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About A Match Made for Murder by Iona Whishaw

It’s November, and Lane and Darling have escaped the chilly autumn in the Kootenays for a honeymoon at the posh and romantic Santa Cruz Inn in sunny Tucson, Arizona. But despite her very best intentions to relax, soon after their arrival Lane’s plans to spend the holiday poolside with a good mystery are interrupted by gunfire. One of the hotel’s wealthy guests has been shot point blank and Lane is second on the scene.

Though Lane and Darling attempt to distance themselves from the investigation, the longer they stay at the Santa Cruz Inn, the deeper they are drawn into a web of suspects and bystanders, and a collection of seemingly perfect marriages fraught with jealousy and violence. The situation threatens first their honeymoon and then their lives when Lane puts herself directly in the sights of local criminals who will stop at nothing to get what they want.

Back in Nelson, Sergeant Ames has been left in charge of the department during Darling’s absence. As he investigates a case of vandalism at the Van Eyck garage, it seems to lead directly to the death of the suspected vandal himself. Working with Constable Terrell, the new recruit, to piece together what happened in this strange and unsettling murder, Ames finds his romantic interest in mechanic Tina Van Eyck creates complications that are more than awkward; they could be deadly.

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Review of A Match Made for Murder

The Lane Winslow Mystery series is one of my favorites in historical fiction.  The post-WWII historical setting, the former spy heroine, the Canadian small town police inspector hero, and the colorful local personalities all combine to charm me into reading each successive novel.

This time, the action moves to the United States.  On their honeymoon, Lane and Darling check into a resort in Tucson, Arizona, where trouble finds them.  Or they find trouble.  Depends on how you look at it.  🙂

Darling wants nothing more than enjoy his honeymoon and spend some time with an old friend.  But when a murder happens right in front of Lane, he knows that is not going to happen.  Darling is the man that recognizes his wife’s independence, intelligence, heart and determination to see justice done. This is a couple for the modern age of the 1940’s and for today.

While things get complicated in Tucson, back home in Nelson, Sergeant Ames has his own case involving a woman that he would like to get to know better.  The back and forth between Tucson and Nelson is easy to follow and having two cases to follow is no problem.  The question is, and you know you have to ask it, are these two cases related?

I won’t answer that question.  There are all sorts of spins and twists to keep you guessing – just the way I like it.  I will also say that Sergeant Ames is a character that is endearing himself to me more with each novel in this series.

Both cases highlight discrimination.  In Nelson, Ames is working with a new recruit, Constable Terrell, who is black.  In Tucson, Lane is assisted by a resort maid and a taxi driver who are immigrants from Mexico.  The discrimination is not overly emphasized, but it is not ignored either, adding the historical aspect to intolerance that is not all that different from the prejudices of today.

The characters grow a little with each book in the series, so it is nice to read each book in order, however all the books in the series can be read as standalone.

The series genre is hard to pin down.  The sometimes quirky, and always strongly-developed characters give this a cozy mystery feel, but the plots feel a like straight murder mystery.  Readers of both genres will appreciate Lane Winslow.

Thanks to the publisher who provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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