The Cutter’s Widow

The Cutter’s Widow is a heartrending novel, set in Saint Paul, Minnesota, against the backdrop of 1915 urban poverty. Ella Byrne is a young widow, gripped by grief and struggling to support herself. She becomes a milliner’s apprentice, a baby broker and partners with a local pickpocket.  Ultimately, she becomes the focus of attention in a murder investigation by one of Saint Paul’s first female police officers. This is a story of the devastations of grief and poverty and the quest to make a difference in the world.

Praise for Mary’s latest novel Dorie Lavalle

“In luminous prose and with a powerful sense of drama, Mary Desjarlais brings us a new kind of hero in the person of Dorie LaValle who has the grit and brains to survive both the challenges of Prohibition as a moonshiner and the impossible odds of finding her way through the backroads of the human heart. DesJarlais is a gifted storyteller, one who makes you lose yourself in a tale so fascinating you stay up all night reading and call in sick the next day, unable to forget the wonderful, heady mixture of beauty, humor, and brutal reality that saturate these pages. This novel announces Mary DesJarlais as a bright star rising in the literary landscape. It will move, disturb, and haunt you in the best way with its poetic intensity, its originality and its tough, no holds barred characters.” – Jonis Agee, author of The River Wife 
“Dorie Lavalle is a story of three women who make moonshine, deliver babies, and dispatch bad guys in the dead of the wintry north. This is compulsively readable historical fiction with equal parts dark mystery and brazen romance weaved in.” – Ann Bauer, author of The Wild Ride Up the Cupboard