Dead and Gondola by Ann Claire

Dead and Gondola is quite a ride! No pun intended! The story is very funny, with a quirky cast of characters, a wonderful mystery with references to all-time favorite aficionado of crime, Agatha Christie as well as a purrfectly fastidious cat!

Ellie and Meg Christie own a bookshop in a small town in Colorado named The Book Chalet. With a last name like Christie, it is not a surprise they are obsessed fans of the writer herself. Even their shop cat, Agatha is an homage to the master! The town is so high in the sky that during the winter with all the snow, the preferred method of travel is gondola.

When a stranger wanders into the bookstore while a seance is going on and suddenly disappears, leaving a duffle bag with a rare Agatha Christie novel inside, they are dumbfounded. That same evening their elderly employee seems to have upped and vanished as well. But the next day when the women find the same man dead on a gondola, well, they feel the need to become Miss Marple and do a bit of sleuthing, against the wishes of the police.

With the help of their Gran who is the pipeline to gossip in the small town, they try to figure out just who the murdered man is and why he had been in their bookstore. When they finally find out who he is the mystery deepens as to why he came to town. He was not a well-liked man and caused people great distress when he had lived there.

As they follow the clues, it seems there are no shortage of suspects. And to add to their anxiety, their employee still has not shown up, leaving them to believe something has happened to her as well. It seems someone is trying to prevent them from getting too close to the truth. With a break in at the bookstore and Agatha going missing, someone seems to be trying to tell them to drop the investigation.

Solving the case seems questionable until some good intuition and their mentor Agatha Christie intervene. Hopefully they will bring the murderer to justice before someone else is killed.

Dead and Gondola is a delightful cozy which should be read with a cup of cocoa and a furry pet animal curled up on your lap. Hopefully the Christie sisters will have a second act!

Thank you #NetGalley #Bantam #AnnClaire #DeadandGondola for the advanced copy.

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