Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Publisher: Avon Mystery / HarperCollins
Release Date: February 2, 2004
ISBN: 0061031224
Format Reviewed: Paperback
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Genre: Mystery
Reviewed: 2004
Reviewer: Kristin Johnson
Reviewer Notes: Reviewer Kristin Johnson is the author of CHRISTMAS COOKIES ARE FOR GIVING, co-written with Mimi Cummins and ORDINARY MIRACLES: My Incredible Spiritual, Artistic and Scientific Journey, co-written with Sir Rupert A.L. Perrin, M.D.

Love For Sale
A Grace & Favor Mystery
By Jill Churchill

    Ready for an escapist mystery that will take you back to a time when life was a bit more genteel? Travel back to the Depression, where in Love for Sale people actually seem to live richer lives than in the modern prosperous era. Without glamorizing the hard times of the past, this cozy mystery, starring a brother and sister team, makes us long for the days of white gloves, croquet, and milk delivered to the door.

   But milk isn’t all Lily and Robert Brewster find on the doorstep of the manor their late great-uncle left them. In true cozy mystery form, the unsuspecting amateur detectives discover a missing grade school teacher, uncover Road to Perdition-style mob activity as well as political conspiracy aimed at President Roosevelt’s election (and you thought the President Bush-Senator Kerry grudge match was nasty), and figure out who killed Charles Pottinger (a.k.a. the radio preacher Brother Goodheart) in their very house. Seems there was more than Bible-thumping going on among the Reverend and his friends, who include the bizarre Nobby Hazard (reminiscent of Renfrew in Dracula, minus the vermin eating). Who would want to kill Brother Goodheart? How about his illegitimate son, who is tossed out as an interesting, if predictable, red herring. Why do we detect the hint of a lesbian quarrel in the disappearance of the schoolteacher?

   And who has moved into the abandoned Gerrit place just outside of town? How is it that Lily and Robert take schoolteacher jobs that involve nothing more disruptive than an occasionally surly student? Why is it that Chief Howard Walker seems more up on crime solving than the entire modern LAPD and Boulder Colorado Police? Do we need to recreate the Depression in order to return to an era in which Robert Brewster shyly courts the local librarian, Miss Philomena Exley?

    Thanks to Jill Churchill’s vivid tale of a bygone era, we can enjoy genteel times again without the Depression and with the whodunit. Much grace and favor to Jill Churchill.