Mystery at Apple Tree Cottage (Eve Mallow Mystery #2) by Clare Chase

Obituary writer and amateur sleuth Eve Mallow is enjoying life in sleepy Saxford St Peter – until a mysterious murder lands right at her door. It’s spring in Saxford St Peter – time to get back in the garden, listen to the birds, and take gentle strolls in the woods. But for some, it’s the season for murder.

Eve Mallow is relishing the gentle pace of the village until a new arrival stirs everyone up. Ashton Foley is back: a teenage tearaway turned interior designer to the stars. He’s mad, bad and dangerous to know, but charming too – as Eve herself can testify – and every house in Saxford opens its doors to him. So, when he’s found murdered in the woods near his mother’s home, Apple Tree Cottage, there’s no shortage of suspects. A jealous husband? A spurned lover? Or has someone from his past life caught up with him?

The police soon hit on a simple solution and arrest his mother’s partner Howard. Ashton always hated him, and he bears all the marks of a recent fight. But Ashton’s mother, miles away in New Zealand, is convinced he’s innocent, and enlists Eve’s help to prove it. There’s just one problem. Eve saw Howard sniffing around Apple Tree Cottage on the morning of the murder, and she’s fairly sure he’s guilty, too…

My Review

In this second book of the series Clare Chase gives us more descriptions of the wild but beautiful coastline where Eve Mallow walks her delightful dachshund, Gus. Unfortunately, she often walks there while under threat from a dangerous murderer. The only snag is that she can’t work out who the culprit is.

We follow Eve’s investigation in detail as she notes down every possible clue using her job as obituary writer for successful Interior Designer, Ashton Foley, as a way of interviewing the suspects. Returning to Saxford St Peter years after he had been sent to a Young Offenders Institute, he was now a bountiful bad boy turned good, the pride of his loyal mother and able to charm many of the women in the village – until he was brutally murdered.

Supported by Robin, the mysterious gardener who was once a police officer, Eve takes risks which tempt several of those involved to reveal their secrets. It is a tortuous tale of more than one crime, involving every aspect of human behaviour.  A cozy mystery yes, but the underbelly of society is not far away. A great book for a cold winter’s day.

Mystery at Apple Tree Cottage on Amazon UK

My review of Mystery on Hidden Lane the first Eve Mallow Mystery.


Published by lizannelloyd

Love history, reading, researching and writing. Articles published in My Family History and other genealogy magazines.

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