Front Page Murder (A Homefront News Mystery)
by Joyce St. Anthony
About Front Page Murder
Front Page Murder (A Homefront News Mystery)
Historical Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Crooked Lane Books (March 8, 2022)
Hardcover : 304 pages
ISBN-10 : 164385898X
ISBN-13 : 978-1643858982
Digital ASIN : B096WWNSKR
In this World War II-era historical mystery series debut by Joyce St. Anthony, small-town editor Irene Ingram has a nose for news and an eye for clues.
Irene Ingram has written for her father’s newspaper, the Progress Herald, ever since she could grasp a pencil. Now she’s editor in chief, which doesn’t sit well with the men in the newsroom. But proving her journalistic bona fides is the least of Irene’s worries when crime reporter Moe Bauer, on the heels of a hot tip, turns up dead at the foot of his cellar stairs.
An accident? That’s what Police Chief Walt Turner thinks, and Irene is inclined to agree until she finds the note Moe discreetly left on her desk. He was on to a big story, he wrote. The robbery she’d assigned him to cover at Markowicz Hardware turned out to be something far more devious. A Jewish store owner in a small, provincial town, Sam Markowicz received a terrifying message from a stranger. Moe suspected that Sam is being threatened not only for who he is…but for what he knows.
Tenacious Irene senses there’s more to the Markowicz story, which she is all but certain led to Moe’s murder. When she’s not filling up column inches with the usual small-town fare—locals in uniform, victory gardens, and scrap drives—she and her best friend, scrappy secretary Peggy Reardon, search for clues. If they can find the killer, it’ll be a scoop to stop the presses. But if they can’t, Irene and Peggy may face an all-too-literal deadline.
When her father enters the war effort as a news correspondent Irene Ingram takes over the editor’s duties at his newspaper, The Progress Herald. The men at the paper are not pleased with the decision but she thinks she can bring them around. All their attention is diverted when one of their own goes missing and then later is found dead of an apparent accident. Irene isn’t buying the police chief’s determination. Moe was following a “big story” but failed to give Irene any details. There are also terrifying things happening around town including the owner of Markowicz Hardware being threatened. Could that be part of Moe’s big story? Irene is determined to find out while reporting on local events. She has found the perfect Watson to her Sherlock too, her father’s, now her secretary and best friend Peggy. They plan to get the scoop and write the killer write into a corner.
I really like the strong woman characters the author has created for this series. During World War II women filled in many jobs as the men went off to war from newspapers to the factories and more. Women were proving they could do jobs as well as men. Irene is a strong confident woman and she has to be to run a newspaper especially when another family member feels they should have been named editor. She is also worrying about her fiancee, a police officer before the war is training and waiting to be deployed.
Peggy is a strong woman too although she is in a more traditional job for her gender. She is always ready to help Irene in any way she can.
Irene interviews women working in a local factory and gets to know one pretty well when she starts boarding with Irene, her mother, and her sister. Irene’s mother has a traditional point of view as well believing all women will gladly return to homemaking after the war. While her thinking isn’t progressive she is strong in her own right keeping a roof over her family’s head and food for them to eat while worrying about her husband and not knowing where he is.
These strong women are surrounded by a variety of characters. Town residents, shopkeepers, factory workers, and managers. All the characters are well written and well developed for the first book in a series. The author has left plenty of room for growth as the series continues.
Ms. St. Anthony blends history and disturbing efforts by some radical groups as the backdrop for a rich mystery. I can tell she did her research by the clear picture she gives readers of what it was like being at home while the war was raging abroad. She weaves together a compelling story with twists and surprises. Irene was like a dog with a bone in her quest for answers. I was completely entertained by her process and fearless attitude even when she found herself in dangerous situations. I really enjoyed that each chapter started with a newspaper headline from The Progress Herald to keep the focus on the theme and the times.
Front Page Murder has set this series off on a fine start. Well-plotted and written with wonderful characters. A good fictional picture of a small town during wartime. I am looking forward to this series continuing with Death on a Deadline where the town of Progress continues to support the war effort.
Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent
About Joyce St. Anthony
Joyce was a police secretary for ten years and more than once envisioned the demise of certain co-workers but settled on writing as a way to keep herself out of jail. As Joyce St. Anthony, she is the author of the Homefront News Mysteries. The first in the series, Front Page Murder, will be (or was, depending on the blog date) released on March 8, 2022. Under her own name–Joyce Tremel–she wrote the award-winning Brewing Trouble cozy mystery series. She is a native Pittsburgher and lives in the beautiful Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania with her husband and two cats–Hops and Lager.
Great Escapes Praise for Front Page Murder (A Homefront News Mystery)
by Joyce St. Anthony
Front Page Murder is a killer diller with a moxie maven, a dishy dame, a cheesy chap, a cockeyed clue, a dead dude who had the dope, an eager beaver sibling, and a crumb killer.
~The Avid Reader
I really enjoyed this book! The World War II-era backdrop provides a great setting for the mystery. The characters are well-written and the main character is a fantastically feisty female who is a pleasure to follow as she ferrets out clues.
~Nellie’s Book Nook
Front Page Murder has wonderful characters, a bewildering mystery, and lots of cozy elements. It really did make me feel happy! I hope it does the same for you!
~Christy’s Cozy Corners
I thoroughly enjoyed this mystery and look forward to reading more books in the series! I recommend Front Page Murder for fans of historical mysteries, and especially for anyone who loves a World War II setting.
~View from the Birdhouse
As we move farther and farther away from WWII in real life, we forget how life would have been for our ancestors. This story brought all that back to life through the author’s writing.
~Connie’s History Classroom
March 8 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW
March 8 – StoreyBook Reviews – GUEST POST
March 8 – Nellie’s Book Nook – REVIEW
March 9 – Ascroft, eh? – CHARACTER INTERVIEW
March 9 – Brooke Blogs – CHARACTER GUEST POST
March 9 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 10 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT
March 10 – Christy’s Cozy Corners – REVIEW
March 11 – View from the Birdhouse – REVIEW
March 11 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST
March 12 – Just Another Teen Reading Books – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 12 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW
March 13 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 13 – #BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog – SPOTLIGHT
March 14 – Literary Gold – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 14 – Girl with Pen – SPOTLIGHT
March 15 – Connie’s History Classroom – REVIEW
March 15 – Mysteries with Character – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
March 15 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT
March 15 – Here’s How It Happened – SPOTLIGHT
March 16 – Tea Book Blanket – SPOTLIGHT
March 16 – Novels Alive – REVIEW
March 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW
March 17 – The Mystery Section – SPOTLIGHT
March 17 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW
March 18 – BookishKelly2020 – SPOTLIGHT
March 18 – I Read What You Write – CHARACTER GUEST POST
Have you signed up to be a Tour Host?
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”