Cover Image: A Legacy of Murder

A Legacy of Murder

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Description
American antique dealer Kate Hamilton's Christmastime jaunt to a charming English village leads to an investigation of a missing ruby...and a chain of murders. It's Christmastime and antiques dealer Kate Hamilton is off to visit her daughter, Christine, in the quaint English village of Long Barston. Christine and her boyfriend, Tristan, work at stately-but-crumbling Finchley Hall. Touring the Elizabethan house and grounds, Kate is intrigued by the docent's tales of the Finchley Hoard, and the strange deaths surrounding the renowned treasure trove. But next to a small lake, Kate spies the body of a young woman, killed by a garden spade. Nearly blind Lady Barbara, who lives at Finchley with her loyal butler, Mugg, persuades Kate to take over the murdered woman's work. Kate finds that a Burmese ruby has vanished from the legendary Blood-Red Ring, replaced by a lesser garnet. Were the theft and the woman's death connected? Kate learns that Lady Barbara's son fled to Venezuela years before, suspected of murdering another young woman. The murder weapon belonged to an old gardener, who becomes the leading suspect. But is Lady Barbara's son back to kill again? When another body is found, the clues point toward Christine. It's up to Kate to clear her daughter's name in Connie Berry's second Kate Hamilton mystery, a treasure for fans of traditional British mysteries.

My Review
Kate is at it again in Book 2 "A Legacy of Murder" (Kate Hamilton Mystery Series).

It seems trouble or I should say murder follows Kate. While visiting her daughter during Christmas Kate uses her sleuthing powers to solve the mystery surrounding murders. Will she succeed before a third body shows up? 

The story kept me interested until the very end. The characters are well-crafted and I thoroughly enjoyed following Kate as she solved the mysteries.

Highly recommend for those who enjoy British mysteries. 
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This was one mystery that I was sad to see end. I love cozies that are set in England and this one was very well-written. I'm looking forward to reading more in this series in the future. 

Note: I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of this book from Netgalley.
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A LEGACY OF MURDER by Connie Berry is the second in the Kate Hamilton mystery series and is set in the present day at Finchley Hall, an Elizabethan House with extensive grounds and a history of murder associated with its treasure, called The Hoard. Hidden in the mid-1500s and missing until much later, these jewels and antique pieces are soon to be put on display. In fact, that is where Kate comes in because she is visiting her daughter who is an intern at Finchley Hall, and one of the other interns dies suddenly.  The circumstances mirror events from almost a quarter century ago when another display of The Hoard was planned. Kate steps in to complete the catalogue of materials as well as to assist in the investigation – not quite the way she expected to be spending time with Detective Inspector Thomas Mallory, a romantic interest from an earlier European trip. A LEGACY OF MURDER is a cozy mystery with likeable characters, historic references and some antiquing lore, too. There's also some drama and angst associated with Kate's daughter and her friends which will add to appeal for younger readers.
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Kate is on spending the days leading up to Christmas visiting her daughter in England.  Even before she can meet up with her daughter, she is among a group who discovers a dead body on the grounds Finchley Hall where her daughter is interning and where Kate will be staying during her trip.  She finds herself investigating the murder among other mysteries.  I liked this book.  The main thing that kept me from loving it was Kate's daughter Christine.  She may be grown but she needs a serious attitude adjustment.  Otherwise the story and cast of characters made this an enjoyable read.
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I recently had discovered Connie Berry’s previous Kate Hamilton story, A Dream of Death, at my local library, so I was delighted to read the next installment.

A Legacy of Murder is a wonderful blend of a compelling mystery, great character development, interesting historical notes and a fascinating setting. For me, Hamilton weaves a great middle place between a cozy mystery and compelling suspense.

In “A Legacy of Murder” the reader is transported to a delightful small village in England, where her heroine Kate Hamilton discovers a body while on vacation visiting her daughter. Throw in a romance with the local detective and a hoard of jewels - and you have the making of a great story. Highly recommend for mystery fans.

I’m already looking forward to the next Kate Hamilton mystery!

Thank you NetGalley for providing me with an advance copy. All opinions are my own.
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This was the second installment in the Kate Hamilton mystery series. Her first novel is titled, "A Dream of Death", was enjoyable and I highly recommend this, as well.

I really enjoyed both installments and think I might have found a new series to devour. They are labeled cozies but they had a little more depth than most in the genre. They are well written, the mysteries kept me engaged and I enjoyed the different settings of both books. I appreciated Berry adding some historical background for each of the locations which added extra interest to the plot.

The author's Kate is a great main character – she is mature, intelligent and has a great heart which makes a perfect combination. The romance with Tom is handled well - there is just enough to spark interest but is not overdone.

I’d like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review and I highly recommend this book.
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This is a different type of cozy mystery that I usually read but I enjoyed it as much as the first book in the series. The author did a great job setting up the scene and the setting gives it a bit more sophistication than some other cozy mysteries. I am  eager to read more books in this series!
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A Legacy of Murder ticks many boxes.....murder mystery x 3, romance with a sprinkling of antique speak and many quirky village characters. I spent my childhood being dragged around antique shops and enjoyed that the author and this tale used this, along with a historical house aspect I am also fond of, as the backdrop for a twisting and turning murder story, where amateur sleuthing and village detective work solve all at the end. I was captivated for the entire ride. And while I had guessed the real murderer a little earlier, I was still surprised at the tying up of loose ends.

American antique dealer Kate Hamilton's Christmas trip to visit her daughter Christine, who is undertaking an internship at Finchley Hall located in a  charming English village,  leads to an investigation into a missing ruby and a chain of murders.  Conveniently, the detective in charge is Kate's relatively new boyfriend Tom. Kate is dragged further into the mystery as she takes over the management of the exhibition of Finchley Halls treasures. And then her daughter becomes a prime suspect in the bashing (nearly to death) of one of the staffers. Kate has an appetite for solving the many questions that are raised throughout the whole saga at the hall.

A great holiday read that has kept me reading late into the nights. Thanks to Netgalley, Connie Berry and Crooked Lane Books for the chance to review this book.
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Kate Hamilton is back across the pond visiting her daughter on Holiday for the Christmas Holiday. Which times perfectly with a rendezvous with Detective Inspector Thomas Mallory of the Suffolk Constabulary, or Tom as he prefers Kate to call him. After their chance encounter and murder mystery in Scotland the two have decided to get to know each other better. Unfortunately it looks like this will be a case of deja vu in a new locale. In addition to the death of an intern, there is the Finchley family scandal, missing jewels, some new relationship friction, and Christine's boy drama. I am surprised that Kate is able to keep all the players straight. The character development is "spot on" and the location history certainly adds to the intrigue of the story. The only thing this story needs is some true quality time for the couple, but I am sure that will be left for another novel.
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First I would like to thank Netgalley and Crooked Lane Books for the opportunity to read and review this book. 

I really enjoyed the first book in this series and was eager to read this one. It didn't disappoint, I'm enjoying getting to know the characters. Although I will admit the daughter irritated the hell out of me and I know I would not have reacted the way the character did. 

I look forward to continuing with this series and I will be interested to see how the author manages to keep both characters in the same country.
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Sitting down with a new Kate Hamilton book by Connie Berry is, quite simply, pure delight. These are the kinds of stories I look forward to with barely-suppressed eagerness, the sort of warmly delicious novels one can curl up with and become instantly immersed into. The type of book I will pull out and re-read because I just adore the writing voice, the rich turns of phrases, and the development of the plot.

One of the things I loved most about A Dream of Death was the gorgeous writing, and it’s one of my favorite aspects of A Legacy of Murder, too. Sentences like… “Irregular panes of glass set into tall banks of mullioned windows reflected the light like a patchwork quilt of mirrors.”… make my reader heart sigh in bookish bliss. Not trying too hard or too needlessly verbose, just a beautiful way of expressing description and insights. Additionally, the construct of the plot in this sophomore novel is even more intricate than in Berry’s debut. Intriguing, multi-layered murders and thefts (some decades old in both cases) share the stage with an authentic look at life, love, and the combination thereof – not to mention well-defined characters, some of whom enhance the story just by being on the page. (I’m looking at you, Ivor!)

Kate’s struggles (in between mystery-solving) in this book are easily relatable, especially for women in the same stage of life, and Kate herself is just as easily liked. She’s smart, witty, warm, and strong – but also honest in her fears and insecurities. And Tom – oh how I love Tom. He’s certainly not without his faults but he’s just such a good guy. I can’t wait to see what the author has in store for their relationship in book #3, and I’m excited about all the storyline possibilities (mysteries included) that the author sets the stage for toward the end of this book.

Bottom Line: A Legacy of Murder is well-plotted and engaging, with layered characters and a lovely English village setting. The writing voice (delightfully enhanced by the first person narrative) wraps you in a warm hug, the descriptions and word choices at times nearly poetic as they flow easily off the page. The mysteries keep piling up in this book and I was intrigued by each one. The perfect choice to curl up with this weekend!

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book)
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An Ideal Backdrop....
The second in the Kate Hamilton mystery series. Enjoyable whodunit with a likeable protagonist in antiques dealer Kate. With an ideal backdrop, a colourful cast of credible characters and a nicely plotted mystery this is an enjoyable and engaging read.
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Connie Berry immerses antiquities' dealer Kate Hamilton in A Legacy of Murder.  Kate's daughter Christine is an intern at Elizabethan Finchley Hall and Kate is visiting for Christmas holiday.  Another intern is discovered  murdered, things are going missing at Finchley Hall and Kate is entangled in a new relationship with the policeman investigating the murder.  How can things get more complicated. Read this delightful cozy and find out.
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A holiday timed mystery, there are many interesting characters, some not so likable, though Kate Hamilton is trying her best to get along with all of them, and suspiciously missing information. The setting is quaint and rich with history. This is the 2nd murder of someone planning to showcase the history of the Finchley Hoard, and now Kate is asked to take over the chore. Nobody really wants to answer all her questions and Lady Barbara has limited vision and Mugg gives the impression of her frailty. Most of the staff have long gone, but Mugg orchestrates appearances to keep Lady Barbara in the dark. And then there's yet another murder, and Kate's daughter might be implicated. This drives a stake between Kate and her would be male friend, the policeman in charge of the investigation.

This is a great story for fans of British mystery, rich with description. Kate is very thorough and dedicated, often dealing with conflictual feelings, not all of them specific to the Finchley Hoard or the ruby.

FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in the hopes that I would post an honest review. This has not affected the content of my review in any way.
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This is an enjoyable follow-up to the first book in the series, A Dream of Death. I like the atmosphere and the characters. The author builds realistic relationships between her characters and the mystery was a puzzler.
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A Legacy of Murder by Connie Berry is another sophisticated book from this wonderful author. 

Is the death that happened twenty years ago connected to the recent death?

Kate Hamilton
Kate Hamilton is our sleuth and the main point of view character. She is a great woman that is now in England visiting her daughter, Christine, who is at an internship. She is also spending some time with a particular cop that she met in Scotland 30 days before her coming back. I love how Ms. Barry has made this character as she is so uniquely driven by not only wanting to help her daughter but also to help the Lady that runs the house where her daughter works.

What I like about Kate is that yes, she is a widow, but she isn't letting that hold her back any longer. She is a great mystery solver that is excellent at helping at old houses.

Tom Mallory
Tom Mallory is our love interest to Kate Hamilton and our police involvement. He likes Kate is a widow, but he lives where Kate's daughter's job is located. It is a unique relationship these two hold as they both know that neither will give up their place for the other, but they are still trying to make it work. Tom is also glad to have Kate's help in this murder investigation but doesn't want her to get hurt.

What I like about Tom is that he does allow her to help him out as long as she tells him what she finds out and as long as it isn't directly involved within the murder. It's a tight line that she walks.

The mystery
The mystery is a cold case about how a girl twenty years earlier may be related to the recent death that has happened in the same place as she was? That is the eerie question since the victim Tiffany was working to bring to light a missing treasure for this family, and so was the first victim. Coincidence? I think not. 

Five Stars
We follow once again through Kate Hamilton's shoes as we travel through the English countryside, visiting Kate's daughter at her new job and trying to figure out her budding relationship with a particular cop. A Legacy of Murder by Connie Berry isn't like any old book but one that you want to sink your teeth into now. I am giving this book five stars and recommending it to anyone that loves cozy mysteries.

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy from the Great Escapes Book Tours. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Thank you for dropping by! I hope you enjoyed this review of A Legacy of Murder by Connie Berry.

Anyways, until next time, 
Karen the Baroness

If you would like to see other reviews like this one, check out BaronessBookTrove.com.
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I’m not joking when I say I’ve found a new must-follow series! Connie Berry’s A Legacy of Murder is one the best cozy mysteries I’ve read for the year… and I read a lot of them!

The story has everything I love in a cozy: lovable characters, beautiful setting, deliciously intricate mystery plot and a touch of romance.

The setting is atmospheric and fantastically depicted. Admittedly there are some paragraphs upon paragraphs of descriptions of landscapes, buildings and artefacts. Some kept my rapt attention and a couple I may have glossed over. It’s never overdone though and certainly does not upset the flow of the story.

This is book two in the Kate Hamilton Mystery series and the first that I’ve read. I did not feel lost at all. I immediately got a sense of Kate’s character and a bit about her background. Reference was made to a couple events from the first book, but just enough to whet the appetite to read it and not enough to be tiresome.

The mystery, or I should say mysteries, are very well-plotted. They are twisty and utterly delightful to read. We have several conundrums to puzzle through: the murders, the heists, the missing son, the mysterious stranger, the ring’s Identity and the random list of objects. All of these elements make for intriguing motives and opportunities. As those develop the reader has a difficult time fixating of the true culprit. The red herrings that pop up are often dead ends but sometimes related to another aspect of the case. I really enjoyed sifting through all the clues.

The characters help bring the story to life and we’re treated to some very different personalities. Where Tom Mallory is patient and level-headed, Kate’s daughter is impetuous and acts a bit spoilt. Lady’s Barbara timeless grace and elegance contrasts against Ivor’s unrefined charm. Each of the players adds to the story, and their interactions with Kate help the reader understand the protagonist better.

I did enjoy Kate as a main character and I found her to be determined, strong, a little flawed and quite endearing overall. There is one disagreement she has with Tom where her actions and responses are completely believable and understandable even if I think she borrowed a page from Christine’s spoilt-child-behaviour book. All of this simply made me more invested in the characters and intrigued to find out what happened next!
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What a great second episode in the life of Kate Hamilton and this was a book that leaves you wanting more and more.

Kate is back in the UK partly to see her daughter (Christine) who is studying over here and partly to see Tom, the police officer she met in Scotland, her daughter has an Intern position at a stately home and it is not too far from where Tom is based, so far so good, but the day after she arrives and whilst going on the tour of the home a young boy discovers a dead body in the lake! Now Tom is trying to juggle a murder case and seeing Kate, Kate has ended up taking the temporary job of the murdered young woman and Christine is having man problems! Oh and Tom's mother really doesn't like her - just to add to the "fun".

Luckily there is a nice gastropub and a wonderful Antique shop, but even these are not enough to keep Kate away from the murder, especially when there is another one and then another attack and now Christine is in the frame for at least one of them, oh and there have been some interesting thefts in the area as well which adds more intrigue to the mix!
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4.5 stars!  Deft and realistic characterization, a well-crafted plot, and a talent for conveying both setting and atmosphere put Connie Berry’s A Legacy of Murder firmly in my Top 5 Mysteries list for 2019. The book reads more like a tradition Golden Age mystery set in the present than like a light contemporary cozy mystery — and that is very much to my taste.

Kate is a sympathetic and believable heroine. The bonus for me is that she is 46, an American widow with two adult children… and in love (“or not; it’s complicated”) with a British Detective Inspector, Tom Mallory, whom she met in the first book in the series. Frankly, it’s refreshing to have a middle-aged-but-not-past-romance heroine. (And it reminds me of another series I enjoy, the Crime with the Classics mysteries by Katherine Bolger Hyde.)

Connie Berry evidently subscribes to what I consider to be one of the cardinal rules of mystery writing: the author must “play fair” with the reader. All clues known to the detective (in this case, Kate) should be available for the observant reader to discover, so that the reader has the opportunity to solve the crime or puzzle on their own. In this series, Kate serves as both amateur detective and first-person narrator, so generally speaking, we see and hear whatever she does. And Tom’s awareness of Kate’s intelligence and abilities means she’s privy to much of what the police know, as well. Despite all that, it took me about as long as it took Kate to figure out the solution to the mystery, due to a multiplicity of suspects and other complicating factors.

There is so much to enjoy in this book: the village-and-great-house setting, the not-always-easy-but-worth-it relationship between Kate and Tom, Kate’s knowledge of and flair for antiques. All of the secondary characters are interesting and believable, and some are quite charming, like Ivor, the local antiques dealer, and the elderly and nearly blind Lady Barbara. But this is a contemporary Britain, not a nostalgic or idealized one. Berry doesn’t gloss over the financial difficulties facing most of the great estates, nor the heartaches, rivalries, and fears that can bedevil relationships of all sorts.

If you are a fan of Agatha Christie, Catherine Aird, and other traditional British mystery authors, you should give Connie Berry a try. A Legacy of Murder is the second book in the series, but I never felt lost reading it. Still, I plan to go back and read the first book, A Dream of Death, as soon as I can!
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Antiques dealer Kate Hamilton is in England to visit her daughter Christine, an intern at Finchley Hall, a down-at-its heels country manor steeped in local history and lore, which over the years has been the site of murder and misfortune.  Desperately in need of major repairs, its current owner Lady Barbara hopes the 200th Anniversary Exhibition of the Finchley Hoard, a collection of family treasures, will generate much-needed revenue.  During the preparation of the exhibit, however, the village is beset by a series of murders, attacks, and thefts. 

Kate agrees to stay on at Finchley Hall to complete the exhibition work begun by Tabitha King, whose lifeless body is found submerged in a lake on the property.  The similarity between this murder and the unsolved death of another curator in 1996 raises alarms that history may be repeating itself.  Were both crimes committed by the same person, or is someone else responsible?  Detective Inspector Tom Mallory of the local constabulary is tasked with finding out.  

Kate’s work on the exhibit uncovers items missing from the collection, and a rash of burglaries of precious objects in the area has the staff on high alert.  As the murder investigation proceeds, more attacks occur, leaving the community on pins and needles. Are these criminal activities connected?  And could a rare missing book hold the key to the solution of the murders and thefts?  There seems to be danger at every turn.

A Legacy of Murder is a thoroughly engrossing mystery with no shortage of lively characters, dead bodies, mysterious circumstances, and plausible murder suspects.  The author has a real talent for character and setting development, and interweaving the past and the present.  Berry creates a rich ancestral history for her quaint village, with families intermarrying over generations, producing a plethora of interesting relationships and motives for murder.  

Moreover, Berry enriches the development of the series which she began with A Dream of Death.  The budding long-distance romance between Kate and Tom is nurtured and tested, and we learn more about supporting characters from each of their families.  It is thus that Berry increases the appeal of the series and readers’ investment in the characters.
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