A magnificent seaside hotel, striped deckchairs, strawberry ice cream… and a rather familiar dead body? Lady Swift is on the case!
Spring, 1921. Lady Eleanor Swift, explorer extraordinaire and accidental sleuth, hasn’t had a vacation since she arrived in England a year ago. Being an amateur detective can be a rather tiring business and she is determined to escape any more murder and mysteries. So she books into the Grand Hotel in the fashionable resort of Brighton for some fresh air, fish and chips and, of course, a dip in the ocean.
Eleanor is enjoying her view of the waves and trying to find her bathing suit when calamity strikes: a guest has been found dead at her beautiful hotel. The distraught manager, who can’t afford a scandal, asks Eleanor to solve the case as swiftly as possible. Thank goodness she has her partner in crime – Gladstone the bulldog – to help her sniff out the dastardly culprit.
But when Eleanor enters the dead man’s room, she receives a shock big enough to make her forget even the finest ice cream sundae. The body is that of her husband, who supposedly died six years ago on the other side of the world. Has he been alive all these years? Why does he have a copy of their wedding photograph with a cryptic message written on the back? If Eleanor can keep herself safe long enough to find her husband’s killer, she might discover that everything is not quite as it seems beside the seaside…
A warm and witty whodunnit! Fans of Agatha Christie, T E Kinsey and L.B. Hathaway will be utterly charmed by this addictive and absolutely gripping page-turner.
Author: Verity Bright
Series: A Lady Eleanor Swift Mystery #5
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Format: Kindle ARC
No. of Pages: 276
Date of Publication: March 11, 2021
My Rating: 4 Stars
Mystery By the Sea is the fifth book in the successful Lady Eleanor Swift cozy mystery series. I love cozy mysteries, and the fact that this is set in the early 1920s definitely adds to its charm. Eleanor has proved to be quite adept at being an amateur detective. No matter where the location, murders always seem to fall into her path. She works on her own, with the police, or with her trusty butler Clifford and faithful dog Gladstone.
This time around, however, Eleanor has decided to take a break. Defying convention, Elle arranges a little holiday with some of her staff, and hopes that she will enjoy more pleasant experiences for at least a little while. Arrangements have been set for Eleanor and the others to spend a few days at the Grand Hotel in Brighton.
Eleanor is approached by the hotel's frantic manager to look into the mystery of a dead body that had been found in one of the rooms. Shockingly, Eleanor discovers that the dead body is that of her husband. How could that be, when he was thought to have died six years previously? After recovering from imaginable shock, Eleanor immediately begins looking for answers. One of the things she finds definitely has clues, but will there be enough for Eleanor to discover how her husband had been alive all of this time, and why he was just killed at the very hotel that she is visiting with her staff?
This book is excellent, as has been every previous title in the series. I love Eleanor and also the time frame in which this book was written. Her love interest is coming along nicely as well. I also enjoyed how Eleanor, as a well-traveled archaeologist, must learn to live the life of a lady, and follow the rules of society. I cannot wait for the next book in the series.
Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Verity Bright is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing partnership that has spanned a quarter of a century. Starting out writing high-end travel articles and books, they published everything from self-improvement to humour, before embarking on their first historical mystery. They are the authors of the fabulous Lady Eleanor Swift Mystery series, set in the 1920s.