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Grace Cries Uncle
Manor House Mystery #6
Julie Hyzy

Berkley Prime Crime
July 7, 2015/ ISBN 97-0-425-25968-9
Mystery/Amateur Sleuth

Reviewed by Laura Hinds


Grace Wheaton is about to undergo a DNA test to find out one way or another if her boss and year friend, Bennett Marshfield is actually her uncle. If he is, this would change many things about their relationship, including plans for his estate. Grace wants nothing more than she already has from Bennett. She loves her job as curator at Marshfield Manor, and she loves him. It has nothing to do with the estate or money, and it's taken Bennett awhile to get her to agree to the testing.

Naturally, her scheming, untrustworthy, money-hungry sister, Liza, shows up soon after the test is administered, and she brings a big bag of trouble with her. Liza had run away some time ago with Grace's fiancè, the equally untrustworthy Eric Soames. Eric and Liza lived foot-loose lifestyles, with Eric often on the wrong side of the law. This time, however, it appears he got in over his head and dragged Liza with him.

When a fake FBI agent appears on Grace's doorstep and is later found dead in a neighbor's yard, Grace vows to let the police solve this crime without her help. Yet as more things happen, and Bennett begins to act secretive, Grace realizes she may have to get into the game if she hopes to save Bennett's life as well as, reluctantly perhaps, her sister's. Lucky for Grace she has good housemates, a great neighbor (who also works for Bennett), and an assistant, Frances, who may be pushy, but is no pushover.

I've always enjoyed this series, and am thrilled that it keeps getting stronger and better. Hyzy's style of writing and the depth of her characters keep me reading chapter after chapter without a break. The mysteries are engaging, and I find myself so deeply absorbed that my reading time flies by all too quickly.

Cozy mystery lovers who like a smart story, with realistic characters, and a clever use of language will not want to miss “Grace Cries Uncle.”


Reviewed 2015