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A Snapshot of Murder (A Kate Shackleton Mystery Book 10) Kindle Edition
Seven keen amateur photographers gather for the most popular openings of the decade. Only six will return.
Yorkshire, 1928. Indomitable sleuth Kate Shackleton is taking a well-deserved break from her detective work and indulging in her other passion: photography. When her local Photographic Society proposes an outing to the opening of the Bronte Museum, Kate jumps at the chance to visit the setting of Wuthering Heights. But the setting proves to be even more sinister than the dreary classic when a member of their party is found murdered.
The event is one of the most popular of the decade, and each of the seven photographers were there to capture the perfect shot of a lifetime. But Tobias, the deceased, was known for being loud-mouthed and didn’t care to curb his demeanor. Kate deduces that he must have had several enemies. But soon, she begins to suspect that perhaps the murderer is amongst them. And before they shrink to just a group of five, Kate must pick back up her magnifying glass and sleuthing cap to crack the case in A Snapshot of Murder, Frances Brody’s tenth brilliant Kate Shackleton mystery.
“Absolutely captivating! With charm, skill, and spot-on insight, the talented Frances Brody expertly transports us to Yorkshire, 1928—and we are thrilled to be there. You’ll adore the wonderfully atmospheric dialogue and put Brody on your bookshelves with Bowen and Winspear.”
—Hank Phillippi Ryan, national bestselling author of Trust Me
“A strong historical-mystery series; perfect for fans of post-WWI detectives, including Maisie Dobbs and Bess Crawford.”
“Well-crafted...The simmering tension gradually heats up to a rolling boil. Brody dresses this elegant mystery in literary history while accenting the cultural mores of the tumultuous 1920s. She also convincingly renders the secrets and vices of her well-rounded characters. An intelligent and complex woman, Kate is someone readers will want to see a lot more of.”
“Brody’s writing is like her central character Kate Shackleton: witty, acerbic and very, very perceptive.”
—Ann Cleeves, award-winning author of the Vera Stanhope mysteries
“I lost a day’s work because of this novel. I couldn’t put it down. Kate Shackleton is a delightful heroine—smart, strong, and independent. Treat yourself to a trip back to 1920s Britain.”
—Elaine Viets, author of Ice Blonde
Praise for the Kate Shackleton mysteries:
“A delightful trip through time and space to 1920s England with a heroine who would make the ladies of the Golden Age proud.”
―Rhys Bowen, New York Times bestselling author of the Royal Spyness mysteries
“Frances Brody writes marvelous British mysteries.”
―Charles Todd, bestselling author of the Bess Crawford mysteries
“In Kate Shackleton, Frances Brody has created a smart and endearing sleuth whose resourcefulness and skill for deduction shine as she investigates murders in 1920s England. With vivid settings, colorful characters, and excellently-plotted mysteries, this series is an absolute delight!”
―Ashley Weaver, author of the Amory Ames mysteries
“Kate Shackleton is a splendid heroine.”
—Ann Granger, author of the Ben Ross mysteries
“A mash-up of ‘Masterpiece’ series ‘Indian Summers’ and ‘Downtown Abbey.’”
―New York Post on Murder on a Summer’s Day
“Brody expertly weaves historical details and social issues to capture the essence of the 1920s. Kate’s intelligence and curiosity make her an appealingly complex heroine. With a writing style and plotting reminiscent of golden age crime fiction, this is a good read-alike for fans of Jacqueline Winspear’s ‘Maisie Dobbs’’ mysteries, Charles Todd’s ‘Bess Crawford’ series, and Catriona McPherson’s ‘Dandy Gilver’ books.”
“Well-plotted and atmospheric...Kate Shackleton joins Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs.”
About the Author
Anne Dover is an accomplished audiobook narrator, actress, and a television and radio presenter. With over thirty years of experience in the entertainment industry, she has mastered the development of the characters she narrates as well as dialects. --This text refers to the audioCD edition.
- ASIN : B07HM5L183
- Publisher : Crooked Lane Books (April 9, 2019)
- Publication date : April 9, 2019
- Language : English
- File size : 1717 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 363 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #341,251 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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While the "whodunit" aspect of the story was quite good with multiple suspects, the crime itself was completely implausible. Ms. Brody's attempt at "murder in a crowd" (a technique skillfully rendered in Josephine Tey's "A Man in the Queue") falls woefully short. Even when given all the evidence, I found it a bit unbelievable. Tobias never cried out? He certainly didn't die instantly, so I find that strange. This could have been such a good book, but for some reason Ms. Brody didn't feel compelled to bring her "A" game.
While I had little sympathy for the two murder victims (and, yes, Carine's father was murdered if you are paying attention to details), I certainly did not like the way the murder investigation into Tobias' death was wrapped up. Throughout the story, I did have sympathy for Carine and agree she will be better off without those two men in her life. Neither did I want to see her punished severely since she had already suffered through most of her life. However, the ending would have sat better if a true mental disturbance had precipitated the murders (which certainly wouldn't be implausible under the circumstances). Instead, in the very last scene, she comes off quite cold and calculating.
The best parts, for me, were the scenes involving Harriet. I'm glad to see her becoming a bigger part of the series. And, as always, the pace picks up and takes a turn for the better once Jim Sykes and Mrs. Sugden become more involved in the case. Unfortunately, Kate seemed different in this one. Very little evidence of her usual wit. She seemed, I don't know, old and worn out. I hope the next book fares better.
In her spare time, Kate devotes herself to photography and the local photography club, along with a friend Carine Murchison, who learned photography from her mother, a professional in the field. Carine was once in love with Edward Chester, a poetic young man who died in the Great War, and she eventually married Toby, Edward's best friend who came to tell her about his death. Toby suited Carine's father much better than Edward, but Derek, Carine's young errand boy and a friend of Kate's niece Harriet, confides to the young woman that Toby abuses Carine. Kate also knows that Carine is exhausted from nursing her housebound father, and still waits for her mother, who abandoned the family when Carine was a little girl, to return for her as she promised.
All these relationships come to the fore when the Photography Club goes on an outing to the newly-opened Brontё museum in Haworth. Carine ends up booking them at a ramshackle inn with a hostile landlady and her often-invisible mother. Then, during the dedication to the museum, Tobias is stabbed. Did he fall on his own sword cane? Or did one of the members of the Photography Club, who were standing around him, kill him? Frighteningly for Kate, one of the suspects is Harriet, the other is Derek, who had a crush on Carine and wanted to rescue her from Toby. Carine, who was taking refuge in the church at the time of his death, is devastated.
I wasn't as fond of this as some of the other Kate Shackleton books, especially THE BODY ON THE TRAIN, which was nearly perfect. The murder doesn't take place almost until 200 pages into the story; the first part is more a psychological portrait of emotionally- (and perhaps physically-) battered Carine. Several friends wish she was free of both husband and father, and Toby had enemies, including one in Haworth. Once Kate's partner Jim Sykes and her landlady Mrs. Sugden join her, they must get through a tangle of personalities to find the culprit. (However, there is one tiny clue early on that spills the beans. Look for it.)
My favorite part of the book was a subplot involving getting Kate's parents a new bloodhound after their old faithful Constable dies. The dog—who washed out of police school for being too friendly—is accidentally delivered to Kate's office and falls in love with her, Jim, Mrs. Sugden, and Harriet instead, and he also solves part of the mystery.
The volume includes the short story "Kate Shackleton's First Case," which I found almost more entertaining than the novel.
Top reviews from other countries
I’ve enjoyed this series of novels from the beginning. I particularly like that they are set in the past in familiar places, so that you see Leeds, Wakefield or Haworth in a different way, with past overlaying the present
I am also fond of the range of recurring character, Kate Shackleton & Harriet, Mr Sykes, Mrs Sugden. Frances Brody is very good at telling us enough about the character so that we feel we k kw and like them, but also implying they have secrets and depths not yet revealed to us.
Mrs Shackleton’s most recent adventure is a strong one, set largely in Haworth as the Parsonage is donated to the Bronte Society and the Headingley Photography Society is staying having an outing. Unlike the snapshots the photographers take, few of the characters are black and white, and the the mystery may be less of who did it and why, but how did they. I enjoyed the ambivalence of both the murderer and the detective.