Shortlisted for the Edgar Awards
Ashley Weaver’s debut mystery, Murder at the Brightwell, is a delicious, stylish novel in which murder invades British polite society and romance springs in unexpected places, and a wonderful testament to the enduring delight of the traditional mystery.
“An elegant Christie-esque 1930s romp.” —Deborah Crombie
“If you love Downton Abbey, you'll adore Ashley Weaver’s charming debut.”—Susan Elia MacNeal
“It’s more terrible than you think, Mrs. Ames. It appears that Mr. Howe was murdered.”
Amory Ames, a wealthy young woman questioning her marriage to her notoriously charming playboy husband, Milo, is looking for a change. She accepts a request for help from her former fiancé, Gil Trent, not knowing that she’ll soon become embroiled in a murder investigation that will not only test her friendship with Gil, but also will upset the status quo with her husband.
Amory accompanies Gil to the luxurious Brightwell Hotel in an attempt to circumvent the marriage of his sister, Emmeline, to Rupert Howe a disreputable ladies man. There is more than her happiness at stake, however, when Rupert is murdered and Gil is arrested for the crime. Matters are further complicated by Milo’s unexpected arrival, and as the line between friend and foe becomes less clear, Amory must decide where her heart lies and catch the killer before she, too, becomes a victim.
*BONUS CONTENT: This edition of Murder at the Brightwell includes a new introduction from the author and a discussion guide
Also out now in the Amory Ames mysteries: Death Wears a Mask, A Most Novel Revenge, The Essence of Malice, An Act of Villainy, and A Dangerous Engagement
Fans of plucky female amateur sleuths will welcome Amory Ames, the heroine of Weaver's pleasing debut set in 1932 England. Amory's rake of a husband, Milo, a man she "loves and hates in equal proportions," has just returned from Monte Carlo, where he was reported to have spent time with other women. Meanwhile, Gil Trent, the man Amory was engaged to before Milo swept her off her feet five years earlier, invites her to join him and others in a large party planning to stay a week at the Brightwell Hotel in Kent. There Gil hopes Amory will help persuade his 23-year-old sister to stop seeing a man he deems unsuitable. Amory accepts, but she soon turns detective after a fellow hotel guest turns up dead and another is suspected of foul play. Despite the routine sleuthing and predictable love triangle, the affable Amory could carry a series, though plausibly involving her in future murder cases will require some imagination.
Great first mystery
Excellent first book by this talented new author. It's a "light" part mystery and part romance with a lot of period background in the mix. I found it engaging and enjoyable to read, well-constructed plot. Will definitely read next in series.