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"This droll romp is a latter-day Miss Marple.” — Washington Post Murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel by internationally best-selling author Elly Griffiths, a literary mystery perfect for fans of Anthony Horowitz and Agatha Christie. The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should not be suspi "This droll romp is a latter-day Miss Marple.” — Washington Post Murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel by internationally best-selling author Elly Griffiths, a literary mystery perfect for fans of Anthony Horowitz and Agatha Christie. The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should not be suspicious. Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing out of the ordinary when Peggy’s caretaker, Natalka, begins to recount Peggy Smith’s passing. But Natalka had a reason to be at the police station: while clearing out Peggy’s flat, she noticed an unusual number of crime novels, all dedicated to Peggy. And each psychological thriller included a mysterious postscript: PS: for PS. When a gunman breaks into the flat to steal a book and its author is found dead shortly thereafter—Detective Kaur begins to think that perhaps there is no such thing as an unsuspicious death after all. And then things escalate: from an Aberdeen literary festival to the streets of Edinburgh, writers are being targeted. DS Kaur embarks on a road trip across Europe and reckons with how exactly authors can think up such realistic crimes . . .


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"This droll romp is a latter-day Miss Marple.” — Washington Post Murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel by internationally best-selling author Elly Griffiths, a literary mystery perfect for fans of Anthony Horowitz and Agatha Christie. The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should not be suspi "This droll romp is a latter-day Miss Marple.” — Washington Post Murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel by internationally best-selling author Elly Griffiths, a literary mystery perfect for fans of Anthony Horowitz and Agatha Christie. The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should not be suspicious. Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing out of the ordinary when Peggy’s caretaker, Natalka, begins to recount Peggy Smith’s passing. But Natalka had a reason to be at the police station: while clearing out Peggy’s flat, she noticed an unusual number of crime novels, all dedicated to Peggy. And each psychological thriller included a mysterious postscript: PS: for PS. When a gunman breaks into the flat to steal a book and its author is found dead shortly thereafter—Detective Kaur begins to think that perhaps there is no such thing as an unsuspicious death after all. And then things escalate: from an Aberdeen literary festival to the streets of Edinburgh, writers are being targeted. DS Kaur embarks on a road trip across Europe and reckons with how exactly authors can think up such realistic crimes . . .

30 review for The Postscript Murders

  1. 4 out of 5

    Meredith ( on Semi-Hiatus until February)

    4.5 stars “If I’m ever killed, my TBR pile will be the murder weapon.” The Postscript Murders is a tautly written murder mystery centered around the death of a 90-year-old woman who happens to have been a murder consultant. When Peggy Smith, a 90-year-old woman, is found dead, no one believes foul play had a role in her death….that is no one but her Ukrainian carer, Natalka. Upon the discovery that Peggy served as a murder consultant, thinking up unique ways for characters to die, for popular a 4.5 stars “If I’m ever killed, my TBR pile will be the murder weapon.” The Postscript Murders is a tautly written murder mystery centered around the death of a 90-year-old woman who happens to have been a murder consultant. When Peggy Smith, a 90-year-old woman, is found dead, no one believes foul play had a role in her death….that is no one but her Ukrainian carer, Natalka. Upon the discovery that Peggy served as a murder consultant, thinking up unique ways for characters to die, for popular and critically acclaimed authors, Natalka teams up with Edwin, an 80-year-old “ancient TV producer," and Benedict an “ex-monk-turned-coffee-shop owner” to investigate Peggy’s death. Detective Harbinder Kaur is brought into the fold. Investigating Peggy’s death changes the lives of this motley and eccentric group of armchair detectives. It also makes an impact on Harbinder’s life. There are multiple narrators, all of whom offer a unique perspective on the investigation. Natalka was my favorite character, followed by Benedict. But really, I loved all of the characters. This is book two in the Harbinder Kaur series but can be read as a standalone. Clare and a few others who played a role in The Stranger Diaries make appearances, but it is not essential to read these books in order. The Postscript Murders is a book for mystery lovers, especially those who are fans of jazz-age mysteries, as well for those who love to play the role of armchair detective. Clues are found in books, and I love the idea of a 90-year-old woman being credited with thinking up original murders for novelists to use in their books. My only gripe was that I wanted to know more about Peggy. I loved every minute of this book! It is smart, witty, and full of wonderful book-related gems. I had so much fun reading it. The mystery has many layers, and all is not what it seems. The characters are developed, intelligent, and each lovable in their own way. I hope to see all of them again in future books! “Is there really a world where people care so much about books that they write to the authors and consider them friends?” I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    MarilynW

    The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths  The Postscript Murders gives us a cozy murder mystery, in the style of Agatha Christie. No in your face blood and guts, just a 90 year old woman who is such an expert on how to kill people that authors use her as their "murder consultant". But when Peggy dies, one of her caretakers, Natalka, gets suspicious for a number of reasons. Natalka had seen Peggy that morning and she was just fine, so Natalka, Benedict, the local coffee shack guy, and Edwin, Peggy The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths  The Postscript Murders gives us a cozy murder mystery, in the style of Agatha Christie. No in your face blood and guts, just a 90 year old woman who is such an expert on how to kill people that authors use her as their "murder consultant". But when Peggy dies, one of her caretakers, Natalka, gets suspicious for a number of reasons. Natalka had seen Peggy that morning and she was just fine, so Natalka, Benedict, the local coffee shack guy, and Edwin, Peggy's 80 year old neighbor, start brainstorming things they've found and become amateur murder sleuths, to the annoyance of DS Harbinder Kaur, who is the official investigator on the case. Peggy's death does seem suspicious, especially when an intruder holds a gun on Natalka and Benedict, while they are looking at crime books in the late Peggy's apartment.  We get to see things from the viewpoints of Natalka, Benedict, Edwin, Harbinder and others. Eventually Natalka, Benedict, and Edwin take off to an Aberdeen literary festival to do their snooping, and things get more dangerous and perplexing. Both Benedict and Harbinger are the most entertaining to me, with their inner thoughts on everything that was going on. Natalka brings to mind a beautiful spy (I'm not saying she is a spy), Edwin, at 80, is as suave as he was in his younger days, and Harbinder gets so irked by her partner Neil that she imagines he's a small woodland creature, although I don't think this helped her relationship with him, one bit.  Harbinder played a role in The Stranger Diaries but it's not necessary to read that book to enjoy this one. I hope we see more of Harbinder (and friends) in future books. I'd love to see things from the viewpoint of Neil, Harbinder's partner. As much as she thinks he drives her nuts, I suspect he has a few complaints of his own.  Expected publication: March 2, 2021 Thank you to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and NetGalley for this ARC.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Paromjit

    Elly Griffiths's sequel to The Stranger Diaries featuring the gay, Sikh DS Harbinder Kaur, in her thirties, yet still living with her parents, is a rather different affair, but a winner nevertheless with murder and mayhem set in the world of a crime writers community, literary agents, murder consultants and publishers. In Shoreham by the Sea, a West Sussex coastal town, 90 year old Peggy Smith sits by her window, observing the world outside, making notes in her investigation book, such as the ap Elly Griffiths's sequel to The Stranger Diaries featuring the gay, Sikh DS Harbinder Kaur, in her thirties, yet still living with her parents, is a rather different affair, but a winner nevertheless with murder and mayhem set in the world of a crime writers community, literary agents, murder consultants and publishers. In Shoreham by the Sea, a West Sussex coastal town, 90 year old Peggy Smith sits by her window, observing the world outside, making notes in her investigation book, such as the appearance of two suspicious men in a car outside. When Ukrainian care worker, Natalka Kolsnyk finds Peggy dead in her chair by the window, it seems a straightforward natural death of an elderly woman. However, a number of strange oddities make Natalka wonder if it could be murder. There is the business card proclaiming Peggy as a murder consultant, and so many of her crime books have the authors thanking her for her help, acknowledging her contribution to their crime novels. Then there is the postcard with the ominous message 'We are coming for you'. Natalka, a mathematics graduate, gifted in algorithms in cryptocurrencies, takes her concerns to Harbinder whose interest is aroused and cemented when Natalka and Edwin are disturbed by a gunman in Peggy's flat. Unwilling to leave the investigation in the hands of the police, Natalka, the gay 80 year old Edwin Fitzgerald, a former researcher and religious radio broadcaster and an ex-monk, Benedict Cole, who runs The Shack cafe, form a tight knit group. Each has been lonely in their own way, now proving to be remarkably adept and skilled amateur detectives as crime authors begin to be murdered, not put off in the slightest by the danger they find themselves in. Griffiths excels in the creation and development of quirky characters in her crime novels, and Natalka, Edwin and Benny make for a wonderfully interesting bunch, each bringing their own specific qualities as they dig deep to get to the truth of the murders and Peggy's mysterious history. Trying to rein them in and protect them, all to little effect as they take off to a literary crime festival in Aberdeen, is Harbinder, with her acute observations, yearning for a romantic relationship, trying to be there for her beloved mother when she suffers an injury that puts her out of action for a little while. This is a wonderfully entertaining crime read, humorous, engaging and just so much fun to read, leaving me looking forward to the next in the series. Fans of Griffiths will love this. Many thanks to Quercus for an ARC.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Dorie - Cats&Books :)

    Well this was definitely a surprise of a book coming from this author! I read and loved “The Stranger Diaries” and some of her Ruth Galloway books. I think those books had a more “sinister”, heavier feel to them. Who has ever heard of a “murder consultant”?? Well in this book you will hear all about Peggy, a lovely woman who was considered just that. She helped authors find unique ways of “killing off their characters” and she was well known among murder mystery writers. The book opens with her Well this was definitely a surprise of a book coming from this author! I read and loved “The Stranger Diaries” and some of her Ruth Galloway books. I think those books had a more “sinister”, heavier feel to them. Who has ever heard of a “murder consultant”?? Well in this book you will hear all about Peggy, a lovely woman who was considered just that. She helped authors find unique ways of “killing off their characters” and she was well known among murder mystery writers. The book opens with her Ukranian caregiver, Natalka, finding Peggy dead at her desk. This is where she wrote her “investigations” and observations of the people passing in front of her bay window overlooking the sea. Her death was thought to be a heart attack, natural causes. She was said to have a known heart condition? Did she?? This starts the beginning of a very novel mystery. The lead detective assigned to the case, DS Harbinder Kaur, gets lots of help from Peggy’s friends in solving this case. There are many different ideas floated around but when others are found dead, supposedly of natural causes, there are suspicions of a possible serial killer? The characters were amazing, here are some of them; the first 4 make up our murder solving investigators! I love how their relationships changed and how well these four worked together : Edwin, Peggy’s friend used to frequently do crossword puzzles. He was a very close friend and is shocked at her death. He said he thought she was quite healthy. Benedict is a former monk, he is a caring neighbor and thinks Peggy’s death is suspicious, he loves murder mysteries Natalka, is an amazing caregiver, we see her change a lot during the book, in a good way. She found Peggy dead and was the first to suggest this might be murder! Harbinger Kaur is a very interesting character, she seems to have a rough exterior but she shows another side of herself in this novel Nigel, Peggy’s son who doesn’t seem to be in mourning for his mother, in fact he starts packing the flat up to sell as soon as he could. Why was he in such a hurry, something isn’t right here. Multiple murder victims whose names I will not mention or that would spoil the surprise :) I really enjoyed this book, it was a very different side of Ms.Griffiths that I have not read before. I would recommend this book, it was a good mystery, well plotted and had great characters that made me care about them. I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher through NetGalley This novel will be published on March 2, 2021

  5. 4 out of 5

    Phrynne

    The second book in the Harbinder Kaur series and it is an absolute delight! The Postscript Murders is a murder mystery but it tends strongly towards cosy with several of the characters acting as amateur detectives and getting themselves into all kinds of difficulties. Luckily the police are involved and do actually maintain control of the investigations most of the time. This is a book about books and their authors, publishers and literary agents. There are also retired wartime spies spending the The second book in the Harbinder Kaur series and it is an absolute delight! The Postscript Murders is a murder mystery but it tends strongly towards cosy with several of the characters acting as amateur detectives and getting themselves into all kinds of difficulties. Luckily the police are involved and do actually maintain control of the investigations most of the time. This is a book about books and their authors, publishers and literary agents. There are also retired wartime spies spending their time creating new ways for book characters to die, Ukrainian refugees out for revenge and an aged care nurse working the bitcoin market in her free time. All good fun and written so nicely it never becomes too over the top. Elly Griffiths has a light touch in this book. There is plenty of humour, especially from Harbinder herself. She has her own wonderful ways of dealing internally with implied racism and with her partner's foibles. The three amateur detectives, Natalka, Edwin and Benedict are all beautifully drawn and make you cross your fingers that things will end well for them. I know it was a good book because I found myself reading bits out loud to anyone who was listening. I thought it was good fun, very well written and totally entertaining. My thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and review this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*

    EXCERPT: Natalka turns back to Peggy. She looks at peace, that's what Patricia will say to Nigel. Passed away peacefully. There's a book open on the arm of Peggy's chair. 'Highrise Murder' by Dex Challoner. Peggy's binoculars are on the table beside her. There's also a pen,completed crossword and a pill dispenser, the sort that has the days of the week on it. There's something else too, a piece of paper just poking out from under the crossword. Natalka slides it out. It's a business card, very o EXCERPT: Natalka turns back to Peggy. She looks at peace, that's what Patricia will say to Nigel. Passed away peacefully. There's a book open on the arm of Peggy's chair. 'Highrise Murder' by Dex Challoner. Peggy's binoculars are on the table beside her. There's also a pen,completed crossword and a pill dispenser, the sort that has the days of the week on it. There's something else too, a piece of paper just poking out from under the crossword. Natalka slides it out. It's a business card, very official, with black, curly writing. Mrs M. Smith, it says. Murder Consultant ABOUT 'THE POSTSCRIPT MURDERS': PS: thanks for the murders. The death of a ninety-year-old woman with a heart condition should absolutely not be suspicious. DS Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing to concern her in carer Natalka's account of Peggy Smith's death. But when Natalka reveals that Peggy lied about her heart condition and that she had been sure someone was following her... And that Peggy Smith had been a 'murder consultant' who plotted deaths for authors, and knew more about murder than anyone has any right to... And when clearing out Peggy's flat ends in Natalka being held at gunpoint by a masked figure... Well then DS Harbinder Kaur thinks that maybe there is no such thing as an unsuspicious death after all. MY THOUGHTS: 'No one knows the hour,not even the angels in heaven, or the Son himself...' - Matthew 24 There is something almost Christiesque about The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths. It has that feel of a Christie murder-mystery. The slow buildup, rather like a steam train pulling out of the station, the multiple suspects, the red herrings. But Griffiths murders and characters perhaps have a few more teeth than Christie's, and she is not above a bit of sarcasm, which I enjoy. Although this is #2 in the Harbinder Kaur series, unusually for a series, the detective is not the focus of the book. The murder/s are firmly front and centre, with an ill assorted cast of amateur detectives playing the major role. Natalka, carer for Peggy and a few of the other elderly residents of Seaview Manor, a residential care complex, has a past, one that she fears is catching up with her. Benedict, ex-Monk, now barista. He left because he fell out of love with God, although his faith is as strong as ever. And Edwin, in his eighties, ex BBC and a gentleman to the core, gay, and very observant. Convinced that Peggy's death was not natural, and that the police aren't taking it seriously enough, these three set out to investigate on their own. Although they do DS (who would love to be DI) Harbinder Kaur the courtesy of keeping in touch by text. DS Kaur, who is almost 40 and still lives at home with her parents, is in turn frustrated and impressed by the skills and dedication of this group. Kaur is also gay, still hiding it from her parents, and disappointingly single. She has a nice line in sarcasm, and often thinks of her partner, Neil, as a little woodland animal, a cute squirrel who often nibbles at nuts somewhat larger than he is. Neil himself would have preferred to live in the times where detectives trampled all over the crime scene, pausing only to beat up suspects and drink beer, rather than having to worry about all the intricacies of forensics. Although this series is immensely different to Elly Griffiths Ruth Galloway series, she still holds me spellbound with her use of words, both in her character and scenery descriptions, and her setting of atmosphere . . . '...the spaces beneath them. Old mining tunnels. Caverns measureless to man. Death and dread.' and 'ghost cottages with the gardens still in flower.' I loved The Postscript Murders. I loved the characters. I loved the plot with its red herrings and twists. I loved the solution. It was something that I had not even considered! An altogether wonderful read. ⭐⭐⭐⭐.8 #ThePostscriptMurders #NetGalley 'It's such a civilised world; books, libraries, tea and cake.' THE AUTHOR: Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway novels take for their inspiration Elly's husband, who gave up a city job to train as an archaeologist, and her aunt who lives on the Norfolk coast and who filled her niece's head with the myths and legends of that area. Elly has two children and lives near Brighton. DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Quercus via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions. For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com This review and others are also published on Twitter, Amazon, Instagram and my webpage https://sandysbookaday.wordpress.com/...

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jayme

    Unpopular opinion alert! This was just a 3⭐️ read for me! I loved “The Stranger Diaries”...the story within the book, the suspense, the hint of the Supernatural... So, I was excited to receive approval to read an ARC of “The Postscript Murders”! The death of 90 year old, Peggy Smith, reveals that she has been a “Murder Consultant” for several best-selling crime fiction authors! Her name appears in dedications and the acknowledgement pages of several books-apparently she was great at plotting and Unpopular opinion alert! This was just a 3⭐️ read for me! I loved “The Stranger Diaries”...the story within the book, the suspense, the hint of the Supernatural... So, I was excited to receive approval to read an ARC of “The Postscript Murders”! The death of 90 year old, Peggy Smith, reveals that she has been a “Murder Consultant” for several best-selling crime fiction authors! Her name appears in dedications and the acknowledgement pages of several books-apparently she was great at plotting and dreaming up new ways to murder someone! P.S. Thanks for the Murders P.S. for PS I wanted to hear about how Peggy collaborated with the authors and brainstormed with them! I wanted to hear her ideas, and to get to know HER. Peggy could have been one of those characters that we never forget! THAT is the book that I wanted to read! But, alas, we didn’t get to spend time with Peggy beyond the Prologue. Instead, we join her three friends (unlikely armchair detectives) and DI Harbinder Kaur (who was first introduced in The Stranger Diaries) for a “COZY” mystery, which at times read a bit like a farce to me because of a white Ford Fiesta which seemed to be lurking around all of the authors of the “Postscript Murders”. It is not necessary to read “The Stranger Diaries” to read this one, but if you haven’t read it, it was the book which I preferred of the two. P.S. This will be available in the U.S. on March 2, 2021.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    This character driven mystery is perfect for fans of The Thursday Murder Club. It’s book two in a series about Harinder Kaur, a gay, 36 year old Sikh, female DS. A ninety year old “murder consultant” dies of an apparent heart attack. But Natalka , her caregiver, has misgivings and shares them with Harinder. Griffiths’ sense of humor is still intact. When Natalka and Benedict, coffee shop owner and ex-monk, decide to investigate, they are confronted by a gun wielding masked man. “But he can’t den This character driven mystery is perfect for fans of The Thursday Murder Club. It’s book two in a series about Harinder Kaur, a gay, 36 year old Sikh, female DS. A ninety year old “murder consultant” dies of an apparent heart attack. But Natalka , her caregiver, has misgivings and shares them with Harinder. Griffiths’ sense of humor is still intact. When Natalka and Benedict, coffee shop owner and ex-monk, decide to investigate, they are confronted by a gun wielding masked man. “But he can’t deny it’s the most interesting thing to have happened to him since Brother Giles forgot the doxology in Matins.” Each character is given a chance to narrate the story. Everyone is well developed, engaging and likable. They are people you would love to enjoy a cocktail with. Peggy, the “murder consultant”, helped novelists find new and interesting ways of murdering their victims. As those novelists feature in the story, Griffiths is given even more opportunities to turn her wit to writers and their methods. This isn’t a fast paced book. But I just found it very enjoyable entertainment. Griffiths harkens back to the “golden age” of crime stories, and the story definitely has a cozy, old fashioned feel to it despite the characters being distinctly modern. It can easily be read as a standalone. Kudos to Griffiths for having three different series, each of which I love. My thanks to netgalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for an advance copy of this book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Ceecee

    Ninety year old Peggy Smith observes two men from her window seat at her sheltered accommodation ‘Seaview Court’ in Shoreham, West Sussex. Peggy is an astute observer but why do they attract her attention? Shortly after this, Peggy is found dead by her Ukrainian born carer Natalka. Maybe her death is no surprise given Peggy’s age but Natalka is uneasy, as is fellow resident and friend, sprightly eighty year old Edwin. They discuss their thoughts with mutual friend and coffee shop owner Benedict Ninety year old Peggy Smith observes two men from her window seat at her sheltered accommodation ‘Seaview Court’ in Shoreham, West Sussex. Peggy is an astute observer but why do they attract her attention? Shortly after this, Peggy is found dead by her Ukrainian born carer Natalka. Maybe her death is no surprise given Peggy’s age but Natalka is uneasy, as is fellow resident and friend, sprightly eighty year old Edwin. They discuss their thoughts with mutual friend and coffee shop owner Benedict and decide Natalka should go to the police with their suspicions. DS Harbinder Kaur investigates and this takes her from Shoreham to Aberdeen and back again in search of the truth. The story is told from several perspectives including Harbinder and this works really well. First of all, although Peggy isn’t in in the book as such, you feel her fascinating and enigmatic presence throughout. She was a ‘murder consultant’ who helped many authors struggling with plot holes to find solutions and this is intrinsic in the storytelling. The characters are terrific as they are all colourfully likeable with really good back stories which makes them a cut above other characters in this genre. I’m sure Harbinder will feature again as she is such a good lead detective character but Natalka, Edwin and Benedict make such excellent amateur sleuths it would be great if they made another appearance too. There’s plenty of humour which I really like (several unladylike snorts of laugher throughout the reading!) and each chapter has a heading which is either obviously funny or dryly ironic. It is extremely well written, it has an old fashioned ‘Golden Age’ crime novel vibe to it but it’s not at all dated, in fact it feels clever, fresh and original. It has all the requisite features of a crime novel with some shocks, dangerous incidents, a killing spree, numerous twists and although it does get somewhat convoluted towards the end it’s a fun caper! I love the crime novel, television show references and quotes throughout and the wry commentary on the literary world is good too. Overall, this is a very enjoyable read with an intriguing and well thought out plot that keeps you guessing. Recommended. With thanks to NetGalley and Quercus for the ARC 4-5 stars rounded up because of the entertainment value!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Diane S ☔

    The Golden Age of mysteries with a contemporary setting and overtones, aided by three quirky amateur detectives and, Harbinger, the gay, Sikh detective from the Stranger Diaries. It starts with the death of a ninety year old in a care home. A mystery afficiendo, her apartment is chock full of mystery novels, some aged, some more current. Her death is thought to be from a heart attack, but her care giver is not sure having been told by the woman that she thought someone had been watching her. She The Golden Age of mysteries with a contemporary setting and overtones, aided by three quirky amateur detectives and, Harbinger, the gay, Sikh detective from the Stranger Diaries. It starts with the death of a ninety year old in a care home. A mystery afficiendo, her apartment is chock full of mystery novels, some aged, some more current. Her death is thought to be from a heart attack, but her care giver is not sure having been told by the woman that she thought someone had been watching her. She enlists the aid of a fellow pensioner at the home and an former monk who now owns a coffee shack. And we're off to the races. A delightful blend of non graphic murder, wonderful characters, a look into the art of mysteries, much humor, and plenty of red herrings strewn hither and non. Loved the armchair today into Scotland and a book festival that features mystery writers that all seemed to know the dead women. Of course, more murders are soon committed making a strange case even stranger. Harbinger, brings us up to date in her life and tries to solve these mysteries while keeping track of her erstwhile amateurs. This is a fun, well put together story. I've read all three of Griffiths series and loved every one. Her characterizations are top notch and the atmosphere created always, for me, feels authentic. "Of course, plot is overrated,' says Lance. 'i try to get beyond what happens next.' Edwin reminds himself never to read Lance's book." Don't need to make that decision here, there is plenty of plot and plenty of Golden Age feel. ARC from Edelweiss.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    This new series from Elly Griffiths featuring DS Harbinder Kaur, a thirty six year old gay Sikh woman still living with her parents, is shaping up to be very enjoyable. More cosy crime than police procedural, it has a lighter feel than her excellent Elly Griffiths series with a good infusion of humour. In this second episode, the mystery is kicked off with the unexpected death of ninety year old, Peggy Smith, a woman with an interesting past and a self proclaimed Murder Consulatant who helps aut This new series from Elly Griffiths featuring DS Harbinder Kaur, a thirty six year old gay Sikh woman still living with her parents, is shaping up to be very enjoyable. More cosy crime than police procedural, it has a lighter feel than her excellent Elly Griffiths series with a good infusion of humour. In this second episode, the mystery is kicked off with the unexpected death of ninety year old, Peggy Smith, a woman with an interesting past and a self proclaimed Murder Consulatant who helps authors with plots for their murder mysteries. Her friends, pensioner Edwin, carer Natalka and cafe owner Benedict all become involved in solving the mystery of her death, much to Harbinder's amusement and despair. The amateur detectives are all interesting quirky characters, something the author writes so well. Harbinder is also developing well as an original character; a good detective with a kind heart who listens to people but gets the job done. The plot takes us into the world of writing and publishing and even to a literary festival. Well written with some good twists and a gentle humour, this was a fun and engaging read. 4.5★ With thanks to Quercus Books and Netgalley for a digital arc to read

  12. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    3.5 stars In this 2nd book in the Harbinder Kaur series, the police detective investigates several suspicious deaths. The book works fine as a standalone. ***** Ninety-year-old Peggy Smith lives in Seaview Court, a seaside block of retirement flats in Shoreham, England. Peggy's a nosy-parker who likes to sit in her bay window and make notes about the people she sees outside. Shortly after Peggy observes two suspicious men sitting in a car she's found dead in her apartment, a death that's ascribed to 3.5 stars In this 2nd book in the Harbinder Kaur series, the police detective investigates several suspicious deaths. The book works fine as a standalone. ***** Ninety-year-old Peggy Smith lives in Seaview Court, a seaside block of retirement flats in Shoreham, England. Peggy's a nosy-parker who likes to sit in her bay window and make notes about the people she sees outside. Shortly after Peggy observes two suspicious men sitting in a car she's found dead in her apartment, a death that's ascribed to a heart attack. Peggy's carer, a beautiful Ukranian woman called Natalka, doesn't buy the natural death scenario. While packing Peggy's books, Natalka notes that many mystery novels are either dedicated to Peggy or mention Peggy in the acknowledgements, and Peggy has a business card that reads 'Mrs. M. Smith, Murder Consultant.' Natalka hastens to the police station..... ....and reports her suspicions about Peggy's death to Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur. Harbinder agrees that 'murder consultant' has a sinister ring to it, but isn't especially alarmed by (what seems to be) the death of an elderly woman from natural causes. Natalka then shares her concerns with two friends who knew Peggy: Benedict - a thirtysomething former monk who now runs a coffee shop; and Edwin - an elderly gent who lives in Peggy's apartment building. With Natalka's urging, the odd threesome decide to launch their own investigation into Peggy's death, a seriocomic exercise that's both fun and dangerous. The amateur sleuths attend Peggy's funeral, because the 'murderer always goes to the funeral', after which Natalka and Benedict search Peggy's apartment for clues. While the duo are looking through Peggy's things, a masked figure enters the residence, points a gun at them, grabs a book, and runs out. This incident DOES make DS Harbinder Kaur suspicious, and the subsequent murder of a mystery author who mentioned Peggy in all his books clinches the deal. Harbinder accepts that the deaths of Peggy and the writer might be linked. While Harbinder makes inquiries in Shoreham with her partner DS Neil Winston, Natalka, Benedict, and Edwin engage in a parallel investigation - one that takes them to a literary festival in Aberdeen. Another death follows, and it looks like Natalka and her cohorts might be in danger as well. The book's plot is engaging, but the best parts of the story are the characters. ♦ Natalka is an ex-pat who can't return to Ukraine because of the conflict with Russia. Natalka has a degree in maths, a facility for trading in cryptocurrencies, and a dangerous history with the Ukranian mafia. Natalka works as a carer to have a flexible job that provides a little money. ♦ Benedict is an amiable man who loved the spiritual life of a monk but came to yearn for 'a normal life.' Benedict is shy about meeting women, but hopes a special lady will miraculously walk into his life. The café owner loves to read mysteries, and turns out to be a clever detective. ♦ Edwin is an elegant gentleman who once worked for the BBC, and still has connections in the entertainment industry. Edwin is bored with his retirement life, and longs for interesting things to do. The chance to look into a crime is pure fun for him. ♦ DS Harbinder Kaur is a gay Sikh woman who still lives with her folks. Harbinder's parents run the family store, and her mom is a wonderful cook who serves delicious Indian cuisine. Harbinder thinks of her police partner Neil Winston, who doesn't 'get' a lot of things, as a woodland creature - sly, slightly stupid, but ultimately lovable. Harbinder's inner thoughts about Neil's animal persona (nibble nibble nibble; twitching nose and ruffled whiskers; a squirrel deprived of its nut) provide amusing mental images. ♦ DS Neil Winston is awed by wealthy people, loves pretty English villages, and thinks the rich and beautiful are above criminal activity. Despite these limitations, Neil is a decent detective....and he loves Mrs. Kaur's cooking. ♦ Other characters in the tale include home care workers, writers, editors, agents, publicists, family members, police officers, elderly ladies, Russians, and more - so there are plenty of suspects for the murders. The story has clever twists, and armchair sleuths will be challenged to solve the crimes. Thanks to Netgalley, Elly Griffiths, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for a copy of the book. You can follow my reviews at https://reviewsbybarbsaffer.blogspot.com

  13. 5 out of 5

    PamG

    THE POSTSCRIPT MURDERS by Elly Griffiths combines death and authors within a novel that is a police procedural and almost a cozy mystery hybrid set in England and Scotland. The death of ninety-year-old Peggy Smith seems to be one of natural causes, but is it? One of her caretakers, Natalka Kolisnyk, thinks it is murder. While helping to clear out Peggy’s apartment, she notices the large number of murder mysteries; many of which have mentioned Peggy in their acknowledgement section. Detective THE POSTSCRIPT MURDERS by Elly Griffiths combines death and authors within a novel that is a police procedural and almost a cozy mystery hybrid set in England and Scotland. The death of ninety-year-old Peggy Smith seems to be one of natural causes, but is it? One of her caretakers, Natalka Kolisnyk, thinks it is murder. While helping to clear out Peggy’s apartment, she notices the large number of murder mysteries; many of which have mentioned Peggy in their acknowledgement section. Detective Sergeant (DS) Harbinder Kaur doesn’t see anything out of the ordinary initially, but is willing to listen to Natalka. When a gunman breaks into Peggy’s apartment and steals a book, the situation rapidly changes and escalates. Natalka and friends Benedict Cole and Edwin Fitzgerald decide they have to help Harbinder solve the case and take on the roles of amateur sleuths. DS Kaur seems to interact with the amateurs a little too freely, but it made for an enjoyable read. The characters of Harbinder and Natalka are well developed and showed growth. The supporting characters of Cole and Fitzgerald were not quite as well developed, but were adequate for their role. I felt that Harbinder’s partner, DS Neil Winston took too much of a backseat to be realistic. The book changes point of view frequently, but the chapters are labeled with the character’s name and it is never confusing. The author did a great job of world-building. A strong sense of place made me feel like I was transported to Shoreham-by-Sea and Aberdeen. The plot is somewhat intricate with several subplots. There are lots of twists and turns and a few surprises along the way. The author’s sense of humor came through in the dialogue. Several themes are woven into the novel including death, murder, loneliness, elder care, religion, cultural differences, racism, and much more. Additionally, it also deals with books, authors, agents and publishers. Overall, it was an entertaining book that approached an investigation with a serious, hardworking, and kind investigator that was willing to listen to some quirky amateur detectives. This is the second book in the Harbinder Kaur mystery series, and I recommend it to those that enjoy the genre. It was a fun read and I am looking forward to the next book featuring Harbinder as well as other series by this author. This is the first book that I have read by Elly Griffiths, but it won’t be the last. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own and are not biased in any way. Publication date is currently set for March 2, 2021.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Rob

    Book 2 in the Harbinder Kaur series published 2020. This, I imagine, is what is referred to as a cosy mystery and not a genre that I would normally gravitate towards. But much to my surprise, and pleasure, I found it to be a highly entertaining and enjoyable read. What made it so entertaining was the eclectic cast of characters, the evolving mystery and the subtle but ever present humour. The characters include. 1. DS Harbinder Kaur, a female detective in a male dominated work place. She is also gay Book 2 in the Harbinder Kaur series published 2020. This, I imagine, is what is referred to as a cosy mystery and not a genre that I would normally gravitate towards. But much to my surprise, and pleasure, I found it to be a highly entertaining and enjoyable read. What made it so entertaining was the eclectic cast of characters, the evolving mystery and the subtle but ever present humour. The characters include. 1. DS Harbinder Kaur, a female detective in a male dominated work place. She is also gay; a Sikh and in her mid thirties is still lives with her mum and dad. 2. The beautiful and mysterious Natalka, a refugee from The Ukraine now living in England and working as carer for the aged. As luck would have it she is also a maths wizard. 3. Bernie, who until recently lived a cloistered life as a monk but know is the barista in his own coffee shop. Bernie also has the hots for Natalka. 4. Last but not least there’s elderly, dapper Edwin a retired TV producer, who like Harbinder, is gay. What’s not to like. When Natalka finds one of her clients, Peggy Smith, sitting in her favourite chair in front of her favourite window all seems normal but for one thing Peggy is dead. The police are called, enter DS Kaur, but given the fact that Peggy was in her nineties the verdict is death by natural causes. The obligatory spanner in the works turns up when Natalka finds some very strange cards inside some of Peggy’s books, cards that read “We’re coming for you”. Natalka is sufficiently intrigued that she decides to share this worrisome information with her friends, Bernie and Edwin. The group then decide to take their worries to DS Kaur who soon finds herself drawn into the mystery. The search for the truth will take the sleuths from the south of England to the north of Scotland and before we get to the truth there will be a plethora of red herrings to confuse you every step of the way. I can only say that this was an enjoyable and entertaining departure from my norm. A highly recommended 4 star read. Many thanks to the publisher Quercuc Books and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book

  15. 4 out of 5

    Javier

    ”She didn’t get all that knowledge from her husband. I think she got it from books.” “You’re right. You can travel the world in books.” “The postcript murders” was so much fun! After a couple of disappointments on my recent reads I knew this was gonna be a winner for me from page one. Murder mystery set in the literary world + eclectic and charming cast of characters = 5⭐️ In this second instalment in the DS Harbinder Kaur series, our favorite Sikh gay detective makes a come back with a trio of am ”She didn’t get all that knowledge from her husband. I think she got it from books.” “You’re right. You can travel the world in books.” “The postcript murders” was so much fun! After a couple of disappointments on my recent reads I knew this was gonna be a winner for me from page one. Murder mystery set in the literary world + eclectic and charming cast of characters = 5⭐️ In this second instalment in the DS Harbinder Kaur series, our favorite Sikh gay detective makes a come back with a trio of amateur detectives that were a complete delight. There’s Natalka, an Ukrainian refugee working as a carer and cryptocurrency genius. Benedict, an ex-monk turned barista suffering a case of Detective Fever. And Edwin, a 80 yo gay TV producer. They were all very well drawn out and were instantly likable. Also I find DS Kaur character so refreshing, as it’s not the usual tortured detective character. It will be nice to see how her family relationship evolves from now on. The story managed to grabbed me from page one. As you know I adore mysteries about writers, crime books, the literary world and so on, and this book was a perfect match for me. The story is laced with some humour and that’s always a win. And the “murder consultant” concept was hilarious! I want that job! I loved how Harbinder didn’t dismiss the trio of amateur detectives, and while she didn’t encourage them to investigate, she listened and respected their findings. The friendship they created was so wonderful! (for all her pretended coldness she sure gets friendly with her suspects! See “The stranger diaries”) All the different POVs made the story pretty dynamic and when you thought that all was said and done there was a final twist that, truth be told, hurt a little. Super enjoyable cozy mystery. Can’t wait to see again DS Kaur, and hopefully, her new friends too. Thanks to Netgalley and Quercus for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sandy

    In 2018 this author gave us The Stranger Diaries, a creepy & entertaining story that introduced DS Harbinder Kaur. She was more of a secondary character but with the arrival of this book, she steps into the shoes of MC. Not only is she up to the task, her unique voice is one of the most enjoyable aspects of this literary murder mystery. It all kicks off with the death of Peggy Smith, a 90 year old woman living in quaint-sounding Shoreham-by-Sea. She’s found by her care giver Natalka, sitting in In 2018 this author gave us The Stranger Diaries, a creepy & entertaining story that introduced DS Harbinder Kaur. She was more of a secondary character but with the arrival of this book, she steps into the shoes of MC. Not only is she up to the task, her unique voice is one of the most enjoyable aspects of this literary murder mystery. It all kicks off with the death of Peggy Smith, a 90 year old woman living in quaint-sounding Shoreham-by-Sea. She’s found by her care giver Natalka, sitting in her chair by the window & surrounded by her beloved mystery books. It’s sad but hardly a shock, right? Well…. It’s just that she was absolutely fine when Natalka popped in that morning. And there’s the small matter of the business card on the table that refers to Peggy as a “Murder Consultant”. Maybe Natalka better talk to someone. Luckily, her visit to the police station gets her a meeting with DS Harbinder Kaur. Neither one can know it yet but it’s the beginning of a strange, deadly & entertaining adventure, Because sudden death doesn’t stop with Peggy. Pretty soon, mystery authors who were acquainted with the little old ‘murder consultant” by the sea begin keeling over at an alarming rate. In short order, Kaur has several investigations on the go & whether she wants it or not, she’s also got outside help. Three of Peggy’s friends decide to act as Kaur’s eyes & ears. It’s not exactly an illustrious crew….a mysterious/gorgeous care giver (Natalka), an ex-monk turned coffee guy (Benny) & a fastidious OAP (Edwin). It’s like belonging to a really weird book club. But oddly enough, Harbinder is kind of enjoying it. So you’ve probably figured out this is not another gritty thriller. It’s more than that. As events lead police, Kaur & her team of misfits on a dash across the UK, many references are made to well known mystery/crime writers & their work. There’s definitely a golden age vibe to the story, albeit with a decidedly modern edge & more humour. Intricate plotting, compelling characters, smart dialogue & plenty of dry wit makes this an engaging read. At the centre of it all is Harbinder Kaur, a 30-something gay Asian cop who lives with her parents. I really like this character. She’s such an intriguing mix with one foot in the traditional Asian community of her parents while the other is firmly planted in her modern reality of being a cop. Several characters take turns narrating from their POV but hers is the primary voice. And it’s one full of intelligence, determination & dryly observant humour. Plenty of red herrings keep you guessing as to who is behind it all while a variety of secondary characters add colour & depth to the story. I really enjoyed this & look forward to seeing how Kaur & her colleagues develop in the next one. Highly recommend for fans of Agatha Christie & Anthony Horowitz’ Atticus Pünd series.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    If you gaze up at that window facing the Shoreham Beach, you would have noticed that elderly woman. She'd be decked out with her binoculars and a handy pen and notebook nearby. Nothing got past ol' Peggy when she sat in that lookout chair. Now most people would think that a ninety year old did her daily routine for entertainment and to pass away the hours. But for Peggy it was more than that. The time finally came when Peggy sat facing the shore with sightless eyes. Her caregiver, Natalka, came If you gaze up at that window facing the Shoreham Beach, you would have noticed that elderly woman. She'd be decked out with her binoculars and a handy pen and notebook nearby. Nothing got past ol' Peggy when she sat in that lookout chair. Now most people would think that a ninety year old did her daily routine for entertainment and to pass away the hours. But for Peggy it was more than that. The time finally came when Peggy sat facing the shore with sightless eyes. Her caregiver, Natalka, came upon her that day. Peggy never got the chance to share what she saw moving along in the sand and the wind. And then, no one felt differently while attending the funeral. Old age and all that...... But Natalka felt unsettled. She knew that familiar feeling easing itself in at the pit of her stomach while growing up in the Ukraine. That's why she contacted DS Harbinder Kaur of the West Sussex CID. They were to meet at The Coffee Shack down the street from Peggy. As witnesses and observers were interviewed by Harbinder, Natalka began to rally around Benedict who owned the shop and Edwin who was Peggy's neighbor. Soon the trio begins sharing notes and ideas with Harbinder. At first, Harbinder blows them off with their outlandish imaginations. But now she's taking them deadly serious when the group is threatened by a masked intruder with a gun. Someone doesn't want them sticking their noses where they don't belong. Elly Griffiths is a renowned author of the Ruth Galloway Mysteries and other offerings. This is the second book in the Harbinder Kaur Series. She's wrapped this one up with plenty of twisties and dead bodies. It doesn't circle around as a cosy mystery and it's not lined with blood and guts either. There's a distinct Agatha Christie flavor with the corners folded in at the end. Griffiths has a clear cut sense of humor and it shows up well in her dialogue and in the sometimes quirky actions of her characters. She's especially creative in The Postscript Murders with the mystery surrounding some unpredictable authors familiar with Peggy and Peggy with quite the backstory herself. You'll find yourself in the center of a moving stage with players who tend to shift gears fast and furious. I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for an honest review. My thanks to Quercus Books and to the talented Elly Griffiths for the opportunity.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    4.5★s Peggy Smith loved to gaze out her window and people watch. She was ninety years old and her mind was as sharp as ever. She loved taking notes and creating murder plots. But the morning Natalka, Peggy’s carer, arrived and discovered Peggy had passed away, still sitting in her chair at the window, would be the beginning of an intriguing and complex mystery. DS Harbinder Kaur was interested in what Natalka had to tell her, though also decidedly skeptical. Peggy had been classed as a “murder co 4.5★s Peggy Smith loved to gaze out her window and people watch. She was ninety years old and her mind was as sharp as ever. She loved taking notes and creating murder plots. But the morning Natalka, Peggy’s carer, arrived and discovered Peggy had passed away, still sitting in her chair at the window, would be the beginning of an intriguing and complex mystery. DS Harbinder Kaur was interested in what Natalka had to tell her, though also decidedly skeptical. Peggy had been classed as a “murder consultant” and the authors who had used her services had recognized her in their books. What were the postcards that were being received, all about? Did they mean anything? When an out of print book was stolen at gun point, Natalka and Benedict were shocked. There was no harm, but Harbinder knew something was going on that needed a full investigation… The Postscript Murders is the 2nd in the DS Harbinder Kaur series by Elly Griffiths and it was fun, entertaining and filled with charm. All about books, authors, publishers and murder, it felt more like a cosy mystery with Natalka, Benedict and Edwin searching for answers, and Harbinder doing the “gruesome” parts. An excellent read which I recommend. With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my digital ARC to read in exchange for an honest review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    DeAnn

    3.5 cozy stars My favorite part of this book is the scenery – I so want to visit Shoreham and Edinburgh after reading this book. Maybe I could hire a driver though to take me on the route? This book marks the return of DS Harbinder Kaur who is on the job investigating a possibly suspicious death followed by a string of murders! Kaur first appeared in “Stranger Diaries” which I really liked! Peggy Smith, a 90-year-old, has died and her home aide/carer Natalka is concerned that it might be suspicious 3.5 cozy stars My favorite part of this book is the scenery – I so want to visit Shoreham and Edinburgh after reading this book. Maybe I could hire a driver though to take me on the route? This book marks the return of DS Harbinder Kaur who is on the job investigating a possibly suspicious death followed by a string of murders! Kaur first appeared in “Stranger Diaries” which I really liked! Peggy Smith, a 90-year-old, has died and her home aide/carer Natalka is concerned that it might be suspicious, especially when she finds an interesting business card stating “Murder Consultant.” Soon we are immersed in the world of mystery book writers, including a book festival in Edinburgh. There’s a fun trio that is investigating the “crimes” – Natalka, a coffee shop owner Benedict, and Peggy’s neighbor, friend, and snappy dresser Edwin. Though the trio was surrounded by murders, I felt that they were safe from harm in this cozy mystery. I found this one to be reminiscent of Agatha Christie. An enjoyable read, but I did not like it as much as “Stranger Diaries” and I hope that in future books Harbinder Kaur is a bit more optimistic and happier! Thank you to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and NetGalley for the copy of this one to read.

  20. 5 out of 5

    NZLisaM

    ‘7 x pensioners: 2 couples, 3 singles'. From the upper floor window of her flat in Seaview Court, 90-year-old Peggy Smith spies on the people below, and records everything in her Investigation Book. When Natalka Kolisnyk from Care4You discovers Peggy dead in her armchair, there is nothing to suggest that the elderly woman died from anything other than natural causes. But while packing up Peggy's crime novels Natalka notices they are all either dedicated or include an acknowledgement to the 90-year ‘7 x pensioners: 2 couples, 3 singles'. From the upper floor window of her flat in Seaview Court, 90-year-old Peggy Smith spies on the people below, and records everything in her Investigation Book. When Natalka Kolisnyk from Care4You discovers Peggy dead in her armchair, there is nothing to suggest that the elderly woman died from anything other than natural causes. But while packing up Peggy's crime novels Natalka notices they are all either dedicated or include an acknowledgement to the 90-year-old, and when she stumbles across a business card with the words ‘Mrs. M. Smith. Murder Consultant' on it, her suspicions are aroused. What exactly is a murder consultant? Natalka, along with Peggy's 80 year-old neighbour Edwin, and the owner of the coffee shop across the road from Seaview Court, Benedict, are on the case. The Postscript Murders was an enjoyable, puzzling cosy mystery even though it lacked the creepy foreboding tension and gothic-ness of its predecessor, The Stranger Diaries. I was thrilled to see the return of DS Harbinder Kaur, as well as a handful of other characters (and pets) from the first book. Note, this a completely separate mystery from no. 1 in the series, so can definitely be read as a standalone, however in my opinion The Stranger Diaries is not to be missed. I wouldn't call this one fast-paced or gritty but there was enough happening to hold my attention, and it fitted with the word ‘cosy'. The amateur trio of investigators eluded equal parts warmth, savviness, and hilarity. The only thing that bothered me was Harbinder’s sometimes unprofessional behaviour, and how much she chose to share with people outside the police force meant the plot occasionally became unrealistic and a tad ridiculous. But I appreciate that as soon as Harbinder realised what she was doing she reined herself in. Okay, so she’s flawed, but I still love her. As an expert on everything bookish I devoured the numerous book references and familiar terminology – authors, writing, world of publishing and promotion, thriller genre, and even a literary festival. Even better, just like Anthony Horowitz's Magpie Murders series, there's a potential clue in a murder mystery novel, but with a clever original twist to separate it from those stories. If you are searching for a light, entertaining read with quirky, diverse characters, then look no further. Fingers crossed there's a third book in the pipeline. I'd like to thank Netgalley, Quercus, and Elly Griffiths for the e-ARC. Publication Date: 1st October 2020 (the perfect Halloween read for those who don't like to be too scared).

  21. 5 out of 5

    Bruce Hatton

    When carer Natalka Kolisnyk discovers the dead body of 90-year-old Peggy Smith in her care home, it is initially assumed that she died of natural causes. However, Peggy had recently been certain she was being watched and followed. Then it’s discovered that she acted as a “murder consultant” for various crime writers. When two of those authors also wind up dead, there’s no doubting at least one killer is on the loose. At first, it looks like the Russian or Ukrainian mafia could be involved, as the When carer Natalka Kolisnyk discovers the dead body of 90-year-old Peggy Smith in her care home, it is initially assumed that she died of natural causes. However, Peggy had recently been certain she was being watched and followed. Then it’s discovered that she acted as a “murder consultant” for various crime writers. When two of those authors also wind up dead, there’s no doubting at least one killer is on the loose. At first, it looks like the Russian or Ukrainian mafia could be involved, as the non-stop action moves from the south coast up to Aberdeen and back again. Despite the high body count, the story is still told with Elly Griffiths’ trademark light touch and sense of humour. Plus, another ingredient I always associate with Elly’s novels: a large cast of memorable characters. The final third is crammed full of twists, turns and surprises. In this, the second book of the series, I also liked the further development of the main character, Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur and look forward to more of her adventures.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Pat (not getting friend updates currently)

    This was the second of Elly Griffiths’ books featuring new protagonist DS Harbinder Kaur from the West Sussex constabulary. As in the first book we get taken on a magical mystery tour of fascinating characters, surprising twists, hidden clues, murder most foul, danger and heartwarming moments. The cast this time is even more diverse. Meet Natalka - a Ukrainian care worker, Edwin - a gay 80 year old former TV producer and radio host and Benedict - a former monk and current coffee shop owner. And This was the second of Elly Griffiths’ books featuring new protagonist DS Harbinder Kaur from the West Sussex constabulary. As in the first book we get taken on a magical mystery tour of fascinating characters, surprising twists, hidden clues, murder most foul, danger and heartwarming moments. The cast this time is even more diverse. Meet Natalka - a Ukrainian care worker, Edwin - a gay 80 year old former TV producer and radio host and Benedict - a former monk and current coffee shop owner. And let’s not forget Peggy Smith, the 90 year old murder consultant who, although she is killed early in the book, casts a very long shadow over the story and really binds it together. When Peggy is killed we learn that she knows an awful lot about murder (no, I’m not going to explain that) and a number of crime authors used to consult her seeking advice on new and innovative ways to kill off their characters. Following Peggy’s death, which is initially considered to be from natural causes, Natalka becomes suspicious, Edwin becomes morose (Peggy was his best friend) and Benedict gets ‘detective fever’ and throws himself into research. When some of Peggy’s authors start getting killed off Harbinder starts to take notice and the three amateur detectives follow the clues around the country getting themselves into heaps of trouble, but they do uncover some vital information. What I love about this series is that the limelight isn’t just on the lead detective. The three friends have starring roles and Harbinder’s friend, Clare Cassidy from the first book, also gets a mention. This might be classed as a ‘cosy’ but it is so well written with wonderfully developed characters and an engaging, complex mystery that it should satisfy the most dedicated armchair detective. A huge thanks to Netgalley, Quercus Books and Elly Griffiths for providing a review copy in exchange for an unbiased review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    P.S. I Love You. I think. This is a difficult review to write because I loved every part of the book except one. I’ll explain further but first the positives: Unique characters, many types not often written about. Lovely English countryside, colloquialisms, and manners. I love reading about the UK! The heart beats around Mystery and Thriller authors and their writing process, book tours, interaction with other authors, publicists, etc. I found this fascinating. Intricate mystery with clues dropped in P.S. I Love You. I think. This is a difficult review to write because I loved every part of the book except one. I’ll explain further but first the positives: Unique characters, many types not often written about. Lovely English countryside, colloquialisms, and manners. I love reading about the UK! The heart beats around Mystery and Thriller authors and their writing process, book tours, interaction with other authors, publicists, etc. I found this fascinating. Intricate mystery with clues dropped into the story. I wondered often where this was going. Plus, a gorgeous cover. I purchased a hardback copy so it'll look great on my shelf. Now the drawback for me: This is a character driven story with wonderfully written dimensional people. Except one. I didn’t like DS Harbinder Kaur and her description seemed forced. She seemed okay in The Stranger Diaries but there wasn’t so much of her. In Postscripts, she has much to say about her race and the prejudices against her but she’s racist herself and her many comments were off putting. She also subtly bullied her partner. That being said, I don't have to like a character to love the book and everything else was sublime. Purchased from The Book Depository.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lou

    The Postscript Murders is the second instalment in the Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur series, where murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel. The death of a ninety-year-old woman, Peggy Smith of Seaview Court, with a heart condition should not be suspicious. Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing out of the ordinary when Peggy’s caretaker, Natalka Kolisnyk from Care4You, begins to recount her passing having found her in The Postscript Murders is the second instalment in the Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur series, where murder leaps off the page when crime novelists begin to turn up dead in this intricate new novel. The death of a ninety-year-old woman, Peggy Smith of Seaview Court, with a heart condition should not be suspicious. Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur certainly sees nothing out of the ordinary when Peggy’s caretaker, Natalka Kolisnyk from Care4You, begins to recount her passing having found her in her beloved armchair.But Natalka had a reason to be at the police station: while clearing out Peggy’s flat, she noticed an unusual number of crime novels, all dedicated to Peggy. And each psychological thriller included a mysterious postscript: PS: for PS. When a gunman breaks into the flat to steal a book and its author is found dead shortly thereafter—Detective Kaur begins to think that perhaps there is no such thing as an unsuspicious death after all. And then things escalate: from an Aberdeen literary festival to the streets of Edinburgh, writers are being targeted. DS Kaur embarks on a road trip across Europe and reckons with how exactly authors can think up such realistic crimes... This is a riveting, compelling and exciting addition to what is shaping up to become a fantastic crime series. It is a complex, multilayered mystery that is gripping and held my interest from first page to last. As always, the writing is superb and draws you in from the outset, the characters believable and real, and the plot action-packed whilst packing an emotional punch. If you're a fan of intelligent mysteries then this is not to be missed. She pays attention to subtle details that many authors would neglect and her quirky characters are memorable and engaging. The plot is superbly executed with enough mystery, intrigue, twists and turns to keeping you feverishly turning the pages. It's fast-paced and written in Griffiths’s straightforward prose which makes it such an easy book to read and lose yourself in. This is a crime writer who knows exactly how to pull the wool over readers' eyes time and time again and who can be trusted to have you on the edge of your seat, making guesses at those behind the crimes but each time she somehow completely fools you repeatedly. A highly entertaining, masterful and utterly engrossing police procedural. Many thanks to Quer us for an ARC.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Farshana ❤️rainnbooks❤️

    Many thanks to Net Galley, Quercus Books and the author for a chance to read and review this book. All opinions are expressed voluntarily. Elly Griffith’s The Stranger Diaries was one of my favorite books in 2019 and the author has brilliantly followed it up with an exciting and thrilling sequel The Postscript Murders. Harbinder Kaur returns as the much-loved DS of West Sussex CID along with Neil in this murder mystery which is more of cozy fiction than a police procedural. Harbinder’s self-depre Many thanks to Net Galley, Quercus Books and the author for a chance to read and review this book. All opinions are expressed voluntarily. Elly Griffith’s The Stranger Diaries was one of my favorite books in 2019 and the author has brilliantly followed it up with an exciting and thrilling sequel The Postscript Murders. Harbinder Kaur returns as the much-loved DS of West Sussex CID along with Neil in this murder mystery which is more of cozy fiction than a police procedural. Harbinder’s self-deprecating humor is spot on and her quirky and lovable character definitely brings a smile on reader’s face. Joining Harbinder in this mystery set in the world of publishers, agents, editors and murder consultants are the three stooges Benedict a coffee shop owner and ex-monk, Edwin, a retired BBC broadcaster and Natalka a carer for the aged and a mathematic whiz whose razor sharp mind, in fact, hooks on to the discrepancies in the death of the 90 year old sprightly crime aficionado Peggy Smith. The trio’s antics as amateur sleuths are the most charming part of the story. The story unfolds thru each of these characters and drama heightens as one death follows another, taking us thru the seaside coastal town and Aberdeen. The locations in the story have been described so wonderfully that one can’t help but feel enchanted and long to be a part of the scenic locales. As the plot thickens with Ukrainian mafia, Russian spies, war activities of the past, the atmosphere intensifies before Harbinder can bring everything to a conclusion. It was enormously witty and comical to see Harbinder’s parents and their ‘neither in India nor in England ways of adaptation and even the mention of akki roti and parathas. Be ready, dear readers to be charmed by the still staying-with- parents, gay, Harbinder Kaur of Sikh origins who loves to play Panda Pop. This review is published in my blog https://rainnbooks.com/; Amazon India, Goodreads, and Twitter.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    In book two of the Harbinder Kaur series, I was expecting a read similar to the first book, "The Stranger Diaries", a gothic-influenced suspense novel. Boy was I ever wrong. This book is full of characters who are, well, characters. Infused with humor and suspense, this book is more of a cozy mystery. Indeed, the television show "Murder, She Wrote", is mentioned often and is the very definition of a cozy mystery. I don't usually put labels on books, however, this book had so much in common with In book two of the Harbinder Kaur series, I was expecting a read similar to the first book, "The Stranger Diaries", a gothic-influenced suspense novel. Boy was I ever wrong. This book is full of characters who are, well, characters. Infused with humor and suspense, this book is more of a cozy mystery. Indeed, the television show "Murder, She Wrote", is mentioned often and is the very definition of a cozy mystery. I don't usually put labels on books, however, this book had so much in common with "Murder, She Wrote", I couldn't help it. Set in a small seaside town similar to Cabot Cove, Maine in "Murder, She Wrote", the book opens with the three main characters, Natalka, Edwin and Benedict trying to come to terms with the death of their friend, 90-year-old Peggy Smith. They soon discover that Peggy has been mentioned in the acknowledgements of many of the crime novels she reads and has a card reading "M. Smith, Murder Consultant". Trying to ascertain what a Murder Consultant could be, they befriend a famous crime writer who is killed right after meeting with them. Enter DS Harbinder Kaur. On top of trying to solve the murder and investigate other mysterious deaths, she must try and contain this self-described "crime-fighting unit" from trampling on her investigations or becoming victims themselves. This is a wonderfully witty book ("If I'm every killed, my TBR pile will be the murder weapon") while at the same time effectively maintaining the suspense of a whodunit. I rooted for Natalka, Edwin and Benedict to solve the crimes and marveled at the restraint Harbindeer showed in dealing with them. Between this book, "The Stranger Diaries", and Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series, Elly Griffiths continually demonstrates her ability to write a range of suspense novels. This is an excellent read and I look forward to whatever Griffiths' writes next. Thank you NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin for an Advance Reader's Copy of this book. It will be published in March, 2021.

  27. 4 out of 5

    fleurette

    This is a very good story written with humour, a remarkably interesting group of characters and a well twisted plot. I usually don't like a story being told from multiple perspectives and when each chapter is a different POV, but here it was fine for me. Even more than that, I really liked it. Probably because all the characters are fascinating, and I really wanted to get to know their perspective. Let that be the best proof of how well written this book is - I was able to like what I usually don This is a very good story written with humour, a remarkably interesting group of characters and a well twisted plot. I usually don't like a story being told from multiple perspectives and when each chapter is a different POV, but here it was fine for me. Even more than that, I really liked it. Probably because all the characters are fascinating, and I really wanted to get to know their perspective. Let that be the best proof of how well written this book is - I was able to like what I usually don't like in my stories. And it must be said that the author did a really amazing job when it comes to characters. We have a great and truly diverse cast of characters. Diversified not only in terms of age or culture in which they grew up, but also experiences and worldviews. It's amazing how this seemingly completely random and mismatched group of characters works great together. Each character adds a certain specific dynamic to the story. Only together do they create the unique vibe. This unusual group of characters is perfectly complemented by a very good storyline. Not only is the idea great, but how could it be otherwise when the victim is ninety-year-old Peggy, who was no less but a murder consultant? The action is also fast, and it doesn't let us get bored even for a moment. Different threads intertwine with each other, and we are constantly wondering what actually happened and whether these things are really related. Well done. This is my first book by this author, and so in this series. But the fact that I hadn't read the first book was no problem at all and I could fully enjoy this one. I already have another book by this author from different series on my shelf and I will certainly read it soon. I definitely recommend this book to everyone who likes good crime stories with an interesting cast of characters and a non-obvious idea for a plot. And of course, all those who like mysteries related to crime fiction and their authors, because that's what the story is about after all. Thanks to NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ken

    The DI Harbinder Kaur series is a real love letter to various literary fiction. Her debut was the brilliantly modern take on the Victorian Gothic, this time it's the Goldern Age of Crime that's celebrated. It probably helped that I'm continuing through Christie's Bibliography, so I spotted many of the little beats of a bygone era which were perfectly placed through this modern take. The story revolves around the death of 90 year-old Peggy Smith, nothing on the surface seems suspicious though her Uk The DI Harbinder Kaur series is a real love letter to various literary fiction. Her debut was the brilliantly modern take on the Victorian Gothic, this time it's the Goldern Age of Crime that's celebrated. It probably helped that I'm continuing through Christie's Bibliography, so I spotted many of the little beats of a bygone era which were perfectly placed through this modern take. The story revolves around the death of 90 year-old Peggy Smith, nothing on the surface seems suspicious though her Ukrainian carer Natalka isn't so sure. We soon learn that Peggy was a 'murder consultant' who help plot out many deaths for celebrated authors. One of the strong aspects of this mystery is the side characters who attempt their own amateur detections during this case, whilst various mentions of the publishing industry and literaturacy festivals are also interesting. There is an element of 'Stuck in it time' when reading Christie now, mentions of both foreigners and homosexuality can feel very dated and problematic. I liked that there was a modern take on these issues too especially as our series character is a closeted gay Sikh. My only quibble is Brighton Pier featuring on the cover where as much of the story takes place in Shoreham-by-Sea. Overall another excellent entry in the series, I'm excited to see what Griffiths follows up with next.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Having loved, “The Stranger Diaries,” I was thrilled to receive the sequel for review. This begins with ninety year old, Peggy Smith, found dead in her retirement flat at Shoreham-by-Sea, by her carer, glamorous Ukrainian, Natalka. Before long, Natalka is questioning whether Peggy died naturally and visits the police, where she speaks to DS Harbinder Kaur. Peggy had a business card, labelling her a ‘murder consultant,’ who helped crime writers to plot their novels and suggest unusual ways of kil Having loved, “The Stranger Diaries,” I was thrilled to receive the sequel for review. This begins with ninety year old, Peggy Smith, found dead in her retirement flat at Shoreham-by-Sea, by her carer, glamorous Ukrainian, Natalka. Before long, Natalka is questioning whether Peggy died naturally and visits the police, where she speaks to DS Harbinder Kaur. Peggy had a business card, labelling her a ‘murder consultant,’ who helped crime writers to plot their novels and suggest unusual ways of killing off their characters. Before long, Natalka begins to investigate, along with ex-monk, Benedict and elderly ex-BBC radio presenter, Edwin. The trio are a wonderful group of characters and this book will certainly appeal to crime lovers everywhere, as so much of the story takes place during author events and literary festivals. I like Harbinder too, plus sidekick DS Neil Winston – even if she often compares him, somewhat unkindly, to a small, woodland animal. Griffiths has created a wonderful group of characters and fleshed them out with members of Harbinder’s family, who you come to care about – what’s not to like about Harbinder’s mother, who offers to feed anybody who sets foot in her kitchen? Overall, a clever, literary mystery, with a great setting, good characters and an interesting storyline. I really hope there are going to be more books featuring Harbinder and would love to see Benedict, Natalka and Edwin reappear too. One of my favourite books of the year – an absolute delight. This can be read as a stand-alone, but I highly recommend the first in the series too. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, for review.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Irene

    Not what I expected. The first book in this series, "The Stranger Diaries", was a gripping read, a compelling thriller. This book is more like a cozy mystery, sometimes almost a comedy, so not really my cup of tea. Not what I expected. The first book in this series, "The Stranger Diaries", was a gripping read, a compelling thriller. This book is more like a cozy mystery, sometimes almost a comedy, so not really my cup of tea.

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