Murder at the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver

by on May 15th, 2015
Murder at the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver Cover Image

Librarian Ashley Weaver’s debut novel is the kind of cozy mystery I really enjoy.  Set in 1930’s England, wealthy Amory and Milo Ames have been married five years and Amory’s charming playboy husband is still acting like he’s a bachelor.  He’s just returned from the French Riviera when her old fiance, Gil Trent, looks Amory up and asks her to join him at a seaside resort to hopefully dissuade his sister, Emmeline, from marrying a cad, Rupert Howe.  On the second day at the posh Brightwell Hotel, Emory finds Howe’s body, apparently pushed over a railing onto a terrace below.  Lots of friends and acquaintances staying for the week are possible suspects, but Gil is the primary target of the investigation.  Then Milo appears on the scene and things get complicated as Amory wants to clear Gil’s name and figure out if her marriage to Milo is worth saving.  Another murder takes place and the group of secondary characters each have their own secrets and reasons not to be trusted. Red herrings abound and Milo’s reluctant assistance in helping Amory find the killer keeps the readers’ interest.  The sarcastic repartee between Amory and Milo is amusing and the the reader will keep wondering who Amory will end up with, Milo or Gil.  The clues start adding up for the detective, but will the mystery be solved before another murder is committed? The romance aspect of the story adds to a fun light read set in a lavish location and time period.  I recommend this engaging mystery to fans of Agatha Christie’s books.  This first novel would make a great series with Amory Ames as the amateur sleuth.

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