A Victorian Mystery, N0 28
May 3, 2011/ ISBN 0425241602
Historical Mystery / Victorian / Cozy
by Brenda Weeaks
The Banfields have a big dinner party every year. Only the elite
of society are invited, but this year Geraldine's nephew and new
wife invite the in-laws (artists, no less) and business guests.
Geraldine and new wife Arlette are at odds. Arlette is modern and
smart. Geraldine believes society rules are there for a reason.
Local society and Geraldine's house guests don't like Arlette, but
the staff adores her. Unfortunately, at the height of the party
and under nose of the staff, Arlette is murdered.
When Inspector Weatherspoon hears about the murder it's his housekeeper
staff who take to the streets. Mrs Jefferies's staff and outside
collaborators work diligently to solve the murder-- each has their
own gift of detection. Mrs Jefferies decides to bring new staff
member Phyllis into the sleuthing fold. Phyllis is a nervous-nelly,
full of fear. Adding such a person could backfire and expose them
I haven't kept up with this series, but always enjoyed what I did
read. This one is no exception. Brightwell's Victorian setting is
perfect and her characters likable. Their personal lives take backstage
to the mystery. They're always on the move, gathering evidence,
having meetings and close calls; it keeps the storyline eventful.
The clues are nonstop to the point Mrs Jefferies needs assistance
in keeping track. The guilty finger points here and there, which
keeps the reader guessing. What I really like is that the kitchen
meetings give one a prime seat in solving the mystery. Well done,