A Shilling For Candles by Josephine Tey

Originally published in 1936, this the second of eight mysteries written by Ms. Tey.

From back of book:
‘Early one summer morning William Potticary’s eye was caught by a flock of seagulls diving into the surf off the southern coast of England. A young woman’s body lay limp on the beach – dyed hair, scarlet tipped toes. The coastguard called it “just a bathing fatality”, but an article twisted in her hair screamed murder. For Scotland Yard’s Inspector Alan Grant it was a nightmarish case of too many clues and too many motives. For the woman was the screen actress Christine Clay. And the world was full of people wanted her dead.’

Fun read! Full of charming characters, gentle humor and a well plotted mystery. I really the character of Inspector Alan Grant. Not afraid to get his information a little outside of the ‘rules’, but full of caring and sympathy.

I don’t want to give away too much about the book and spoil your fun of reading it for yourself… Tisdale is a fun character on the run from Inspector Grant and his men. He’s their key suspect. The police chief’s daughter, Erica, is sure he is innocent and goes out on the limb to help him. She brings him food until he turns up missing and then she is on the hunt for the item the police are looking for, as she’s sure it will clear him. Erica is a great character and Grant has a soft spot for her. Does she find the item? Does it clear Tisdale? Do they ever find Tisdale? And does romance bud between the two?

There are lots of interesting suspects, fellow actors who hated working with Christine, a husband who is a Lord, a male friend who shows up the morning they find her body and every says they are lovers, an astrologer who predicted her death and a no good brother out for her money. It could be any of them. I certainly didn’t guess the right person! See if you can!

Peggy Ann

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