Friday, May 5, 2023

BLOG TOUR - Murder at the Beauty Pageant


Kitty Underhay is awarding first place… to murder.

1935. Newlywed Kitty Underhay has been enlisted by her old nemesis Mrs Craven to help organise the Miss Dartmouth Jubilee pageant at the Dolphin Hotel. Being bossed around by her arch enemy is not quite what Kitty had in mind for the start of her married life, but she’s excited to launch the glamorous show. Sparkling smiles are quickly replaced by audible gasps however, when one of the girls goes missing during the interval…

When pretty Peggy Blaine is discovered dead, Kitty can’t help but notice that none of the other contestants seem particularly shocked. Can jealousy over a sash and a diamante tiara be a motive for murder?

But when she discovers the threatening notes the young women have received, Kitty enlists her husband 
Matt to figure out who’s scaring the competitors. However, before Matt can speak to them, another entrant turns up dead after an apparently accidental overdose. Taking part in a beauty pageant seems to have turned into a fatal occupation!

The daring duo are sure that someone close to the girls is responsible. But can they sort the harmless face powders from the fatal poisons before it’s too late? 
Or will Kitty and Matt find they are next to be crowned… with death?

An utter joy! Fans of Agatha Christie, T E Kinsey and Lee Strauss will fall head over heels for this utterly compelling and totally charming historical cozy mystery!

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Title:   Murder at the Beauty Pageant 
Author:  Helena Dixon
Series:  Miss Underhay #12
Publisher:  Bookouture 
Genre:   Cozy Mystery
Format:  Kindle ARC 
No. of Pages:   256
Date of Publication:   May 2, 2023
My Rating:   4 Stars 

Kitty Bryant is now a newlywed. She and her husband Matt now have their own private investigation agency. Kitty has been instrumental countless times when it came to solving murders, often working along with the police. Kitty and Matt have a new client who has raised concerns about his stepdaughter. 

Meanwhile, Kitty is one of the organizers of a small beauty pageant with several young ladies vying for first prize. There have been a few problems, starting with a threatening note, and ultimately one of the girls turns up missing during the middle of the pageant. Sadly, the young woman is soon found dead, and Kitty and Matt are fairly certain that the murder has to do with their current case. 

With a new Inspector at the police, Kitty and Matt soon learn that their previous alliance has been broken. Yet, they want answers and nothing will stop them. With great characters and wit, Helena Dixon has kept this series alive and enjoyable. I enjoy Kitty and Matt’s exploits and look forward to seeing a lot more of them in the future. In fact, in a few short months, I look forward to the release of Murder at the Village Fair. 

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Helena Dixon splits her time between the Black Country and Devon. Married to the same man for over thirty five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, and a crazy cockapoo. 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 and Love Story of the Year 2010 as Nell Dixon. She now writes historical 1930's set cozy crime. Nell enjoys hearing from readers and you can read her news and contact her via her website at

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