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MURDER IN THE MANOR (AN LACEY DOYLE COZY MYSTERY—BOOK 1) is the debut novel in a charming new cozy mystery series by Fiona Grace. Lacey Doyle, 39 years old and freshly divorced, needs a drastic change. She needs to quit her job, leave her horrendous boss and New York City, and walk away from the fast life. Making good on her childhood promise to herself, she decides to walk MURDER IN THE MANOR (AN LACEY DOYLE COZY MYSTERY—BOOK 1) is the debut novel in a charming new cozy mystery series by Fiona Grace. Lacey Doyle, 39 years old and freshly divorced, needs a drastic change. She needs to quit her job, leave her horrendous boss and New York City, and walk away from the fast life. Making good on her childhood promise to herself, she decides to walk away from it all, and to relive a beloved childhood vacation in the quaint English seaside town of Wilfordshire. Wilfordshire is exactly as Lacey remembers it, with its ageless architecture, cobblestone streets, and with nature at its doorstep. Lacey doesn’t want to go back home—and spontaneously, she decides to stay, and to give her childhood dream a try: she will open her own antique shop. Lacey finally feels that her life is taking a step in the right direction—until her new star customer turns up dead. As the newcomer in town, all eyes are on Lacey, and it’s up to her to clear her own name. With a business to run, a next-door neighbor turned nemesis, a flirty baker across the street, and a crime to solve – is this new life all that Lacey thought it would be? Book #2 in the series—DEATH AND A DOG—is also available for preorder!


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MURDER IN THE MANOR (AN LACEY DOYLE COZY MYSTERY—BOOK 1) is the debut novel in a charming new cozy mystery series by Fiona Grace. Lacey Doyle, 39 years old and freshly divorced, needs a drastic change. She needs to quit her job, leave her horrendous boss and New York City, and walk away from the fast life. Making good on her childhood promise to herself, she decides to walk MURDER IN THE MANOR (AN LACEY DOYLE COZY MYSTERY—BOOK 1) is the debut novel in a charming new cozy mystery series by Fiona Grace. Lacey Doyle, 39 years old and freshly divorced, needs a drastic change. She needs to quit her job, leave her horrendous boss and New York City, and walk away from the fast life. Making good on her childhood promise to herself, she decides to walk away from it all, and to relive a beloved childhood vacation in the quaint English seaside town of Wilfordshire. Wilfordshire is exactly as Lacey remembers it, with its ageless architecture, cobblestone streets, and with nature at its doorstep. Lacey doesn’t want to go back home—and spontaneously, she decides to stay, and to give her childhood dream a try: she will open her own antique shop. Lacey finally feels that her life is taking a step in the right direction—until her new star customer turns up dead. As the newcomer in town, all eyes are on Lacey, and it’s up to her to clear her own name. With a business to run, a next-door neighbor turned nemesis, a flirty baker across the street, and a crime to solve – is this new life all that Lacey thought it would be? Book #2 in the series—DEATH AND A DOG—is also available for preorder!

30 review for Murder in the Manor

  1. 4 out of 5

    sharkygal

    Look, I don't have a problem with cozy mysteries skirting reality a little, but this is bonkers. This is the most poorly researched book I think I've ever read -- like, I'm impressed by how incredibly wrong it managed to be on such a huge variety of topics, including but not limited to: immigration to the UK, what a town is (shires are counties, yo), stove models, antique clocks, dog adoption, small businesses, pastry, Americanisms, the English legal system in entirety, what kind of salary liter Look, I don't have a problem with cozy mysteries skirting reality a little, but this is bonkers. This is the most poorly researched book I think I've ever read -- like, I'm impressed by how incredibly wrong it managed to be on such a huge variety of topics, including but not limited to: immigration to the UK, what a town is (shires are counties, yo), stove models, antique clocks, dog adoption, small businesses, pastry, Americanisms, the English legal system in entirety, what kind of salary literally anyone makes at any job anywhere, and how long any given task would take to complete (getting a work visa, cleaning a years-empty abandoned seaside cottage, opening a business, packing up and transporting AN ENTIRE ESTATE'S WORTH OF ANTIQUES, etc.). It's mind boggling. The characters are rice paper thin, the writing is slapdash, the dialogue sounds like subpar Hallmark movie fanfiction, and the plot is nonsensical and totally dependent on ridiculous leaps of "logic" that are such a stretch, they could qualify as yoga poses. I wanted to like this book. I finished this book. I don't get a thrill out of being a super critical jerk. There's the seed of a good story here, but this execution is more than bungling, it's straight up sloppy.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Iza Brekilien

    I read it completely, but got tired of it way before the end ! The beginning is rather nice : a woman left by her husband because she doesn't want children, she moves to England to a coastal village she remembers visiting as a child, rents a house, opens an antique shop - she can afford it, of course... And of course, the baker just in front of her shop is a tall, dark, green-eyed handsome guy who immediately likes her and is absolutely flawless. But then the murder happens and everything turns so I read it completely, but got tired of it way before the end ! The beginning is rather nice : a woman left by her husband because she doesn't want children, she moves to England to a coastal village she remembers visiting as a child, rents a house, opens an antique shop - she can afford it, of course... And of course, the baker just in front of her shop is a tall, dark, green-eyed handsome guy who immediately likes her and is absolutely flawless. But then the murder happens and everything turns sour : it's a cozy mystery, so I don't especially expect much in the character construction department, but the characters in there ? Lacey had stupid reactions, made stupid decisions. People who hated her one minute suddenly become her BFFs when you turn the page. A rich lady dies so - of course - her sons and daughter, those greedy bas... hem, I mean heirs, fight over the inheritance. And let's not talk about the bitch shop owner next door. I disliked all these people, I disliked reading about them, Lacey's "friends" are so cliché, the others characters are so cliché, their actions are so cliché, the plot is not really interesting. What interested me most is what happened to Lacey's father, but am I willing to read the next book ? Nah. I won't lose sleep over it and thankfully, this book was a freebie. PS : Lacey in the first book turns into "Ella Rose" in the others ? Nah, I'm not even tempted to find out why.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Anne

    The best thing about this book is the dog. The main part of the storyline as set in the UK isn't particularly credible, the people are two dimensional, and the plot is thin at best. I can't judge the opening chapters set in New York, having no experience of the place. I presume the author is American, since the author's about information doesn't say, but the spelling and language indicates a US background, which probably explains the plot weakness, as I cannot imagine many British authors writin The best thing about this book is the dog. The main part of the storyline as set in the UK isn't particularly credible, the people are two dimensional, and the plot is thin at best. I can't judge the opening chapters set in New York, having no experience of the place. I presume the author is American, since the author's about information doesn't say, but the spelling and language indicates a US background, which probably explains the plot weakness, as I cannot imagine many British authors writing such an implausible story set in the UK. The lead character seems to have two names, depending on which version of the book you read, books 2 onward being firmly in the Lacey Doyle camp, except for the write up on book 2 at the end of book 1 where Lacey is referred to as Ella. (This series is also referred to as the Ella Rose series on the author's website.) Continuity isn't just relevant on screens, it also matters in print, and such details will spoil a book/series. I've also flagged up a raft of errors via the Kindle report an error option for review, in the hope the author may pick them up and improve things. All I can honestly say is that I read this as an Amazon freebie but would not pay for it or its sequels.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Whipp

    Warning: Contains Spoilers Saccharine and absolutely ridiculous. The plot was so incredibly stupid and contrived, I DNF'd this at 40%. Below are a few events from the book, but read until you get to the kicker. • Lacy signs her divorce papers one morning, leaves from work without going home, and flies to England that same afternoon. Apparently, she keeps her passport pretty handy. • Lacey makes no inquiries or arrangements for transportation or accommodations for when she arrives. • Despite hotels Warning: Contains Spoilers Saccharine and absolutely ridiculous. The plot was so incredibly stupid and contrived, I DNF'd this at 40%. Below are a few events from the book, but read until you get to the kicker. • Lacy signs her divorce papers one morning, leaves from work without going home, and flies to England that same afternoon. Apparently, she keeps her passport pretty handy. • Lacey makes no inquiries or arrangements for transportation or accommodations for when she arrives. • Despite hotels all being full, Lacey lucks into a lovely, two-story seaside cottage "like something from a fairy tale" right after arriving for less than $20 per night. • Lacey meets a gorgeous man the day after her arrival (and divorce) who just so happens to be straight and single, and they experience instalove/instalust. He has green eyes, of course, because cliched romantic heroes always have rare green eyes, even though only 2% of the actual population has them. • Also on her second day, Lacey walks by an empty store, walks in, and decides to rent it to open an antiques shop. She has no prior experience as a business owner, but thinks she'll be fine because her father owned an antiques shop when she was 7 years old, before he abruptly abandoned his family. • Despite having arrived in a foreign country on a visitor's visa, Lacey is somehow able to get the paperwork for a foreigner to not only stay longer than intended, but all the necessary paperwork and permits to open a freaking business in a matter of days. • Lacey walks into a clothing boutique and within just a few minutes is able to find the perfect outfit, buy said outfit in multiple colors, and meet her soon-to-be arch enemy, the boutique owner. • Lacey becomes instant friends with her new neighbor. This is fortunate, since within the first week of opening her new business, Lacey will be too upset to work and her elderly neighbor will, of course, run the shop for her. • Lacey buys a used car one morning and is immediately off to London in it. The car purchase warrants an entire sentence... don't we all wish buying a car only took a few minutes and was this simple? • Lacey goes back and forth to London with her new bestie/neighbor to buy merchandise for her new store and stocks the entire store so it's so beautiful that is looks like it belongs on the "center page spread of an interior design magazine." • Lacey opens her antiques store for business and begins making sales right away. • A stray collie - beautiful and "highly intelligent" - wanders into Lacey shop and after finding the owners are deceased, she of course adopts it. • Lacey is approached by the owner of the estate around which the village was founded to evaluate the manor's antiques. Lacey agrees to do this even though she has no experience evaluating antiques. • Lacey discovers a dead body. • Lacey decides to play Nancy Drew to find the murderer. Ready for the kicker? All of the above events OCCUR IN A SINGLE WEEK. Yep, divorce, flight to England, cottage rental, instalove, renting a store, changing visa, filing paperwork to open a business in a foreign country, getting all the paperwork approved, finding a best friend, buying a used car, cleaning and stocking the entire store, opening a store, adopting a dog, finding a dead body.... ONE WEEK. It's often irritating when simpletons decide to play detective (because they're so much better at solving crimes than the authorities), but this was beyond ridiculous. I am truly mind-boggled that not only did people finish reading this, but that it has such high reviews.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Miriam

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Do not bother with this one. Really bad, and bad modelling and advice for anyone who is alive. She gives over paying alimony without a whimper, takes a leave on her job with no notice when there's a good chance her boss will fire her; flies to England with no luggage. Negotiates up the price of a rental cottage, and leases the premises of a business with no visa entitling her to work in England. In less than 24 hours. That was when I stopped reading. Dear reader, read all contracts before signin Do not bother with this one. Really bad, and bad modelling and advice for anyone who is alive. She gives over paying alimony without a whimper, takes a leave on her job with no notice when there's a good chance her boss will fire her; flies to England with no luggage. Negotiates up the price of a rental cottage, and leases the premises of a business with no visa entitling her to work in England. In less than 24 hours. That was when I stopped reading. Dear reader, read all contracts before signing. Don't pay alimony to your ex and then jeopardize your job. Don't fly to a foreign country and jump into things when you are grieving. I stopped reading because I couldn't care less about this flimsy, underdeveloped character. And I hate that since its a cozy mystery it will probably turn up roses for her.

  6. 5 out of 5

    sharon sobzak

    Errors There are just too many errors and they make a lot of dissonance in the story. The story starts with her divorce papers being Doyle vs Doyle, then spends several pages with her talking about why she should take her maiden name back...which was Doyle. Then somehow she is able to clean her rental in an evening when it has sat empty for years...She rented it one afternoon and woke the next morning in a clean house. In honor of her father, who left the family when she was 7 never to be heard f Errors There are just too many errors and they make a lot of dissonance in the story. The story starts with her divorce papers being Doyle vs Doyle, then spends several pages with her talking about why she should take her maiden name back...which was Doyle. Then somehow she is able to clean her rental in an evening when it has sat empty for years...She rented it one afternoon and woke the next morning in a clean house. In honor of her father, who left the family when she was 7 never to be heard from again, she starts an antique store. Just too much conflicted details for me.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Book.Goddess

    Terrible - Could Not Finish - 0 Stars The mistakes in this title are cringe worthy. In the first couple of pages, Lacey receives divorce papers, ’The words David Doyle vs Lacey Doyle stared up at her.’. A few paragraphs on, ’I’ll have to change my name ... Return to my maiden name. Lacey Fay Bishop was no more. Erased. That name belonged to David Bishop‘s wife ... She’d become Lacey Fay Doyle once again.’ And as evidenced by other readers’ reviews, this is just the beginning. Enough said.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Susan Schnackenberg

    A most intriguing mystery I loved reading your book, Murder in the Manor, and would love to follow up with the next two in your series but feel manipulated by the the not so subtle increase in cost for each subsequent book. I cannot afford to continue reading at the higher price, much as I would love to. Thank you and I'm sorry. A most intriguing mystery I loved reading your book, Murder in the Manor, and would love to follow up with the next two in your series but feel manipulated by the the not so subtle increase in cost for each subsequent book. I cannot afford to continue reading at the higher price, much as I would love to. Thank you and I'm sorry.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Cindy

    Very enjoyable, clean and engaging novel. I love the dog. Recommended for “slowin’ up” kinda times since my life doesn’t seem to have a hand brake. The plot is exciting with twists but no sex, profanity, or gore and not a cliffhanger. Yeah!!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Lise

    The Mystery of the Detective's Identity Fiona Grace has written a wonderful cosy, but the name of the sleuth is in question. From Grace come two almost identical stories with the same title but differently named detectives: Ella Rose and Lacey Doyle. I read the story that revolved around Lacey Doyle, but I'm "cut and pasting" my comments to both just on the off-chance that one day the two versions are combined. I don't want my pleasure with this book to go unrecorded! The Review While I read the La The Mystery of the Detective's Identity Fiona Grace has written a wonderful cosy, but the name of the sleuth is in question. From Grace come two almost identical stories with the same title but differently named detectives: Ella Rose and Lacey Doyle. I read the story that revolved around Lacey Doyle, but I'm "cut and pasting" my comments to both just on the off-chance that one day the two versions are combined. I don't want my pleasure with this book to go unrecorded! The Review While I read the Lacey Doyle story, I see there are more comments written about the Ella Rose one. Some of those reviews seem a shade harsh and I wonder if there were major revisions made between the two versions. Regardless, the story I read was one of those types that makes you wish you had lived the life of the character. Her husband serves her with divorce papers and she realizes that she needs a change of scenery and immediately takes time off from her unsatisfying job and leaves New York for a seaside town she had vacationed in with her parents years before. Despite having not planned, she manages to snag the last accommodation available during Easter break. A further piece of luck drops an antique business into her lap and she's set up for a new life. Freed from all the trappings of her previous situation, everything looks golden until her first major client is murdered and she becomes the suspect. The rest of the novel is rather unsurprising but is told in a delightful way and wraps up at the end of the book leaving the reader free to decide whether or not to continue with the series. I love a stand-alone especially in this era of self-publishing where story arcs are common. There is a plot that will be continued in the next book (presumably) but it is a subplot and not essential to complete the story. The subplot is, however, fascinating and I will be continuing this series just to see its eventual resolution.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    I was enjoying this book and was to the third chapter and I realized that the author uses the name of the woman over and over instead of using pronouns. It became brutal to read so I stopped. This was very disappointing because I thought the storyline seemed interesting.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cherop

    I don't read that many cosy mystery books. This is my first by the author. I noted a few editing errors and some plot weaknesses but overall a good read. I don't read that many cosy mystery books. This is my first by the author. I noted a few editing errors and some plot weaknesses but overall a good read.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    Even for a cozy mystery, Murder in the Manor was too basic, lots of holes in plot, very boring.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Etti Calvo

    This!! Was!! Fantastic!! Lacey is an amazing main character, the mystery had me guessing with every turn of the page, and I can't wait to get into the rest of this series!! This!! Was!! Fantastic!! Lacey is an amazing main character, the mystery had me guessing with every turn of the page, and I can't wait to get into the rest of this series!!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lise

    The Mystery of the Detective's Identity Fiona Grace has written a wonderful cosy, but the name of the sleuth is in question. From Grace come two almost identical stories with the same title but differently named detectives: Ella Rose and Lacey Doyle. I read the story that revolved around Lacey Doyle, but I'm "cut and pasting" my comments to both just on the off-chance that one day the two versions are combined. I don't want my pleasure with this book to go unrecorded! The Review While I read the La The Mystery of the Detective's Identity Fiona Grace has written a wonderful cosy, but the name of the sleuth is in question. From Grace come two almost identical stories with the same title but differently named detectives: Ella Rose and Lacey Doyle. I read the story that revolved around Lacey Doyle, but I'm "cut and pasting" my comments to both just on the off-chance that one day the two versions are combined. I don't want my pleasure with this book to go unrecorded! The Review While I read the Lacey Doyle story, I see there are more comments written about the Ella Rose one. Some of those reviews seem a shade harsh and I wonder if there were major revisions made between the two versions. Regardless, the story I read was one of those types that makes you wish you had lived the life of the character. Her husband serves her with divorce papers and she realizes that she needs a change of scenery and immediately takes time off from her unsatisfying job and leaves New York for a seaside town she had vacationed in with her parents years before. Despite having not planned, she manages to snag the last accommodation available during Easter break. A further piece of luck drops an antique business into her lap and she's set up for a new life. Freed from all the trappings of her previous situation, everything looks golden until her first major client is murdered and she becomes the suspect. The rest of the novel is rather unsurprising but is told in a delightful way and wraps up at the end of the book leaving the reader free to decide whether or not to continue with the series. I love a stand-alone especially in this era of self-publishing where story arcs are common. There is a plot that will be continued in the next book (presumably) but it is a subplot and not essential to complete the story. The subplot is, however, fascinating and I will be continuing this series just to see its eventual resolution.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Alexandra Scherer

    Mrs Grace had a great idea, but unfortunately the execution of the story is a bit lacking. Lacey Doyle, an American goes on an impromptu trip to the United Kingdom after her divorce is through. So far so good. The story has all the ingredients one needs for a good whodunit: the niggling mother, the unsupportive selfish sister, the self-centered ex-husband, the nasty chef, the nice guy across the street, supportive new neighbors, nice landscape... food, a dog... the body...it is all there but it Mrs Grace had a great idea, but unfortunately the execution of the story is a bit lacking. Lacey Doyle, an American goes on an impromptu trip to the United Kingdom after her divorce is through. So far so good. The story has all the ingredients one needs for a good whodunit: the niggling mother, the unsupportive selfish sister, the self-centered ex-husband, the nasty chef, the nice guy across the street, supportive new neighbors, nice landscape... food, a dog... the body...it is all there but it does not blend. Mrs Grace wants too much. She starts with one idea... skedaddles to the next and the ways her figures behave are not really logical or consequential. She does a lot of 'tell' where the book could do with some nice 'show'. It is a pity. Because this book could be so much more entertaining.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Peggy

    I got his ebook free from Barnes and Noble. It is worth exactly what I paid for it. This is a truly awful book. 1/2 stars, maybe. Lacey Doyle has been served with divorce papers from her husband who left her because, at age 39 and 15 years of marriage, she does not want to have children. She is an associate at a design firm where she is worked mercilessly by her demanding boss. So, she is depressed and is reassessing her life. Her last happy memory is a family vacation to England when she was 7, I got his ebook free from Barnes and Noble. It is worth exactly what I paid for it. This is a truly awful book. 1/2 stars, maybe. Lacey Doyle has been served with divorce papers from her husband who left her because, at age 39 and 15 years of marriage, she does not want to have children. She is an associate at a design firm where she is worked mercilessly by her demanding boss. So, she is depressed and is reassessing her life. Her last happy memory is a family vacation to England when she was 7, just before her dad left the family never to be heard of again. On a whim she drops her job, her life in New York, boards a plane without luggage, and off she goes to the seaside town she has romanticized from childhood. That’s the best part of the book. It is all downhill from there. The author wants you to believe that she finds a quaint place to live, applies for and receives a work visa after impulsively renting a store space. She travels around England buying antiques to fill the store. She develops an instant relationship with the hunky bakery owner. She makes an enemy of the boutique owner next door. She gets hired to assess the value of all the contents of a wealthy woman’s manor home. The woman tells Lacey that she trusts her because (dramatic pause) - she looks just like her dad. Before the old lady can tell her how she knows Lacey’s dad, she is murdered. Instantly the mean cop and everyone in town thinks Lacey did it, so she turns sleuth to save herself. She hosts an auction in spite of the woman’s horrible adult children. ALL this apparently happens in a matter of weeks. There is no sense that time has passed. After all, mister hunky baker doesn’t even kiss her until the last chapter. Unbelievable is all I can say. I am supposed to be enticed to find out more about her dad in coming books. Not bloody likely.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sheri

    Murder in the Manor (A Lacey Doyle Cozy Mystery, Book 1) by Fiona Grace After her divorce Lacey Doyle feels she needs a big change. She quits her job, leaves new York and heads to Wilfordshire, England. She decides to take on a new business and begins to make friends. Then a Murder occurs and Lacey is determined to find out who committed the crime and if there is any connection to her. A fast paced cozy murder mystery with a classic who-done-it feel. Lacey is very likable, she has some family "iss Murder in the Manor (A Lacey Doyle Cozy Mystery, Book 1) by Fiona Grace After her divorce Lacey Doyle feels she needs a big change. She quits her job, leaves new York and heads to Wilfordshire, England. She decides to take on a new business and begins to make friends. Then a Murder occurs and Lacey is determined to find out who committed the crime and if there is any connection to her. A fast paced cozy murder mystery with a classic who-done-it feel. Lacey is very likable, she has some family "issues" but she is ready to tackle them. She also makes friends with a man who may become more than just a friend. Despite the murder, her move can be exactly what she needs. Overall I found Murder in the Manor enjoyable and feel those who love a good murder mystery will like it as well. I look forward to to reading the next two books in this series.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dee-Dee C.

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I found this book delightful and I could not put it down! I was rooting for Lacey to find a new and exciting time visiting Wilfordshire, and was so happy when she decided to set up shop! And Tom was a pleasant surprise too! I felt totally immersed in her journey! Of course there is the murder, of which i felt the murderer was an obvious choice and would have preferred it to be someone we would not have expected, but I give it 5 Stars and look forward to reading the next book!! Congratulations Fi I found this book delightful and I could not put it down! I was rooting for Lacey to find a new and exciting time visiting Wilfordshire, and was so happy when she decided to set up shop! And Tom was a pleasant surprise too! I felt totally immersed in her journey! Of course there is the murder, of which i felt the murderer was an obvious choice and would have preferred it to be someone we would not have expected, but I give it 5 Stars and look forward to reading the next book!! Congratulations Fiona Grace on this debut book series!!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Palmer

    Lacey Doyle goes from a personal assistant to a rich, unlikable lady and a recent divorcee to England transplant. She goes to Wilfordshire England where she has memories of her father right before he left them. She decides that she loved the town and leases a building and starts an Antique Store like her father had had. She is quickly deep in a murder and the prime suspect. Tom the pastry chef across the street has become quite taken with her and helps prove her innocence.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    Pollyanna loses her cool despite the dishy baker and a clue about her father. Awfully wordy, and rather odd that the American main character who relocated to England was narrated by a British accent. Mary Sarah, the narrator, did a fine interpretation but it seemed incongruous.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sue

    Don't know who Ella Rose is. The book I read by this name by this author had Lacey Doyle / Bishop as the MC. Plot sounds the same though. Very odd... Don't know who Ella Rose is. The book I read by this name by this author had Lacey Doyle / Bishop as the MC. Plot sounds the same though. Very odd...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    3.5? I like Lacey, and I like that she doesn't wallow in her sorrows after her divorce or let the feud with the next-door-store get her down. But things seem a little too easy for her. 3.5? I like Lacey, and I like that she doesn't wallow in her sorrows after her divorce or let the feud with the next-door-store get her down. But things seem a little too easy for her.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Joni

    I listened to the audio book. The narration is comical. Not sure if she was trying to be sexy or mysterious or what. Premise was good. I hope her style and technic improve in future books.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Christine Goodnough

    The concept behind this story was a good one: a woman coming to England and setting up a business, then getting involved in an investigation. Having it all happen in a week is rather breathtaking. From loafing on the couch staring at divorce paper, Lacey fires off like a rocket. She signs the papers, takes a leave from work and is on the plane to England by noon. Takes a cab to the seaside town of her childhood memory and finds a place to rent yet that first day. Finds a vacant store and arranges The concept behind this story was a good one: a woman coming to England and setting up a business, then getting involved in an investigation. Having it all happen in a week is rather breathtaking. From loafing on the couch staring at divorce paper, Lacey fires off like a rocket. She signs the papers, takes a leave from work and is on the plane to England by noon. Takes a cab to the seaside town of her childhood memory and finds a place to rent yet that first day. Finds a vacant store and arranges to set up an antiques business in the next few days. Opens for business in a week. So the story moves along at a fairly rapid pace. By the end of her first week she's found an elderly aristocratic woman dead and everyone in town seems to suspect Lacey did the deed. Taryn passes the word along. Her vitriolic neighbour, Taryn, I thought was overplayed. Would she really hate Lacey with such a spit-fire passion at first sight, that she'd blast her own customers with booming music just to annoy the new neighbour? And the quarrelling, grasping, heartless children felt too stereotype. As a main character Lacey is likable and tolerant of others, but her backstory as a meek and methodical assistant is a complete flip from the impulsive risk-taker she appears to be now. As to her ex, she seems to rarely think of him after their fourteen-year marriage breaks up. Her father and her childhood holiday in this seaside community is uppermost in her thoughts and she gets various flashbacks, like puzzle pieces, recalling that holiday. She wants to know more about him and why he left them right after. There were places where I questioned, how real is this? Would the dog who attacked an intruder in the night not recognize him the next time they met? But if you're willing to skip lightly over these not-so-likely bits, the story plays out well as a pretty good cozy. And it's well written plus well edited.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mystica

    Venice 1720. For Sophia fresh from a English countryside village it was all what she had dreamed of but with a repressive aunt whom she was accompanying, the art and beauty of Venice was being denied her. Sophia was no frightened miss and was determined to enjoy herself in this chance of a lifetime and this she did. Henry on the other hand was sent off to the Continent to "repent" for his many transgressions! he was not repenting in the least but enjoying himself to the utmost. When his father di Venice 1720. For Sophia fresh from a English countryside village it was all what she had dreamed of but with a repressive aunt whom she was accompanying, the art and beauty of Venice was being denied her. Sophia was no frightened miss and was determined to enjoy herself in this chance of a lifetime and this she did. Henry on the other hand was sent off to the Continent to "repent" for his many transgressions! he was not repenting in the least but enjoying himself to the utmost. When his father died suddenly, he realized the depth of his responsibilities and had to return to England to face upto them. They meet up once again in different circumstances, and the effect they have on each others lives is part of this novella. The story is light hearted and since it is a very short one we are not able to see how it is going to develop further. Hopefully there will be a sequel.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Bridget

    On the day that Lacey Doyle receives her divorce papers to sign, she decides on a whim that she is taking a trip to the small seaside England town where her family had a wonderful vacation right before her father left for good. When she arrives, the little town is much as she remembered it, and she feels happy and comfortable there. Once she realizes that a storefront is available for purchase, she decides to apply for a working visa, buy the place, and open an antiques shop like her father had. On the day that Lacey Doyle receives her divorce papers to sign, she decides on a whim that she is taking a trip to the small seaside England town where her family had a wonderful vacation right before her father left for good. When she arrives, the little town is much as she remembered it, and she feels happy and comfortable there. Once she realizes that a storefront is available for purchase, she decides to apply for a working visa, buy the place, and open an antiques shop like her father had. With her work and educational background in antiques and the approval to stay, she opens her dream shop and starts to feel that she has made the right decision to stay. When a customer stops in and asks her to come to the local manor house to appraise some items, Lacey is thrilled. However, when she arrives the woman is dead, and of course the local police find Lacey to be a perfect suspect. Her store suffers because everyone suspects the outsider. This was a pretty interesting mystery, not just because the small town sounds lovely and the author writes about it in a very evocative manner, but because the mystery keeps taking twists and turns. And at the very end, we *may* have found someone who can tell Lacey something about her father ... but that will have to wait until the next book?

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tina Kennebeck

    The characters are charming. The story is a nice escape from covid 19. This book is an easy whimsical read. I enjoyed the mystery because it offered suspects with motive. You will be surprised when you find out who it is. I love Chester the dog. This book is a nice light Nancy Drew with fun likeable characters!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Linda Martin

    A terrific first book. The story stays interesting as the characters are introduced I enjoyed this mystery much. The plot is interesting and moves as you are introduced to the characters. There is a background story too that will move through the series. There is new beginnings strength, romance and a dog. My kind of mystery.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sophie

    I downloaded multiple books for free on my Kobo, mainly because I can't be spending that money on books that I may not necessarily enjoy, but anyway this came up on my suggestions for "mysteries" and I read the blurbs of about 10 books and this was the one I was most looking forward to starting and it took me around 11 nights to read and I throughly enjoyed it and would suggest highly to anyone to give it a read if you love historical, little villages on the coast of England (even though Wiltfor I downloaded multiple books for free on my Kobo, mainly because I can't be spending that money on books that I may not necessarily enjoy, but anyway this came up on my suggestions for "mysteries" and I read the blurbs of about 10 books and this was the one I was most looking forward to starting and it took me around 11 nights to read and I throughly enjoyed it and would suggest highly to anyone to give it a read if you love historical, little villages on the coast of England (even though Wiltfordshire is fictional I believe it is based around Cornwall as there is a location in the book that plays a part for this). But overall this is a lovely book and I have purchased the 2nd one today for £1.99 and I'm going to start reading it tonight!

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