I just finished a delightful mystery by Debra E.Marvin. I’ve only read one other novella by Debra (also a mystery, which I enjoyed, Desert Duet) and enjoyed that, so when she asked if I could be a part of her street team and told me a little about the book, I said sure! (required disclosure here about this being my honest opinion even th
ought I was provided a copy of the book). It’s not quite a cozy mystery, but pretty close to, and has a beginning amount of romance. So, for those of you who’ve asked for a mystery that is light (or nonexistent) romance and not scary, I think this would be a great fit for you. It’s also a historical, but being set in 1956, it’s contemporary enough that if you tend to fall in either camp, I still think you’d enjoy it.
I was able to meet Debra and hang out with her for a bit at CFRR this year. She is super nice and we talked about all sorts of things. If you ever get a chance to meet her, take it! Here are some photos of her trip to Edinburgh.
Inspired by the famous Girl Detective, the members of the Olentangy Heights Girls’ Detective Society, affectionately known as the Nosy Parkers, spent their formative years studying criminology, codes, and capers. Unfortunately, opportunities to put their unique skills to work were thin on the ground in the post-war boom of their little corner of suburbia and they eventually grew up to pursue more sensible careers. Until…
Heather Munro’s youthful devotion to The Girl Detective led to a passion for digging around in history. Now pursuing her Master’s Degree in Celtic Studies, Heather must balance exploring Edinburgh with her determination to excel in her all–male classes at the University. Unfortunately, on her first night working in the Archives room, she discovers the dead body of a visiting professor, the same would-be lothario she’d hoped never to see again.
As clues come to light, it’s clear someone hopes to frame Heather for the murder. Besides her quirky landlady, whom can she trust? How can she clear her name? The police and the American Consul have plenty of suspects, but only two seem to have both motive and opportunity: Heather and the quiet Scottish historian she longs to trust.
At first I wasn’t sure how much I would like this story knowing it was light on the romance, was set post WWII (but not contemporary), and is written from one perspective. I am happy to say that my normal taste preferences were absolutely proven wrong. I can’t remember reading a story set in this time period previously, but the setting is a blend of history while being contemporary enough to relate to. I loved the Scottish accents and hope it comes to audio book soon so I can listen to them as well. I was also hesitant since I’m a very big romance fan, but the story was so fascinating that I didn’t notice that I wasn’t being drawn into a relationship, plus there was just a hint that was enough for the romantic in me to be happy about, while also providing a bit of will they or won’t they?
While the story is written from one perspective, it is not narrative in style, which in my opinion, gives readers a little more information on context, while still telling it from the heroine’s perspective. I’m not a huge narrative style fan, but this story was a nice blend of the two opposites of narrative and multiple characters POV. I not only like the heroine, but I adored Mrs. Kintyre, who provides some motherly advice while also being out of the box.
Tom is an unusual hero, especially since Heather’s first impression of him are lack luster, but he proves himself an all around good guy, and that is the most attractive characteristic in a swoon-worthy man. There are also a few other men thrown in that keep you guessing as to who Heather will pursue. I hope that we’ll see more of her story as the series continues and who she for sure ends up with. Don’t fear it’s a drop off ending, though! You know how I detest those, and this one wraps up nicely.
Debra on her 60th birthday trip to Scotland!
Debra E. Marvin tries not to run too far from real life but the imagination born out of being an only child has a powerful draw. Besides, the voices in her head tend to agree with all the sensible things she says. She’d like to live a wee bit closer to her grandchildren, but is thankful that God is in control, that He chooses to bless us despite ourselves and that He has a sense of humor.
Other than writing light-hearted romances and gritty gothics, she has rather normal obsessions such as fabric, peanut butter, vacations, British dramas, and whatever mystery series she’s currently stuck on.
Debra has graciously agreed to giveaway one digital copy of The Clobbered Cad! She also believes in not filling up you email inbox with junk, so it’s super easy to enter and no subscription required, though we’d love to add you to our mailing lists (which will earn you extra entries). Please click the Rafflecopter link, and as always, refer to the disclosures page for full details on giveaways.