Murder at the Mansion Cozy Mystery
Lyrical Underground (June 7, 2016)
Paperback: 190 pages
E-Book ASIN: B015MA6EDO
What I Thought:Fortunes, fineries, and foul play . . .It’s whale-watching season in Redwood Cove, and B&B manager Kelly Jackson’s battening down the hatches for the tourist rush at Redwood Heights—a Victorian-style estate owned by her boss. And due to recent jewelry thefts, her duties include keeping track of the many dust-covered artifacts spread throughout the property. But when Kelly finds Sylvia Porter’s lifeless body, menial tasks don’t seem so terrible. Enlisting the help of a ragtag group of brainy retirees, aka the “Silver Sentinels,” Kelly’s on the hunt for clues hidden behind the mansion’s glamorous façade. . .and for a killer who may want to make history of her next!
This was a very entertaining read. I really like Kelly, the protagonist. While I haven't read the book before this one, I did not feel lost. Janet writes so well and the characters were very well developed. I enjoyed visiting Redwood Cove. When Kelly finds a body at the bottom of the stairs, she enlists the help of the "Silver Sentinels" to help her find the killer. This made for some very interesting reading. I look forward to more in this series.
I received a complimentary copy of this book for my honest review.
About the Author
Janet Finsilver is the USA TODAY best-selling author of the Kelly Jackson mystery series. She worked in education for many years as a teacher, a program administrator, and a workshop presenter. Janet majored in English and earned a Master’s Degree in Education. She loves animals and has two dogs–Kylie and Ellie. Janet has ridden western style since she was a child and was a member of the National Ski Patrol. One of the highlights of her life was touching whales in the San Ignacio Lagoon. MURDER AT REDWOOD COVE, her debut mystery, was released on October 13, 2015. Her second book, MURDER AT THE MANSION, was released on June 7, 2016.
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The Kelly Jackson Mystery Series
Welcome! In this post I’d like to give you some background about the Kelly Jackson mystery series as well as a share some of the story of my most recent release, Murder at the Mansion.
My protagonist, Kelly Jackson, was raised on a Wyoming cattle and horse ranch that rents cabins to guests in the summer. They have opportunities to go horseback riding, fishing, and hiking. Her sister and two brothers work on the ranch. Her parents would like her to be there as well, but Kelly wants to create a career of her own. Resorts International hires her, and she becomes the manager of Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast.
I have fun weaving in similes and metaphors as well as using vocabulary that connects with her ranch experiences. My last two vacations to guest ranches have given me some great material for doing this.
The Silver Sentinels
The previous manager of the bed and breakfast dies in what is deemed an accidental fall from a seaside cliff. I wanted some of his friends to question that decision. I “interviewed” a number of people in my mind and eventually formed the crime-solving group of seniors I named the Silver Sentinels.
There are five members with hair ranging in color from silver to white. Gertrude Plumber, “Gertie,” a retired school teacher, and Mary Rutledge, known for the baked goods she generously shares, are the two women of the group. Rudy and Ivan Doblinsky, Russian brothers, and Herbert Winthrop, known as the Professor, round out the Silver Sentinels.
Redwood Cove is based on Mendocino, California, a tourist town on the Pacific Coast in northern California. The Silver Sentinels make their appearance in my first book, Murder at Redwood Cove. When pickpockets created problems for the community, the five friends banded together to help catch those responsible. They were successful and decided to continue their work to help the town and dubbed themselves the Silver Sentinels.
Dogs with Special Abilities
I read an article about a poodle that had been successfully trained to detect cancer. I began researching some of the ways dogs benefit us and became fascinated with the many areas I found. I used the cancer-sniffing dog in Murder at Redwood Cove. In Murder at the Mansion I put in two beagles trained to detect bedbugs and termites. Book three, Murder at the Fortune Teller’s Table, has a hearing assistance dog.
I’ve enjoyed learning what dogs can do and felt readers would also like to read about their unusual skills.
Murder at the Mansion begins with Kelly returning to Redwood Cove. She exchanged her position as an executive administrator with Resorts International to become the manager of Redwood Cove Bed and Breakfast. Her inn is being renovated and during the interim she’s assigned to inventory a collection of objects from the 1800s at Redwood Heights, a sister property, as well as help with the annual Whale Frolic festival. She’s asked to see if she can learn anything about some guests’ jewelry that’s gone missing while she’s at the mansion.
Not long after her arrival, she finds a murdered guest in a room with the doors and windows locked from the inside. The woman had created difficulties for staff members and the police question them as well as Kelly. Some of the missing jewelry turns up in the possession of the son of one of the Sentinels.
The Silver Sentinels and Kelly band together to solve the crimes before anyone else dies or someone is wrongly accused of a crime they didn’t commit.
I hope you’ve enjoyed learning more about the Kelly Jackson mystery series!