Sitting Murder (Lancashire Detectives # 4) by @awright51 #Historical Whodunit @EndeavourPress #RBRT #FridayReads

Author: A.J. Wright

Published: October 2017 by Endeavor Press

Category: Historical, Murder, Mystery, Book Review

Detective Sergeant Michael Brennan of the Wigan Borough Police has no time for tales of ghosts and the afterlife, or of the dead contacting the living. 

So, when he finds himself investigating the case of a recently widowed young woman, Alice Goodway, who has suddenly developed ‘the Gift’ of mediumship and has received a threatening letter, he embarks on the inquiry with no small degree of scepticism. 

Set in a North-Western English town during the late 19th century, this murder/mystery whodunnit brings the history of the era to life with the terraces of houses, local dialect and a community living in close proximity to one another. The main source of work were the cotton mills and the mines. Alice Goodway, only married a year, has lost her husband, Jack, in a mining accident, which also took the life of her friend’s husband. Since her husband’s death, Alice has become a medium, offering comfort to those who have lost loved ones, through her spiritual contact with Jack.

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The Walker On The Cape (Sgt. Windflower #1)

  • TheWalkerOnTheCapeAuthor: Mike Martin
  • Published: November 2012 by BookLocker.com, Inc
  • Category: Whodunit, Murder/Mystery
  • three-half-stars

A man’s body is found in a small fishing community on the East Coast. First, everyone thinks it’s a heart attack or stroke but then it’s discovered that he was poisoned. Who would do this and why? Finding that out falls to Winston Windflower and his side-kick Eddie Tizzard. Along the way, they discover there are many more secrets hidden in this small community and powerful people who want to keep it that way.

The people of Grand Bank, on the coast of Newfoundland, could set their clocks by Elias Martin. Every morning, whatever the weather, he walked from his house over the hills to the Cape. Until one day his body was discovered on the path by two tourists. His death was attributed to natural causes until the suspicions of Sergeant Winston Windflower of the RCMP were aroused. He and Constable Eddie Tizzard began an investigation into Elias Martin’s death and as new evidence comes to light it’s apparent murder has been committed. 

This solitary pilgrimage allowed him to mourn his wife Eileen without anyone intruding on his grief. More importantly, it allowed him to talk to her without anyone thinking he was crazier that he was. This walk was one that they had shared for almost forty years until she took sick and he still missed her and still needed to feel her comforting presence. He thought her long, painful, and ultimately fatal battle with cancer would be the worst part of his life. Now he knew that being without her was even worse.

There’s a lot I like about this story. Sergeant Windflower is a great character, a full-blooded Cree who has only been in his this post for a year. I enjoyed the glimpse into Windflower’s native culture and customs and I’d love for these to be explored in more depth as the series progresses, along with increased character development. There’s the beginnings of a sweet relationship between Windflower and the owner of the local cafe running in the background.

Windflower and Constable Tizzard work through the motives, opportunities and means of the suspects, and as the interrogations gain momentum they begin to fit all the pieces together. They have no help from their Inspector who seems to want the case closed as quickly as possible. Hmm, could Inspector MacIntosh be working to his own agenda? 

There are plenty of suspects with motives for murder to choose from, including Harvey Brenton and his wife Marge, who has a history with the victim. Roger Buffet and Ginger Grandy’s parents who all had a grudge against Elias Martin. Georgette Sheridan and her son, James also have ties to Grand Bank and Elias. Windflower’s investigation uncovers more than he expected, the discovery that corruption can reach to the higher levels even in small communities. The investigative procedure is realistic, the plot is well thought out and keeps the story moving.

Unfortunately, there were grammatical errors which should really have been picked up during the editing process. I’ll follow on with the second book in the series because this is a good story with interesting characters and hopefully the editing will be a bit tighter in the next instalment. 

About the author

MikeMartinI have always been a writer, even as I have earned a living doing many, many other things. For the last 15 years I have been a freelance writer, specializing in workplace and social policy issues. I have been published in newspapers and magazines acrossC anada, the United States and New Zealand. My first published book was Change the Things You Can: Dealing With Difficult People, published by Booklocker in 2011. TheWalkeron the Cape is my first published fiction book although I have published a number of short stories in periodicals and on-line.

For more information about me and my writing experience and samples of my work please visit www.mike54martin.com