MYSTERY

Murder, She Wrote: A Time for Murder

Berkley Prime Crime. (Murder, She Wrote, Bk. 50). Nov. 2019. 304p. ISBN 9781984804303. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781984804327. M
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It’s been 25 years since Jessica Fletcher solved her first murder mystery. Now, she’s being interviewed for a high school newspaper, that initial case comes back to haunt her. She was a high school substitute English teacher when she helped police detective Amos Tupper investigate the murder of the school principal. Jessica was a keen witness even then, helping to narrow the time frame to find a liar and killer. At present, the young interviewer turns out to be older than Jessica thought, and she’s related to the victim from 25 years earlier. It’s a retirement party for a teacher from that same school, though, that brings a new murderer out into the open. The combination of Fletcher’s first case with a contemporary one is perfect for the 50th book in the popular series. Characters from Jessica’s past, including retired sheriff Tupper, return to add a nostalgic element to the story.
VERDICT Although there are so many implausible elements, including the startling climax with a freighter and a lighthouse, fans of the cozy mystery series will be eager to pick up this latest book. [See Prepub Alert, 4/22/19.]

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