Amateur sleuth Charley Carpenter discovers a coded journal that could crack her small town’s most infamous cold case wide open in this charming cozy mystery from the USA Today bestselling author of The Book Club Murders.
As the owner of Old Hat Vintage Fashions, Charley Carpenter supplies retro apparel to the residents of Oakwood, Ohio, but she’s been known to set business aside to play detective when a mystery rears its head. And there’s no bigger mystery in Oakwood than the murder of Regan Fletcher—a case that’s haunted the town for decades.
Regan’s boyfriend, Carter, did time for the crime—until another man’s confession freed him. But did the “real killer” really do it? Or did Carter walk away with blood on his hands? When Charley stumbles on an old journal written in code, it only complicates the case by revealing a blackmail scheme that targeted dozens of Oakwood’s citizens, giving them all a motive for murder.
Now, with a spate of new suspects to pursue, plus a fresh murder and the abduction of her sleuthing partner, Charley must dig deeper still into the past—even as she risks being buried by her shadowy prey. Joining forces with Detective Marcus Trenault and the newly formed Oakwood Mystery Book Club, Charley turns to a classic whodunit for clues on catching a killer—before more lives are lost, and the truth dies with them.
Leslie Nagel’s delightful Oakwood Mystery novels can be enjoyed together or separately: THE BOOK CLUB MURDERS • THE ANTIQUE HOUSE MURDERS • THE ADVICE COLUMN MURDERS • THE CODEBOOK MURDERS
What’s the couple next door really hiding? Vintage fashionista and amateur sleuth Charley Carpenter finds out in this engrossing cozy mystery from the USA Today bestselling author of The Book Club Murders.
In a small town like Oakwood, Ohio, everyone knows everyone else’s business—except for Charley Carpenter’s standoffish new neighbors, who tend to keep to themselves. But behind closed doors, Paxton Sharpe’s habit of screaming bloody murder at all hours of the day keeps Charley awake all night. Coupled with the stress of the increasingly delayed expansion of her shop, Old Hat Vintage Fashions, the insomnia is driving Charley crazy. Her only distraction? The local paper’s irreverent new advice column, “Ask Jackie.”
Jackie’s biting commentary usually leaves Charley and her employees rolling on the floor, but her latest column is no laughing matter. An oddly phrased query hinting at a child in peril immediately puts Charley on high alert. After arriving home to a bloodcurdling scream next door, she follows the noise into the basement and makes a grisly discovery: the body of Judith Sharpe’s adult daughter.
With Detective Marcus Trenault off in Chicago, Charley decides to take matters into her own hands. Convinced that the murder is connected to the desperate plea for help in “Ask Jackie,” she embarks on a twisted investigation that has her keeping up with the Sharpes—before a killer strikes again.
Leslie Nagel’s delightful Oakwood Mystery novels can be enjoyed together or separately: THE BOOK CLUB MURDERS | THE ANTIQUE HOUSE MURDERS | THE ADVICE COLUMN MURDERS
In this irresistible cozy mystery from the USA Today bestselling author of The Book Club Murders, amateur sleuth Charley Carpenter fights to avenge a crime that hits far too close to home.
Mulbridge House stood, silent and decaying, deep in the woods at the heart of Oakwood, Ohio, long before the passing of Augusta Mulbridge. Yet suddenly everyone in town seems to have a stake in its fate: the greedy heirs, eager to tear it down for a tidy profit; the local preservationists, determined to maintain it as an historic site; the angry neighbors, staunchly opposed to the construction of a modern subdivision. Even Charley Carpenter is forced to admit that her beloved shop, Old Hat Vintage Fashions, could use an infusion of the estate’s treasures.
The clock is ticking. The wrecking ball is ready to swing. All that stands between Mulbridge House and oblivion is one final vote. That, and murder . . .
The trouble begins when Charley walks into auctioneer Calvin Prescott’s office to find her cherished family friend crumpled on the floor. Detective Marcus Trenault quickly connects his death to a string of increasingly violent burglaries plaguing Oakwood. But when Charley uncovers a link to a massive land swindle worth millions, not to mention a drug ring operating out of the manor’s abandoned outbuildings, that theory crumbles faster than Mulbridge House. Now Charley’s racing to catch a killer before everything falls apart.
USA TODAY BESTSELLER • In a charming cozy mystery series debut, Leslie Nagel’s irrepressible small-town heroine finds that her fellow book club members may be taking their Agatha Christie a bit too literally—and murder a bit too lightly.
Charley Carpenter has poured heart and soul into her clothing store, Old Hat Vintage Fashions. She’ll do anything to make it a success—even join the stuffy Agathas Book Club in order to cultivate customers among the wealthy elite of Oakwood, Ohio.
Although mixing with the most influential women in town has its advantages, Charley finds the endless gossip a high price to pay. But after two women with close ties to the Agathas are brutally murdered, everyone falls under threat—and suspicion. When key evidence indicates that both murders are the work of the same hand, Charley realizes that the killer has arranged each corpse in perfect imitation of crime scenes from the Club’s murder mystery reading list. She uses her membership in the Club to convince Detective Marcus Trenault to use her as an inside informant. Not that he could stop her anyway.
Intelligent, fearless, and every bit as stubborn as Marc is, Charley soon learns the Agathas aren’t the only ones with secrets to protect. Passions explode as she and Marc must race against time to prevent another murder. And if Charley’s not careful, she may find herself becoming the killer’s next plot twist.
Praise for Book Club Murders
“A home-run debut . . . With action, adventure and murders involving mystery books, it is sure to please every cozy mystery fan! I highly recommend adding The Book Club Murders to your Fall reading list.”—The Cozy Mystery Journal
“Charley Carpenter is my kind of woman—smart, strong, and independent. She makes an engaging and utterly appealing new detective. Book some time with Charley today!”—Michael Lister, New York Times bestselling author of Blood Oath
“A super-paced good read, perfect for a bibliophile and a mystery lover! . . . Charley is a fun, slightly sarcastic character. She’s smart, brave and passionate. . . . And the mystery . . . that was plain wicked!”—Nadaness in Motion
“A good mystery with a solid dose of romance.”—The Ninja Librarian
“I found the book to have an interesting pace; it was like an adventure ride. Twists and turns, sometimes a quick chapter. other times the chapters are full and winding. . . . This book is a great start to a new and exciting series.”—Bibliophile Reviews
“The premise for this story is great, the plot is well developed, and I can’t wait to get to know the characters better as the series continues. I had no idea who the murderer was until the moment of the reveal, which is just the way I love it.”—Book Babble
“Tuck into this well-written and endearing cozy murder mystery, set in an upper-class suburban community where the veneer of civility is thin and verbal encounters are often knife-edged.”—Mallory Heart’s Cozies
“I always enjoy getting in on the ground floor of a new series and this one gets off to a great start. As soon as I saw this series involved a mystery book club, I knew I would have fun with it and I did.”—Socrates’ Book Reviews