Mrs. Malory and a Necessary End
by Hazel Holt
Mass Market Paperback:
Publisher: Obsidian Mystery
Released: October 2, 2012
Source: Review copy from the publisher.
Book Description, Modified from Back Cover:
When Sheila Malory fills in for a friend at a local charity shop in the quiet English town of Taviscombe, she's happy for the change of scene. The work is interesting, but the store supervisor, Desmond Barlow, is arrogant and always finds fault with the workers. That is, until Desmond is found stabbed to death in the shop.
Desmond was disliked by pretty much everyone, but who did it? Mrs. Malory listens to the gossip around town as she visits friends and runs errands. She discovers important information that could reveal whodunit which she passes on to the detective on the case, who happens to be the son of a friend.
Mrs. Malory and a Necessary End is a cozy mystery. This book is the 20th in the series. You don't need to read the previous novels to enjoy this one, and the answers to previous mysteries were not discussed in this one. However, the author did assume that the readers already knew the reoccurring characters and how they were related to Mrs. Malory. This information usually wasn't given when the characters were introduced, yet it became more clear as the story went on.
The story was very fast paced. Each scene focused on adding more clues about the mystery and was mainly dialogue. The descriptions (setting, job, characters, etc.) were brief unless more description was needed to understand and solve the mystery.
The whodunit in this puzzle-mystery was guessable but not obvious. I liked how Mrs. Malory picked up important information simply by her willingness to listen to people talk, that she encouraged them to give this information to the police, and the mutual respect between her and the detective on the case.
There was no sex. There was a very minor amount of explicit bad language. Overall, I'd recommend this novel to those who enjoy puzzle-mystery whodunits.
If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.