MYSTERY

Murder Once Removed

Minotaur: St. Martin's. (Ancestry Detective, Bk. 1). Mar. 2019. 336p. ISBN 9781250189035. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250189042. M
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OrangeReviewStarWhen genealogist Lucy Lancaster digs into the story behind a murder, she endangers herself and others who have clues to the death, which took place in 1849. Billionaire Gus Halloran, patriarch of an influential Texas family, hires Lucy to trace his family lineage. She finds a photograph of Seth Halloran's body, and the photographer's confession that he lied to hide the murder on behalf of another powerful family. Gus announces at a press conference that an ancestor of a Texas senator killed Seth and draws the wrong attention to Lucy's findings. Lucy feels guilty for the break-ins that follow, but it's the murder of her mentor and the dismissive attitude of an FBI agent that cause her to turn amateur sleuth.
VERDICT The winner of Minotaur's Malice Domestic Best First Traditional Mystery Novel competition, this debut features an intelligent genealogist detective, a strong supporting cast, some romantic tension, and information about Texas history that should appeal to readers of Rett MacPherson's genealogy mysteries as well as cozy lovers who prefer a dash of history in their mysteries. [See Prepub Alert, 9/10/18.]

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