There isn't a mystery writer out there who creates characters any better than Julie Hyzy does. She won the Anthony and Barry Awards for State of the Onion, the first mystery to feature Ollie Paras, the White House chef. She could just as easily win those awards for Grace Interrupted, the second mystery in her Manor House mystery series. Grace Wheaton, curator and manager for Marshfield Manor, is joined by a cast of engaging characters in this entertaining story.
Grace has only been curator for a short time, following the murder of the former one. She's still finding her way in her job when she has to deal with two women who want to confront Zachary Kinkade, a man involved in a Civil War re-enactment on the grounds of the Manor. As soon as she expels them, she has another situation on her hands. Kinkade attacks one of the groundskeepers, Davey Embers, and then accuses Jack Embers of killing his brother. Even before she can wrap her mind around that, since Grace is interested in Jack, Kinkade is found dead on the grounds, stabbed to death. Although she doesn't know Jack's background, she doesn't think he or his brother killed the dislikable Kinkade. Even with an entire camp of suspects, the police think differently. But this time, Grace might have some unexpected allies; her difficult assistant, Frances, and a consultant to the police force, a woman named Tank.
Grace Interrupted finds Grace Wheaton with a few problems on her hands. There's a second murder on the property; the man she likes is suspected of not one murder, but two; her boss wants her to move onto the property. Then, there's the stray kitten she's allergic to.
With a wealth of interesting characters, a fascinating mystery involving a Civil War re-enactment and a cold murder case, and the addition of a kitten named Bootsie, Hyzy has another hit on her hands. Add Grace to your own life with Grace Interrupted.
Julie Hyzy's website is www.JulieHyzy.com
Grace Interrupted by Julie Hyzy. Berkley Prime Crime. ©2011. ISBN 9780425241905 (paperback), 278p.
FTC Full Disclosure - The publisher sent me a copy of the book, hoping I would review it.