Hannah Dennison: Danger at the Cove

This is the second installment in the charming Island Sisters series, set in Britain’s Scilly Isles.  Sisters Evie and Margot have taken over an old hotel and are managing it for the owner, though they are on the hook for repairs, which are turning out to be massive.  As the book opens, they are a few days out from their grand re-opening, and they are working full tilt to get everything ready in time.

Because the books are set on the tiny island of Treggarick Rock, accessible only by boat and at certain times because of high or low tide, every story is going to be essentially a locked room mystery.  Because the décor of the hotel calls back to the 30’s, this adds a decidedly golden age feel to the proceedings. read more

Serena Kent: Death in Avignon

This was a delicious slice of armchair travel – I have never personally been to Provence, but I think my new life goal might be to get there.  Serena Kent’s British heroine, Penelope Kite, has started over in Provence after a divorce and seeing her children out of the nest.  She’s rehabbed a gorgeous old stone farmhouse (I’m assuming it’s gorgeous, because, by the sound of the book, everything in Provence is gorgeous). She lives a pleasant life walking into the village for croissants, eating lots of incredible sounding meals, drinking wine that sounds just as luscious, practicing her cello, and oh yes – she has a flair for detection. read more