A California Magazine with Local Focus and Global Appeal:
Community - Entertainment - Human Interest


Weekly issues every Saturday morning and other special articles throughout the week — there's something for everyone. Check out our sister site KRL News & Reviews for even more articles every week.

Previous post:

Next post:


Memorial Day Weekend Mystery Catch Up!

IN THE May 29 ISSUE

FROM THE 2021 Articles,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andSandra Murphy
SECTIONS

by Sandra Murphy

This week we have another fun group of mysteries to review as we once again play catch up! We have Murder on Wall Street: A Gaslight Mystery by Victoria Thompson, Deadly Editions: A Scottish Bookshop Mystery by Paige Shelton, and Death at the Salon: A Daisy Thorne series by Louise R. Innes. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of all 3 books and links to purchase them at the end of each review–you may not be able to see the Amazon links if you have ad blocker on.

Murder on Wall Street: A Gaslight Mystery by Victoria Thompson
Review by Sandra Murphy

Frank Malloy used to be a police detective. He was good at it but not popular since he wanted to solve crimes, not to take bribes from the rich to ignore their transgressions and possibly frame the poor for the misdeed.

Luckily, he inherited a large amount of money and won the love of Sarah Brandt, a true socialite who became a midwife. They’ve patched together a family with Frank’s son, an adopted daughter, a nanny who is a business partner, a former cop (Italian, hated even more than the Irish), Frank’s mother, and Sarah’s parents. Frank takes cases as a private investigator, not being suited to the life of an idle, wealthy man.

Jack Robinson is a gangster going straight. He longed for a respectable life and enlists Frank and Sarah’s help. Now Jack’s married and they’re expecting their first child. When a hated banker, Hayden Norcross, is killed in his own office, Jack’s sure he’ll become a suspect and with good reason. He hires Frank to find the real killer before suspicion points his way.

The more Frank and Sarah learn about Hayden, the more suspects there are. Hayden had unsavory habits which meant he dealt with criminals. He lied, cheated, and abused women. It’s not a matter of why was he killed or who wanted him dead, but more a question of who got to him first. When a second death occurs, Frank and Sarah know they have to find the killer and fast.

This is book twenty-four in the series. Sarah and Frank are a perfect couple in that they both distance themselves from society life unless it will help a case. Their family ground them in reality and are interesting characters themselves. Sarah’s mother enjoys her occasional assignments during a case just a little too much! For a look back to a time when automobiles were thought to be a whim, class and status mean everything, and crimes are often ignored, this is a perfect series.

Deadly Editions: A Scottish Bookshop Mystery by Paige Shelton
Review by Sandra Murphy

Delaney Nichols is American by birth but Scottish by marriage. She works at the Cracked Spine, an unusual bookstore. Her husband, Tom, has his own small pub. She’s surprised when a messenger arrives at the store, inviting her to meet Shelagh O’Conner, a rich woman and something of a kook, more politely said as eccentric. Delaney is invited to take part in a treasure hunt of sorts. There are four hunters involved and each will receive payment for participating. The winner will receive a rare first edition of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson, plus the contents of Shelagh’s extensive library.

One of the other hunters is Birk, a friend of Delaney’s. They decide to work together to solve the clues. Jacques, a relation of some sort to Shelagh is another, with a local librarian making up the fourth. When she was younger, Shelagh dressed as a beggar and would prowl the streets at night. During that time, there were several burglaries and, ultimately, a murder. She was cleared, but the legend and suspicion remain.

Now burglaries are happening again and another murder, and Shelagh is nowhere to be found. Is she on the run or is she a victim too? Delaney and her friends will have to decipher more clues to not only win the books but to save their lives.

This is book six of the series. Delaney and Tom are a delightful pair, loving and adapting to life as newlyweds. The other employees of the bookstore are unique but no matter what, they are a team, including Hector, the dog. The local pubs and The Cracked Spine Bookstore are characters as much as the people. For a visit to Scotland without leaving home, Delaney makes a perfect tour guide.

The Burning Pages, the next installment of the Cracked Spine series, is coming in April, 2022. Shelton also writes the Alaska Wild mysteries, two so far, both reviewed here. Look for Dark Night, coming in December, available for pre-order now. Previously, she wrote six Farmers’ Market books, five in the Cooking School series, and three Dangerous Type mysteries, many reviewed for KRL.

Death at the Salon: A Daisy Thorne series by Louise R. Innes
Review by Sandra Murphy

In the village of Edgemead in Surrey, England, Daisy owns the Ooh La La salon. As the only salon in town, her schedule is busy, especially now that she offers manicures, too. Mel Haverstock was one of Saturday’s customers, there for an updated look that was voted a success by all who saw it.

It was short-lived, though, because Mel was found dead in the alley behind the shop at closing time. Daisy found the body, Mel was stabbed with Daisy’s scissors, Daisy has Mel’s DNA on her gloves and coat, and Mel stole Daisy’s boyfriend when they were back in school. Flimsy as that may be as a motive, DCI Paul McGuinness arrests Daisy on suspicion of murder. When he’s forced to release her, Daisy feels it’s in her best interests to investigate on her own. While the handsome DCI and Daisy shared one date, it’s been a while and there’s been no move on his part to continue.

First, Daisy must narrow the field of suspects by remembering when she used her scissors last and who had the opportunity to take them. Next, what was the motive? Either the people who had access to the scissors didn’t have a motive or the strength to use the scissors as a weapon or the people who might have been glad to see Mel dead were nowhere near the salon. Was Daisy deliberately framed or just an easy way out for the killer?

This is book two in the series. Daisy is an engaging character, down to earth, and caring for her employees and clients. DCI Guinness has a hard time solving a case with her so involved—it’s obvious he’s torn between caring for her and following the evidence, which sadly, points right at Daisy.

Coming in September, Death at Holly Lodge gives Daisy a chance to solve yet another crime, this one Christmas themed.

To enter to win a copy of all 3 books, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “memorial day” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen June 5, 2021. U.S. residents only, and you must be 18 or older to enter. If you are entering via email please include you mailing address in case you win, it will be deleted after the contest. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. BE AWARE THAT IT MAY TAKE MUCH LONGER THAN USUAL FOR WINNERS TO GET THEIR BOOKS DUE TO THE CURRENT CRISIS.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Also listen to our new mystery podcast where mystery short stories and first chapters are read by actors! They are also available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify. A new episode went up this week.

You can use this link to purchase any of these books from indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy, and KRL gets a portion of the sale:
mysteriousgalaxylogo

Sandra Murphy lives in the shadow of the Arch in St. Louis Missouri. She’s editor for Peace, Love, and Crime: Crime Stories Inspired by the Songs of the ’60s, with twenty-two cozy stories. She also edited A Murder of Crows, twenty-one stories featuring animals and crime (no animals were harmed). She also writes for magazines, newsletters, and the occasional guest blog. Both anthologies are available at the usual outlets, print or ebook.

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Nancy May 29, 2021 at 9:05am

These all look like fun and enjoyable mystery reads!

Reply

2 Sue Stoner
Twitter: @Sue
May 29, 2021 at 11:29am

These 3 books are on my want to read list. Thank you for the opportunity.

Reply

3 Mary Holshouser May 29, 2021 at 11:51am

They all sound like a good reads.
Already read Deadly Editions but
I’ll pass it on if I win. (it was a
good story). thanks
txmlhl(at)yahoo(dot)com

Reply

4 Cecile Fleetwood May 30, 2021 at 3:46pm

I love Victoria Thompson’s Gaslight Mysteries! I am running out of her books. I own all but the most recent. I have been stretching them out by reading other cozy authors, which I also love!

Reply

5 Glen Davis May 29, 2021 at 12:49pm

Another great collection! Count me in!

Reply

6 Linda Herold
Twitter: @Linda
May 30, 2021 at 4:07am

Awesome giveaway! I would love to win these cozies!

Reply

7 Carol Knudtson May 30, 2021 at 7:38am

These all sound so good. Thanks for the contest. So many wonderful authors.

Reply

8 Dianne Casey May 30, 2021 at 2:27pm

Sounds like three great books. Would really like to read all of them. Thanks for the chance.
diannekc8(at)gmail(dot)com

Reply

9 Teresa Warner May 30, 2021 at 3:25pm

Thanks for the opportunity! tWarner419(at)aol(dot)com

Reply

10 Ev Bedard May 30, 2021 at 5:18pm

I have enjoyed some other books by these authors…thanks…

Reply

11 Carol May 31, 2021 at 8:33am

Love the Gaslight series! They are a great distraction from everyday life. It’s always a pleasure to sit down & read one. ?

Reply

12 Linda Chudej
Twitter: @lnchudej
May 31, 2021 at 9:40am

I haven’t read any of Ms. Thompson’s books so hopefully I’ll win Murder on Wall Street. I love Paige Shelton’s Scottish bookshop series so I definitely hope I win Deadly Editions. Since I’ve never met a cozy mystery I didn’t want to read, I’m hoping to win Death at the Salon too! Thank you for the opportunity to enter the contest.

Reply

13 Bernice Kennedy June 1, 2021 at 7:26am

How could I have missed Victoria Thompsons books? I have a lot of catching up to do. Thanks for sharing.

Reply

14 Cecilia Roberts
Twitter: @None
June 1, 2021 at 8:14am

I would love to win these books. Thanks for the chance.

Reply

15 Lily-Ann Gill June 1, 2021 at 8:38am

I love to add new books and authors to my “hubby I need these to read” book list. Thank you for the chance.

Reply

16 Lacie Hernandez June 1, 2021 at 11:04am

I love these series!! I have read them all except for this one!!! I hope Frank and Sarah have a baby!!

Reply

17 Kelly Cannavale June 1, 2021 at 12:20pm

Another story from the gaslight series. I enjoy reading about the characters and how their relationships evolve throughout this series.

Reply

18 Patricia Browall June 1, 2021 at 2:44pm

I just finished Murder on Wall Street today. Great plot that had me guessing “who done it” until the end reveal. Terrific series!

Reply

19 Shanna June 1, 2021 at 6:11pm

All of these books sound amazing!

Reply

20 Lorie
Twitter: @mysteryrat
June 14, 2021 at 3:00pm

We have a winner!

Reply

Leave a Comment

Twitter ID
(ID only; No links or "@" symbols)

CommentLuv badge

Previous post:

Next post:

  • Arts & Entertainment

  • Books & Tales

  • Community

  • Education

  • Food Fun

  • Helping Hands

  • Hometown History

  • Pets

  • Teens

  • Terrific Tales