Setting: Mulbridge House, and other locations in and around Oakwood, Ohio
- Charley Carpenter: small business owner, feisty amateur sleuth. Dating Marc.
- Marcus Trenault: police detective – hard-nosed and sometimes hard-headed. Dating me, I mean, Charley.
Plot: Several months after the death of the reclusive Augusta Mulbridge, her estate is finally up for sale. Her house is a showpiece or, rather, it was a showpiece before time and neglect took their toll. As the owner of a small business dealing vintage apparel and accessories, Mulbridge House turns out to be a treasure trove for Charley. Her longtime family friend, Calvin Prescott, has set aside only the choicest pieces for Charley’s inventory; the leftovers will join the other items for the public auction. Shortly after the auction has ended, Charley heads to Prescott Auctions to collect her inventory . . . only to find the body of her friend, Calvin, alongside the racks of designer dresses and boxes of handbags and hats. Devastated, she calls Marc to investigate, but she can’t leave the matter with him alone. Despite Marc’s pleas and warnings, Charley continues to try to figure out who killed Calvin – and how the Mulbridge estate, a string of break-ins and robberies, a contentious pending real estate deal, and a missing will might all be related. The more Charley learns, the less happy Marc becomes. When Charley refuses to give up, encouraged by the progress she is making so far, Marc’s frustration boils over – and it might cost Charley her life.
Wild Card: The Oakwood Mysteries by Leslie Nagel are new favorites of mine. I was absolutely enamored of the first book in this series and had been waiting with waning patience for this second story. And I was not disappointed. The Antique House Murders has so many twists and turns – you may want to keep a notebook handy to keep up with all of the developments! Charley is chock full of passion and heart; she’s all good intention, even if those good intentions sometimes do, in fact, pave the road to trouble. And Marc is her perfect match – powerful and equally passionate, savvy and sharp. When they are together, the virtual pages practically crackle. To paraphrase Jane Austen, a good book is always over too soon – as this book certainly proves.
Hit, Miss, or Draw: A five-star hit!
About the Book
In this irresistible cozy mystery from the author of The Book Club Murders, amateur sleuth Charley Carpenter fights to avenge a crime that hits far too close to home.
Mulbridge House stood, silent and decaying, deep in the woods at the heart of Oakwood, Ohio, long before the passing of Augusta Mulbridge. Yet suddenly everyone in town seems to have a stake in its fate: the greedy heirs, eager to tear it down for a tidy profit; the local preservationists, determined to maintain it as an historic site; the angry neighbors, staunchly opposed to the construction of a modern subdivision. Even Charley Carpenter is forced to admit that her beloved shop, Old Hat Vintage Fashions, could use an infusion of the estate’s treasures.
The clock is ticking. The wrecking ball is ready to swing. All that stands between Mulbridge House and oblivion is one final vote. That, and murder . . .
The trouble begins when Charley walks into auctioneer Calvin Prescott’s office to find her cherished family friend crumpled on the floor. Detective Marcus Trenault quickly connects his death to a string of increasingly violent burglaries plaguing Oakwood. But when Charley uncovers a link to a massive land swindle worth millions, not to mention a drug ring operating out of the manor’s abandoned outbuildings, that theory crumbles faster than Mulbridge House. Now Charley’s racing to catch a killer before everything falls apart.
The Oakwood Mystery Series
Leslie Nagel is the USA Today bestselling author of The Book Club Murders, the first novel in the Oakwood Mystery series. She lives in the real city of Oakwood, Ohio, where she teaches writing at a local community college. After the written word, her passions include her husband, her son and daughter, hiking, tennis, and strong black coffee, not necessarily in that order.
Follow the Tour:
May 26th – Bibliophile Reviews – REVIEW
May 27th – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW
May 27th – The Girl with Book Lungs – INTERVIEW
May 28th – A Blue Million Books – INTERVIEW
May 28th – Storybook Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
May 29th – Laura’s Interests – REVIEW
May 29th – The Books The Thing – REVIEW & INTERVIEW
May 30th – The Girl with Book Lungs – REVIEW
May 30th – Bella Reads & Reviews – REVIEW
May 31st – Sleuth Café – SPOTLIGHT & REVIEW