Posts Tagged ‘Stella Cameron’

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I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley.

Kyle Gammage – a teenage boy – finds the murdered body of a young woman in the woods.  Kyle works part time for Tony the vet and his brother Scooter works for Alex Duggins at the Black Dog.  As  a result of trying to protect the two young boys Alex and Tony and drawn into yet another murder investigation.

This is a well written and interesting crime novel and having read the previous three books in the series I’m getting to know the main characters.  I’m still not sure about Alex herself as she always seems a little flaky to me and she seems to worry about trivialities and about what might happen far more than a very good business woman would do in reality.  Mainly I forgive her her foibles because the plots are good and the other characters are interesting – Harriet and Mary who keep a bookshop/cake shop, Lily – Alex’s mother who runs the restaurant at the Black Dog and Hugh and the other pub staff.

If you’re looking for a new crime series set in a small rural community then you could do worse than read this one.  The series is best read in order of publication.


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Alex and Tony are once again discovering dead bodies.  This time the body is that of Laura Quillam – a temporary resident in the village.  Could it be suicide or natural causes?  The Quillams are a charismatic family.  Elyan – eighteen year old piano virtuoso with a great career ahead of him, Percy Quillam – controlling paterfamilias; glamorous Sonia – Elyan’s mother and Laura’s stepmother.  They are renting Green Friday – a local estate – for the summer to give Elyan peace and quiet to practice but their stay turns out to be very different from what they expected.

Folly on Weir is once again rocked by murder and mayhem and Alex and Tony fall under suspicion when Dan O’Reilly and Bill Lamb are sent to investigate Laura’s death and find it too much of a coincidence that Alex is once again first on the scene of a suspicious death.

I find Alex a bit too highly strung for my taste but the book is well plotted and the characters are interesting.  I thought the Quillams and their hangers on were especially well drawn.  The book is well plotted and I didn’t work out who was the murderer until the frightening conclusion.

If you enjoy well plotted typically English crime novels set in small communities then you might want to try this one.  It is part of a series but each book can be read as a standalone novel.  I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review.

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Out Comes the Evil: A Cotswold Murder Mystery (An Alex Duggins Mystery)

A local woman – Pamela Gibbon – goes missing from her home in Folly on Weir where Alex Duggins owns the pub and restaurant.  Alex and her friend, Tony, the vet find the body down a disused well at a derelict manor house.   Though the dead woman doesn’t seem to have any enemies there were a lot of rumours about the men she seems to have been involved with – most notably Harry Stroud who also seems to be away from home.  Who could have hated Pamela enough to kill her in a particularly gruesome way?

I did enjoy reading this second book in the series though it is certainly the stuff of nightmares.  This author is excellent at creating suspense and tension and there are so many undercurrents in the book that you feel on the edge of your seat with every encounter between the residents of Folly on Weir.  The police characters – O’Reilly and Lamb don’t help the situation as they seem to have decided to play good cop/bad cop with DS Lamb playing the bad cop and being down right rude to all and sundry.

If you like plenty of tension in your crime stories and some very sinister and really unpleasant characters then this may be the book for you.  It is part of a series but can be read as a standalone novel as the reader doesn’t need to know what happened in the first book.  I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review.

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Alex Duggins returns to her home village of Folly-on-Weir in the Cotswolds after the traumatic breakdown of her marriage determined to make a new life for herself.  She is settling into being the owner of a pub and restaurant and continuing her career as a graphic artist.  Out for a walk one snowy morning she stumbles across a body.  It is soon clear that the police have Alex cast as first murderer and she will need all her wits about her and the help of her friends to extricate herself and uncover the real murderer and the secrets the whole village seem to be in league to keep secret from everyone including the police.

I liked the characters in this well written mystery and there are plenty of suspects and motives for the crime and the next murder which takes place soon after.  The village background in the depths of winter is well realised and the build up of tension and the fear engendered in Alex herself is very well done.  The final pages are tense and I found myself willing Alex and the other characters to succeed in a race against time to stop the killer disposing of another victim.

If you like mysteries set in the English countryside with some interesting characters then try this one.  It is the first book in a proposed series so I shall be watching out for new future episodes.  I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes.

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