by Sandra Murphy
Details at the end of this review on how to win a copy of Suspicion at Seven, along with a link to purchase the book where a portion goes to help support KRL & an indie bookstore.
Lois Meade has her hands full to run a cleaning service, corral Gran and her friend, keep up with three adult children and a husband, and Jeems the dog. She does manage to find a bit of spare time to investigate murders. After all, one needs a hobby.
Inspector Cowgill has been in love with Lois from the start. Since his nephew has now married into Lois’ family, he’s considered family too and now can indulge in chaste kisses on the cheek or a gentle hug. He’s often wondered what he’d do if Lois returned his affections but realizes he’d probably run for the hills!
Aurora Black runs the bakery in the next town. Her breads are all made by hand and are very popular. Her husband Donald is a bit of a rogue. He travels to sell flashy costume jewelry and seems very friendly with the ladies. No one is sure if Aurora knows.
Of course, Donald turns up dead. With so many suspects to choose from, it’s hard to narrow the investigation to just a few. Lois is able to tap into local gossip by way of her cleaning crew. Milly, Aurora and Donald’s daughter, takes a leave of absence from nursing school to come home and help her mother who went back to baking bread to keep her mind off the murder.
Donald used to work as a bookkeeper but there were shortages and well, he was let go. The jewelry business seems to be going well but on the face of it, it’s nothing more than a pyramid scheme. Lois is worried when Gran and her friend invest with the intention of hosting jewelry parties of their own. Donald’s death throws a kink into the works of course. More troubling, the two women decide to set up their own pyramid business. Lois tries to talk to Gran but Gran’s mind is made up–something along the lines of “You’re not the boss of me!”
Investigating a murder seems like a relaxing afternoon’s work in comparison. Lois follows the twists and turns, including the disappearance of Aurora, to find the real killer. It’s nice to read about older adults with rich lives. Lois has three happy children, is out and about, involved in her community but suffers the same problems as anyone else–she’s the sandwich generation, caring for her mother while running a business and keeping her husband and children happy. Readers are able to find out a bit more background on Lois’ employees in this book which is a nice touch as well.
English mysteries are not always my first choice but I enjoy Lois, the cleaning crew, Derek and Gran. Inspector Cowgill is so very proper but mischievous too. Lois is pretty brisk with him but there is an underlying affection that shows. This is book fourteen in the series. Purser also writes the Ivy Beasley series which is five books to date. Put both series on your reading list.
To enter to win a copy of Suspicion at Seven, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Seven,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen January 10, 2015. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.
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Use this link to purchase a copy of the book & a portion goes to help support KRL & an indie bookstore: