Thursday, July 28, 2011

Looking Forward to a Wicked Autumn

Advance Reader's editions of upcoming mysteries frequently find their way to my desk.  I must say, when I picked up G.M. Malliet's Wicked Autumn, I was totally intrigued.  Of course, I was familiar with Malliet's DCI St. Juste series, starting with the award-winning Death of a Cozy Writer in 2008. But when one happens upon an Agatha-Christie-style English village mystery where the series hero is former MI5, now Anglican priest, one is undeniably hooked!

G.M Malliet
The small village of Nether Monkslip is no Saint Mary Mead, however.  The quirky residents are definitely 21st century and their hunky vicar, Father Max Tudor, make this new series a deliciously wicked read.  Fed up with the life of a spy, Max has retreated to  the relative peace and tranquility of Nether Monkslip, along with the village's urban escapees, yoga teachers, artisans, crafters, and new agers.  The only fly in the ointment is Wanda Batton-Smythe, the bossy and unpopular president of the Women's Institute.

Surely it's no surprise when Wanda is whacked at the Harvest Fayre.  While the death looks like a tragic accident, Max's training kicks in and he's sure it's murder -- "the snake in his Garden of Eden," as it were.  Max finds himself being drawn deeper into the investigation, which stirs up his own personal demons from the past.

This delightfully witty cozy is sure to make many of the Best of 2011 lists.  Wicked Autumn is scheduled for a September release date.  Read more about G.M. Malliet and her books on her website.

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