Winter Blogfest: Wendy Kendall

This post is part of Long and Short Reviews’ Winter Blogfest. Leave a comment for a chance to win a digital copy of the book Kat Out of the Bag, OR another of the author’s books if the winner would prefer another book instead.

Xmas Legend of Turkey Purses by Wendy Kendall

There was an ancient town of Myra, now called Demre, located in the country of Turkey. From this town there comes an ancient Christmas legend of The Three Purses –

A noble man had lost his fortune. He could no longer afford food and clothing for his family of three daughters. His daughters were of an age to marry, but the father could not afford their dowries. The family grew desperate. 

Saint Nicholas, the bishop of Myra heard about the plight of this family and decided to rescue them. He did not want to approach the nobleman and offer him help, as he knew that such an approach would be politely turned down. He made up his mind to help anonymously and secretly.

One night St. Nicholas visited the house and threw a silken purse filled with gold on the eldest daughter’s bed. The next morning when she found it, the family was overjoyed and bought some food and clothes for themselves. The eldest daughter could now marry. 

A second night, St. Nicholas threw another silken purse of gold on the bed of the second daughter. The family was delighted, and she also married. 

The nobleman wanted to track down their secret patron. He hid beneath window, the third night and waited. When St. Nicholas came to throw the third silken purse of gold, the nobleman leaped out and thanked him for his kindness. St. Nicholas requested the nobleman not reveal his good deeds to anyone. He told him it was his duty to help the needy.

As this story evolved it was told that St. Nicholas passed silken purses of gold through the kitchen chimney which landed in the stockings of the daughters. The stockings were kept under the chimney for drying.

St. Nicholas, came to be known as Santa Claus. St. Nicholas/Santa is a generous person, known for his charity and benevolence.

What bag are you wishing for this holiday season?

Here are four contemporary Turkey’s purse designers – 

Güneş Mutlu founded handbag brand Mehry Mu in 2009. Mehry Mu was created from Mutlu’s love of fabrics. Eastern design is very much part of the brand’s aesthetic, and influences from colorful Istanbul and Morocco.

Sisters Beste and Merve Manastır founded Manu Atelier in 2014 to promote handicrafts and pay tribute to their father, who is a renowned leather goods craftsman.

Sanayi 313 launched in 2015. The label offers a ready-to-wear line designed by Serena Uziyel; every piece is handmade by skilled artisans, in processes that can take around 100 hours. Uziyel previously worked for luxury brands including Alberta Ferretti before teaming up with interior architect Enis Karavil, who set up Sanayi 313 in Istanbul.

Meb Rure founded Mlouye in 2015 in Turkey and has excellent quality and design at its heart. The Lantern bag was inspired by a classic lampshade and is made of smooth, sturdy Italian leather. The label’s sculptural bags are connected to Rure’s background in industrial design.

Pursuing a Killer

Her must-have creations made Katherine Watson the purse designer for fashionistas, influencers and celebrities on both coasts. Tiring of fame, she’s giving back to her Washington State hometown by launching the Purse-onality Museum, a one-of-a-kind collection of historical purses. But at its glittering gala opening, Kat’s best friend and town mayor, Brenda, is found strangled by a Chanel-style purse chain. And with investigating officer Jason Holmes and his K-9 Hobbs uncovering a stack of circumstantial evidence against hapless Historical Society employee Michael, Kat is determined to cut to the truth.

As Kat clashes with likely suspects, she also finds plenty of murderous motives from which to pick and choose. Faced with bitter political and personal rivalries, decidedly unfashionable secrets and an exclusive selection of lies, she’ll have to stop a cunning killer before they knock off another innocent victim.


The result of Wendy Kendall’s passion for purses, mystery and romance is the intriguing In Purse-Suit Mysteries published by The Wild Rose Press. Kat Out of the Bag introduces Katherine Watson purse designer/sleuth, also published by Harlequin at Harper Collins, available February 20, 2024. As Katherine moves from designer bags to body bags, she’s uncovering clues to a murder. The prequel, Purse-Stachio Makes A Splash delves into a chilling cold case. Finalist for Best Romantic Suspense at Killer Nashville, Snow Kiss Cookies To Die For creates a tangle of mystery and love, raising suspicions about a teacher’s romantic new sweetheart. A summer romance read that will keep you on the edge of your beach towel, Cherry Shakes In The Park blends danger, divas, and frothy delights. And ribbons of love run through the holiday season romance, Heart of Christmas Cookies and Dreams. Wendy enjoys investigating the Pacific Northwest life, and she leaves a trail of her own clues as a blogger, YouTube podcaster, speaker, and syndicated columnist.

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  1. I love this story about St. Nicholas. What a kind thing to do!

  2. That’s a fascinating story. I love seeing how these things evolve over the years.

  3. Winner of an e-copy of Kat Out of the Bag is Aymee! Congratulations! Happy New Year! Let’s make 2024 Fabulous!

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