Avon Books, Book Review, Fantasy, Paranormal, Series, Witches

Witch Way to Murder (Ophelia & Abby Mystery #1) by Shirley Damsgaard


I chose this book because I was interested in reading a book by a fellow Iowan and what fun to find out that the protagonist is a librarian.

Ophelia is an uptight librarian in small-town Iowa who keeps to herself and doesn’t make any waves. And, did I mention she is a witch? Her grandmother and sidekick, Abby, is also a witch and tells Ophelia that her life is in danger.

Enter Rick Davis, mysterious stranger, asking many questions around town. The events that follow are predictable, but the characters are fun and interesting.

This 2006 “Best first” Agatha book nominee, is a fun, enjoyable read for fans of cozy mysteries and witches who try to get answers on the Internet!


Witch Way to Murder



I’ve read many bios that start with the words “I wanted to be a writer all of my life and wrote my first story at the age of five.” I honestly can’t say that’s true for me—at the age of five, as an only child growing up on a farm, my career goal was to be a princess. Unfortunately, all those positions happened to be filled, so I followed the path so many other women have traveled—marriage, children, a career outside of the home—in my case, with the United States Postal Service. It wasn’t until the tender of age of 48 that I really decided to try my hand at writing.

My first attempt was a disastrous romance novella, and I might have given up had it not been for my late husband’s suggestion that I give mysteries a try. He pointed out my knack at spoiling movies for him by deducing how they would end. (Hey, it’s no fun being clever if you can’t share, right?) I combined his suggestion with my life long interest in the paranormal, and Ophelia and Abby were born. And in the end, creating the series helped carry me through a very difficult time.

Now seven years later, I still live in the same small town that I have for over twenty years, still have a career as Postmaster, and my grown children, with their children, all live within driving distance. I still enjoy gardening, reading, and needlepoint, but my world is larger thanks to Ophelia and Abby. Becoming an author has been the ride of a lifetime, and one for which I’ll always be grateful.