On my blog today, I’m sharing my thoughts on the new novel by Lisa Cutts, Murder in the Village.
Meet Belinda Penshurst. Castle owner, dog lover… crime solver?
Belinda Penshurst loves her home village Little Challham, with its shady lanes, two pubs and weekly market. She’s lived there all her life, knows everybody, and feels proud of its charming, friendly nature. So when irritable pub landlord Tipper is found dead in his cellar, she’s shocked… and also perfectly placed to investigate.
Retired detective Harry Powell moved to Little Challham for a quiet life. He didn’t expect to be dragged into a murder investigation. But Belinda is a very persuasive woman, and there are strange things happening in the village. Particularly the number of dogs that have disappeared lately…
Is there a dognapper at work in Little Challham? Is Belinda right to be worried that her brother Marcus was arguing with Tipper on the day he died? Belinda and Harry interrogate the suspects: the rival landlord, the outraged barmaid, and the mysterious man in the black car. But are they on the right track… or is the killer already on their trail?
Cosy crime isn’t usually my go to genre. I do like the crime fiction I read to be a touch darker. But I’ve read Lisa Cutts work before and I really enjoyed it so I thought I would give her latest novel, Murder in the Village a go. I have to say, I really enjoyed it. I loved Belinda and Harry, although I think Belinda is definitely my favourite character of the two. I really hope this is going to be the start of a long running series featuring them.
There is a lot that is going on in the charming village of Little Challham. Dog owners are on edge because dogs are mysteriously vanishing and when the local pub landlord is found dead, tensions really begin to heat up.
Belinda is a character who I think many readers will warm to right away. Belinda’s family are quite well known in the town and Belinda certainly knows how to make her voice heard. I loved the way how she threw herself into finding out what was going on in the village and I loved how she managed to get Harry working with her as well. They make for a fascinating and a really entertaining duo. Belinda seems to take everything that is happening in the village in her stride. She is definitely in her element when she is trying to solve the mystery.
Harry is also an intriguing character. He was once a police officer but now sells dog treats, like Belinda, he is intrigued by what is happening in the village, particularly with the missing dogs, but he doesn’t want to get involved in an investigation. I think, personally he only agrees to help Belinda out because he doesn’t want to see her get into trouble.
Lisa Cutts manages to create the country life living seen very well. I could picture Little Challam really well and I loved the detail that Lisa Cutts added, particularly the pubs. I’ve lived in a village for twelve years now and the pubs here certainly seem to be the central focal point of everything.
Everything came together very well and I liked how Lisa Cutts wrapped everything up. I can’t wait to see what Belinda and Harry get up to again and I’m looking forward to seeing what mystery comes their way next.
Publication date: 25th August 2021
Print length: 252 pages
Murder in the Village is available to buy: