In the Market for Murder by T.E. Kinsey opens with Lady Emily Hardcastle in low spirits because she has had a long convalescence after being shot, so when Inspector Sunderland asks her help with the case of a murdered farmer, Spencer Carradine, she perks up immediately. Not able to have much success in this case until the medical examiner determines the cause of death, Lady Hardcastle soon turns to investigating two more local, less lethal crimes.
Lured by her lady’s maid, Florence Armstrong, who narrates the book with tremendous humor and clever repartee between herself and her employer, Lady Hardcastle attends a seance in which a ghost manifests and accuses a member of the group of murder. The next night the furniture in the pub where the seance took place is found tossed about and a message left on the blackboard, once again accusing the same man of murder.
Then, before solving this accusation, the pair get called to the rugby club, where someone has stolen their trophies immediately following an all-night carousing party by the team. It may seem like a petty crime, but Lady Hardcastle delights in her work to solve this crime too.
The book does a fantastic job of blending all three seemingly separate mysteries, making the whole book very enjoyable. Further, the book is full of humor and witty word play. Lady Hardcastle and Flo tease each other in ways not normal for the relationship between maid and employer, but the book adeptly makes these unrealistic scenarios seem plausible and fun.
The audio edition of this book is read by Elizabeth Knowelden, who makes the book enjoyable. The only thing that made me want to read the book visually was that many of the puns and word play went past so fast at times that I didn’t catch all the details.
I should point out that this book has been revised from a version that contained the three separate plots in separate short stories, plus one more story. It is a very well-written book with great writing that gave me some thoroughly delightful hours of listening. I look forward to the audio release of the next book and give this five stars!
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