Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Mudpie Interviews...Baby from Valerie Burns' Baker Street Mystery Series


In a brand-new culinary cozy series with a fresh edge and a delightful small-town setting, the acclaimed author introduces Maddy Montgomery, a social media expert who’s #StartingOver in small town Michigan after inheriting her great-aunt’s bakery…and a 200-pound English Mastiff named Baby.

When Maddy Montgomery’s groom is a no-show to their livestream wedding, it’s a disaster that no amount of filtering can fix. But a surprise inheritance offers a chance to regroup and rebrand—as long as Maddy is willing to live in her late, great-aunt Octavia’s house in New Bison, Michigan, for a year, running her bakery and caring for a 250-pound English mastiff named Baby.

Maddy doesn’t bake, and her Louboutins aren’t made for walking giant dogs around Lake Michigan, but the locals are friendly and the scenery is beautiful. With help from her aunt’s loyal friends, aka the Baker Street Irregulars, Maddy feels ready to tackle any challenge, including Octavia’s award-winning cake recipes. That is, until New Bison’s mayor is fatally stabbed, and Maddy’s fingerprints are found on the knife . . .

Something strange is going on in New Bison. It seems Aunt Octavia had her suspicions, too. But Maddy’s going to need a whole lot more than a trending hashtag to save her reputation—and her life.

Mudpie was very excited to have the opportunity to interview Baby, the canine star of this series. We hope you enjoy meeting him!

Welcome, Baby! Thank you so much for chatting with me today. Could you start by telling us a little about yourself and how you came to be under Maddy's care? 

My name is Champion Crooner Ol’ Blue Eyes, One for My Baby. However, everyone calls me Baby. I was raised by a lovely human named Miss Octavia Baker. She found me as a puppy on the beach near her home in New Bison, Michigan. I was the runt of the litter and a scrawny little thing, but Miss Octavia fed and care for me until I grew healthy and strong. She showed me at dog shows and of course, I wanted to do my best for her, so I won. Now, I’m retired from dog shows, but people pay big money for me to sire puppies. It’s a RUFF life, but somebody’s got to do it. Anyway, Miss Octavia owned a bakery and we used to have a wonderful time together. She was a great cook and she made special treats for me. Those were good times. One day, Miss Octavia died and her great-niece, Maddy came to stay. Boy, was she green. She didn’t know how to do anything. She can’t cook. She didn’t know the first thing about dogs. I had to teach her how to do everything.

What's a typical day like for you? 

On a typical day, I let Maddy get up first. I take a nap while she showers and gets ready for work. Then, I get up. A quick shake, and I’m ready to go. I eat breakfast and then we go to Baby Cakes Bakery. After Maddy opens the door, I take a tour of the building to make sure it’s safe. Then, I curl up and nap, uh I mean supervise Maddy and the other staff, Miss Hannah and Leroy. Sometimes, I greet customers. Maddy likes to take my picture and post them online, so I pose for pictures. I guess, you could say I’m a model. Good thing I learned how to pose during my time on the dog show circuit. Smiling for the camera is an art. The top dogs make it look easy. When the last customer leaves, then I escort Maddy home. Then, its dinner, a little cuddle, and then I make sure she makes it safely to bed. It’s exhausting, but I don’t mind.

Tell us about Two Parts Sugar One Part Murder, the Baker Street Mystery Series you star in. 

Maddy used to live in Los Angeles. I think something happened. I know she was supposed to have gotten married, but the groom never showed up. He was a dummy. Anyway, Maddy was pretty sad, but when she heard that my human, Miss Octavia, died, she came here. Now, she stays in the house. She runs the bakery, although between you and me, she doesn’t know the first thing about cooking. And I look after her. Lots of people wanted to buy the house and the bakery. But Miss Octavia arranged things so that Maddy has to stay here for at least a year. Some guy got mad and when Maddy told him she wouldn’t sell him the bakery. They had a big fight and I had to come and show him who was boss. Nobody yells at my human and gets away with it. Well, right after that, the guy was killed, right there in the bakery. Maddy had to figure out who did it.

Do you assist Maddy in any way in solving the mystery? 

Absolutely, Maddy’s new to New Bison, and she’s young and kind of naïve. I help her know who the good guys are. Like, my vet, Dr. Michael Portman. He’s one of the good guys, even though he pokes and prods me, and even gives me shots. He also knows just the right spot to scratch behind my ears.

English Mastiffs are such huge dogs, you must be very helpful at intimidating potential bad guys. Are you a tough pup or a softie? 

Maddy calls me a “gentle giant.” I like to cuddle, take walks on the beach, and eat snacks. I put up with quite a lot from the kids who come in the bakery and want to ride me like a pony. However, if someone comes sniffing around my humans who wants to ‘cause trouble, well…that’s when I have to let them know just who’s the real boss.

Can you give us any clues as to what's next for you two? 

Well, I don’t want to give anything away, but spring is the start of the New Bison Spring Festival. Maddy’s determined to continue Miss Octavia’s legacy in the baking contest. However, a new bakery is opening in town, backed by a guy named CJ Davenport. I don’t like the smell of him. Apparently, neither did someone else, because he gets himself killed. Maddy has to catch his killer before her goose is cooked.

About the Author: 

Valerie (V. M.) Burns is the author of the Mystery Bookshop Mystery series. Her first book, The Plot is Murder, was nominated for an Agatha Award for Best Debut Novel. She is the author of the Dog Club Mystery Series, the RJ Franklin Mysteries, a three-time finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards, and an Edgar Award-nominated short story. Her newest series, Baker Street Mysteries, will release later this year, and her Pet Detective Mystery series will release in 2023. Valerie is on the board of Sisters in Crime and the Southeastern Chapter of Mystery Writers of America. She is also a member of Dog Writers of America, Crime Writers of Color, and International Thriller Writers. She is a manager for a Fortune 100 company and a mentor in the Writing Popular Fiction Program at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA. Born and raised in northwestern Indiana, Valerie currently lives in the southeastern United States with her two poodles. Readers can visit her website at

Author Links: 







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Mickey's Musings said...

Great interview Mupie! Sounds like a good mystery from the author you chatted with too!
Purrs, Julie

pilch92 said...

Great interview Miss Mudpie. This sounds like a fun series. XO

Lynn and Precious said...

Mudpie, how I enjoy a fun mystery read with the benefit of fur in it. Thanks for such a great book report. Reminds me of ancient times at school.

CCL Wendy said...

Mudpie, you are such a pro when it comes to doing interviews. You should give lessons, pretty girl.

Brian's Home Blog said...

That was a fun interview and the book sounds really good!

meowmeowmans said...

That was a greart interview, Mudpie. You really know the right questions to ask to get your interviewees talking! This bbok sounds like a good read, and we will check it out. :)