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Shadow Waltz (The Marjorie McClelland Mysteries) Paperback – April 8, 2008

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

At the start of Meade's diverting third Marjorie McClelland 1930s cozy (after 2007's Ghost of a Chance), Marjorie agrees to help an anxious young wife, Elizabeth Barnwell, find her missing husband, Michael. When Marjorie and her fiancé, wealthy Englishman Creighton Ashcroft, discover a dismembered body that turns out to be Michael's mistress, the philandering husband surfaces shortly thereafter and is arrested for murder. Marjorie, though, suspects the police have the wrong man. Meanwhile, the members of Marjorie's church in Ridgebury, Conn., have planned a wedding reception for her and Creighton complete with Mrs. Shutt's revolting Perfection Salad. Can they gracefully get out of this without hurting any feelings? While weak on period detail, this light whodunit does offer a surprise closing twist. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The spirited third installment in Meade’s bewitching Marjorie McClelland mystery series finds her adventurous heroine fending off the wacky and tacky assistance of family and friends who have immersed themselves in planning her upcoming wedding to debonair Englishman Creighton Ashcroft. Nuptial details quickly take a backseat, however, when a distraught young woman arrives on Marjorie’s doorstep, tearfully pleading for the couple’s assistance in locating her missing husband. Curious clues quickly lead the amateur sleuths to the husband’s secret love nest, where the mutilated body of his mistress turns out to be just the first of the corpses Marjorie and Creighton encounter throughout Meade’s elaborate tale of revenge and betrayal. When Marjorie’s mystery-writer’s intuition kicks into high gear, the couple is challenged to a contest of investigative prowess by the head of the local police force, Marjorie’s ex-fiancé, Detective Robert Jameson. Sprightly characters, saucy dialogue, and supple pacing are once again winsomely showcased in Meade’s sassy paean to those zany Depression-era, romantic detective duos. --Carol Haggas

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Product Details

  • Series: The Marjorie McClelland Mysteries (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Midnight Ink; First Edition edition (April 8, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0738712493
  • ISBN-13: 978-0738712499
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,621,655 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Born and raised on Long Island, New York and currently residing in Southern Vermont, Amy Patricia Meade is the author of the critically acclaimed Marjorie McClelland Mystery series and the "Vermont" mysteries, both available through Midnight Ink Books.

In addition, she recently launched a Rosie the Riveter series via Kensington Books, the first of which - "Don't Die Under the Apple Tree" - was released this past May.

When not writing, Amy spends her time cooking, entertaining, watching classic films, wearing dangerously high heels, shopping for vintage-style dresses, and wishing for an end to the long Vermont winters.

You can email her at

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on April 2, 2008
Format: Paperback
It is 1935 and the nation remains buried in the Great Depression, but author Marjorie McClelland and her rich fiancé Creighton Ashcroft barely feel its effects. They are making wedding plans when an interruption comes in the form of a knock on the door. Elizabeth Barnwell, who read about this couple solving two murders (see GHOST OF A CHANCE and MILLION DOLLAR BABY), begs them to find her missing husband Michael who vanished two days ago. They agree to help her; she tells them she found a mysterious key and a piece of paper with an address on it in a pocket of one of his pants.

They go to the address and find the butchered body of a woman whose face is smashed in, and her four extremities cut off. The house belongs to Ronnie Carter and a witness describes her lover as that of Michael. Marjorie and Creighton find him at his parents'' home where he proclaims his innocence. He is taken to jail. Marjorie learns that the victim's lover before Michael, Trent Taylor, is now a widower who made a fortune collecting a life insurance payout on his wife's death. Before she died, Ronnie accused Trent of poisoning his spouse; an autopsy proves his late wife had a deadly amount of arsenic in her system. Case closed except Marjorie thinks someone else has set up Trent, but her sleuthing almost gets her shot.

Since everyone in Ridgebury, Connecticut wants to get involved in the wedding, Marjorie buries herself into the investigation to avoid dealing with definitive decisions that people demand of her. Readers will feel like they are in the middle of a Tracey-Hepburn movie to include campy dialogue, misleading assumptions, and plenty of action. SHADOW WALTZ is a thoroughly enjoyable historical mystery that takes its audience dancing into a bygone era.

Harriet Klausner
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By B. Bryan on January 9, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a fun book, takes you to a different time and place. Very reminescent of the "Nick and Nora Charles" movies of the past.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Carney on April 23, 2008
Format: Paperback
After reading Amy Meade's first two books (Million Dollar Baby and Ghost of a Chance) I was looking forward to Shadow Waltz and Ms. Meade did not disappoint. The characters, plot, and humor made Shadow Waltz a great read cover to cover. It was well worth waiting for and I am already counting the months, weeks, days,...until Ms. Meade's fourth book is released. I would recommend Ms. Meade's books be read in the order they were published, it will add to the reading enjoyment!
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Format: Paperback
“Shadow Waltz” is the third book in the Marjorie McClelland Mysteries by Amy Patricia Meade; however, it is the first book I have read in this series and, indeed, the first book I have read by Ms. Meade. I often chose to start a series mid-way through in order to judge whether it can be read stand-alone enjoyably or if it needs to be read as part of the series. While I did enjoy reading the book, I think it would be more enjoyable to have read it as part of the series. There seems to be many references to people, places, and occurrences which happened in the first two books. While I was able to figure out a good number of them by the end of the book, while I was reading it, I was puzzled by some of the references.

The story itself was definitely a fun and cozy mystery. Marjorie McClelland is a mystery writer who lives in Connecticut during the 1930's. The country is still fairly deep in the Great Depression and there are signs that a good number of people are struggling. Thankfully for Marjorie and her fiance, Creighton Ashcroft, that is not their situation. Marjorie is making a nice living from her books and Creighton appears to be very wealthy indeed.

The couple, and especially Marjorie, seem to happen across murder mysteries and feel called upon to try to solve them at once. This makes life a little difficult for Marjorie's recent ex-fiance, Detective Jameson, whose job is actually solving murders in their small locale. However, Jameson is willing to let bygones be bygones and they start working together (somewhat) to solve the whodunnit in this book.

I was not able to solve the mystery until close to the end although looking back, their were a number of clues left by the author. The art of misdirection in a mystery is well done by Ms.
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Format: Kindle Edition
[I received this book free from the publisher through NetGalley. I thank them for their generousity. In exchange, I was simply asked to write an honest review, and post it. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 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]

As I understand this is the third book in this series, however,I believe it could also be a stand- alone.

Take a bit of Miss Marple, add a generous portion of The Thin Man, toss in a cat and two Keystone Cops, and you have a nice enough, albeit predictable, mystery. Marjorie is now engaged to Creighton, and the wedding is being hijacked by the town all while this mystery unfolds. Set in the Depression, the role of women will drive you crazy, especially when the strongest characters are women, from Mrs. P to Nurse Douglas to Sharon, the men definately take a backseat in this story.

Its really difficult to get into this review without spoiling the plot, so I won't except to say that this is a pretty good, light, escapist mystery.
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