Emmeline Kirby/Gregory Longdon Mysteries: Book 8
Publication Date: September 17, 2022
The wicked kill…but the dead speak
Journalist Emmeline Kirby and her jewel thief/insurance investigator husband Gregory Longdon were in the mood for intrigue at the theatre. However, murder was only supposed to take place on stage. All too soon, the evening’s peace is shattered when the ceiling collapses in the Upper Circle.
In the ensuing chaos of the evacuation, Emmeline and Gregory discover tabloid reporter Verena Penrose in her box. Her neck had been snapped. Verena had done a brisk trade in scandal, blackmail and splashy exposés. Her fatal error was tangling with the Raven, an elusive assassin with ties to the Russians and ETA, the Basque separatist group.
Although Verena despised Emmeline, she leaves a cryptic message for her that is too tantalizing to ignore. However the layer upon layer of lies, jealousy and revenge touch too close to home when her brother Adam is implicated in the Raven’s schemes to infiltrate the London Diamond Bourse and to murder a prominent British official.
To restore the family honor, Emmeline and Gregory race to Madrid only to walk into the Raven’s trap.
A Mind to Murder, the eighth book in the Emmeline Kirby/Gregory Longdon Mystery series by Daniella Bernett, drew me in from the first page to the last. It was nice to be back in London with Emmeline Kirby and Gregory Longdon to watch them solve more crimes. The mystery has a lot of depth, as do the characters, and what you see is seldom what you get!
Mayhem and murder abound along with danger when this husband and wife duo are in the vicinity, much to the chagrin of Superintendent Oliver Burnell and Sergeant Finch, who work closely together.
Emmeline and Greg are amateur sleuths who are constantly butting into police business but often come up with clues they pass on. They have an unusual relationship with both cops to who they provide information. She’s a well-known journalist, and he works for a high-end insurance company and has a fascinating past. But is it in his past?
This international thriller has many twists and turns that had me flipping the pages to see what would happen next in London and Spain, with many Russians thrown in. The descriptions of the locations made me feel like I was there, and I liked how information about previous cases and incidents was sprinkled throughout.
There are bodies, crimes committed, lots of gems, businesses that may not be what they seem, fear, tears, anger, family and friends, police work, things not always on the up and up, and a tangled web of connections. Every detail is important and seems to be filed away for use later.
The story is fast-paced and builds the suspense of whodunnit and who the Raven is since his name keeps popping up with all the bad things going on. There is closure with the identity of the Raven revealed and crimes solved, but the story ends abruptly, even with the epilogue.
Clues, crimes, and several details create an interesting backdrop for A Mind to Murder. If you enjoy books set in international locations with police procedurals combined with amateur sleuths, this may be a book and series you’d enjoy. Give Ms. Bernett’s books a try if you haven’t already!
Daniella Bernett is a member of the Mystery Writers of America NY Chapter and the International Thriller Writers. She graduated summa cum laude with a B.S. in Journalism from St. John’s University. Lead Me Into Danger, Deadly Legacy, From Beyond The Grave, A Checkered Past and When Blood Runs Cold are the other books in the Emmeline Kirby-Gregory Longdon mystery series. She also is the author of two poetry collections, Timeless Allure and Silken Reflections. In her professional life, she is the research manager for a nationally prominent engineering, architectural and construction management firm. Daniella is currently working on Emmeline and Gregory’s next adventure.