Saturday 20 August 2022

Death on a Winter Stroll

Finished July 6
Death on a Winter Stroll by Francine Mathews

This mystery novel is part of the series featuring Nantucket police chief Merry Folger. Winter Stroll is a tradition on Nantucket and this is the first time it is happening since the pandemic began. Merry knows that the island depends on tourism economically and desperately needs that for the small businesses to survive, but she also wants to keep the community safe amid all the activity.
There is a production team on the island filming a television series at the less populated end of the island, as well as lots of tourist and former residents back for the winter event. Among the former residents is the family of the current Secretary of State, including her stepson Ansel. The famous actor starring in the TV series has brought his young adult daughter Winter along, and a chance meeting between the two has them joining forces when disturbing events cause upheaval in both their worlds. 
Ansel has a secondary purpose on the island that no one else in the family knows, reuniting with his estranged mother, Blythe Fitzpatrick. He wasn't told the truth about her absence in his life and is learning about her and trying to build a relationship. 
As Merry tries to manage the crimes that impact both the production and the government official, she uses her lifelong knowledge of the island and its residents to make connections. 
I liked many of the characters, including both the series characters such as Merry, and the ones appearing first in this novel, such as Ansel, Winter, and Blythe. They are well drawn and have depth. 
I definitely plan to look for more in the series. 

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