Sunday, 13 July 2014




Published by Random House - Alibi

Published -- 6 May 2014
Genre --  Cozy Mystery


Pru Parke always dreamed of living in England.  And after the Dallas native follows an impulse and moves to London, she can't imagine ever leaving - though she has yet to find a plum position as a head gardener.  Now, as the sublet on her flat nears its end, the threat of forced departure looms.  Determined to stay in her beloved adopted country, Pru takes small, private gardening jobs throughout the city.

On one such gig in Chelsea, she makes an extraordinary find.  Digging in the soil of a potting shed, Pru uncovers an ancient Roman mosaic.  But enthusiasm over her discovery is soon dampened when, two days later, she finds in the same spot a man's bludgeoned corpse.  As the London police swarm her worksite, ever inquisitive Pru can't quite manage to distance herself from the investigation - much to the dismay of stern Detective Chief Inspector Christopher Pearse.  It seems that, much as he tries, even handsome DCI Pearse can't keep Pru safe from a brutal killer who thinks she's already dug up too much.


My Thoughts:

"I grew up in the States, but I live here now."  As much as Pru loved saying it loud, she knew it couldn't really be true until she found a permanent job, a job as head gardener at a small historic garden.  Give her a couple of acres and a place to live; she didn't need the grounds of Windsor Castle.

Brought up on stories of England and its gardens by her English mother, Pru always felt that she belonged there and when her mother died she decided to up sticks and plant herself in England.

But a small job sorting out the unruly garden of the Wilsons digs up more than just roots!  Pru's inquisitive and trusting nature leads her into danger as she tries to solve the murder of Mr Wilson's friend, an amateur archaeologist, despite the best efforts of the good-looking Detective Christopher Pearse to dissuade her.

Marty Wingate's obvious love of gardening shines through in this mystery. The plot was just at the right pace with believable characters and I found it easy to immerse myself in Pru's world.

With a storyline sure to delight gardening enthusiasts, you don't need to know your Hyacinths from your Hollyhocks to enjoy this cozy mystery.  I certainly did!

I'm looking forward to reading more of Pru's adventures when she finally lands her dream job in The Red Book of Primrose House which is published in November 2014.

Marty Wingate's website  --  Twitter  --  Facebook

Source:  Thanks to the Publishers on NetGalley

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