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The Family Way (Molly Murphy Mysteries Book 12) [Kindle Edition]

Rhys Bowen
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $15.99
Kindle Price: $9.99
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Sold by: Macmillan
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Book Description

Molly Murphy--now Molly Sullivan--is a year into her marriage, expecting her first child, and confined to the life of a housewife. She's restless and irritable in the enforced idleness of pregnancy and the heat of a New York summer in 1905. So when a trip to the post office brings a letter addressed to her old detective agency asking her to locate a missing Irish serving maid, Molly figures it couldn't hurt to at least ask around, despite her promise to Daniel to give up her old career as a detective. On the same day, Molly learns that five babies have been kidnapped in the past month.

Refusing to let Molly help with the kidnapping investigation, Daniel sends her away to spend the summer with his mother. But even in the quiet, leafy suburbs, Molly's own pending motherhood makes her unable to ignore these missing children. What she uncovers will lead her on a terrifying journey through all levels of society, putting her life--and that of her baby--in danger.

The Family Way, the latest entry in Rhys Bowen's bestselling Molly Murphy series, will delight fans and win over newcomers with its elegantly plotted mystery, atmospheric historical detail, and vivid characters.

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Anthony and Agatha Award–winning Rhys Bowen’s series about Molly Murphy, a bubbly Irish immigrant in New York City at the turn of the twentieth century, is now in its thirteenth installment. Molly, who has always had a gift for getting to the bottom of things, established her own private detective agency in New York. Now, though, she is married to a police captain, is named Sullivan rather than Murphy, and is pregnant. When she receives a letter begging for her help in locating a disappeared Irish maidservant—and when she subsequently learns that five infants have been kidnapped in the same month—Molly is ready to take action, but her husband ships her off for an enforced rest with her mother. Ah, but Molly is nothing if not dauntless. The ways she finds to keep investigating, and the trouble she lands in as a result of that investigation, will be more than enough to keep series fans satisfied. Others may be puzzled by the (at times) overly simplistic writing here, which gives the book a tone not in keeping with its subject matter. --Connie Fletcher


Praise for The Family Way

“Highly entertaining…[Molly] pieces together a complicated mystery set against a rich historical backdrop.” —RT Book Reviews (4½ stars)

“[A] well-paced 12th mystery featuring feisty and endearing Molly Murphy…The usual full-blooded characters will keep readers engaged.” —Publishers Weekly

“Feisty Molly unravels another knotty case while providing insight into life just after the turn of that other century.” —Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

  • File Size: 453 KB
  • Print Length: 305 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1250011639
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books (March 5, 2013)
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0091CAPSK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #52,668 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ms. Bowen Can Do better March 27, 2013
In this latest offering in the Molly Murphy Sullivan series, Molly is nearing the delivery of her first child in the midst of a New York heat wave, and is trying NOT to get involved in a couple of tragic puzzles that cross her path and pull at her heart-- a series of kidnappings in the lower East Side, and a plea for help in locating a lost Irish immigrant girl. Interesting plot lines, but Bowen seems to have dashed this volume off in a quick weekend, and she lets us and Molly down.

This is definitely one of Ms. Bowen's more shallow efforts and I expected far better -- her characters here are one-dimensional and there is little explanation for their motivations and actions. Molly's husband is so insufferable (even by 1900's standards) that I think she should have shot him by page 10. We have Evil Nuns in a Gothic Convent, barely sketched-out characters in their clutches, totally improbable situations and developments at every turn, and we have the IRA Underground suddenly appearing at the last minute --- Are Bowen's editors afraid to send back a manuscript? Is this formerly delightful series simply written out as Ms. Bowen devotes more effort and creativity to other series on her desk? And if Mr. Sullivan doesn't straighten up and fly right I am going to go back in time and deal with him myself!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Taking a disappointing turn June 25, 2013
I really do like this series, however, I have been disappointed by the turn that it has taken now that Molly and Daniel have gotten married. I have never been completely sold on Daniel as a partner for Molly, but I keep hoping he will grow on me. Instead, the opposite is occurring. In the previous book Daniel behaved like a whining, churlish child and in this novel he was insufferable and heavy handed, treating Molly like a naughty child rather than a respected wife. That said, Molly should never have promised him that she would quit detecting as she obviously has no intentions of keeping that promise. As frustrating as it is, Daniel does have a point when he berates Molly as she did make that promise. There is little understanding and very little trust in this marriage and without that a marriage is doomed. Heck, Molly STILL hasn't told Daniel she suffered a miscarriage! I understand this novel is set a century ago, when women were expected to be little more than wives and mothers and that Daniel is behaving in what is probably a very realistic way for the time period. That said, it makes him a very unsympathetic character for twenty-first century readers. I also understand Molly's frustration in being treated like the "little woman", however, because of that frustration she has taken some really foolish risks. I found it hard to believe that she would take such a chance with the life of her baby, especially having suffered a miscarriage in the past. I hope that at some point Daniel comes to understand Molly and who she really is and allows her into his world, as much as he can, as I think it will make for a much happier Molly and a happier marriage, not to mention a more enjoyable read!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Set in Her Ways July 22, 2013
When Molly Murphy married Capt. Daniel Sullivan, she promised to give up her detective agency and engage in no further investigative efforts. So much for promises. Now in her seventh month of pregnancy, she can't change. So when she gets a letter addressed to her now defunct agency, she just plows ahead.

The plot involves three separate circumstances, all of which Molly ties together, more often, as she notes, by the luck of the Irish rather than by deductive reasoning or good, solid detective work: First, a series of baby snatchings on the Lower East Side. Then there is the subject of the letter (a young Irish girl whose relatives have not heard from her in many months). And lastly, a bomb plot, either by anarchists or the Irish Republican Brotherhood.

Unlike previous Molly Murphy mysteries, which take place at the turn of the 20th century, there is little here of the flavor of Little Old New York. Perhaps that is because Molly is sent off in the heat of summer to her mother-in-law's Westchester home to cool off (which, obviously, doesn't occur). Somehow, Molly manages to develop as a person, while her new husband comes across as a typical loutish male (although, from time to time, shows a certain degree of insight and compassion).

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Must'a been overcome by the heat... April 20, 2013
Twelfth in the Molly Murphy historical mystery series set in turn-of-the-century New York City with a most unhappy Molly.

My Take
A fascinating look at life in the heat of the summer in turn-of-the-century New York with health concerns and a different perspective on what to "cook" for dinner, and a touch of the suffragist movement and the Irish Republican Brotherhood to liven things up.

Unfortunately, that was the best part as Bowen has her characters...ahem...overcome by the heat. Well, it's the only excuse I can imagine for how stupidly they act!

Daniel just keeps stepping in it over and over. I suspect the repetition is what drives Molly on to make so many stupid decisions. As for Wilkie, I found him rather condescending to Molly. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what he's wanting, and yet he acts as though her conclusions are so brilliant.

I must say I do wonder at Sister Jerome choosing Sister Angelique as a midwife with her attitude. Especially when her inclination is not to save lives and Sister Jerome is counting on it.

Has Molly so sense of self-preservation? She just jumps right in there without letting anyone know. Duhh. Then there's the conclusion Molly comes to about Maureen. Oh, boy. Lots of conclusion-jumping. I'm not saying she's wrong, just that there aren't a lot of clues before Molly "discovers" the truth. Then there's the mother superior. She was awfully accepting of what occurred. Where has she been when all this has been going on if she's so bright? It seems that Molly would have done better to tell Daniel what she suspected when she first arrived back in New York, rather than running about. She did promise, after all. The two of them have some work ahead of them, for neither trusts the other.
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More About the Author

Rhys Bowen's books have been nominated for every major mystery award and she has won thirteen of them to date. She currently writes two historical mystery series, each very different in tone. The Molly Murphy mysteries feature an Irish immigrant woman in turn-of-the-century New York City. These books are multi-layered, complex stories with a strong sense of time and place and have won many awards including Agatha and Anthony. There are 13 book so far in this series plus two Kindle stories, The Amersham Rubies and The Face in the Mirror--a great way to introduce new readers to Molly's spunky personality.

Then there is Lady Georgie, Rhys's latest,and very popular, heroine. She's 35th in line to the throne of England, but she's flat broke and struggling to survive in the Great Depression. These books are lighter and funnier than Molly's adventures. They poke gentle fun at the British class system--about which Rhys knows a lot, having married into an upper class family rather like Georgie's, with cousins with silly nicknames,family ghosts and stately homes. The seventh book is called Heirs and Graces, and on November 5th The Twelve Clues of Christmas comes out in paperback, perfect timing for the holidays.
The series received the Readers Choice Award for favorite mystery series and Rhys was nominated for career achievement.

Rhys was born in Bath, England but spent time during her childhood with relatives in Wales. Those childhood experiences colored her first mystery series, about Constable Evans in the mountains of Snowdonia. 10 books including the Edgar nominee Evan's Gate. She has lived in Austria, Germany and Australia, but has called California her home for many years. She now escapes to a condo in Arizona during those cold California winters. When she's not writing she loves to travel, sing, hike, paint and play the Celtic harp.


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