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Herring on the Nile
Ethelred and Elsie Mystery, No 4
L. C. Tyler

Felony & Mayhem
May 16, 2012 / ISBN: 1937384020
British Cozy

Reviewed by Brenda Weeaks

Herring on the Nile is fourth in series. Ethelred is a mystery writer, although not a popular one. In the opening, he's catching up on interview questions. His answers are sad yet funny. Ethelred is going on a paddle steamer up the Nile. His girlfriend backs out so his publicist, Elise, goes with him. Ethelred is dragged into a possible murder (meaning the murder may or may not happen). Someone else's life is in danger, but he's the one getting the threatening text message. Then his girlfriend shows up, and she's not happy. The storyline leads in different directions and although the paddleboat stalls at one point the mystery doesn't. It's a sound mystery with a surprising conclusion. The chapter narration switches back and forth between Ethelred and Elise, which is quite entertaining. The secondary characters add color to the storyline and Elise's commentary.

A third of the way through this I was wishing I had started with the first in series. I was enjoying it that much. I like the author's writing style, the dialogue and storyline flow. What I enjoyed most was Ethelred and Elise. They steal the show but in a good way. They're like odd bookends that need each other. I didn't like Elise until I read her first chapter. She made me laugh. And Ethelred -- well, you just want to save from him from himself and Elise. He's melancholy and she's forthright which leaves a lot of room for them to get into trouble.

Fair warning: it's a mystery full of clues and nonstop wit - don't skip a word… I'm so glad the publisher turned me on to this series. What an unexpected treat.

Reviewed 2012