Another Review at MyShelf.Com

The Blackwoods Farm Enquiry
Ivy Beasley Mystery #5
Ann Purser

April 1, 2014/ ISBN 978-0-425-26181-1
Mystery/Amateur Sleuth

Reviewed by Laura Hinds

Ivy Beasley is a spitfire of a senior citizen. She takes no sass from anyone and has a sharp tongue and strong opinions. She’s also smart as a whip and attends a college class at the nearby Manor House College. Ivy intends to write her memoirs, and it comes as no surprise that she takes the classroom in hand, and charms both the tutor and her classmates.
Meanwhile, the lady of the Manor House, Eleanor Winchen Blatch, is in fear for her life, feeling the ghost of her husband is trying to lure her to join him in the afterlife. Just in case her tormentor is real, she hires Enquire Within, Ivy’s agency, to look into it and to protect her.

Ivy’s team of investigators is on the case. However, even with everyone giving their best efforts, they encounter several dead ends. When Mrs.Blatch is indeed found at the bottom of the fire escape attached to Manor House, the inquiries take on a sense of urgency. After all, one of their own, Gus Halfhide, was on duty to protect her when her death occurred. Gus isn’t a suspect, but the whole team is determined to find the killer and the truth. Leave it to Ivy to keep her ear to the ground and learn about more than creative writing at the college.

What do I like about this series, and this book? Everything! I love Ivy, and her romance with confirmed bachelor Roy Goodman, and I can’t wait for their oft-postponed wedding to happen. Their love is a bright spot for the staff and other residents of Springfields, the local retirement home. They try the patience of their “gaoler,” Mrs. Spurling, who runs the facility. The rest of Ivy’s Enquire Within staff consists of Gus, and also the widow Deirdre Bloxham, Ivy’s younger cousin.

The mystery itself is well plotted, and clues are cleverly planted to seed themselves in the reader’s mind. I’d begun to put the pieces together, but until everything was spelled out for me, I hadn’t solved it entirely. I love the ending, and must confess to a tear or two in my eyes.

Ann Purser has produced yet another wonderful Ivy Beasley mystery, and whether you are already a reader of the series, or if this book is your introduction, you are in for a fun read!

Kudos Ms. Purser!

Reviewed 2014