cover image A Fatal Overture

A Fatal Overture

Kathleen Marple Kalb. Kensington, $26 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4967-2725-1

It’s January 1900 in Kalb’s fast, fun third Ella Shane mystery (after 2021’s A Fatal First Night), and New York City opera diva Ella is having a fencing lesson at her Washington Square townhouse when she receives a surprise visit from Flora Saint Aubyn, Countess of Blyth, accompanied by her equally noble sisters, Caledonia and Charlotte. Flora, the mother of Ella’s suitor, Gilbert Saint Aubyn, Duke of Leith, has traveled from Britain to assure Ella that she would be delighted to welcome Ella into the family. After a splendid tea, the visitors depart for their nearby hotel. Shortly afterward, Ella receives a message from Flora: “An unfortunately dead man has appeared in the bathtub in our suite. We have called the police, but please do come if you can.” The victim is Darren Eyckhouse, son of the owners of the hotel, who has been stabbed in the eye. Is Darren’s murder connected to recent attempts on Gilbert’s life? However, the real question is: will Ella accept Gil’s proposal of marriage? This will appeal more to romance readers than to mystery fans. Agent: Eric Myers, Myers Literary. (Apr.)