Monday 8 January 2024

πŸ“– Book Review ~ The Harbour Lights Mystery by Emylia Hall


Thomas and Mercer
October 2023

My thanks to the author and publisher for my copy of this book

As The Shell House Detectives try to solve a family mystery, their investigation runs dangerously close to a murder case. Are the two linked?

It’s December in Cornwall, and Mousehole harbour is illuminated with its famous Christmas lights. Ally Bright is among the crowd listening to the carol singers—and then to the piercing screams that rip through the darkness. A body has been found, brutally murdered and dumped in a fisherman’s boat.

The victim is chef JP Sharpe and there is no shortage of people who might have wanted him dead. Eager for a new case for The Shell House Detectives, Ally calls ex-cop Jayden, but he’s keen to leave it to the police—until a letter in Sharpe’s pocket draws them into a seemingly unconnected family mystery. As they take on this highly charged mission, the duo can’t help scrutinising the murder suspects. Who among the close-knit community has reason to kill, and how far will they go to protect themselves?

As fear spreads, Ally and Jayden need answers—fast. Could the letter offer a clue to the murder case or will it reveal a terrible truth? And when a new witness comes to light, Jayden closes in on a desperate killer…but can he warn Ally in time?

πŸ“– My Review..

I thoroughly enjoyed the first book in this cosy crimes series so it has been a real pleasure to return to Cornwall to see what The Shell House Detectives get up to in this latest offering from this talented writer.

The discovery of a murder victim in the festively decorated Mousehole harbour upsets the local community during their annual carol singing in December and when the identity of the victim is known there are people in the community who have no reason to mourn JP Sharpe's tragic demise. With the local police doing what they can to find the murderer, private detectives, Ally Bright and her Shell House detective partner, Jayden Weston are tasked with finding the identity of someone who hasn't wanted to be found for over thirty years and in doing so they become inextricably linked to the murder case. With more questions than answers this complicated plot veers off in several different directions and I had enjoyed trying to put together all the jigsaw puzzle pieces in this complex murder mystery. The Harbour Lights Mystery flows well, the many twists and turns of the plot certainly keep up the momentum and the characters who flit into and out of the story bring their own special brand of Cornish warmth, wit and charm.

As always, Cornwall forms an integral part of the story, we learn of the challenges facing local fishermen, the anguish of not having enough money and the constant worry of businesses who need to thrive during the tourist season so that they may survive the leaner months of winter. I've thoroughly enjoyed my visit back to Cornwall and love spending time with The Shell House Detectives and look forward to the next book in the series, which I hope is coming soon.

About the Author


Twitter @emyliahall #TheHarbourLightsMystery


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