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March 19, 2015

THREE SISTERS by Helen Smith



A British Mystery
Emily Castle's Mystery
Book One
Helen Smith
Three Sisters: A British Mystery (Emily Castles Mysteries Book 1)

(from Amazon)
Three Sisters introduces twenty-six-year-old amateur sleuth Emily Castles in this entertaining new mystery series from bestselling British author Helen Smith.

Emily receives an invitation to a party in a large house at the end of her street, hosted by a mysterious troupe of circus performers. She accepts, despite her misgivings, because her dog has died and she needs cheering up. But when she witnesses a murder in the midst of the surreal entertainment, no one will believe what she has seen. Is Emily befuddled with grief at the loss of her pet? Or has something wicked happened in plain sight of all the party-goers? Emily and her eccentric neighbours attempt to discover the truth in a charming story that will have you giggling at every funny line.

Readers of M C Beaton or Alexander McCall Smith will enjoy discovering a new mystery author.

Chosen as a “Book of the Year” by Elizabeth at The Frugal Ereader.

This short mystery is a standalone story set in London. The Emily Castles mysteries can be read in any order.

Fast-paced, funny, and mysterious all at the same time… I can’t wait to see what Emily’s next adventure will be. Socrates Book Reviews

Helen Smith manages to pack in surprises and plot twists, creating a story that is fully engaging from start to finish. The characters are creative and multi-dimensional and I loved the unique personalities and talents of all the party guests. As a wallflower turned super-sleuth, Emily Castles was a wonderful protagonist and I'm eager to read more of her adventures. Her Book Self

Helen Smith has created a great little cozy series with the charming Emily Castles. Criminal Element

Very funny indeed... There seems to be a winning line on every page. The Bookbag

Helen Smith's books have reached number one in the Amazon store in the US, UK, Germany and Canada. Her books have appeared in "best of the year" lists by For Books' Sake, The Cult Den, The Independent, and the Guardian.

  • File Size: 1875 KB
  • Print Length: 104 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Tyger Books Mysteries (February 5, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004M5HK0M
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Emily Castles is a twenty-six-year-old Londoner who lives in Brixton, south London, where I live. The London that you'll find in the Emily Castles Mysteries has familiar locations and landmarks. But it has a village feel that is typical in cozy mystery books (and not very typical of a big city like London): neighbors know each other and help each other out.

I started out reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers, Ngaio Marsh and Arthur Conan Doyle, and I go back to their stories time and again, both on the page and on TV and film. Miss Marple has to be one of my all-time favorite characters in a book! More recently, I have enjoyed mysteries written by Charlaine Harris, Alexander McCall Smith and M C Beaton.

With the Emily Castles Mysteries, I wanted to create stories that use some of the endearingly popular ingredients from the golden age of British crime writing. But I have set them in the present day, so there's a little urban grit mixed in with the fun. Emily herself, with her dimples and her dark brown hair, her sweet nature, her good humor and her love of solving mysteries, is partly based on my daughter, who is around the same age. Unlike my daughter, Emily will never get older... only a little wiser, perhaps, and a little more adept at sleuthing as the series develops.

Like all my books, the Emily Castles Mysteries feature strong, interesting female characters, and plenty of funny lines. These are clean, comic mysteries that can be enjoyed by readers of any age. I hope readers will enjoy them and keep coming back for more. 

Emily decides to go ahead and go to the party even though she is so very sad that her dog died.   A performance troop was hired by her neighbor but somehow things are different.  Everything they are doing is an act.  They are putting on a show but things in between the act seem to be a performance too.
A girl doesn't die when she is accidentally stabbed during a fight between two of the knife throwers before the performance.
The story had a mysteriously dark side to it but was rather fun to read.  It was still like a cozy mystery at the same time.  It was nice to go back in time with Emily and her dog and the things they used to do.  For some reason go back helped Emily solve the mystery.  She had to figure out how to get the performances to stop so the characters would talk to her about the mystery.
If you love cozy mysteries that are well written, good plot, a fast read, I would recommend this book to you to read and probably re-read.

I was given a complimentary copy of THREE SISTERS from the author, Helen Smith for my view of the book.

I would give the book 4 STARS.


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