American heiress Stella Kendrick and her husband, British aristocrat Viscount “Lyndy” Lyndhurst, prepare to celebrate their first Christmas together as newlyweds in Clara McKenna’s latest historical mystery set in England’s New Forest region at the turn of the 20th century…
Taking on the responsibilities that come with being Lady Lyndhurst, Stella is eager to embrace yuletide traditions in the Edwardian English countryside and use her strong social influence for good. Her world becomes so consumed with starting a horse farm charity for the holidays that she barely notices the usual oddities attached to her upper-crust lifestyle. At least, not until items vanish from her bedroom and maligned housekeeper, Mrs. Nelson, becomes seriously ill—only to be found dead in the cold on Mistletoe Lane . . .
Cheery spirits are dashed following the sudden death, especially once Stella questions whether her own staff knows what—or who—killed the woman. Her suspicions mount when another person dies under strange circumstances during New Forest’s annual Point‑to‑Point Boxing Day race. Then there’s the case of Morrington Hall becoming plagued by false identities, secret affairs, and disgruntled employees . . .
Now, with two murders unfolding before their eyes in late December, Stella and Lyndy realize they can’t fully trust anyone except for themselves while investigating. Because as disturbing answers come into focus, identifying the criminal responsible and surviving into the new year would be the greatest gift of the season . . .
About the Author
Clara McKenna is the author of the acclaimed Stella and Lyndy Mystery Series as well as other historical mysteries written under a different name. She is a member of Historical Novel Society and Sisters in Crime, as well as a founding member of Sleuths in Time, a cooperative group of historical mystery writers who encourage and promote each other's work. McKenna has spent most of her working life in academia and is an avid traveler, a vintage teacup collector, a poet, and a self-professed anglophile. She lives with her family in a Victorian farmhouse near Ames, Iowa, and can be found online at ClaraMckenna.com.
Praise for the Stella and Lyndy Mystery Series
“The halcyon days of 1905 are both romantic and dangerous for the charming sleuths.” —Kirkus Reviews on Murder at the Majestic Hotel “The Stella and Lyndy mystery series from Clara McKenna portrays Edwardian England at its most charming…[McKenna] provides a clever set of twists with a highly satisfying conclusion.”—Historical Novel Society on Murder at the Majestic Hotel
“McKenna nicely balances detection with romantic moments between Stella and Lyndy. Vivid evocations of Yorkshire and clever subplots enhance the smart, well-paced mystery. Fans of light British historicals will be well satisfied.”—Publishers Weekly on Murder at the Majestic Hotel “This story appeals to the mystery lover but also to the reader who enjoys a tale of a unique and very accomplished couple. Very strongly recommended.” —Historical Novel Society (Editor’s Choice) on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“An intriguing peek into British society with likeable, believable characters, a fast-moving plot, and a surprising, very happy ending.” —Suspense Magazine on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“The two appealing leads are fully fleshed out.” —Publishers Weekly on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“An American marrying into an aristocratic family faces prejudice and peril in 1905 England…The sleuthing couple unearth surprising revelations in an appealing continuation of their adventures.” —Kirkus Reviews on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“Even with murder involved, the sprightly dialogue, interesting characters, and intwined intrigue offsets the violence so the cozy mystery air—turn-of-the-century style—is easily maintained.” —New York Journal of Books on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“Murder at Keyhaven Castle is like reading a Masterpiece Theater script. It wasn’t just about murder. It was a period piece, and if you enjoy grand castles, elaborate gowns, uppity royalty, devious killers, and a bit of respectable romance I highly recommend this novel.” —Mystery & Suspense Magazine on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
“A delightful, thoroughly enjoyable book, with an attractive young couple as protagonists...Highly recommend.” —Aunt Agatha’s Bookstore (Ann Arbor, MI) on Murder at Keyhaven Castle
"A spirited American heiress who's shocked the stuffy Edwardian aristocracy turns to detection once more...Oodles of charisma in a neat combination of mystery and romance." —Kirkus Reviewson Murder at Blackwater Bend
"McKenna manages to pull the many story lines together toward the satisfying conclusion." —Publishers Weeklyon Murder at Blackwater Bend
"Love will have its way and murder will out, but it's a harrowing and dangerous experience for the Kentucky heiress and her noble intended, with plenty of false clues and mysterious diversions." —The New York Journal of Bookson Murder at Blackwater Bend
"The varied and richly portrayed characters make this story." —Bookliston Murder at Blackwater Bend
"Entertaining." —Historical Novel Societyon Murder at Blackwater Bend
"Stella and Lyndy come from different backgrounds but together they're creating a life that combines the best of the old and new worlds. I look forward to their next adventure, hopefully after a splendiferous wedding." —Criminal Element on Murder at Blackwater Bend
"McKenna's delightful debut and series launch introduces feisty American heiress and horse breeder Stella Kendrick and Viscount Lyndy Lyndhurst...Eccentric, humorous characters add to the intrigue of catching the murderer...Fans of historical cozies will be enchanted." —Publishers Weeklyon Murder at Morrington Hall
"McKenna's series kickoff will warm the hearts of fans who cherish all things Edwardian." —Kirkus Reviewson Murder at Morrington Hall
"Well-drawn characters, a richly described historical setting with details of horses and horse racing, and a tentative romance distinguish this agreeable cozy." —Bookliston Murder at Morrington Hall
"Get ready for an entertaining combination of Pride and Prejudice, the game of Clue, and an Agatha Christie-type plot...What adds to the reader's enjoyment is the growing relationship between the intended bride and groom, who are both lovers of horses and horse riding. The denouement is both surprising and satisfying." —Mystery Scene on Murder at Morrington Hall
"Unexpected twists and turns and a clever ending...Hopefully, her next one will have just as much quirkiness and fun." —Historical Novels Reviewon Murder at Morrington Hall
"With her unconventional, contrary ways, American heiress Stella lays siege to every notion of decorum held dear by her soon-to-be British in-laws, but she and their elegant son Lyndy find more in common than either thought possible. Together, Stella and Lyndy make a delicious pair. They'll win your hearts as they win each other's in this charming, clever mystery!" —Alyssa Maxwell, author of Murder at Crossways
"Murder at Morrington Hall proves to be a delightful read. While educating her readers about the social history of the era, Clara McKenna also provides us with a challenging mystery to solve." —Newport Plain Talk on Murder at Morrington Hall
"It will take more than an arranged marriage and a murder to thwart Stella Kendrick in this compelling mystery filled with twists and turns, intriguing characters, and rich historical detail. I fell in love with the clever and spirited Stella and her charming fiancé Lyndy as they navigate the perils posed by both romance and intrigue; I cannot wait to see what the future holds for them!" —Ashley Weaver, author of An Act of Villainy
"Witty from the start, Clara McKenna has crafted a clever mystery. A pair of wickedly winning sleuths--one horse-loving, headstrong American heiress and the handsome Viscount she's meant to marry--makes for fabulous fun." —Nancy Herriman, author of the Bess Ellyott mysteries