To Kill a Hummingbird (
A Bird Lover's Mystery #4)
by JR Ripley
Pub. Date: 7/11/2017
Genre: Cozy Crime
For Amy Simms, owner of Birds & Bees, nothing is more important than impressing her old professor, but this odd bird is about to fall to earth . . .
When her favorite ornithology professor comes calling, Birds & Bees owner Amy Simms hangs six hummingbird feeders around the shop to welcome Professor Livingston with a flock of his favorite flying creatures. But Amy soon finds that the sugar water in the feeders brings more than a swarm of hummingbirds. It also attracts murder.
Professor Livingston is just as friendly as Amy remembers, but something seems to be troubling him. When Amy pays him a visit that night, she finds the professor slumped over a table with a pair of scissors buried in his neck. And standing over his body is Rose Smith, the local bookseller, who claims she killed him. But while the police believe they have a bird in hand, Amy thinks the real killer may still be in the bush . . .
I drove back to Bookarama. This time I was fortunate enough to
find a parking slot right in front. Everyone seemed to be gone. The
sign over the door was turned off, and the street was dark. Was I too
I shut off the ignition and hurried to the entrance. A couple of
lights were still on inside toward the back. The door was unlocked.
I went inside. Several paperbacks were scattered on the floor between
the door and the sales counter. The folding chairs were just as
they had been. I couldn’t see the signing table because the projector
display screen had been moved in front.
“Rose?” I called. There was no sign of her or her daughter or any
of the other clerks.
I headed for the table to look for the books Derek had purchased,
thinking that maybe Mason had left them there. He’d obviously returned
to the campground.
Rose came from the storeroom, pulling a long, rolled-up rug the
color of a purple finch. She dropped the heavy rug at her feet when
she saw me. The plank floor shook. Her eyes flew to her right, and
my eyes followed.
Mason Livingston was seated at the signing table. His torso
drooped forward and his head rested on the table. A pair of scissors
protruded from his neck.
Rose bit her lip. “He’s dead. I killed him. And I’m glad he’s
In addition to writing the Bird Lover’s mystery series, J.R. Ripley is the critically acclaimed author of the Maggie Miller mysteries and the Kitty Karlyle mysteries (written as Marie Celine) among other works. J.R. is a member of the American Birding Association, the American Bird Conservancy, and is an Audubon Ambassador with the National Audubon Society.