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Mrs Malory and Death is a Word
Final Sheila Malory Mystery #21
Hazel Holt

05/03/2016/ ISBN 9781101990636
Mystery / Cozy / British / Contemporary /Female Sleuth

Reviewed by Brenda Weeaks


A former villager named Eva moves back to the Devon countryside after her husband dies. Eva has downsized most of what she and her husband had, but she did keep all of his work files and travel diaries. Eva’s cottage catches fire, but Eva cleans it all up and get serious about her husband’s work. She tries to gather enough unpublished works to put in a book. At one point everyone becomes very ill, and that’s when they find Eva dead. They assume she died of the virus they all suffered, but Sheila Malory, the series sleuth, starts to think otherwise….

Death is a Word is a traditional mystery at its best. Holt takes the reader into Sheila’s world, and by that I mean daily encounters, just as you would see on PBS Miss Marple or Poirot. You listen in on conversations, observe Holt’s full-bodied characters through her written words, and witness scenes that no one else does. The suspense builds and you go back over everything you’ve read, and look for the occasional clue to pull it all together, but alas there is always the preverbal twist that fools us all.

I really enjoyed Death is a Word. I believe Holt’s Malory series is one to be reckoned with. If you haven’t read it, you should because Holt is brilliant when it comes to penning a traditional British mystery.

It has been a while since I read a Shelia Malory cozy, but I’m glad I was able to review Death is a Word, because it is Mrs. Holt’s and Shelia Malory's final curtain. Hazel Holt passed away in 2015. She will be missed.

Other reviews in this series

Mrs Malory and the Fatal Legacy #10
Mrs. Malory and No Cure for Death #16
Mrs. Malory and A Death In the Family #17
Mrs. Malory and A Necessary End #20

Reviewed 2016