Kel’s Review:

This is book two in the Flora Steele mysteries by Merryn Allingham and we rejoin the leading duo of Flora and Jack. Once again, they are in the midst of mystery before they realise it. A friend seemingly dies by suicide but Flora is unconvinced. As she begins digging, she befalls an “accident” and Jack is concerned she is putting herself at unnecessary risk.

Whilst I didn’t find the mystery especially tricky to work out, I enjoyed the village life and the time with familiar characters. If you enjoy a cosy, historical mystery, this is a series to read! I am looking forward to the next one! It’s a four out of five on the enJOYment scale.

Ka’s Review:

It still feels like this could be a great series. as Flora and Jack make for an interesting leading couple.

This time there was just too much I found implausible and the behaviour, and at times, a little reckless, putting people in harms way unnecessarily. I worked out who the murderer was early on, the motivation behind the killing took a little longer.

I’m looking forward to seeing if the series gets back on track in the next book, with this unlikely duo.

We received complimentary copies of the book from Bookouture Pen Press through NetGalley. The opinions expressed in these reviews are completely our own.

From the back cover:

Meet Flora Steele – bookshop owner, bicycle-rider, daydreamer and amateur detective!

Sussex, 1955: When bookshop owner Flora Steele goes for a walk along the pier she isn’t expecting to spot a young woman’s body in the stormy waters below. And she’s shocked to discover the victim is someone she knows…

Convinced the death was not an accident, Flora persuades attractive local crime writer Jack Carrington to help her find out what really happened to poor Polly Dakers, a popular young woman with a complicated love life, who’d been at the heart of village life in Abbeymead.

Jack is reluctant to get involved in another murder case at first but even he can’t deny that Polly’s fall seems fishy. An argument at a party, a missed hairdresser’s appointment and a red woollen bobble found on the wooden boards where Polly last stood provide a trail of clues…

As they grow closer to solving the puzzling mystery, the unlikely pair stumble upon several surprising secrets about those closest to Polly. A number of potential suspects begin to emerge. But who really disliked Polly enough to kill her? Was it Raymond, her jilted first love? Harry, her latest beau? Or Evelyn, Harry’s jealous estranged wife?

As the investigation brings them closer to the truth, Flora is intent on unmasking the killer – but will her stealthy sleuthing lead her down a dangerous path?

An utterly delightful cozy crime novel set in the fictional Sussex village of Abbeymead. Perfect for fans of Agatha Christie, Faith Martin and Joy Ellis!

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