Murder  Among  Friends

Mysteries inspired by the Life and Works
of John Greenleaf Whittier


All proceeds benefit the upkeep and operation of the Whittier Birthplace museum
 and the surrounding 69 acres of farmland in Haverhill, Massachusetts.



Snowbound with Zombies,
the first volume in this series,
is a collection of short supernatural stories inspired by the life and works of John Greenleaf Whittier.

 Although primarily remembered for his poems celebrating rural life, Whittier also relished a good ghost story – his poetry includes tales of witchcraft, clairvoyance, deviltry, premonitions, and ghosts. His first book was not of poetry, but a study of local superstitions, The Legends of New England, which includes retelling such tales as a schoolmarm whose murdered child briefly appears and drives her to confess, a demon fiddler who forces a party to dance until their legs wear down to bloody stumps, and various references to the Robert Burns poem "Tam o' Shanter" with its witches sabbath in a haunted church.

Available through the Gift Shop at the Whittier Birthplace or through Amazon.


Meet the Contributors

David Bernard (“The Death Clock”) is a native New Englander who now lives (albeit under protest) in South Florida, a paradoxical place where, when temperatures drop below 60°, locals break out parkas to wear over their shorts and sandals. His previous works include short stories in anthologies such as Twice upon an Apocalypse, Strangely Funny, and Legacy of the Reanimator.

William Cullen Bryant (“The Murdered Traveller”) was an American romantic poet, journalist, and long-time editor of the New York Evening Post. Along with Whittier, he was part of that most exclusive group of American literary superstars known as The Fireside Poets.

Judi Calhoun (“Exposed for Murder”) lives with ferocious black bears and wild wolves that howl at the moon every night in the Great North Woods of New Hampshire. A member of the New England Horror Writers, her stories regularly appear in e-zines, most recently in Portable NOUNS, Crimson Street, Theme of Absence, and Great Jones Street, just to name a few. Her stories have also appeared such anthologies as the N.H. Pulp Fiction Series, Pernicious Invaders, Canopic Jars, and The Passion of Cat. She was also in last year’s Whittier anthology Snowbound with Zombies.

D.G. Critchley (“Skeleton on the Ski Lift”) lives in northern New Jersey but will deny it if pressed on the issue. A novice mystery writer, he feels actually writing mysteries is the logical culmination of a life-long fascination with pulp detective magazines.

Ken Faig, Jr. (“The Goodwife and the Bookseller”) is one of the leading scholars on the Amateur Journalism movement as well as the genealogy of H. P. Lovecraft. Lovecraft’s Pillow and Other Strange Stories, a collection of his stories, was released by Hippocampus Press. The collected casebooks of this tale’s protagonist, Wilmott Watkyns, are currently being collected for publication.

David Goudsward (editor) lives in Lake Worth, Florida but was raised on the summit of Haverhill’s Scotland Hill. The author of 10 books on various nonfiction topics, his latest book is Horror Guide to Northern New England. He can be seen on reruns of the Travel Channel shows Mysteries at the Museum and Mysteries at the Monument.

Lucy Larcom (“The Murderer’s Request”) was an educator, editor, and publisher. Whittier became her mentor after “discovering” her work in Lowell Offering, a publication Larcom produced of literature by her fellow mill workers. A highly regarded poet in her lifetime, she is best remembered today for writing A New England Girlhood (1889), an autobiographical look at the advent of the industrial age and her role in it as an 11-year old laborer in a textile mill.

Edith Maxwell (“Murder in the Summer Kitchen”) is an Agatha-nominated mystery writer and a national best-selling author. Called to Justice, her second novel about 1888 Quaker midwife Rose Carroll, released in April 2017. A resident of Whittier’s hometown of Amesbury and a docent-trainee at the John Greenleaf Whittier Home Museum, Edith also writes the Local Foods Mysteries, set on an organic farm, and award-winning short crime fiction. As Maddie Day she writes the Country Store Mysteries and the Cozy Capers Book Group Mysteries.

Rock Neelly (“Cane Fishing”) is a Professor of Communications and English in the Cincinnati area. He is the author the Purple Heart Mystery series about combat-wounded veterans turned private detectives.

Gregory L. Norris (“Antiques”) is a prolific fiction writer. He was screenwriter on two episodes of Star Trek: Voyager, and recently penned the screenplay for the feature film Brutal Colors (Royal Blue Pictures). His most recent collection, Tales from the Robot Graveyard, is a collection of cyber-centric novellas.

Susan Oleksiw (“Miss Larcom Meets the Neighbors”) writes two mystery series, one featuring Chief of Police Joe Silva in the New England coastal village of Mellingham, and the second featuring Anita Ray, an Indian-American photographer living in South India. She was the founder and editor of The Larcom Review: A Journal of the Arts and Literature of New England, and is the co-founder of Level Best Books.

Peter Rawlik (“Black Ice”) is the author of more than twenty-five short stories, a smattering of poetry, and the Cthulhu Mythos novel series Reanimators, The Weird Company, and Reanimatrix. His short story “Revenge of the Reanimator” was nominated for a 2014 New Pulp Award. He lives in southern Florida where he works on Everglades issues.

Kristi Petersen Schoonover (“A Cricket in the Wall”) has appeared in countless magazines and anthologies. Skeletons in the Swimmin’ Hole, her collection of Disney World-themed horror, appeared in 2011, and her first novel, Bad Apple, was published in 2012. She was also in last year’s Whittier anthology Snowbound with Zombies.

Celia Thaxter (“A Memorable Murder”) was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and raised on the Isles of Shoals. After 10 years of marriage on the mainland, she returned to Appledore, writing poetry about the Isles that captured the public’s imagination. Her success brought literary giants to call, and the hotel parlor served as a salon with visits from Emerson, Hawthorne, Longfellow, and of course, Whittier.

Vicki Weisfeld (“The Flock”) is a writer, reader, active blogger, and reviewer of books, movies, theater, and socio-cultural phenomena. Find her online at Her stories have appeared in Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, Betty Fedora, King’s River Life, and Big Muddy Literary Magazine of Southeast Missouri State University, among others.

John Greenleaf Whittier (“A Mother’s Revenge” and “The Murdered Lady”) was a poet, journalist, editor and abolitionist. His first book, Legends of New England in Prose and Verse, was published in 1831. In 1866, with slavery abolished, he turned toward religious and nostalgic themes, one of which would be his most popular work. “Snow-Bound,” brought him widespread popular acclaim and the financial security to focus exclusively on his poetry.