Murder at Marble House
(A Gilded Newport Mystery)
2nd in Series
Historical Cozy Mystery
Kensington Publishing Corp. (September 30, 2014)
Trade Paperback: 336 pages
E-Book File Size: 1290 KB
With the dawn of the twentieth century on the horizon, the fortunes of the venerable Vanderbilt family still shine brightly in the glittering high society of Newport, Rhode Island. But when a potential scandal strikes, the Vanderbilts turn to cousin and society page reporter Emma Cross to solve a murder and a disappearance. ..
Responding to a frantic call on her newfangled telephone from her eighteen-year-old cousin, Consuelo Vanderbilt, Emma Cross arrives at the Marble House mansion and learns the cause of her distress–Consuelo’s mother, Alva, is forcing her into marriage with the Duke of Marlborough. Her mother has even called in a fortune teller to assure Consuelo of a happy future.
But the future is short-lived for the fortune teller, who is found dead by her crystal ball, strangled with a silk scarf. Standing above her is one of the Vanderbilts’ maids, who is promptly taken into police custody. After the frenzy has died down, Consuelo is nowhere to be found. At Alva’s request, Emma must employ her sleuthing skills to determine if the vanishing Vanderbilt has eloped with the beau of her choice–or if her disappearance may be directly connected to the murder. . .
This second story in the Gilded Newport Mystery series picks up just a short time after Murder at the Breakers leaves off. This time it takes place at the other Vanderbilt Castle, Marble House. Emma’s “cousin” Consuelo is being forced into an arranged marriage and even a fortune teller has been summoned to explain to the young woman that this marriage is meant to be. Emma isn’t convinced but before the crystal ball can even be consulted the fortune teller is dead and a young maid has been arrested. Soon after the bride to be goes missing. Emma soon finds herself searching for Consuelo and a murderer too.
I could almost cut and paste my review of the previous book here because again Alyssa Maxwell has given us a fantastic mystery with fabulous characters in a fascinating time and place. Again this story is based on many actual facts. Marble House is a real place. Consuelo Vanderbilt was not happy with the marriage that was arranged for her. And her mother was known for her temper and keeping Consuelo’s friends from seeing her. Maxwell took these facts and a few more and created a wonderful story with suspense, mystery and intrigue.
Emma is a very strong woman in a time where women basically tended to social matters and attended teas. But is was the time when the temperance and women’s suffrage movements were just starting and that plays into part of the story. Emma is trying to earn a living as a newspaper reporter but again that is considered a man’s job. She also tries to carry the torch passed to her by her Aunt Sadie, who bequeathed her Gull Manor. Her aunt always had policy of helping women in need no matter what the circumstances. All of this drives her need to not only help her cousin but the young maid that was arrested.
I absolutely loved this story. The author’s words let me escape back in time and enjoy the story through Emma’s eyes. I could feel Emma’s emotions as she tries so hard to find her cousin and catch a killer all while dealing with her own problems she is facing. She tries to make the right decisions but sometimes her heart and her head are at odds with each other. Her life is not what she thought it would be and she has been let down yet again by people who should be there to support be she perseveres through it all.
Now we wait until next Spring for Murder at Beechwood.
To find out more about Alyssa Maxwell and her books visit here webpage here.
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