Greetings! Vicki Delany is the author of A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery series, Constable Molly Smith Mysteries, A Year-Round Christmas Mysteries, Ashley Grant Mysteries, and as Eva Gates A Lighthouse Library Mystery series. She also published a couple of standalone suspense novels--Burden of Memory and More Than Sorrow). Vicki is a national bestseller in the United States and one of Canada's most prolific and varied crime writers. She is a former computer programmer and systems analyst. Vicki lives and writes in Prince Edward County, Ontario.
There’s a Murder Afoot by Vicki Delany is the fifth A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery. Gemma Doyle along with Ryan Ashburton, Jayne Wilson, Grant Thompson and Donald Morris are in London, England for the Sherlock Holmes in the Modern World Conference. Gemma is looking forward to spending time with her parents as well as her sister, Pippa (well, not Pippa so much). Things take a turn for the worse when Henry Doyle, Gemma’s father, recognizes a man staring at them at the pub. It is Randolph Denhaugh who is Anne Doyle’s, Gemma’s mother, black sheep brother whom they have not seen since the night he stole the John Constable painting from his parents’ home. Henry confronts Randy to tell him to stay away from Anne, but Randy was never one to listen. At the banquet, Gemma accepts an award on behalf of her uncle, Arthur. Gemma notices Randy slip away with her father disappearing soon after. Everyone is ready to depart, but Henry has yet to reappear. Then a server comes screaming out of a nearby room. Gemma rushes into the room to find Randy dead on the floor with Henry kneeled by him with his hand on the rope encasing Randy’s neck. Detective Sam Morrison is assigned the case and he is thrilled that his old colleague, Henry is a suspect (oh no). Gemma along with Pippa and her friends set out to prove Henry’s innocence and find the guilty party.
There’s a Murder Afoot by Vicki Delany may be the fifth installment in A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery series, but it can be read on its own. The author includes the necessary background information a new reader needs. This is my favorite book in the series. I found it to be well-written and it moved along at a steady clip. I enjoyed the author’s descriptions of London, the conference and especially the beautiful costumes worn by some of the attendees including Donald. Donald was in seventh heaven with all the Sherlock Holmes people he could talk to and the various places for him to visit including the Sherlock Holmes Museum. Gemma is enjoying spending time with her parent’s and being back in London. She just did not count on getting involved in a murder investigation (she really should have anticipated this turn of events). I like the humor injected into the story. The lengths they went to keep her friends occupied while she is out investigating and then there were Arthur’s antics at the bookstore. Gemma should have known things would not go smoothly with Arthur. The mystery was thought out with several suspects and good clues. I found it interesting and enjoyed following the investigation. The police in Scotland Yard did not appreciate Gemma’s interference any more than those back home in West London, Massachusetts. But Gemma had Pippa on her side. Pippa’s may say she is a clerk, but her job is complex, mysterious and suits her intellect (would have suited Gemma as well). I like how the mystery played out and the resolution. I like Gemma’s attention to detail and how it plays into the solving of the mystery. While I was not surprised by the guilty party (or who was murdered), I was entertained which is the purpose of this delightful tale. I look forward to the next A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery. My one wish is for West London to get a different detective who appreciates Gemma’s insights. There’s a Murder Afoot is a diverting cozy mystery with a black sheep sibling, a discriminatory detective, surplus of Sherlock, a vexing uncle, a sister’s secretive situation, and a parent’s puzzling predicament.
There's a Murder Afoot is available at major booksellers including Amazon*. You can find the list of the books in A Sherlock Holmes Bookshop Mystery series here. Thank you for stopping in today. I will be participating in the Great Escapes Virtual Book Tour for Bound for Murder by Victoria Gilbert tomorrow. It is the fourth A Blue Ridge Library Mystery. May you have an inspiring day. Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader
*This post contains affiliate links.