Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Manna from Hades: A Cornish Mystery by Carola Dunn

Hm. Can't believe I haven't reviewed this already, but apparently I haven't!

Manna From Hades was Dunn's departure from Daisy Dalrymple mysteries. This one features Eleanor Trewynn, an older widow who runs a thrift shop in Cornwall. One day after a round of collecting donations, she finds a suitcase full of valuable jewelry and assumes it is an especially generous donation. As it turns out, it is not, and the people who left it in her car want it back rather badly.

The question of who owns the jewels, how they ended up in Eleanor's car, and who is willing to kill for them forms the main question.

I enjoyed the book, overall. "Aunt Nell" is a lively, enjoyable character, and the people she surrounds herself with are an eclectic bunch. The Cornish setting is well-described and makes the village worth a literary visit.

If I have a complaint, it is that Eleanor currently reminds me a bit too much of Mrs. Pollifax, complete with unexpected martial arts abilities. I like Mrs. Pollifax, but one was enough, and I hope future books will bring Eleanor more fully into focus as her own character.

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