cover image A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery

A Woman Unknown: A Kate Shackleton Mystery

Frances Brody. Minotaur, $25.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-250-03704-6

Set in England in 1923, Brody’s fabulous fourth Kate Shackleton mystery (after 2014’s Murder in the Afternoon) finds the savvy PI trying to help a distraught husband, Cyril Fitzpatrick, locate his wife, who has a habit of disappearing for days at a time. Meanwhile, Kate is shocked to discover that banker Everett Runcie, who was seeking a divorce from his wife, has been found dead in his room at the Hotel Metropole in Leeds. The two threads turn out to be ingeniously related. Humming underneath the main story line is Kate’s continued mourning for her husband, who went missing in WWI. Such details as cloche hats, Yorkshire pudding, and “grand country houses” provide period flavor, while more serious historical matters, such as cultural attitudes toward divorce and adultery, prove germane to the plot. Snappy dialogue and a cast of well-developed minor characters are a plus. [em]Agent: Judith Murdoch, Judith Murdoch Literary Agency (U.K.). (Feb.) [/em]