Reviewed By: Harriet Klausner
Meredith Mitchell is elated to see her friend Toby Smythe, temporarily home from overseas assignment, for the first time in a long time. However, Toby is not here on a friendship renewal visit. He needs a favor, but not from Meredith. Toby’s relative Alison Jenner needs help as someone has been sending her hate mail that implies that she murdered her Aunt Freida Kemp over two decades ago; a crime that she was acquitted of doing by a court of law and never solved. She hopes that Toby can get Meredith's fiancé Detective Superintendent Alan Markby to investigate who the loathing pen pal is.
Markby wants to tell his beloved no as he dislikes Toby, and can rationalize that he is preoccupied by the upcoming wedding. However, he meets Alison, her spouse Jenner, and his daughter Fiona. Before he can follow up, someone murders Fiona. Though the cause of death is different from the Kemp killing the similar crime scenes make the murder seem somewhat like a copy cat first homicide. Markby ably assisted by new team member Jessica Campbell and amateurish by his fiancée and her friend, begins to unravel the current homicide whose roots go back twenty-five years ago when Frieda was killed.
Anyone who enjoys a delightful English cozy that is a clever blending of amateur sleuth and police procedural will enjoy the Meredith-Markby tales. The latest tale is another strong entry as Markby and company investigate the current homicide that leads to the need to look at the first murder. The cast is wonderful and the new cop adds freshness to a fine who-done-it.
Reprinted with permission. Do Not repost without permission from the author, Harriet Klausner