30th December 2020.
I’m not a big fan of the traditional cosy mystery set in a small rural village, but the writing and character of Jenny Starling captured my imagination from the first page and took me along on an interesting and enjoyable ride.
Relief chef, Jenny, is working at the Spindlewood Inn in the village of Caulcott Deeping in the Cotswolds. The village is putting on a Regency extravaganza, which includes performances of a local historical event by the amateur dramatic society. And while they may be amateurs, the battle of egos is just as sharp.
The story ambles along with Jenny observing the varied characters who are there for the weekend. It soon becomes apparent that some of these people have other agendas, especially where the main actor, Rachel Norman, is concerned. It’s only a matter of time before she winds up dead, but how she was killed is a baffling mystery in the Agatha Christie tradition.
While the police try to piece it all together, Jenny’s observational skills and ability to connect the sometimes obscure clues ensures she solves the murder with skill and aplomb.
The author’s produced an entertaining and enjoyable read, filled with suspects, motives and red herrings and a liberal sprinkling of humour and wry observation, which lift it above the average cosy mystery.
Jenny Starling is working at The Spindlewood Inn for the weekend. It’s hosting a Regency Extravaganza, involving historical costume, amateur dramatics and food.
Leading actress of the amateur dramatic society and reputed man-eater Rachel Norman portrays a doomed noblewoman. But when she turns up actually drowned in the pond, there’s suddenly a murder to investigate.
There’s been plenty of trouble at the idyllic country inn. The performers weren’t a happy troupe, and Jenny discovers a simmering romantic tension.
Who wanted Rachel dead and why? Jenny Starling is going to need all her wits to crack this complex case.