THE HOUR OF DEATH by Jane Willan


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A Welsh nun with a passion for murder investigations sees every suspicious death as a case to solve.

Sister Agatha of Gwenafwy Abbey reads detective fiction and watches Midsomer Murders, and she’s also busy writing a murder mystery of her own. Agatha already has a claim to fame since helping solve a murder at the abbey (The Shadow of Death, 2018). Now the villagers of Pryderi are in a bother over plans to build housing in a lovely meadow between the village and the abbey, but even that outrage is put aside when Tiffany Reese, the very model of annoying perfection, is found dead in the church hall with the painting she’d planned to enter in the annual art show—where she'd won first prize last year—gone missing. Constable Barnes, who thinks Tiffany had a heart attack, refuses to do an autopsy, but Sister Agatha, knowing how many enemies Tiffany had made with her high-handed ways, starts her own investigation with the help of Father Selwyn and some of the nuns at the abbey. Even the abbey’s paying guest, young artist Lucy Pennoyer, gets dragged into the investigation when her dog is stolen and left in a crate in a frozen field. There are too many suspects for Agatha, who labors to find alibis and motives. Strange notes with Wizard of Oz references left for Lucy only raise the stakes as Agatha tries to keep up with the abbey’s pre-Christmas cheese orders while hunting down a killer.

The second entry in this charming series poses no great challenges for mystery buffs but is peopled with plenty of interesting characters and local color.

Pub Date: Oct. 9th, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-68331-759-3
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Crooked Lane
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2018


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