest. I’m the same. I was loosely based on Debbie’s Siamese cat, Oliver, who has since gone to Rainbow Bridge, but I’m also younger and handsomer.
Can you share an excerpt from one of your books that features you in an important scene? If so, please include it.
Excerpt from Chapter 14:
“The thought of Bruce brought her back to the present with a start. Lois glanced at her watch. He would be here in a few minutes so she had better finish getting ready. She didn’t have much left to do. She preferred light makeup so a little blush and lipstick would take care of that. She just needed to brush her hair and have a final look at her outfit in the mirror. As she went to the dresser to lift her brush, she glanced at her wedding ring again. Should she take it off? As a widow she had every right to wear it, but if this was a date, what would Bruce think of her wearing it? Was she signalling reluctance to begin a new relationship?
Lois glanced at her two calico cats sprawled on the bed behind her. “What do you think, Ribbons? Should I take my rings off?”
The cat she had spoken to lay stretched out on her side, gazing at her owner. Lois was aware that the animal had been watching her since she started dressing for her evening out. Her other cat, Raggs, curled in a tight ball asleep, was oblivious to Lois’s actions. That was always the way. It was Ribbons who took the most interest in what her owner did.
As Lois looked at the cat, she grasped her engagement ring with her right hand and slowly slid it along her finger. Ribbons raised her head, watching her intently, her eyes narrowed. The ring slipped over the middle joint of her finger and Ribbons made a grumbling noise deep in her throat. The noise increased in volume as Lois slid the ring to the tip of her finger.
Lois looked down at the ring then at the cat. “You don’t like the idea of me taking it off either, eh?”
A feeling of sadness and uncertainty settled over her as she looked at the ring that was poised to leave her finger. She took a deep breath then exhaled, listening to Ribbons’s grumbling.
No, I’m not ready yet, she thought. Bruce will just have to understand.
Her mood immediately lifted as she slid the engagement ring back onto her finger. Ribbons stopped grumbling and closed one eye in what seemed like a wink before she lay her head back on the bed.”
Pawsome excerpt. Thanks for sharing.
What do you like most about your role in your authors’ books?
I’m never one to brag but I do bask in the attention I get. It feels good to have my worth noted. I may have mentioned my littermate, Raggs, is rather lazy and she often sleeps through anything exciting – and misses the snacks available when Lois is chatting with her friend Marge about the latest mystery. But I’m always right there to nudge Lois in the right direction when she needs a bit of help and to share the snacks. It feels good to help her and, like I said, I don’t mind the attention I get when I do something clever either.
I feel the same way, Ribbons.
Are you a talking cat in your books or just a silent one like I am who just meows occasionally?
I can be vocal when I need to but it’s a meow. I make my own wants known as well as helping Lois when she misses clues. But I draw the line at talking. If Lois and her friends can’t learn my language, I don’t intend to speak theirs. I don’t know why it’s so difficult for them to understand me sometimes when I have no trouble at all understanding them.
I don’t talk either, not to the humans, but I communicate with the readers through my conversations with the other pets. I wasn’t always like this. In the first 4 books of my series, I was like you. But since my author began writing short eBook stories to supplement our series books which now number 5, I am now communicating this way with my “talk” in italics. I think readers are enjoying it. They like to believe they know more than the human characters, although I’m careful not to reveal too much. It’s great fun. You may want to try it.
What advice would you give other cat characters?
Give your author the odd nudge and remind her you’re there. She needs to be sure to include you as often as possible in every book she writes. You’re much more interesting and photogenic than the humans in any story. Just take a look at me and Raggs on the cover of this book and you’ll see what I mean.
That’s great advice. I agree completely, and I might also add for cat characters to ask for their own blog like I did or at least a Facebook page or Instagram account.
Do you have any new books coming out? Please give dates and details.
This second book in the Century Cottage Cozy Mystery series, The Heritage Heist, was just released in December. I’m already nudging my author to get her slaving away at Book 3 in the series. I’ve got lots of ideas for how to feature me in it.
Keep at her. I have to do that with Debbie because, besides our Cobble Cove books, she writes other mysteries that aren’t all cozy, although most have cozy elements in them. The worst part is that she features other cats in those books and stories.
Are you and/or your author on social media? If so, please list your links.
Like I’ve said, I let the humans do the talking. You can find my author on her website: http://www.dianneascroft.com and on social media. On Facebook she’s at http://www.facebook.com/DianneAscroftwriter and on Twitter she’s at @DianneAscroft.
Thanks so much for that purrfect interview, Ribbons, and best whiskers to your and your author on your series. I’m including your blog tour and giveaway below.
The Heritage Heist (Century Cottage Cozy Mysteries)
by Dianne Ascroft
About The Heritage Heist
The Heritage Heist (Century Cottage Cozy Mysteries)
2nd in Series
Publisher: Independently Published (December 15, 2020)
Paperback: 278 pages
Digital ASIN: B08QMHW6DD
A fall fair, a cornered craftsman, an heirloom heist. When an antique quilt that is a cherished part of Fenwater’s past disappears from the market before her town’s fall fair, it’s up to Lois to resolve the quilt quandary.
Middle-aged widow Lois is enjoying her second season in her new town and her century house, away from the dangers of big city life in Toronto. She can’t wait to experience her first old-fashioned fall fair, complete with hot apple cider. But when the local market is burgled, her enthusiasm for the upcoming festival plummets. During the break-in one of the security guards is badly injured and an antique quilt, on loan from the museum, vanishes. Her friend, Bruce, designed and built the display case and has one of only two keys to secure it. That makes him a prime suspect in the theft. Lois won’t let Bruce’s reputation, nor the trust his customers have in the bespoke furniture maker, be damaged by the allegation. She’s determined to piece the clues together to find the quilt, clear Bruce’s name and save a piece of Fenwater’s history.
And so begins a week of deepening friendships, hot apple cider, calico cats, backseat shenanigans, hazy housemates, and few puzzle pieces to work with, set against the backdrop of a rustic market building amidst stately stone architecture, the crackle of flames in the hearth, a blaze of colour on leafy residential streets and the scintillating scent of cinnamon.
The Century Cottage Cozy Mystery series is set in rural Ontario, Canada during the early 1980s.
A tale for fans of Cindy Bell, Leighann Dobbs, Dianne Harman and Kathi Daley.
About Dianne Ascroft
Dianne Ascroft writes the Century Cottage Cozy Mysteries, set in rural Canada, and The Yankee Years historical sagas, set in WWII Northern Ireland. She has a passion for Ireland and Canada, past and present. An ex-pat Canadian, Dianne lives on a small farm with her husband and an assortment of strong-willed animals.
Her previous fiction works include An Unbidden Visitor (a tale inspired by Fermanagh’s famous Coonian ghost); Dancing Shadows, Tramping Hooves: A Collection of Short Stories (contemporary tales), and an historical novel, Hitler and Mars Bars, which explores Operation Shamrock, a little known Irish Red Cross humanitarian endeavour.
Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/DianneAscroftwriter
For other countries: https://books2read.com/u/4XLYBN
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