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Lineage Most Lethal is the captivating second mystery in S. C. Perkins' Ancestry Detective series, in which Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster grapples with murders in both the past and present. It's the week before New Year's Eve and genealogist Lucy Lancaster is mixing work and play quite nicely at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. After two months of research she Lineage Most Lethal is the captivating second mystery in S. C. Perkins' Ancestry Detective series, in which Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster grapples with murders in both the past and present. It's the week before New Year's Eve and genealogist Lucy Lancaster is mixing work and play quite nicely at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. After two months of research she's finalizing her presentation for hotel heiress Pippa Sutton, her latest client. Lucy has just arrived back at the hotel after a day of research when a strange man comes staggering toward her. She barely has time to notice his weak, sweaty appearance and broken tooth before he presses a classic Montblanc pen into her hand, whispers, "keep them safe," and collapses at her feet, dead. Lucy only knows one person who might be able to explain the significance of the pen: her grandpa, who is a collector. But Grandpa has an odd reaction to the sight of the pen, and Lucy can't help but feel that it might have something to do with his experiences during World War II. When Lucy becomes convinced that her hotel room has been searched and that there's more to the pen—and her grandpa—than meets the eye, she begins to draw connections from the present-day deaths and suspicious behaviors to a group of spies in World War II. Secret codes, old grievances, and traitors seem to hide behind every corner, and as Lucy begins to connect the dots someone seems determined to make sure the Lancaster line ends once and for all.


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Lineage Most Lethal is the captivating second mystery in S. C. Perkins' Ancestry Detective series, in which Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster grapples with murders in both the past and present. It's the week before New Year's Eve and genealogist Lucy Lancaster is mixing work and play quite nicely at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. After two months of research she Lineage Most Lethal is the captivating second mystery in S. C. Perkins' Ancestry Detective series, in which Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster grapples with murders in both the past and present. It's the week before New Year's Eve and genealogist Lucy Lancaster is mixing work and play quite nicely at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. After two months of research she's finalizing her presentation for hotel heiress Pippa Sutton, her latest client. Lucy has just arrived back at the hotel after a day of research when a strange man comes staggering toward her. She barely has time to notice his weak, sweaty appearance and broken tooth before he presses a classic Montblanc pen into her hand, whispers, "keep them safe," and collapses at her feet, dead. Lucy only knows one person who might be able to explain the significance of the pen: her grandpa, who is a collector. But Grandpa has an odd reaction to the sight of the pen, and Lucy can't help but feel that it might have something to do with his experiences during World War II. When Lucy becomes convinced that her hotel room has been searched and that there's more to the pen—and her grandpa—than meets the eye, she begins to draw connections from the present-day deaths and suspicious behaviors to a group of spies in World War II. Secret codes, old grievances, and traitors seem to hide behind every corner, and as Lucy begins to connect the dots someone seems determined to make sure the Lancaster line ends once and for all.

30 review for Lineage Most Lethal

  1. 5 out of 5

    James

    Lineage Most Lethal is the second book in the Ancestry Detective series written by S. C. Perkins. After the author's very successful win of a Malice Domestic award, she had a lot to live up to with this next book... and I can easily say she's done a fantastic job. Given my personal hobby of genealogy and love for the cozy mystery, this series couldn't be a better fit, and I'm glad to share my review of this latest tale. Lucy Lancaster is a genealogist not too far from Austin, Texas. She's been hi Lineage Most Lethal is the second book in the Ancestry Detective series written by S. C. Perkins. After the author's very successful win of a Malice Domestic award, she had a lot to live up to with this next book... and I can easily say she's done a fantastic job. Given my personal hobby of genealogy and love for the cozy mystery, this series couldn't be a better fit, and I'm glad to share my review of this latest tale. Lucy Lancaster is a genealogist not too far from Austin, Texas. She's been hired by Pippa Sutton, early 20s, to trace the Sutton family history. After the death of her father and grandfather, Pippa's looking to bring her family together, especially for the sake of their high-end hotel business. Lucy arrives to present the research to the family, but something goes very wrong. A stranger dies in their hotel after trying to slip a secret object to Lucy. To make matters worse, when Lucy tells her grandfather about it, he steals the object himself. WOW! Talk about family connections... now Lucy must figure out what's going on with the Suttons and how it might relate to her grandfather's role in the military during WWII. To start off with, the setting is great. A wonderful old hotel. A family with tons of branches. A mother with a secret. A strange hotel manager. A chef who seems to be hiding something... everyone's related, somehow, and Lucy can't figure out all the connections. It's a perfect, intricate crime, and it kept me guessing throughout the book. The first half is the lead-up to the backstory. We see the murder, we get to know the players, and we learn all about Lucy's grandfather's history as an important wartime asset. There's a cryptic set of clues regarding information about a group of 8 people who banded together to keep a secret in the 1940s. Some are still alive, but when the descendants of a few begin to die in weird ways, Lucy realizes she could be in danger. The second half of the book reads more like a thriller. It's fast-paced but still cozy. Characters have critical roles, and some we don't even get to meet. We just hear stories about who they once were, then decide how they fit into the puzzle, or who might be their current descendant today. Like the art and science of genealogy, this plot is meant to be slowly studied... you can't guess too quickly because not all the data is available. And then you hit a brick wall. You're left making strange connections, researching odd angles, getting lost and making wrong turns, but then... you find the truth. What a way to weave this story. Kudos to Perkins for making the actual structure of the story feel like the actual ancestry research I'm often finding myself in the middle of. The characters are well drawn, the mystery is ripe with clues and red herrings, and the family dynamics are spot on. I can't wait to see where this series goes; it's full of potential. While you can read them out of order, I always recommend starting from the beginning. That said, have at it... and you'll find it's pretty awesome!

  2. 4 out of 5

    JEN A

    I received an advanced copy of this book from Net Galley and the publisher in return for an honest review. The release date for this book is 21 July 2020 I absolutely loved this book. I didn’t want it to end! I love the mix of history and genealogy and to spice things up a bit of old school espionage. This book had me hooked from the beginning. The main character Lucy is so very likable and the supporting cast, especially her grandfather are amazing. There’s just enough mix of mystery and romance I received an advanced copy of this book from Net Galley and the publisher in return for an honest review. The release date for this book is 21 July 2020 I absolutely loved this book. I didn’t want it to end! I love the mix of history and genealogy and to spice things up a bit of old school espionage. This book had me hooked from the beginning. The main character Lucy is so very likable and the supporting cast, especially her grandfather are amazing. There’s just enough mix of mystery and romance to make this a perfect summer read. I highly recommend this book to everyone!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for this ARC in return for an honest review. I wasn’t far into reading this book before I realized that this was a relaxing, cozy mystery, not a category that personally appeals to me. It is a story that will be enjoyed by many enthusiastic readers as proven from its highly positive reviews. It serves as a welcome distraction from the stressful, locked-down world in which we are living. Frequent references to Tex Mex food left me craving for some, but t Thank you NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for this ARC in return for an honest review. I wasn’t far into reading this book before I realized that this was a relaxing, cozy mystery, not a category that personally appeals to me. It is a story that will be enjoyed by many enthusiastic readers as proven from its highly positive reviews. It serves as a welcome distraction from the stressful, locked-down world in which we are living. Frequent references to Tex Mex food left me craving for some, but that must await a time when restaurants reopen. The plot contained an intriguing puzzle, codes, romance, friendships, a WW2 spy circle, present-day murders and mystery, a deadly, desperate villain, and secrets revealed through family trees. To have a genealogist as the protagonist in a mystery series is an original and welcome device. The complex, easy to read plot was well crafted and organized. I failed to develop a connection with the characters except for the delightful 92-year-old grandfather, George Lancaster, a former member of a WW2 spying ring consisting of eight British and American agents. I started to warm to the genealogist, Lucy, through her love and devotion to this intelligent and adorable old man. Lucy, his granddaughter, was brave, resourceful but quite outspoken and reckless. She was regarded as inquisitive which went along with her assignment in building a family tree. She was given the task by Pippa Salton, a wealthy heiress to a chain of upscale hotels. She decided to include video presentations from close and distant relatives and present her findings at the hotel. Once outside the meeting, Lucy was approached by a sickly, staggering stranger. The man pressed a Mont Blanc pen into her hand and uttered the words, “ Keep them safe.” He then collapsed and died. In the confusion, the pen was snatched by the family dog but later retrieved. Knowing that her grandfather collects these expensive pens, she learns from him that this pen is a valuable collectors’ item issued to a group of spies during the war. It contains a concealed microdot reader. The dot is on a concert ticket from the dead man’s wallet. The grandfather manages to get the dot through sleight of hand and trickery from the police evidence bag. They discover a code pertaining to the members of the wartime spy ring. They believe some present-day descendants are being murdered in an act of revenge. “Keep them safe”, uttered by the man before death may refer to the descendants whose life is in danger. The police are skeptical of Lucy’s assumptions. Her grandfather is in hospital following an accident, and Lucy works with Pippa to complete cracking the code. As they get close to a solution, both the lives of Lucy and Pippa are in mortal danger. I thought the conclusion was somewhat drawn out, but every mystery is resolved in a satisfying manner. Recommended for anyone who enjoys the study of genealogy and/or a cozy and complicated mystery.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Kate Baxter

    3.5 / 5.0 stars What a fun and interesting cozy mystery with the added nuance of a genealogist as the protagonist and amateur sleuth. This second book in series was my introduction to this intriguing sassy, outspoken and reckless woman, Lucy Lancaster. She's a professional genealogist for hire. One can certainly imagine how sleuthing genealogical clues can easily transfer to digging into murder mystery clues. It's all research, reasoning and parsing out the clues. Of course, there are always a fe 3.5 / 5.0 stars What a fun and interesting cozy mystery with the added nuance of a genealogist as the protagonist and amateur sleuth. This second book in series was my introduction to this intriguing sassy, outspoken and reckless woman, Lucy Lancaster. She's a professional genealogist for hire. One can certainly imagine how sleuthing genealogical clues can easily transfer to digging into murder mystery clues. It's all research, reasoning and parsing out the clues. Of course, there are always a few red herrings thrown in for good measure. As Lucy is working out the family lines of hotel heiress, Pippa Sutton she is also affronted with an an old man's sudden death outside the Sutton's hotel. His exquisite fountain pen and its sudden disappearance play into the story around which many lives entwine - all connected back to WWII covert operations. One such person is Lucy's grandfather - a man whom she respects and absolutely adores but who has a few secrets not yet divulged. Perkins' writing style is smooth, engaging and propels the reader to a well-fraught climax from which the reader is gently brought back down. After hearing of a number of genealogical research errors within the first book in series, I was encouraged to read that Perkins engaged a professional genealogist to proof the references to this profession contained in this second book. If you enjoy well thought out, circuitous stories with a touch of history and family tales, then this may well be a book for you. I am grateful to author S.C. Perkins and Minotaur Books for having provided an uncorrected digital galley of this book through NetGalley. Their generosity, however, has not influence this review - the words of which are mine alone.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jeri

    Who among us hasn't been curious about our roots and our family history. Do we come from heroes or traitors? When Lucy is tasked with digging into a hotel heiress' family tree she finds connections to WW2 like many of us would if we did our own digging. As Lucy arrives back at the hotel after finishing up for the day she is confronted by a man who hands her a pen and tells her to keep them safe then falls dead. She has no idea what he means but knows her grandfather collects the pen she was give Who among us hasn't been curious about our roots and our family history. Do we come from heroes or traitors? When Lucy is tasked with digging into a hotel heiress' family tree she finds connections to WW2 like many of us would if we did our own digging. As Lucy arrives back at the hotel after finishing up for the day she is confronted by a man who hands her a pen and tells her to keep them safe then falls dead. She has no idea what he means but knows her grandfather collects the pen she was given so she calls him for answers. This opens up a whole new story into WW2 and what role many ancestors played in it. I enjoyed this book very much. I am like many people interested in my own family history and what roles they played in history. I was given an eARC by the publisher through NetGalley.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Gail C.

    This is the second book in the Ancestry Detective Mystery series by S. C. Perkins and is a solid follow-up to the first novel. In Lineage Most Lethal, genealogist Lucy Lancaster is hard at work putting together the family history of a young woman who has inherited her family’s fortune and turned the family estate into the flag-ship hotel of the family chain. The death of a man on hotel grounds initially appears to be an unwelcome, but accidental intrusion. However, Lucy, as she shares informatio This is the second book in the Ancestry Detective Mystery series by S. C. Perkins and is a solid follow-up to the first novel. In Lineage Most Lethal, genealogist Lucy Lancaster is hard at work putting together the family history of a young woman who has inherited her family’s fortune and turned the family estate into the flag-ship hotel of the family chain. The death of a man on hotel grounds initially appears to be an unwelcome, but accidental intrusion. However, Lucy, as she shares information about a collector’s quality Mont Blanc fountain pen with her grandfather, himself a collector, learns it is much much more. In the process, Lucy learns much about her grandfather’s time in the military during WWII when, unknown to most of his family, he was a member of the intelligence branch with some top secret duties. His group had been issued pens matching the one carried by the murdered man so they could recognize one another, and thus the present starts to merge with the past. Lucy’s grandfather is a charming character in the series, and his information is vital to solving the current mystery. There are also repeat appearances by Flaco, Lucy’s self proclaimed adoptive father and master chef of all things Mexican; her roommates, and a brief appearance by Ben, her love interest from the first novel. The book is self-contained and there is sufficient information for anyone to enjoy this one without having read the first in the series. However, if you are a lover of mystery series, you may want to read the first book and then this one as you will most likely want to continue as new books are published. While I figured out early the identity of the murderer, it was no less enjoyable to read and see how Perkins included clues right in front of the reader’s nose that could easily be overlooked. Likewise, the importance of red herrings was cleverly touted while, in truth, having nothing to do with the murder. The entire story harkens back to occurrences from WWII, and thus seems a perfect setting for someone with Lucy’s interest and talent at doing historical research. My thanks to St. Martin’s Press Minotaur Books and NetGalley for providing me an advanced digital real copy of the novel. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Peggy R

    Having done my family's genealogy since I was middle school, I picked up the first book in the series and very much enjoyed it. So, needless to say, I was looking forward to this next book in the series. I love that the main character is a professional genealogist. I think it brings a different perspective and added dimension to her sleuthing. Lucy Lancaster is a terrific character. She is smart and curious, with a good mind that is able to put clues together. She is surrounded by a returning ca Having done my family's genealogy since I was middle school, I picked up the first book in the series and very much enjoyed it. So, needless to say, I was looking forward to this next book in the series. I love that the main character is a professional genealogist. I think it brings a different perspective and added dimension to her sleuthing. Lucy Lancaster is a terrific character. She is smart and curious, with a good mind that is able to put clues together. She is surrounded by a returning cast of characters in her grandfather and two office mates/friends. I like that so far, each book introduces us to new characters that are involved with Lucy's current genealogy project. The mystery in this book was well done. It involves some murders in the present that are driven by secrets from World War II. Lucy's grandfather plays a large role in her investigation with plenty of references to the secrets and covert missions carried out during WWII. The author did a great job of weaving a couple of different mysteries together with the main whodunit and tied them all up nicely in the end. I have to say that I surprised myself by figuring out the culprit early on. That said, I wasn't sure of motive until it was fully revealed in the end. I am looking forward to more books in the series and given that I relate to the profession of the main character, the stories hold a lot of interest for me. I voluntarily read a digital advanced reader copy provided to me by the publisher, St. Martin's Press, through Netgalley. The opinions expressed are my own.

  8. 4 out of 5

    FMSWarrior

    client and her extended family as she delivers their genealogy and family history to kick off the new year. Spending the holiday at one of the family’s hotels, Lucy is met by a man who falls dead at her feet, but not before pressing an old Mont Blanc pen into her hand and giving her a message. In the flurry of activity as they try to revive the man the pen is lost when the family dog runs off with it. But Lucy gets it back later and decides to show it to her grand father before turning it into t client and her extended family as she delivers their genealogy and family history to kick off the new year. Spending the holiday at one of the family’s hotels, Lucy is met by a man who falls dead at her feet, but not before pressing an old Mont Blanc pen into her hand and giving her a message. In the flurry of activity as they try to revive the man the pen is lost when the family dog runs off with it. But Lucy gets it back later and decides to show it to her grand father before turning it into the police the next day. Sharing the pen through FaceTime with her grand father leads to Lucy learning more about his time in service during World War II and unveils a modern day threat to the descendants of eight US and UK spies that helped to shape history. Lucy knows to follow the trail and takes the lead when Grandpa ends up in the hospital. But will Lucy be able to figure out who all of the targets are before a new chapter is written in history? I love history and cozies, so reading this was a double header win for me! The amount of detail and the connection of events into the storyline is fabulous! This is one of the best cozies I have read in awhile. I’m hooked on this series!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Maranda

    Being a long time genealogist myself it is great to read a mystery with lineage paths to follow. The research is evident in the pages but does not overshadow the story being told. This is the second Perkins' Ancestry Detective novel but Lineage Most Lethal reads fine as a stand alone. All trails seem to be leading back to WWII spies. But why and who are related to these long ago secret team members? Lucy Lancaster is putting the finishing touches to the Sutton Family Research along with enjoying Being a long time genealogist myself it is great to read a mystery with lineage paths to follow. The research is evident in the pages but does not overshadow the story being told. This is the second Perkins' Ancestry Detective novel but Lineage Most Lethal reads fine as a stand alone. All trails seem to be leading back to WWII spies. But why and who are related to these long ago secret team members? Lucy Lancaster is putting the finishing touches to the Sutton Family Research along with enjoying the Christmas/New Year Holiday at the Sutton Hotel. Unfortunately bodies seem to be turning up at every turn and becomes personal when Lucy's own Grandfather George is involved in a hit and run accident. Lots of action going on here that led to a quick read. Would have liked a bit more romance and more time spent with the unique dog Boomer. "A copy of this book was provided by St. Martin's Press via Netgalley with no requirements for a review. Comments here are my honest opinion."

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rima Aiello

    A strong addition to an engaging series. The way the author moves between past and present to solve mysteries is a beautiful thing to be lucky enough to witness. One would think you would get lost in the details, but that is definitely not the case. An enjoyable read from start to finish.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Minx

    True Rating 3.5 stars! Lineage Most Lethal is a cozy mystery that not only delivers a story deeply rooted in the history of World War II but also gives insight into Lucy’s family secrets with a side dish of espionage. I very much liked the addition of Lucy’s grandfather as a sleuthing partner. The relationship between Lucy and her Grandfather, George Lancaster, was very endearing and complimentary. They were truly friends as well as family and their concern for each other were clearly shown. Furt True Rating 3.5 stars! Lineage Most Lethal is a cozy mystery that not only delivers a story deeply rooted in the history of World War II but also gives insight into Lucy’s family secrets with a side dish of espionage. I very much liked the addition of Lucy’s grandfather as a sleuthing partner. The relationship between Lucy and her Grandfather, George Lancaster, was very endearing and complimentary. They were truly friends as well as family and their concern for each other were clearly shown. Furthermore, I found it most interesting that the current day mystery had direct ties to George’s past. In addition to a fun whodunit, there was a great element of danger and intrigue in this story. With each clue uncovered, the stakes became higher for Lucy and George. From the point of discovery of the Montblanc pen, the hazards to Lucy’s and George’s health only increased exponentially! The plot itself was very involved, which was nice, but it also seemed, at times, a little far-fetched. Although, never enough to lose my interest. Overall, Lineage Most Lethal was a delightful story that would appeal to fans of cozy fiction with an emphasis on behind the scenes machinations in the World War II era. This review is based on a complimentary book I received from NetGalley. It is an honest and voluntary review. The complimentary receipt of it in no way affected my review or rating.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Elizabeth

    This is a great sequel and I’m so invested in this series. It was WWII espionage mixed with genealogy and family drama and TexMex. I highly recommend it. I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid for this review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Dawn Michelle

    This is a tough review for me to write - I didn't hate this book. I didn't even dislike it. But there are aspects of it that I am just not a fan of - it is about 50-60 pages too long [there is a LOT of blathering about stuff that just doesn't matter] and in this one, there was just one story-line too many for my liking [though they were both interesting, it would have been neat to have them BOTH as separate books as I like Pippa and it would be cool to see her as a recurring character]. Apparent This is a tough review for me to write - I didn't hate this book. I didn't even dislike it. But there are aspects of it that I am just not a fan of - it is about 50-60 pages too long [there is a LOT of blathering about stuff that just doesn't matter] and in this one, there was just one story-line too many for my liking [though they were both interesting, it would have been neat to have them BOTH as separate books as I like Pippa and it would be cool to see her as a recurring character]. Apparently I need a more plot-driven story-line so when it wanders away and blathers, I get distracted and turned off. That said, even though I didn't love it [and had my dislikes], I did like it for the most part - I loved Lucy's grandfather. What a great addition to the story. He [and his story-line] was just fantastic and I kept praying throughout the book that he wasn't going to get killed. I would have been seriously unhappy then. And even though we don't see them as much in this book, I like Lucy's besties as well. And Flaco's Tacos. I seriously need one of those places near me. Heavenly. And I really did like Pippa and her story-line. And the whole genealogy thing is very cool. Just less blathering please. I knew who the killer was in the second chapter, though to be fair, I just thought ''Oh that person would be a great murderer", never thinking anything past that. But by the 5th or 6th chapter I knew for certain and then it just had to unravel [and that might be my reasoning for thinking it was too long and had too much filler]. The reveal was excellent though and the end was really perfect. So there is that too. I would read a third one should she write it. :-) Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin Press/Minotaur Books for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Gloria

    This is a fine mystery series that runs on the lighter side, but incorporates interesting history and the contemporary field of genealogy. Lucy is a young beautiful expert on the newest ways to track a person's genealogy and has all kinds of interesting connections through organizations like the National Archives. She is a sleuth like a dog with a bone. Just won't let up until a story reveals itself. And she is kind of falling for the really cute FBI agent . Lucy's smart and capable friends play This is a fine mystery series that runs on the lighter side, but incorporates interesting history and the contemporary field of genealogy. Lucy is a young beautiful expert on the newest ways to track a person's genealogy and has all kinds of interesting connections through organizations like the National Archives. She is a sleuth like a dog with a bone. Just won't let up until a story reveals itself. And she is kind of falling for the really cute FBI agent . Lucy's smart and capable friends play a role, too, as does her almost dashing grandfather (age 92). Lots of red herrings appear before the big resolve. While bits are somewhat too convenient, this is a fun and heartfelt read. This would be interesting to fans of the TV series The Genetic Detective. Start with the first book in the series Murder Once Removed.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Patricia Romero

    Ancestry Detective Mystery 2 Welcome to the second book in this series about Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster. Lucy is crazy busy trying to wrap up a project for Pippa Sutton of Sutton Hotel fame. After months of work, she is ready to present her results to Pippa and the rest of the Sutton family. And it's just a week before New Year's Eve. After a day of research, she comes back to the hotel but before she reaches the steps a man stumbles towards her and shoves something in her hands before droppi Ancestry Detective Mystery 2 Welcome to the second book in this series about Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster. Lucy is crazy busy trying to wrap up a project for Pippa Sutton of Sutton Hotel fame. After months of work, she is ready to present her results to Pippa and the rest of the Sutton family. And it's just a week before New Year's Eve. After a day of research, she comes back to the hotel but before she reaches the steps a man stumbles towards her and shoves something in her hands before dropping dead. Whispering a cryptic message to "keep them safe". Looking at her hand she sees it is a Mont Blanc pen and while her grandfather is a collector Lucy doesn't understand what the man meant, so she calls in grandpa and all of a sudden Lucy is wondering what in the world she has gotten herself into! After speaking with him, things get very interesting! And Lucy isn't sure who her grandpa is anymore, but boy is he interesting! A really good mystery here. Spies, murder, an old vendetta based on a lie. It's all here! Enjoy! NetGalley/ July 21st, 2020 by Minotaur Books

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    The plot has some rather far-fetched aspects to it, and as such the dialogue can sometimes feel awkward and forced to force the plot forward, but it was a smooth entertaining read.

  17. 5 out of 5

    QNPoohBear

    Lucy Lancaster is working on a family history project for hotel heiress Pippa Sutton and her family. Pipp's mother, Roselyn, is a thorn in Lucy's side for not wanting her family tree done. Working hard is a good distraction for Lucy's broken heart. Special Agent Ben Turner has been MIA for ages even though he swore he didn't go undercover. Lucy believes he's "ghosted" her. When a clearly ill man stumbles onto the hotel property and into Lucy, he hands her a Montblac pen and begs her to keep them Lucy Lancaster is working on a family history project for hotel heiress Pippa Sutton and her family. Pipp's mother, Roselyn, is a thorn in Lucy's side for not wanting her family tree done. Working hard is a good distraction for Lucy's broken heart. Special Agent Ben Turner has been MIA for ages even though he swore he didn't go undercover. Lucy believes he's "ghosted" her. When a clearly ill man stumbles onto the hotel property and into Lucy, he hands her a Montblac pen and begs her to keep them safe. Who are them and why does Lucy need to keep them safe? The man unfortunately dies and the pen disappears in the chaos. Pipp's dog, Boomer, finds the pen and delivers it to Lucy in return for treats. Lucy is curious about the pen as her beloved grandfather collects antique Mont Blanc fountain pens. When she shows him the pen, her grandfather becomes mysterious. He shows up at the Hotel Sutton unexpectedly, just as Lucy is about to show the pen to the assorted Sutton descendants. She notices something odd about the pen. Lucy then gets swept up in a mystery involving her grandfather, old secrets from WWII and a top-secret spying mission to save the world from the Nazis. It looks like the man's death was connected and Grandpa suspects others may be in danger as well. Lucy must use all her research skills to figure out who will be targeted next. As she gets closer, more people are killed and her own life, Grandpa's and Pippa's lives may also be in danger. Can Lucy figure out who the crafty killer is in time? This mystery was not as engaging as the first book in the series. World War II is not my thing and I don't read spy thrillers for a reason. This is not a geneaological mystery in the true sense. Lucy needs her Grandpa's spy knowledge and to call in favors from friends and she still can't figure it out. The identity of the murderer was SOOOOO obvious from the beginning! As soon as the murder method was revealed, Lucy should have known. If she were a real historian and not just a geneaologist with an interest in history, she'd have figured it out. It was just too obvious. While there are a few red herrings along the way, they're not strong enough to lead away from the true killer. There's not enough geneaological research in this book to please me and it needs the chart from the first book to explain the cousin relationship so readers know how Pippa is related to each of her relatives. I liked the first chapter in the cemetary the best but it has NOTHING to do with the rest of the book. There's a secondary mystery that bogs down the novel and one minor mystery from the past that doesn't really add anything to the story. There's a little too much going on here. I like Lucy well enough but I am still bothered by her lack of background in history and library studies. She loves history and discussing history but she doesn't seem to have formally studied history. She also doesn't know when to shut up. I can relate to that! She's more open and personable than most researchers I know. Something about her just doesn't feel authentic to me for some reason. I don't like her self-pity party over Ben. Even though he said he doesn't go undercover, I believe he said rarely, not never. He does work for the FBI so it stands to reason he may be up to something he can't tell her. However, he should have had a colleague contact Lucy to say he was alive and would contact her when he could, if that's allowed, or told her up front he's too busy for a relationship right now. That subplot was way predictable and too rushed. What I do really like about Lucy is her relationship with her grandpa. They're fun together and their relationship is sweet. It's obvious how much she loves and cares about him. Grandpa Lancaster is a hoot. George has some pretty big secrets and now is the time he has to share them. I would think that information would still be classified for 75 years or 75 years + until all parties involved are dead. George can not possibly have been as old as 19 in 1944 or he shaved many years off his age. My grandmother was a 20 year old war bride in 1944 and is currently 96 years old. There are very few WWII veterans still alive, let alone veterans with amazing memories like George's. I found that just a little bit implausible but maybe I'm jealous and wishing my grandfather was still alive and my grandmother's memory was not affected by Alzheimers. George is kind, caring and extremely brave. He's a real hero. George is also cheeky and mischievous at times. I wonder if the author chose the musical Oklamahoma as the theater ticket because it was the hottest show on Broadway in 1944? George could have gotten tickets because he was a serviceman but regular people had to wait and wait and wait. My grandpa took his war bride to see it in March that year on their honeymoon. They went back to NY for their 60th anniversary and it was a massive sticker shock experience just to sleep at the same hotel, let alone go see a show! George's story is thrilling and kept me turning the pages to see how Lucy would decode the message. She took too long. I recognized the pigpen cypher from the Revolutionary War. As George said, it's not hard to crack. The book cipher is another old one but it's supposed to use a book EVERYONE had on their bookshelf like the Bible or Shakespeare, not some random early 20th-century novel that's been reprinted a million times. That part of the story made me roll my eyes and I was frustrated at Lucy's delay. I really like Pippa Sutton. I was expecting a Paris Hilton type spoiled brat but Pippa is a smart businesswoman who cares a lot about her family heritage passed down from her great-grandparents. She's excited to learn what Lucy has to tell her about her family heritage and share it with her relatives. Pippa also cares a lot about the hotel staff and moves them around from her other properties to make sure she has staff she can trust to do the job well. I love how welcoming and kind she is to Lucy. Not every hotelier would invite Lucy to STAY on site, let alone allow her to invite her besties over for New Year's Eve! I also love Pippa's relationship with her Yellow Lab, Boomer. Boomer is goofy, sweet and lovable. He adores Pippa as much as she loves him. Pippa also loves her mom. Roselyn can be flighty and rude at times but Pippa never judges. She worries about her mom and wants to help. Roselyn is not very likable at first but I grew to like her and was envious of the close mother-daughter relationship. Mrs. Pollingham, the front desk manager, is a motherly sort but she's also very strict about keeping the hotel clean and about the rules. She can be tough when she wants to be. Mrs. P has to run the hotel, deal with angry guests and worry about the dead bodies associated with the hotel. I feel sorry for her. She's been a good friend to Pippa's mom and I think the two may have a closer connection than they realize or tell anyone about. I don't understand her catchphrase "Och" if she's supposed to be American of English parentage? "Och" is Scottish. I've never met anyone who actually says "och" in real life. Maybe it's supposed to sound old-fashioned? Chef Rocky is not of LATIN heritage if he's Italian. Italians are not Latin as much as a certain person I know claims they are. Lucy must not know many Italians or do Italian geneology because for some reason she doesn't know Rocky is the Anglicized version of Rocco, a common Italian first name. I rolled my eyes at her lack of knowledge. A true geneaologist would know the common names of immigrants and the American equivalents. Chef Rocky is a bit tempermental. He's certainly arrogant thinking he's God's gift to women. He's rude to flirt with all the women and make them think they're special when it doesn't mean anything to him. I don't like him but I want to try his chocolate mint gelato! He doesn't deserve what happens to him at all. Lucy's friends add some lightness and humor to the novel. There isn't enough of them or of Flaco's Tacos. I don't like tacos or Mexican food but I'm up for some break-up churros and chocolate! I like how protective Flaco is of Lucy. He's almost like an uncle to her. Hugo Markham was a nutty government conspiracy theorist. Hmm he may have actually been on to something now. He was known to the CIA as a harmless threat but he can't have been that harmless to have someone murder him! He didn't deserve to die. The killer is truly evil and remorseless. The killer's motive is vastly scary and unbelievable but sadly, probably plausible. David S. Eason, Pippa's "Uncle Dave" has a special subplot of his own. He's kind of boorish and whiny. He can't move past an incident that ended his career. He does sound "used carsalesman"ish as Pippa describes his manner. I find him crude and not worth speaking to even if he is enthusiastic about the family history. Officer Carr is the man in charge of the investigation. He's tough but I think he's fair. At first I thought he suspected Lucy of murder but he just wanted to get the facts while they were fresh in her mind. Detective Dupart is kind of a jerk and doesn't know how to handle nosy geneaologists yet. He knows how to do his job and does it well but this mystery is beyond his scope. He needs Lucy's help and she needs him. I hope they can work together again. Even though I didn't enjoy this story as much as the first in the series, I hope the author writes more about the Ancestry Detective.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Denice Langley

    This book definitely fits the mystery/ thriller genre but it also mixes in many pieces of other genres that it's very hard to give a definite classification to. But that is far from a bad thing. Lucy is a talented genealogist. SC Perkins gives Lucy's character skills and abilities that would serve her well in this career while giving her intelligence and caring that will serve her well as she investigates the death of a stranger that seems to be someone her grandfather knows. As the mystery cont This book definitely fits the mystery/ thriller genre but it also mixes in many pieces of other genres that it's very hard to give a definite classification to. But that is far from a bad thing. Lucy is a talented genealogist. SC Perkins gives Lucy's character skills and abilities that would serve her well in this career while giving her intelligence and caring that will serve her well as she investigates the death of a stranger that seems to be someone her grandfather knows. As the mystery continues, watch for the clues scattered throughout. I missed a few and had to go back to look for them. A truly enjoyable read that has added another author to my FOLLOWED list.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sue Em

    Lucy Lancaster, genealogist extraordinaire, is polishing her video and presentation for the Sutton family at a family hotel in Austin. A talented historian and a tad nosy, when a dying man presses a pen in her hand, she puts her talents to use in unravelling this mystery. Engaging characters and an interesting plot with an historical perspective back to WWII. Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lesa

    Is this the kind of amateur sleuth, or, actually, the kind of character you would like to see in a book? "I don't apologize for loving learning and information. I'm smart, I'm good at my job, I work hard, and I'm proud of it." Those are my favorite sentences in S.C. Perkins' excellent second mystery, Lineage Most Lethal. Genealogist Lucy Lancaster is not ashamed of who she is. My kind of character. And, how often do you see a female in any novel express that kind of confidence? Hotel heiress Pipp Is this the kind of amateur sleuth, or, actually, the kind of character you would like to see in a book? "I don't apologize for loving learning and information. I'm smart, I'm good at my job, I work hard, and I'm proud of it." Those are my favorite sentences in S.C. Perkins' excellent second mystery, Lineage Most Lethal. Genealogist Lucy Lancaster is not ashamed of who she is. My kind of character. And, how often do you see a female in any novel express that kind of confidence? Hotel heiress Pippa Sutton is Lucy's latest client. At twenty-four, Pippa is the last descendant to bear the surname of 19th century land baron Reginald Sutton and his English wife, Sarah Bess. She's the sole heir to a one hundred year old dynasty of small but high-end hotels in Texas and the South. As Lucy finishes up the project for Pippa, she's staying at the hotel in Austin, even though she lives and works there. The hotel gives Lucy access to a number of Pippa's cousins who can fill in personal stories about the family. That includes Pippa's paternal great-grandparents. Her great-grandfather, James, met Nell, his future wife, when he was in England, fighting WWII as a British citizen. Lucy returns from another research trip to a local cemetery, and is out on the hotel porch when a man staggers from the parking lot, collapses at her feet, tries to put a Montblanc pen in her hand, and says, "Keep them safe." She has no idea what he means, but when she mentions the pen to her beloved grandfather, George, he knows. That's when he reveals he was an intelligence officer during the war, a spy, and he remained active as a handler for twenty more years. He recognized that pen as a special connection to a small group of eight spies who had a shared mission. But, before he can do a great deal of research, Grandpa is hit by a car in a hit-and-run accident. Some good Samaritan stayed with him, passed on a message, and made sure there was a security guard at the hospital door for the ninety-two-year-old man. Without her grandfather's assistance, Lucy has to tap into her research abilities as a genealogist. She soon realizes the dead man at the hotel might be linked to a couple other recent deaths. Then, she worries about her grandfather. Can all these accidents and deaths be traced back to that small group of spies in the war? That Montblanc pen and a book are the biggest clues in Lucy's arsenal. S.C. Perkins' characters are wonderful. Lucy, her grandfather, her co-workers, and even the restaurant owner at Big Flaco's Tacos are well-developed, great characters. I adore her grandfather! Perkins knows how to keep those characters active and involved with Lucy. Here's my recommendation for this riveting book. Don't read the flap of the book if you pick it up. It gives away too much of the story. While some might call this a cozy mystery, I consider it a compelling pageturner. Don't spoil any bit of this suspenseful mystery for yourself. A year ago, I reviewed S.C. Perkins' debut mystery, Murder Once Removed. It was debut of the month for Library Journal, and a starred review. Lineage Most Lethal is even better than the first book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kathleen

    This is the second book in this series and it's another excellent cozy! The author does a great job of creating really likable characters and infuses them with unique identities, and there is a lot of great humor trickled throughout. Exactly the way I like it - the first page grabs you tight and the dead body shows up promptly! Just like in the first book though, I really wanted more genealogy research tidbits. My thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy to read and pro This is the second book in this series and it's another excellent cozy! The author does a great job of creating really likable characters and infuses them with unique identities, and there is a lot of great humor trickled throughout. Exactly the way I like it - the first page grabs you tight and the dead body shows up promptly! Just like in the first book though, I really wanted more genealogy research tidbits. My thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy to read and provide my honest opinion.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Katherine

    I love family history and genealogy, so the whole premise of this book delights and intrigues me. Genealogist Lucy Lancaster is spending the week before New Year's Eve at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. The hotel is owned by her client, a hotel heiress, and Lucy's there to finalize and present two months of research. Lucy's just arrived at the hotel when a strange man arrives, sweaty, staggering, with a broken tooth, and obviously ill. He presses a Montblanc pen into Lucy's hand and I love family history and genealogy, so the whole premise of this book delights and intrigues me. Genealogist Lucy Lancaster is spending the week before New Year's Eve at the boutique Sutton Hotel in Austin, Texas. The hotel is owned by her client, a hotel heiress, and Lucy's there to finalize and present two months of research. Lucy's just arrived at the hotel when a strange man arrives, sweaty, staggering, with a broken tooth, and obviously ill. He presses a Montblanc pen into Lucy's hand and whispers "keep them safe," then immediately collapses dead at her feet. In the chaos after emergency services arrives the pen disappears and Lucy forgets about it entirely until afterward. She tracks it down and retrieves it from her client's dog. Lucy's grandfather collects Montblanc pens so she decides to wait and show it to him before handing it over to the police. But grandpa's response is odd, starting Lucy down an investigatory trail. Lineage Most Lethal is a fun and fast-paced cozy mystery, with interesting characters I hope to see in future books. Lucy's ninety-something year old grandfather plays a large role in the novel and is absolutely fantastic. There is a spoiler for the killer from the previous book so I would recommend reading the series in order (this is book two). Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC. The opinions in this review are honest and my own. #LineageMostLethal #mystery #cozymystery

  23. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    This is the second book in this series and I received an advanced reading copy from NetGalley. My thanks to them and to the author for letting me read this book. I enjoyed the first in the series and was glad to see there was a second one. It does not disappoint. Lucy Lancaster is researching the ancestry of the family of the owner of a boutique hotel in Austin, Texas. When a man literally drops dead at her feet with a mysterious message, she feels compelled to find out what is going on. It is i This is the second book in this series and I received an advanced reading copy from NetGalley. My thanks to them and to the author for letting me read this book. I enjoyed the first in the series and was glad to see there was a second one. It does not disappoint. Lucy Lancaster is researching the ancestry of the family of the owner of a boutique hotel in Austin, Texas. When a man literally drops dead at her feet with a mysterious message, she feels compelled to find out what is going on. It is interesting how the sins of the fathers can affect what happens to their descendants and this is what Lucy finds out as she follows the clues. When Lucy isn't researching, she is hanging out with her best friends eating Mexican food at her favorite spot. Being a Texas girl myself raised on Mexican food, I wish I could taste some of the dishes the author writes about. Again, this was a fun book to read and, if you are into genealogy, I would highly recommend it. I can't wait for the next one.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Daniele

    LINEAGE MOST LETHAL, the second book in S.C. Perkins’ Ancestry Detective series, is an excellent, smart mystery featuring genealogist Lucy Lancaster. It is sure to please both cozy and traditional mystery readers alike. The series’ premise of a professional genealogist solving mysteries is fresh and, to me, pretty exciting. Perkins does an excellent job of weaving Lucy’s work into both a present day mystery and a tale of World War II era espionage. I like the Austin, Texas, setting. The character LINEAGE MOST LETHAL, the second book in S.C. Perkins’ Ancestry Detective series, is an excellent, smart mystery featuring genealogist Lucy Lancaster. It is sure to please both cozy and traditional mystery readers alike. The series’ premise of a professional genealogist solving mysteries is fresh and, to me, pretty exciting. Perkins does an excellent job of weaving Lucy’s work into both a present day mystery and a tale of World War II era espionage. I like the Austin, Texas, setting. The characters, especially Lucy and her grandpa George, are so appealing. Since the pair is tightly connected to the mystery, I felt invested in the story from the first page. The story is well plotted and expertly executed. The pace is steady and leads up to a nail-biting climax. I am so glad that I came across LINEAGE MOST LETHAL and look forward to many more adventures with Lucy and crew. Highly recommended! With much gratitude, I received an ARC of this title through NetGalley from St. Martin’s Press and voluntarily shared my thoughts and opinions here.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Austin based genealogist Lucy Lancaster is supposed to wrap up her job for wealthy hotelier Pippa by New Year's Day, but when a dying man hands Lucy a rare Mont Blanc pen and whispers "Keep them safe," she knows that she has another job to do. Since her elderly grandfather is a collector of fountain pens, she asks him about the pen, and he reveals to her for the first time that he was in OSS during World War II and served with the father of the dead man, who was a spy fanboy. There's a coded lis Austin based genealogist Lucy Lancaster is supposed to wrap up her job for wealthy hotelier Pippa by New Year's Day, but when a dying man hands Lucy a rare Mont Blanc pen and whispers "Keep them safe," she knows that she has another job to do. Since her elderly grandfather is a collector of fountain pens, she asks him about the pen, and he reveals to her for the first time that he was in OSS during World War II and served with the father of the dead man, who was a spy fanboy. There's a coded list of eight names, all the descendants of people who worked on a particularly significant operation during the war, and he suspects Lucy's name is on the list, as he helped lead the operation. But after Grandpa is injured in a fishy automobile accident, Lucy is on her own in figuring out who is in danger, and from whom.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Katie Fitzgerald

    I have been trying to get into this cozy mystery since well before it was published, and I just haven't been able to get invested in the story. I don't have anything critical to say about the book; I think I'm just at a point in my reading life right now where this is not the book for me. I'm also finding more and more that I really prefer to listen to cozies as audiobooks, and not being able to do that with this one (which was a digital ARC from NetGalley) kept causing me to push it to the bott I have been trying to get into this cozy mystery since well before it was published, and I just haven't been able to get invested in the story. I don't have anything critical to say about the book; I think I'm just at a point in my reading life right now where this is not the book for me. I'm also finding more and more that I really prefer to listen to cozies as audiobooks, and not being able to do that with this one (which was a digital ARC from NetGalley) kept causing me to push it to the bottom of my TBR. I do like the way this author writes, but for now, I have to give myself permission to move on.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Karin Carlson

    This is a well written cosy mystery with an interesting main character who works at deterring ancestry for clients. All the supporting characters are believable and likable and while this is a cosy it is a very involved plot line reaching back to WWII. The end surprised me which is always a good thing and I look forward to reading more in this series. Thank you NetGalley for the advanced readers copy for review.

  28. 5 out of 5

    RoyalFrost

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This book is a Goodreads prize. That has nothing to do with my willing opinion. This was a great mystery book! I recommend this book because it was very interesting, and the plot twists kept me on my toes. I do plan to read, Murder Once Removed, the first in this series(this was the second book). I will certainly be interested in the rest of the series yet to come ( and anything else from this author ).

  29. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    I received an ARC of Lineage Most Lethal free from Goodreads.com. The book follows Texas genealogist Lucy Lancaster in the second book of the Ancestry Detective series. Lucy is researching the Sutton family's ancestry. Great book. Quick read. Entertaining. Spies, traitors, murder, revenge, secret codes and Worl War II come together in Lineage Most Lethal. Even the Montblanc pen contains a secret of its own.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jillian Digiantonio

    This is my first foray into the Ancestry Detective series by S.C. Perkins, but it won't be my last. I'm huge history and mystery buff so this book matched me perfectly. The mystery centered around a very rich family, the Suttons, that Lucy Lancaster was doing genealogy work for. Lucy is staying at their hotel while she presents her findings to the rest of the extended family. While there, a man mysteriously dies and gives Lucy a Montblanc pen that leads her back to spies during World War II. I l This is my first foray into the Ancestry Detective series by S.C. Perkins, but it won't be my last. I'm huge history and mystery buff so this book matched me perfectly. The mystery centered around a very rich family, the Suttons, that Lucy Lancaster was doing genealogy work for. Lucy is staying at their hotel while she presents her findings to the rest of the extended family. While there, a man mysteriously dies and gives Lucy a Montblanc pen that leads her back to spies during World War II. I loved the mix of past and present mysteries as the story went along. The cast of characters were great including Lucy's grandpa and Pippa Sutton. I did think the ending dragged a bit and found the killer slightly obvious, but it did not detract from the overall story. I can't read to read Lucy's next adventure!

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