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Ringing in Murder (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Myst) Mass Market Paperback – November 3, 2009

4.5 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of Kingsbury's engaging fourth holiday Pennyfoot Hotel mystery set during the Edwardian era (after 2007's Shrouds of Holly), amateur sleuth Cecily Sinclair Baxter is hoping for a festive winter season at her hotel on England's windy southeast coast, but the Christmas curse strikes again. The speaker of the House of Lords, Sir Walter Hetherton, and his wife, Lady Clara, are killed by an explosive Yuletide cracker at the Pennyfoot Country Club, which Cecily now manages. Constable Sam Northcutt believes the explosion was caused by a malfunctioning gas lamp, but after Sam leaves for vacation, one of Cecily's employees alerts her to some disturbing evidence. Could Pennyfoot be harboring a murderer? Suspects include Hetherton's political rival, Roland Crossley. A scary, vanishing snowman heightens the suspense. While the murderer's motive might strike some as a bit unconvincing, cozy fans will be pleased to ring in the new year with this cheerful Kingsbury trifle. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Kate Kingsbury is a full-time writer and the author of the Pennyfoot Hotel mystery series.
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Product Details

  • Series: A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Myst (Book 16)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; Reprint edition (November 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425231208
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425231203
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,275,176 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Just in time for the holiday season, Kate Kingsbury has released her latest in the Pennyfoot Hotel series, Ringing in Murder. It's the winter holiday season in the early 1900's and everyone at the Pennyfoot Hotel, on England's south coast, is full of cheer. The staff rush about to decorate and prepare the various feasts for the holidays. The owner and manager, Cecily Sinclair Baxter, also has the added pleasure, of preparing for her friend Madeline's wedding, "knowing quite well that her friend would much rather have been married privately in the woods with only the birds and woodland creatures in attendance."

Against all hopes to the contrary, the annual Christmas curse on the Pennyfoot Hotel has returned. First, two of the exclusively designed Christmas crackers disappear; then a pair of guests is killed in a seemingly accidental fire at the hotel. To add some fun to the story, a mysteriously mobile snowman seems to be playing tricks on some of the staff.

Cecily has to investigate all the unusual events if she is to prevent more disasters that would mar the holiday festivities and the all important wedding. Not trusting the local constabulary with the investigation, the unlikely sleuth soon uncovers clues that point to a possible murderer. Will she discover the truth in time to prevent more deaths and help her friend get through the pre-wedding jitters and celebrate her nuptials? And what in the world is the meaning of the silly snowman that seems to move around outdoors and spook the staff? The characters are fun with their spot on old English vocabulary and various superstitions and neuroses. You will enjoy this fun frolic in the snow in Merry Olde England.

by Rhonda Esakov
for Story Circle Book Reviews
reviewing books by, for, and about women
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This is not a review of the story but of the text with print so small I could not read this edition. These special Christmastide tales are lots of fun so I am asking my public library to find a copy with larger print.
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Format: Paperback
It is the holiday season and Cecily and Baxter are involved in getting the Pennyfoot Club decorated before Christmas arrives. There are two VIP guests staying at the Pennyfoot the Speaker of the House of Lords Sir Walter Hetherton and MP Roland Crossley of the House of Commons. In addition to decorating for the holidays, Cecily is also involved in the wedding of her best friend Madeline. a psychic feared by villagers. to pragmatic Dr. Kevin Presildough who does not believe in her skills but loves her.

An explosion occurs in Sir Walter's room killing him and his wife. At first everyone assumed a gaslight caused a tragic accident, but they soon revise that opinion. A party favor (cracker) was found in the room and anyone with scientific knowledge could turn it into a lethal weapon; someone obviously did. Two servants observe a snowman moving and talking to Gertie McBride's twin. They are puzzled and spooked until they see the snowman inside the Pennyfoot; they become petrified. Cecily refuses to end the holiday season with an unsolved murder and a waling snowman at the Pennyfoot so she investigates.

This enticing cozy will get the audience into the holiday spirit with the decorations and the snowman tension relieving subplot. Even married Cecily remains an independent suffragette frustrating her spouse when she obstinately places herself in danger. RING IN MURDER is an enjoyable cerebral amateur sleuth that rings in the Yuletide season on an entertaining note.

Harriet Klausner
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I enjoy the building of the characters of The Pennyfoot Hotel. The interaction between the lower working class and the upper class and the times they cross over the traditional set limits is interesting.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Wonderful characters that are so much fun to follow in each new book. Lots of interesting 1900's English history on living conditions, dress, and moral codes. Sort of a fun, comedic Upstairs, Downstairs. Sure wish there were a few illustrations. However, Cecily's husband, Baxter is morphing into a stuffy bore; him I could do without. Ignore him and enjoy everything else.
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When shopping at Amazon for mysteries, I have noticed a lot of Kate Kingsbury books but have never ordered one. Thus I decided to order "Ringing in Murder" to see what her novels were like. I also ordered this novel because in general I tend to enjoy mysteries set in England and also those that take in the holiday seasons. However, it took me a while to get into this book as it really did not hold my interest. Unfortunately I figured out who "did it" fairly early in the novel. I also did not find the characters particularly memorable, and in fact, some seemed boring and contrived. I also did not particularly like the time period in which the novel was set which was in the earlier 1900s. Overuse of the word "bloody" and some other cliche-like language just really put me off the novel as well. Although I did finish it, I would not buy another.
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Format: Paperback
Christmas is always a special time at the Pennyfoot Hotel, but this Christmas promises to be extra special as Cecily Sinclair Baxter is busily preparing for the wedding of her friend Madeline Pengrath to Doctor Kevin Prestwick. Cecily has her fingers crossed that all will go well since Madeline can be very unpredictable. When Christmas crackers go missing, Cecily is mildly annoyed, but her annoyance turns to horror when two guests are killed in an explosion and fire in one of the rooms at the Pennyfoot. Cecily suspects murder and wants the case solved before someone else is killed and before Madeline and Kevin's wedding is ruined.

"Ringing in Murder" is Kate Kingsbury's latest Pennyfoot Hotel mystery set at Christmastime (the others are No Clue at the Inn (Pennyfoot Hotel Mysteries), Slay Bells (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Myst), and Shrouds of Holly (A Special Pennyfoot Hotel Myst)). Like the other books in the series this cozy mystery is delightful. All of the familiar characters are here: Cecily and her beloved husband Baxter, Madeline and Kevin, Phoebe Carter-Holmes Fortescue and her eccentric husband Colonel Fortescue, and of course Cecily's household staff - Mrs. Chubb, Gertie, Pansy, and "French" cook Michel. The wedding plot line is a good one and adds some mild suspense to the novel as Madeline and Kevin are at odds with each other over certain beliefs and readers will wonder if the two can make their differences work.
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