The Sara Selkirk Trilogy
The three Sara Selkirk novels are set in the elegant English city of Bath, famous for its Roman baths and Georgian architecture. They feature Sara Selkirk, international cellist and occasional amateur sleuth, and music-loving DCI Andrew Poole.
Sara Selkirk is apprehensive about her upcoming charity concert in Bath’s famous Pump Room. It’s the first time she will have performed in public since the death of her lover the previous year. But Sara’s performance is overshadowed by the death of the concert’s organiser, Matthew Sawyer. In the ensuing police investigation, many secrets are uncovered including a stolen needlework collection, an immigration racket, a headmaster’s adulterous affair with his secretary. What, if anything, do any of them have to do with Sawyer’s death?
‘… a new and exciting talent to British crime writing … Morag Joss’s distinguished debut demonstrates all the virtues … an interesting setting, characters drawn with wit and perception, good writing and a plot which combines tension with credibility’.
P D James
‘… skilful plotting, strong sense of place and colourful but credible characters … not only convincing crime writing but also a fine novel … a lively sense of social comedy and sharp wit.’
Good Book Guide
‘an exceptionally accomplished first novel’
‘an atmospheric whodunit of some sophistication … A finely woven plot, complex characters and elegant writing … ensures the future of a new writer with terrific talent.’
‘an exquisite crime novel’
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Exhausted after a gruelling world tour, Sara Selkirk is looking forward to a few weeks’ recuperation. But her growing attraction to DCI Andrew Poole leads to her involvement in a dubious community opera project. The Circus Opera Group is a motley crew: faded diva Helene and her autistic daughter Adele, vain Cosmo and his ambitious girlfriend Poppy, affable Jim and silent Phil. Sara also has to contend with superstar composer Hervé Petrescu and his matching ego. With this uneasy mix, both Sara and Andrew see trouble ahead. What they don’t predict is sudden, violent death.
‘… a mesmerizing psychological thriller … Joss is the most persuasive chronicler of the city perhaps best known to some as Jane Austen’s stamping ground.’
‘… Bath has never been chronicled with such scalpel-sharp wit. Except by Jane Austen, of course … in the finest tradition of British whodunnits – constructed with page-turning skill, witty and touching in equal measure.’
‘… a complex set of variations on the theme of love … all adding rich substrata to the skilful unravelling of the intricate plot in this accomplished and satisfying novel.’
Good Book Guide
Sara Selkirk’s relationship with DCI Andrew Poole comes under strain when her former teacher Joyce Cruikshank is implicated in the murder of a Japanese tourist whose body is found in a Bath pub. Is there a connection between Joyce, the B&B where the dead woman was staying, and the charismatic Dr Golightly, whose rich, spoiled patients at the Sulis Clinic are beginning to die? As Sara delves into these mysteries, one thing becomes clear: Joyce’s dachshund Pretzel isn’t the only one in danger.
‘Morag Joss gets better with each book. … there can be no uncertainty about the high quality of the writing and the plotting.’
‘… a hugely satisfying read, as the threads are slowly unravelled.’
‘A literate and surprisingly lyrical read, as well as a mesmerising thriller.’
What’s on – Birmingham
‘Joss has a remarkable talent … and a gift for creating wonderful characters and relationships.’
‘Joss’s latest Sara Selkirk mystery offers another deftly textured evocation of an idyllic British locale.”