Sunday, December 11, 2022

Dumpster Dying - A Review & Giveaway


DUMPSTER DYING by Michelle Bennington
The First Hazardous Hoarding Mystery 

Birdie Harper lives alone with her treasures. And the ghost of her dead husband. Collecting all manner of things from garage sales and dumpster dives, Birdie finds it painful to throw anything out, though she will gift some things she finds, like the ceramic angel that was a perfect present for Jenna, the young cashier at the local convenience store. When Jenna goes missing Birdie knows something is terribly wrong. With an older sister trying to boss her around and a possible suitor from church, Birdie is determined to uncover the truth behind Jenna's disappearance-no matter the cost.

I really enjoyed my first trip into Birdie Harper's world. I love the realness that is Birdie. She's gone through a lot and is coping the best way she knows how. She's determined, funny, feisty, and kind. Only one thing bothered me a bit. Continually described as an old lady, I was stunned when I discovered she's just a year older than me! In any case, the mystery is intriguing and I love Birdie's determination to help. Excellent character dynamics and a distinct sense of place really drew me in.

One of the things I appreciate most about DUMPSTER DYING is the way in which the hoarding aspect is portrayed. Approached with care and understanding, it is also very realistic from the tingling and obsessive thoughts to the condition of Birdie's home as well her emotions in regard to it all. Birdie is a hoarder, but she is not a caricature.

DUMPSTER DYING is a unique mystery that incorporates timely real life issues making it an outstanding first entry in a new series.


 Dumpster Dying: A Hazardous Hoarder Mystery by Michelle Bennington

About Dumpster Dying 

Dumpster Dying: A Hazardous Hoarder Mystery
Cozy Mystery 1st in Series
Setting - Kentucky
Independently Published (September 7, 2022)
Paperback: ‎ 270 pages

Birdie Harper is a widowed hoarder who lives with her husband's ghost. The only thing she enjoys more than a good yard sale is a good dumpster dive. When she finds her latest treasure—a ceramic angel— she knows just who to bring it to.

Jenna Lawson is a cashier at the Blue Market convenience store where Birdie often shops. The two women have formed a strong bond to assuage the losses in their lives, and Birdie thinks of Jenna like the daughter she lost long ago. So, when Jenna goes missing, Birdie is determined to find out what happened to her.

As she works to unravel the mystery, a man at church, Neville Miller, shows interest in Birdie, leading her to wonder if the lonely days are finally coming to an end. But her ghostly husband, Walter, sure isn’t going to like it.

Birdie is on a hunt that may claim the ultimate price—her own life.


About Michelle Bennington


Born and raised in the beautiful Bluegrass state of Kentucky, Michelle Bennington developed a passion for books early on that has progressed into a mild hoarding situation and an ever-growing to-read pile. She delights in spinning mysteries and histories. Find out more on her website:  

Author Links: 






Purchase Link - Amazon

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  1. Thank you for the lovely review! And I think I definitely messed up on the age and should have made her physically older. But I guess I always imagined her as someone who seems much older than she really is. I'll try to clear that up in subsequent books--if I can. And even though I'm only five years younger than Birdie myself, as I was writing her, it was as if I was looking at her through a child's eyes. And I don't know why. Maybe because I based her loosely on someone I know and the memories of her are trapped in my mind of when she was in her 50s and I was about 12 or 13. Hopefully I can clear that up a bit. Thanks again for the review!

    1. I was picturing her at 65, with her sister at 70, but got confused with the hot flashes...and Jenna's age. Still, loved the book.