Though I don't have an accent (I don't, really!) I am a Southerner and am fluent in “South-speak”.
Sometimes, I forget my editor and copy editor (love y'all!) are Yankees but am reminded when I wind up having to clarify or explain a Southernism.
I'm going to try to list a few of my favorite bits of Southern slang and sayings and invite you to share some of yours with me (I welcome Yankee-isms, too. One of my characters is from Buffalo, NY, after all!)
Everyone’s heard of “yonder” and “y’all” but how about...
“Mad as a wet hen.” – angry or upset.
“Slow as molasses in January.” – Extremely slow. In my recollection this was used to refer to dawdling children.
“Fit to be tied.” – very angry (even madder than a wet hen.)
“All over hell and half of Georgia.” – Meaning all over the place. Refers to distance and effort usually, re: locating someone/something or accomplishing a task i.e. I had to look all over Hell and half of Georgia before I found a parking spot at the Piggly Wiggly! (We Southerners do love hyperbole.)
Addressing your best friend as “heifer” is actually a term of endearment. This might be a generational thing, but many girls down South call their best girlfriends names like “heifer, hooker, trickster etc...” Notice I say best friend. This would not be acceptable in any other situation. (Or at church, for that matter.)
Addressing everyone else as “sugar, baby, darlin’, honey, etc...” is perfectly normal, even if they’re strangers.
In the South you’ll hear strange things like, “cat head biscuit” (this is a reference to size, not ingredients), “knee baby” which is a term for a toddler and “The devil’s beating his wife.” which is what we call rain with sunshine.
Just a quick note, to all you ladies who may not have traveled to the deep South. Being addressed as "ma'am" is never an insult or a reference to age.
“Ma’am” is just us being polite!
A Tiger's Tale (Call of the Wilde - Book 2) by Laura Morrigan
Publication Date: 05/06/2014
Publisher: Penguin Group
Imprint: Berkley Prime Crime
Genre: Cozy Mystery
(Received for an honest review from Berkley Prime Crime)
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, Indiebound
Laura Morrigan on the WEB: website, twitter, facebook, goodreads
Books in the series:
Call of the Wilde
1. Woof at the Door
2. A Tiger's Tale
Coverart: Click the Image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.
When a normally mellow tiger at a rescue facility trees a terrified vet, animal behaviorist Grace Wilde needs to use her psychic ability to get to the root of the problem…
A tiger can’t change his stripes—but if his behavior changes suddenly, there’s a reason. So when even-tempered Boris the Siberian tiger goes into attack mode, Grace knows there’s more to the story. Something is agitating the big cat. As she uses her telepathic ability to calm the tiger, she realizes he has witnessed a theft—not of something but of someone. A teenaged volunteer at the animal rescue facility has been taken…kidnapped.
The problem is Brooke Ligner’s parents believe their troubled daughter ran away and Grace can’t exactly reveal her source. Even though sexy cop Kai Duncan is aware of Grace’s secret ability, he can’t initiate an investigation based on the word of a tiger. Now, as Grace searches for solid clues to rescue the missing teen, it’s the human predators she’ll need to watch out for…
A Tiger's Tale is the second book in the Call of the Wilde series by Laura Morrigan. Readers who are looking for a change of pace in a cozy need look no further. This books focuses on a disappearance rather than a murder and keeps readers on their toes with clues and evidence or an usual sort. Morrigan has an affinity for writing about animals and their thoughts and feelings that gives her work a realness that isn't easy to find in the genre. She is able to tap into the heart of the animal and use it in her writing. A great addition to this wildlife orientated series.
What I liked:
The first book in this series introduced readers to Grace Wilde, who is essentially an animal whisperer. Grace's ability to talk to animals is an ongoing theme in the series, which will appeal to animal lovers and cozy mystery enthusiasts. I love Grace. She's a bit of misfit in some ways, except where animals are concerned. She doesn't really fit into a particular niche and I always enjoy a character who has their own eccentricities and uniqueness. I think this character is all about being comfortable with being who you are and not letting yourself be influenced by what others want you to be. She is one of favorite heroines that I have found for a while.
Grace talks to all kinds of animals and in this particular book it's a lion taking center stage. Not many people are aware of Grace's gift for being able to communicate with those in the animal kingdom and when she finds out that a young worker is missing she isn't sure how to explain how she knows that she has been kidnapped. I liked Grace's dilemma and how she eventually figures out how to handle it. The lion was a great character and definitely has his own personality. I also loved the addition of Voodoo the kitten and how this affected Grace's life as well.
This book wasn't about a murder. Now there is a surprise for a cozy mystery. This one focuses on a missing girl who everyone wants to believe has run away. Morrigan is able to show cozy readers that a disappearance can be just as interesting in the whodunit department as a murder can. I loved that Morrigan went out on a limb and changed up the mode of the crime. She didn't stick to the cozy plan... bravo! Now I love cozies, but something different in the genre is a rare find and this is it. Great idea!
The mystery elements of the book are all still here. There are a lot of suspects when it comes to this kidnapping and figuring out whodunit, isn't as easy as one might think. The plot involves everything from an abusive father, to an unstable kid, to mobsters. There are enough red herrings to make the perpetrator elusive and Morrigan keeps it interesting by providing a lot of different reasons or motives that someone might want to kidnap that girl. Very well written.
What I didn't like:
I liked this one a lot. It wasn't your same old cozy. The animal psychic connection is believable and Morrigan has a way with writing the animal psyche.
If you love animals, an eccentric heroine and a mystery that doesn't has to involve murder, this is the one. A great read!
A Tiger's Tale is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.
I'm giving this one 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!
About the Author:
Spending the first years of her life on a Costa Rican coffee farm blessed Laura Morrigan with a fertile imagination and a love for all things wild. Later she became a volunteer at a local zoo, helping out with everything from “waste management” to teaching an elephant how to paint. Drawing from her years of experience with both wild and domestic animals and her passion for detective novels, Laura created the Call of the Wilde Mysteries, including Woof at the Door.
The publisher is sponsoring a giveaway for one copy of A Tiger's Tale by Laura Morrigan.
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