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Expert in Murder

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The first in an entralling new series from a major new female crime writer

About the Author

Nicola Upson was born in Suffolk and read English at Cambridge. She has worked in theatre and as a freelance journalist, is the author of two works of non-fiction and is the recipient of an Escalator Award from the Arts Council England. She lives with her partner and divides her time between Cambridge and Cornwall.


Mystery writer Josephine Tey (The Daughter of Time) makes a convincing sleuth in British author Upson's debut, the launch of a new whodunit series. On a train journey from Scotland to London in 1934, Tey meets a fan, Elspeth Simmons, who's traveling to the capital to attend a performance of Tey's hit play about Richard II. When Simmons is found brutally murdered--stabbed with a hatpin, posed with some dolls and partially shaved--after arrival at King's Cross, Tey's Scotland Yard friend, Insp. Archie Penrose, investigates and soon learns that the victim was adopted under irregular circumstances. After another death, the evidence suggests that both crimes are linked to a murder committed amid the devastating trench warfare of WWI. While the heroine falls conventionally into the killer's clutches before a solution many will anticipate, the engaging prose will leave even readers unfamiliar with Tey's fiction eagerly looking forward to the next in the series. (June) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Some books just grab readers and never let go. Using classic mystery author Josephine Tey (The Daughter of Time; The Franchise Affair) as her detective protagonist, debut novelist Upson has written an original mystery as finely plotted as any of Tey's works. Set in 1934 London, when Tey was enjoying success as a playwright, the novel opens as she is traveling by train from Scotland to London for the final week of her hit play Richard of Bordeaux. But the murder of a young woman Tey meets on the train leads her into danger. Upson changed the names of the cast for her novel but interviewed the actual actors who performed (inclucing the late Sir John Gielgud), which gives her novel an authenticity that allows readers to wander through the streets of London and feel close to those who lived there. We can only hope that the next adventure of Miss Tey will be out soon. Fans of Tey, Dorothy Sayers, Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and other writers of mystery's "Golden Age" (1919-39) will put this on their reserve lists. Highly recommended for all mystery collections. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

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