The Chronicles of Mister Marmee

The Chronicles of Mister Marmee novels are the first hand accounts of the many investigations and exploits of the feline adventurer and consulting detective, Mister Marmee and his best friend and colleague, the famous dachshund detective Sir Happy Heart. The world is introduced to this dynamic detective duo at a time when the criminal underworld is just beginning to make its mark upon the fabric of the British Empire in the Victorian Era and when the Empire desperately needs heroic figures to champion the cause of justice. Joined by their human counterpart, Inspector Hyrum Farley of Scotland Yard, Mister Marmee and Sir Happy Heart begin a lifelong struggle against the worst the criminal mind has to offer.
The Chronicles of Mister Marmee novels are not unlike the adventures of Sherlock Holmes and his endearing friend Doctor Watson in setting, style, and language. There are a few things which set the Mister Marmee stories apart from the stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The Chronicles of Mister Marmee are told from the perspective of a Victorian gentleman who just happens to be a marmalade colored cat. Each novel has the requisite elements one would expect to find in a truly riveting mystery - intrigue, jealousy, revenge, murder, plot twists, seemingly innocuous clues, and copious numbers of suspects. The novels weave together elements of the human and animal world, seamlessly integrating the two realms. In recounting his many adventures as a consulting detective, Mister Marmee offers us a rare glimpse into the true intricacies of the animal community and reveals through his writings that animals can understand humans and their languages, in all their complexities and nuances. Few humans, on the other hand, are able to understand the animal language and therefore often marginalize and underestimate the animals around them. By sharing his adventures, Mister Marmee gives a voice to those animals who have none, because of this limited understanding.
One significant theme found throughout the Chronicles of Mister Marmee is the deep and enduring bond between Mister Marmee and Sir Happy Heart. Although they come from different species and different backgrounds, their abiding respect and admiration for each other strengthens the connection between them, transforming them into an unstoppable force; the scourge of all who would seek to bring harm to the innocent.
Fun Facts For The Chronicles of Mister Marmee series:
The original cover art for the first book (below left) came from a larger painting I did back in 2007/2008 when I was still working on the first draft of the book. I had this vision of Mister Marmee and Sir Happy walking together down a cobblestone street in the heart of London, talking over the details of their first big case. This painting was the result of that day dream. It took me months to finish the painting. I worked on the painting much as I did the book; a little at a time. I was going to school full time. It was my senior year of college studying engineering technology, and I had projects coming out the wazoo. I carried writing journals with me everywhere I went so I could write every free second I had, and when I had a few minutes at home (which weren't many), I would work on the painting. The finished product can be seen above.
When The Case of Jack the Nipper was first published in eBook format in June of 2012, the original cover was released with it. With the success of the first novel's sales, I was able to invest in hiring a professional artist, Nick Delidaris, to redo the cover for me. His design was a stunning combination of traditional noir and non-traditional point of view. The results were incredible (below right).


It took about six years for me to complete The Case of Jack the Nipper. I was going to school full time when I started so I worked on it when I could. It usually meant I was writing in between classes, while I was waiting in line for financial aid, and occassionally at times when my attention should have been elsewhere. (We won't mention the particulars of those times.) It was a slow process, but little by little, the story took shape. The scribbles in my journals were eventually transformed into a novel, which has now expanded into a series. I have at least nine additional Mister Marmee novels planned, so rest assured on seeing Mister Marmee and Sir Happy Heart for a long time to come. As long as there are adventures to share, there will be books in the series.
Book 1:
The Case of Jack the Nipper chronicles Mister Marmee and Sir Happy Heart's initial meeting and first adventure together. When a series of brutal attacks and a connected murder set the city of London on edge, Sir Happy Heart and Mister Marmee find themselves unavoidably embroiled in the case as the details of each victim are brought to their very doorstep by Inspector Hyrum Farley himself, in his efforts to stop the perpetrator of the crimes before he strikes again. With clues that lead from the bleakest slums, to the darkened doorway of illegal dog fighting, to the country estate of one of the most powerful and influential families of Victorien times, can these extraordinary detectives prevail before the Nipper takes his next victim? Or will Sir Happy Heart's beloved owner, the preeminent veterinarian Doctor Stephen Hanover, find himself in the jaws of danger before the villain can be tracked down? It's a race against the clock for these two fearless detectives, and time is running out!
Book 2:
The Case of the Wayward Fae ~ When Mister Marmee and Sir Happy Heart retreat to the countryside to Doctor Stephen Hanover's family estate of Dawberry Manor for the winter holidays, their hopes of leisure and relaxtion are brought to a grinding halt when the shire is overrun with faerie mischief. Sprinkle in a murder, a missing girl, an arson, a questionable suicide, and a blind horse who 'saw' it all, and the detective duo have a recipe for disaster and their paws full of things to investigate. When Sir Happy Heart decides to investigate the murders on his own and puts his very life at risk, Mister Marmee must muster all of his cunning and half of the animal countryside to save his friend and solve the mystery behind the mischievious and deadly fae before it is too late.

The Case of Jack the Nipper Reviews - What People Are Saying....

* I have this on my NOOK, and absolutely love it! It is a delightful book with characters I wanted to invite into my home and heart. I simply could not put it down until I had finished it. I have not had the opportunity to read it again, as everyone wants to borrow it. I cannot wait for the second book to come out. Do yourself a favor, and get this book. You will not be disappointed. - anon "anon" (5 star review)
* I love Animals. I love a good mystery. The two combined make not only for an enjoyable made for FUN!!!
Buy too will enjoy it. - Margaret J. Szlabonyi (5 star review)
* Great! Anyone who is an animal lover will love it. Written by an animal lover for animal lovers. Buy it! - Christina Moon (5 star review)
* This book has all the suspense of Sherlock Holmes with delightful, endearing characters! A must read for animal lovers as well as those who love mysteries! AWESOME! - Allison Statzer (5 star review)
* Such a well written book for both the old and young. Such an interesting read. Loved it! I am anxious for the second edition to be published. - Beckiboo70 (5 star review)
* This is a lovely, engrossing read! The language and style will transport you to Victorian London, but the emotions and sentiments that resonate on each page are totally eternal and contemporary ---just like the human spirit. H.L. Stephens does a wonderful job of keeping the suspense and mystery alive. The unveiling of each piece of information through the eyes of Mister Marmee and his dear friend is delightful in itself, but the transitions to understanding the situation from the human standpoint are even more engrossing. Overall, it is a thoroughly enjoyable page turner! I can't wait to read successive stories in this wonderful chronicle! - parsi chhokri (5 star review)
* Excellent Read. I could not put this down until I finished it. Fabulous book with an enchanting story. Cannot wait for the next book. - Annonymous (5 star review)
* A facinating take on the "who done it" caper from the perspective of a wise dashound and his side kick Marmee the cat. I was intrigued and truly enjoyed every moment of this book. Can't wait to read more from this author. - Mayopets (5 star review)
Facebook: (From the Mister Marmee Facebook page) Mr. Marmee, my mom downloaded your book from Amazon. She's still in the beginning chapters, but says it is an engaging story that captured her attention from the very start! Highly recommended for readers everywhere! - Tami Tanoue June 2012 comment