A Miss Underhay Mystery #1
A room with a view… to murder
June 1933. Independent young Kitty Underhay has been left in charge of her family’s hotel, The Dolphin, on the tranquil English coast. She’s expecting her days at the bustling resort to be filled with comfortable chatter with chambermaids as they polish the mahogany desks and glittering candelabras of the elegant foyer. Everything must be perfect for the arrival of a glamourous jazz singer from Chicago and a masked ball that will be the cultural highlight of the season.
But when several rooms are broken into and searched, including Kitty’s own, she quickly realises that something out of the ordinary is afoot at the hotel. Soon rumours are flying in the cozy town that someone is on the hunt for a stolen ruby. A ruby that Kitty’s mother may well have possessed when she herself went missing during the Great War. And when the break-ins are followed by a series of attacks and murders, including of the town’s former mayoress, it seems the perpetrator will stop at nothing to find it.
Aided by ex-army captain Matthew Bryant, the Dolphin’s new security officer, Kitty is determined to decipher this mystery and preserve not only the reputation of her hotel, but also the lives of her guests. Is there a cold-blooded killer under her own roof? And what connects the missing jewel to the mystery from Kitty’s own past?
Historical fiction is usually not my cup of tea but I love cozy mysteries and my love for the genre and the gorgeous cover convinced me.
I read the book in one go. I guess it’s quite clear that the story is captivating. The writing style is very fluent and I really liked Miss Underhay. She is not only independent, but clever too. Although she does what a lot of girls in thrillers do and should not have done and has everybody yelling NOOO, she at least takes precautions.
Often, at the start of a new series, the main character’s background remains rather vague and in each book some details are revealed. In this case, we get to know Kitty pretty well, but I am sure a lot is still hidden and waiting for the readers to find out.
It was a rather complicated case with a lot of people who could have done it and I was pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
I am looking forward to part 2. 4 stars.
Thank you, Helena Dixon and Bookouture.
About the author
Nell Dixon was born and continues to live in the Black Country. Married to the same man for over thirty-five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, a crazy cockapoo and a tank of tropical fish. She is allergic to adhesives, apples, tinsel and housework. Her addictions of choice are coffee and reality TV. She was winner of The Romance Prize in 2007 with her book Marrying Max, and winner of Love Story of the Year 2010 with her book, Animal Instincts. She also writes historical 1930’s set cozy crime as Helena Dixon.