First in the series about Augusta Goodnight, an angel sent to help people in difficult situations. Mary George Murphy's beloved Aunt Caroline has just died as the result of a fall down the attic stairs. But was she pushed? Mary George needs to find out, and learn which of her aunt's "friends" really were friends, and which ones wanted to harm her.
First in the Grace and Favor series. I really liked this book! Lily and Robert are former socialite brother and sister who are going through hard times in the Great Depression. They receive help, in a sense, when they inherit a mansion from their recently deceased great uncle, but they must live in it for 10 years before it is turned over to them.
First in the Supper Club series, about 5 overweight people in a small town in Virginia who form the "Flab Five" to work together to lose weight. When a much-disliked citizen is murdered, the group finds themselves in the middle of the investigation. This was an enjoyable book, but, as seems to be common in many recent books, could use a bit more editing. I also had some questions about exactly how the murder was committed, but explaining more would spoil the solution for anyone wanting to read it. All in all, if you like cozy mysteries (there are a few recipes as well) and aren't concerned about great writing, this should be a pleasant read.
Fourth in the series. This book reveals more about Matt Devine and his reasons for joining, and then leaving, the priesthood. I give credit to Ms. Douglas for presenting this information in an understanding way, while not making a blanket condemnation of the Catholic Church or the priesthood. This wasn't precisely a murder whodunit. There was a body, but his murder was apparently incidental to another crime, and it isn't directly solved. There is still a complete feeling to the story though, except for the open question in the series about the disappearance of Max.
American Girl series - ages 9 and up. From the back cover: "Samantha is excited about her family's stay at a fancy new 'apartment-hotel' -- until she learns there's a terrible curse on the building's owner! As soon as Samantha arrives, one thing after another goes alarmingly wrong. Is it the curse -- or is something else scaring the residents from Ravenscourt?"
Very good and suspenseful children's mystery. This book has been nominated for an Agatha Award for best Children's/Young Adult mystery for 2005.
The first in the Jessica Popper mysteries. Dr. Popper, a traveling veterinarian, is on her way to see a patient when her van hits a ditch. When investigating, her 2 dogs run into the woods, where they discover a body. After reporting it to the police, Jessica takes it on herself to discover the killer.
3rd in the series. Molly has a chance at a huge commission when she takes on the job of evaluating a large estate in Carmel. But eventually a skeleton is discovered, leading to other murders, and one of her best friends becomes a suspect.
First in the Brenda Midnight series. Brenda is a hatmaker/designer with her own shop in Greenwich Village. The store does require a lot of suspension of disbelief, but it's a good start to the series, and I will be reading more.
Erin Gilbert, an interior designer, has been hired to design a bedroom in competition with her arch-rival Steve Sullivan, who will be doing a room in a house across the street. Once they have begun, the murder of one of the homeowners begins to reveal secrets among the families, including Erin's own birth parents.