I’ve read a few Vera Stanhope novels before and enjoyed them; this is the latest one. Vera is an older Detective Inspector who dresses quite frumpy, but underneath it all lies a very keen mind. She has a current murder to solve: a man is found hanging in his room on Holy Island. Several singles and couples meet every 5 years on Holy Island to reconnect, after having crossed paths as teenagers on a retreat here. One of the singles, Rick Kensall, is the victim. Vera doesn’t agree with an initial verdict of suicide, and it quickly becomes a murder case. Her two right hand detectives are Joe and Holly, and they are both called in to help. Spoiler alert: the ending is a SHOCKER for anyone who has read previous novels written by Cleeves. It’s a bit slow at times, but still worth a read.
This book was great on at least two accounts. The writing was very good! The voice has a way of being very identifiable and digestible. The book also has a suspenseful atmosphere that pulls you along at an exciting clip wanting to read more and more. 4/5 stars.
–Trine Giaever, adult Summer Reading participant
I have to admit, the title of this YA mystery and the front cover attracted my attention, so I checked it out. It turned out to be a Holmes and Watson novel, only the author is Brittany Cavallaro, and the main characters are Charlotte Holmes and James Watson, the great-great-great grandchildren of the famous detectives. Charlotte is being framed for a murder she didn’t commit, and James is determined to aid her in proving her innocence. A murderer is on the loose, using original cases of Sherlock Holmes to plot his victims’ deaths, while Charlotte and James are racing the clock to find him/her before someone else dies. I found it very enjoyable, but would recommend it for teens in grades 9 and up.
For anyone with an interest in mysteries with Italian settings (in this case, Florence) and many characters to keep track of, this book is for you. Sandro Cellini leads the action, being a former policeman and now turned private investigator. He attends a gathering at a renovated palazzo, whose rooms are now leased to separate tenants, with his wife, Luisa, who is trying to find new clients for the clothing shop where she is employed. Little does Sandro know he will shortly find employment himself at the palazzo San Giorgio, when the Head of Security vanishes and is later found dead. The palazzo has a macabre history– one of the rooms in the basement is found to be walled up, where evil had taken place years ago. And the current deaths keep adding up, causing Sandro much frustration as he searches for the murderer. It took me quite a while to get through this novel; trying to keep track of all the characters was very confusing. But I stuck with it, since it was an interesting read.
The latest entry in Rhys Bowen’s Royal Spyness Mysteries, Malice at the Palace is set in 1930s England, and features Lady Georgianna Rannoch, whose pedigree enables her to be number thirty-fifth in line for the throne. Georgie is summoned by the Queen to be the companion of Princess Marina from Greece, who is arriving in England to wed Prince George, the king’s youngest son. But a woman found murdered and left on the palace sidewalk complicates matters for Georgie, an amateur sleuth. Her investigative attempts are hindered by the need to keep the murder under wraps, to avoid any whiff of scandal concerning the royal family. If you like historical fiction, intrigue and romance, check this out.