Tag Archives: cosy crime

#BookReview ‘The Cornish Wedding Murder’ by @fkleitch #cosycrime

Jodie ‘Nosey’ Parker, former Metropolitan Police officer, has moved home to Cornwall with daughter Daisy. When she agrees to do the catering for an ex-boyfriend’s wedding, she doesn’t expect to find herself involved a murder investigation. The Cornish Wedding Murder is first in the Nosey Parker cosy crime series by Fiona Leitch. A while ago I stumbled on the second book in this series and enjoyed it so much I decided to start at the beginning. Fiona LeitchDoes Jodie find murder and mayhem, or does trouble find her? When Tony Penhaligon’s fiancé disappears on the eve of their wedding, and his ex-wife is found dead in the grounds, he is arrested. Jodie, who has taken an instant dislike to the flashy bride-to-be Cheryl, becomes peacemaker as Mel, Tony’s ex, publicly accuses her successor of marrying him for his money. Never one to stand on the sidelines, Jodie steps in to calm the situation.
This is an enjoyable, easy read. Perfect for when you want something to sink into and forget the world outside. Yes, it’s a murder story. But it’s also funny, full of twists, turns and a main character who is impossible not to like. Jodie is the sort of friend everyone wants. Meddling, well-meaning, gung-ho and giggly, she has a sensitive nose for wrongdoing and a clear idea of what’s right and wrong. Aided by an adopted fluffy white dog and loaded down with leftover wedding food that must be eaten, Jodie is determined to uphold the concept of ‘innocent until proven guilty.’
A well-written mystery that introduces the setting and characters of the future books. Jodie is likeable. Flawed, but in a nice way that makes her seem a real person. Ably supported by her Mum and daughter Daisy, everywhere Jodie turns in the village someone remembers her as the daughter of respected and much-missed Chief Inspector Eddie Parker. That’s quite a reputation to live up to. Looking for a peaceful life, a new start with her daughter away from London, she manages to find trouble around every corner. She pursues every clue she finds, instead of telling local detective DCI Withers who despairs [or pretends to] at her interference.
Close to the end, I was still guessing the identity of the murderer. The conclusion of the romantic sub-plot is also unsure. A nice mixture of amateur sleuthing and romance. You’ll finish it wanting to read more.


If you like this, try:-
Murder at Catmmando Mountain’ by Anna Celeste Burke
The Art of the Imperfect’ by Kate Evans
Magpie Murders’ by Anthony Horowitz

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
THE CORNISH WEDDING MURDER by @fkleitch #bookreview https://wp.me/p2ZHJe-64h via @SandraDanby

Natalie Haynes

#Bookreview ‘The Killings at Kingfisher Hill’ by @sophiehannahCB1 #crime

Red herrings, twists and turns, lots of lies, confusing motivations and a long list of characters make The Killings at Kingfisher Hill by crime writer Sophie Hannah the type of book you need to read when fully alert. Fourth in Hannah’s series of continuation Hercule Poirot mysteries, I finished it with mixed feelings. Sophie Hannah

Direct comparisons of Hannah and Christie seem unfair as these are continuation novels. Christie was a highly accomplished author who balanced likeable characters with dense but ultimately solveable crimes, while at the same time making the novels appealingly comfortable to read. If The Killings at Kingfisher Hill were a standalone novel featuring an unknown detective, it would be free of these comparisons. I enjoyed The Mystery of Three Quarters, third of Hannah’s Poirot novels, and will continue to read this series. It has also given me renewed impetus to re-read the Christie originals.

The complications start at the beginning. Poirot and Inspector Edward Catchpool are about to board a char-a-banc for Surrey and the exclusive Kingfisher Hill development, when they encounter not one but two women passengers behave strangely. One fears she is about to be murdered on the bus if she sits in a specific seat. The second woman confesses she has killed someone. Christie’s novels always have options – for victim, and murderer – but the options here did seem rather full-on with numerous characters introduced or mentioned in quick succession with none fully-formed in my mind. At one point I felt as Inspector Catchpool does, ‘My mind blurred, then went blank.’ So many possibilities in quick succession made me long for Christie’s more leisurely pace. True to character, Poirot is totally in charge of his investigation. He tells Catchpool, ‘Once one has a point of focus, all of the other details start to arrange themselves around it.’

Throughout I felt two steps away from the action because the murder has happened before the book begins. We are told the story of Poirot’s investigation by Catchpool and hear much of the necessary information as told to Poirot by third parties. Hearsay. I longed to be in the moment as it actually happened, or at the very least immediately afterwards – I think here of Poirot in Murder on the Orient Express, Evil Under the Sun and Death on the Nile.

The Killings at Kingfisher Hill wasn’t quite what I expected.

Here’s my review of The Mystery of Three Quarters.

If you like this, try:-
No Other Darkness’ by Sarah Hilary
Cover Her Face’ by PD James
The Secrets of Gaslight Lane’ by MRC Kasasian

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
THE KILLINGS AT KINGFISHER HILL by @sophiehannahCB1 #bookreview https://wp.me/p5gEM4-58W via @Sandra Danby

#BookReview ‘Murder at Catmmando Mountain’ by @aburke59 #cosycrime

I nearly gave up on this in the first few pages, and what an error that would have been. Anna Celeste Burke is an American writer specializing in cosy mysteries, so why did I almost stop reading Murder at Catmmando Mountain? Chapter one introduces narrator Georgie Shaw who works in PR at tourist attraction Marvellous Marley World, based on the cartoon characters of tycoon Max Marley. The action starts in chapter two and that’s when the fun starts. Anna Celeste BurkeEarly one morning, a body is found. Not just any body, a dead body. The body of Mallory Marley, obnoxious daughter of Max Marley. Lying next to the body, and dipped in Mallory’s blood, is Georgie’s scarf. Georgie, who recently moved to the PR department from Food and Beverage rather than take retirement, is forced to consider her life in a new light. Is one of her colleagues trying to frame her? Homicide detective Jack Wheeler, who reminds Georgie of James Garner in The Rockford Files [watch out for the American detective references], makes being a suspect easier for Georgie to deal with, though she does have an alibi as the transponder in her car was clocked by a state police camera at the time of the crime. But other clues linking Georgie to the crime continue to appear.
All the time I was reading this book, it reminded me of the comedies of Carl Hiasson, the Florida journalist turned novelist who wrote the hilarious Lucky You, Skinny Dip, Native Tongue and Basket Case. I liked Georgie from the beginning, and her Siamese cat Miles. This is comfort reading, easy, it was fun eliminating the suspects one-by-one and choosing the wrong one.
This is a read-in-one-sitting novella, 178 pages, and I would have liked it to be longer. The last chapter is a summary of how the case is solved, and it would have been more dynamic to read the action.

If you like this, try:-
The Cornish Wedding Murder’ by Fiona Leitch
Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death’ by MC Beaton
The Killing of Polly Carter’ by Robert Thorogood

And if you’d like to tweet a link to THIS post, here’s my suggested tweet:
Costume cats, a real cat & murder: MURDER AT CATMMANDO MOUNTAIN by @aburke59 #bookreview http://wp.me/p5gEM4-23B via @SandraDanby