cover image Queen of the Flowers: A Phryne Fisher Mystery

Queen of the Flowers: A Phryne Fisher Mystery

Kerry Greenwood, . . Poisoned Pen, $24.95 (249pp) ISBN 978-1-59058-171-1

Crime strikes close to home in this latest installment of Greenwood's charming series (The Castlemaine Murders , etc.) featuring 1920s Aussie amateur sleuth, Phryne Fisher. While the town of St. Kilda prepares for the 1928 Flower Parade, Phryne's adopted daughter, Ruth, disappears after learning her father's identity from her birthmother, Anna Ross. Phryne adds Ruth to her caseload, which coincidentally includes the search for another missing young woman, Rose Weston. As with other series entries, the solution to the mystery is secondary to the author's clever prose and gift for characterization. Phryne carries the action ably, even if her resourcefulness and unflappability sometimes border on the superhuman. The engaging cast of familiar supporting characters—including Phryne's maid, Dot, and her Chinese lover, Lin Chung—will delight longtime fans, but newcomers who like their crime on the lighter side can jump in without any trouble. (July)