The Maypop Kidnapping

Quinnie Boyd Mysteries Book #1

When Ms. Still­ford does not show up on the first day of school, 13-year-old Quin­nie Boyd is con­vinced her beloved tutor has been kidnapped.

Quin­nie, clever and endowed with a vivid imag­i­na­tion, is ini­tial­ly unable to con­vince her moth­er, the sher­iff of the small coastal vil­lage of Maid­en Rock, Maine (as well as its post­mistress and real estate agent; it’s that small a town), to mount a search. 

Miss­ing her best friend, Zoe, who is in Scot­land for the year, but aid­ed by her maybe-crush, Ben, and by the new girl, skinny-jeans–clad Mariel­la from New York City, Quin­nie mucks through the marsh, sneaks into hous­es, spies on vis­it­ing tat­tooed rock­ers, and jumps to conclusions—with the best inten­tions but often humor­ous results. 

Much of the book’s humor derives from the quirky, col­or­ful Maid­en Rock­ers, par­tic­u­lar­ly the two elder­ly nuns who dri­ve too fast, can’t fig­ure out recy­cling, live in the con­vent with hordes of cats, and have a puz­zling need for bat guano. 

Quin­nie is a mem­o­rable pro­tag­o­nist with an engag­ing voice, con­fused about her feel­ings for Ben and her anger at the moth­er she loves even as she bar­rels full tilt and against her mother’s instruc­tions into her ama­teur sleuthing.


Moon­beam Chil­dren’s Book Award, Pre-Teen Fic­tion, Mysteries


4 First-rate Mys­tery Sto­ries for Mid­dle-Grade Read­ers,” Augus­ta Scat­ter­good, Chris­t­ian Sci­ence Mon­i­tor, 14 Mar 2016

Cyn­thia Sur­risi is in the House,” Bar­bara O’Con­nor, Greet­ings from Nowhere, 14 March 2016 (down­load a PDF of this interview)

Eva Per­ry Mock New­bery Club, Wake Coun­ty Teen Libraries Lead­er­ship Corps/Reading Corps, 31 Mar 2016

“Mid­dle Grade Girl Detec­tive Books: Beyond Har­ri­et the Spy,” Kari­na Glaser, BookRi­ot, 26 Sept 2016


“Surrisi’s debut nov­el is a delight­ful cozy mys­tery, snug­ly mix­ing intrigue and humor, with an unpre­dictable and sat­is­fy­ing res­o­lu­tion.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“Sur­risi has cre­at­ed a tale that cap­tures read­ers’ atten­tion with­in the first few pages and keeps up the pace through the last chap­ter. The char­ac­ters are relat­able, refresh­ing­ly human, and very fun­ny. Quin­nie acts just like a 13-year-old girl would; she is an adult, a child, wise, and very fool­ish all at the same time. Surrisi’s law back­ground lends valu­able per­spec­tive and infor­ma­tion to the mys­tery but is nev­er heavy-hand­ed. Infor­ma­tion is always pro­vid­ed through Quin­nie and with the right lev­el of com­pre­hen­sion for a girl her age. Per­fect for mid­dle school­ers and upper elementary–aged read­ers, this title hits just the right note of sus­pense with­out being too scary.” (School Library Jour­nal)

“[A] sweet mys­tery that man­ages to have sus­pense, bad guys, and dan­ger but avoids gore and being too scary…. This book is rec­om­mend­ed for upper ele­men­tary mys­tery col­lec­tions.” (VOYA)

“Red her­rings aplen­ty will keep read­ers guess­ing about the iden­ti­ty of the crim­i­nals…. Mid­dle-grade read­ers look­ing for an unusu­al pro­tag­o­nist and set­ting will be well served by this.” (Book­list Online)

“C. M. Surrisi’s Quin­nie Boyd is one of the clever­est, most mem­o­rable, young teen pro­tag­o­nists I’ve met in quite a while! Set in a small coastal vil­lage in Maine, much of the humor in this fast-paced read revolves around the quirky vil­lagers, par­tic­u­lar­ly the two elder­ly nuns who dri­ve like NASCAR rac­ers. Surrisi’s debut nov­el is an engag­ing cozy mys­tery, with unpre­dictable twists and turns and an end­ing you’ll applaud!” (Cindy Nor­ris, Author Event Coor­di­na­tor, Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café)

C.M. Surrisi

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