Murder by Syllabub
by Kathleen Delaney
on Tour September - October, 2013
Genre: Cozy MysteryPublished by: Camel PressPublication Date: July 1, 2013Number of Pages: 298ISBN: 978-1-60381-957-2
Synopsis:A ghost in Colonial dress has been wreaking havoc at an old plantation house in Virginia. The house is owned by Elizabeth Smithwood, the best friend of Ellen McKenzie’s Aunt Mary. Mary is determined to fly to the rescue, and Ellen has no choice but to leave her real estate business and new husband to accompany her. Who else will keep the old girl out of trouble? When Ellen and Aunt Mary arrive, they find that Elizabeth’s “house” comprises three sprawling buildings containing all manner of secret entrances and passages, not to mention slave cabins. But who owns what and who owned whom? After Monty—the so-called ghost and stepson of Elizabeth’s dead husband—turns up dead in Elizabeth’s house, suspicion falls on her. Especially when the cause of death is a poisoned glass of syllabub taken from a batch of the sweet, creamy after-dinner drink sitting in Elizabeth’s refrigerator. Monty had enemies to spare. Why was he roaming the old house? What was he searching for? To find the truth, Ellen and her Aunt Mary will have to do much more than rummage through stacks of old crates; they will have to expose two hundred years of grudges and vendettas. The spirits they disturb are far deadlier than the one who brought them to Virginia. Murder by Syllabub is the fifth book of the Ellen McKenzie Mystery series.
My take on this book:
Cozy mysteries are right up my alley, and when the author provides a fast paced plot with plenty of twists well then that makes for a page turning read in my book! Ever since the death of her husband Elizabeth Smithwood, owner of Smithwood plantation has had some weird things going on in her home, and even thinks she has a ghost, and what's more she thinks the ghost might be trying to do her in! Thankfully her friend Mary decides to come to Virginia to help her figure out what is going on, and Mary's friend Ellen is coming along to keep Mary out of trouble. Once they arrive it doesn't take long for trouble to show up though in the form of a dead body! What's going on at the Smithwood Plantation?
What a wonderful mystery. I loved that there was a historical slant with the story,and the descriptive writing the author uses to describe furniture and cooking,made it easy to see that she had done her research! I found the characters to be very endearing, and their actions were often laugh out loud funny. While this book is part of a series, it can easily be picked up and read alone, after a couple of chapters I felt like I had known Ellen and Aunt Mary forever! I found the mystery to be top notch as well, Ms. Delaney provides more than a few suspects making it difficult to figure out who-dun-it! Lovers of cozy mysteries are going to find this a must read. I know that I am hooked and will be going back to read the entire series!
Read an excerpt:
Author Bio:Kathleen Delaney has written four previous Ellen McKenzie Real Estate mysteries, but has never before transported her characters out of California. A number of years ago she visited Colonial Williamsburg and fell in love. Long fascinated with our country’s history, especially the formation years, she knew she wanted to set a story there. Another trip with her brother and sister-in-law solidified the idea that had been rolling around in her head but she needed more information. A phone call to the nice people at Colonial Williamsburg provided her with appointments to visit the kitchen at the Payton Randolph house, where she got her first lesson in hearth cooking and a meeting with the people who manage the almost extinct animal breeds the foundation is working to preserve. A number of books purchased at the wonderful bookstore at the visitor’s center gave her the additional information she needed and the story that was to become Murder by Syllabub came into being. Kathleen lived most of her life in California but now resides in Georgia. She is close to many historical sites, which she has eagerly visited, not only as research for this book but because the east is rich in monuments to the history of our country. Luckily, her grandchildren are more than willing to accompany her on their tours of exploration. You can find Kathleen on the Web atdelaney.camelpress.com.
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