Cover Image: A Clock Stopped Dead

A Clock Stopped Dead

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Member Reviews

It’s so nice to be reunited with Liz, Thelma and Pat in another mystery. This story has a bit of a darker, paranormal side, by no means did I find it scary, it was good to read a slightly different kind of mystery, I think the different approach made it harder to figure out what happened and solve the mystery. I love the ordinary lives of the three women, and the family tales which are written or the blunders the women make add an entertaining or comical element to the plot. Although this is one in a series, I don’t feel they need to be read in order, JM Hall has a great way of subtly recapping the women’s lives and how they know the other characters.

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Bizzare, marvellous and a little unnerving in a good way. I didn’t see that one coming…
One of Pat’s friends, stumbles upon a creepy charity shop that suddenly disappears, a psychic connection is assumed but Pat, Liz and Thelma suspect foul play… The one thing for me, is that J M Hall never plays it safe - here is novel number three and we are given something completely fresh, no none of the plain old murders here. Instead, we are introduced to the bizarre case of the missing charity shop. The psychic themes rather put me in mind of the way Agatha Christie uses it within a Poirot episode. In A Clock Stopped Dead, the plot trope is given a new twist. It could have become a trifle over theatrical and incredulous, but given the characters it worked.
It is a great skill to be able to write so many unique voices and bring them to life on the page like this. I must say that through this series I could imagine being in a room listening to all the characters. It’s great to hear northern voices.
The ladies, Pat, Thelma and Liz have the ability to cut through to the truth in a motherly sort of fashion. As usual one of the highlights for me was the continuation of the back storyline of our main characters. This novel, like the others, veers off into each of the main character’s heads, though central plot line is never far away. Each chapter looks at the crime as part of a jigsaw piece that when it came together left me wanting more.

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This third visit to North Yorkshire and retired primary school teachers Pat, Thelma and Liz certainly didn’t disappoint. The three best friends once again find themselves embroiled in another mystery, alongside a good dose of family drama. There’s plenty of twists and turns along the way that kept me guessing to the end and I thoroughly enjoy watching the cogs turn in their minds as they slot together the pieces of the puzzle. As a retired primary schoolteacher myself, having grown up in Yorkshire and even taught in North Yorkshire, I often find myself grinning and nodding along at the little quirks and quips of our three teachers and bringing to mind pupils I’ve taught. Once a primary school teacher, always a primary school teacher and Pat, Thelma and Liz are those real gems that you’d find in those Yorkshire schools. A really good yarn for fans of cosy mysteries and I do hope we’ll be back in the garden centre with ladies with coffee and cake very soon.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, Avon Books UK for an arc in exchange for a review.

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It took me a while to get into this book but once I did I enjoyed it, very well written and all the characters were believable, some I liked, some I didn't but the storyline was interesting.

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The three main characters were very likeable. Their relationships and friendship was strong and their situations were so normal everyone can relate to them. I felt find however that there was just too much going on with lots of sub plots trying to throw you off and give you - and the budding detectives - red herrings that I just ended up a bit confused as the three character's blended together a bit and the mystery was a bit of an after thought to all the busy goings on in their lives. A readable cosy mystery but not the best I have read. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

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Our ex-teachers find themselves another mystery when another ex-colleague, Marguerite, witnesses, what she says is a paranormal event when her train has been cancelled and she goes in search of a loo in a fog bound town.
When she returns to the town to clarify things in her mind, the "charity shop" that she sawa has disappeared and there is nothing but derelict buildings. There has also been a death close by.
meanwhile the Ladies have various issues in their own lives to deal with and when Pat seems to have a new best friend in Jamie, who is connected with the death near to where Marguerite had her experience.
Another twisting, turning tale full of red herrings as the Ladies put their heads together to try and solve the various mysteries thrown up.
Entertaining as always.

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I love a good cosy mystery and this is just that, with a little touch of the supernatural. I have really enjoyed the books in this series and this is no exception. As a retiree myself, I particularly like the way the three protagonists are not ready to accept that their useful lives are over.

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This is the third book in the series but all can be read as stand alone novels. Retired teachers Pat, Liz and Thelma have a habit of stumbling across crimes that only they can solve. In this book we have a disappearing shop, a clock that chimes at ten to three and the mystery of a young woman who dies in a car accident only a short time after her much older husband dies in unexpected circumstances.

This is marketed as a cosy crime thriller and it certainly fits that description. Slightly more complex than the other books in this series but still highly entertaining.

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I think I should have read the first 2, but that being said, I thought it was a good story, with really likable characters and a good plot!
Fits in with the Thursday murder club stories and kept me entertained!!
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an ARC copy

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A treat of a cozy set in Thirsk featuring Pat, Liz and Thelma, retired teachers who solve crimes with a degree of fond camaraderie. This is the third in the series but the first I've read and it was just fine as a standalone. The mystery is a little more complex than I expected (although to be honest, it had to be given that there is a missing shop) and that's a good thing.. Loved the small town atmospherics and the banter. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. Delightful.

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A bit of a different sort of crime novel but an intriguing plot. The three retired teachers are well depicted, with their different characters and strengths, and together they manage to solve the mystery.

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A Clock Stopped Dead is the third installment in the series (following A Spoonful of Murder & A Pen Dipped in Poison), and returns us to the world of Pat, Liz and Thelma. The retired schoolteachers return in the book, investigating their friend's supposed supernatural encounter, and the car accident that happened just round the corner that same night. Alongside their investigation, we are brought into the women's personal lives; of their children and their romantic relationships, of both old and new friends, and changing jobs.

Whilst A Clock Stopped Dead can be read as a standalone I highly recommend reading the first two in the series first, as there are a number of characters mentioned, and it can be difficult to keep track of who is who. Even having read the first two books I did find a few of the lesser mentioned returning characters had slipped my mind, although they could largely be figured out using context clues.

I found the premise of the story intriguing - a disappearing charity shop, a coincidental car crash, supernatural experiences - but unfortunately found that the number of sub plots drew me away from the investigation. We hear about marital issues, quarreling coworkers, and unwell pets, to name a few. Whilst I continued reading to the end, I lost track of the investigation a little, and had to reread pages on a few occasions to refresh my memory. I did not solve the mystery, and did enjoy reading the sections where it was all laid out to the reader, but felt that the book rambled on in parts where it wasn't necessary. I would still pick up a fourth book in this series if one was written, as generally I find them enjoyable and that they have unique but largely realistic mysteries being investigated

I rated A Clock Stopped Dead 3 stars
Thank you NetGalley, Avon Books, and J.M. Hall for this ARC

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Liz, Pat and Thelma #3

Retired schoolteachers and amateur sleuths Liz, Pat, and Thelma are happiest whiling away their hours over coffee, cake, and a chat at the Thirsk garden Centre café. But when their good friend Magureite claims to have uncovered a mysterious charity shop that has since vanished, they simply can't resist investigating. Before long, our trio of unlikely sleuths find themselves embroiled in a race against the clock to get to the bottom of this mystery - but who has a secret to hide, and how far will they go to keep it concealed?

Liz, Pat, and Thelma meet up once a week at a café for coffee, cake and chat. But there always seems to be a mystery to solve. When Magureite's train is cancelled one night, she decides to go for a walk. She comes across a charity shop and decides to visit it the next day, but the charity shop isn't there. It's vanished into thin air. There was also a car accident the same night.

This story has a unique and twisted plot. There are mini-cliffhangers at the end of each chapter, so you have to keep reading on. The story has a supernatural thread that runs throughout the book. I like the main characters, they are well-developed and believable.

Published 11th April

I would like to thank #NetGalley #AvonBooksUK and the author#JMHall for my ARC of #AClockStoppedDead in exchange for an honest review.

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Another enjoyable cozy mystery with our 3 detectives, still meeting at the garden centre to discuss the case. This time a mysterious charity shop has been seen by a woman in the mist and a death has occurred, followed by another that seem like they may be from natural causes?

This is a nice read but for me felt not as engaging as the previous books. Still was happy to catch up I’m with the trio and will look forward to reading book 4.

Thanks to Netgalley, the publisher and the author for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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It was so lovely to catch up with Pat, Thelma and Liz and their Thursday morning coffee get-together at the Garden Centre to set the world to rights. A mutual friend, Marguerite experiences a strange out of this world event. She thinks she has been locked in a charity shop with a clock stopped at 14.50. All is not what it seems when she tells the ladies her story!! This leads the retired school teachers on one of their investigations into the event. All in all, this was a great read, well written and very descriptive. It is full of twists and turns with a red herring or two thrown into the plot. I couldn't stop reading! I recommend this book.

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I absolutely loved this book. I loved Pat, Liz and Thelma and their dynamic friendship. I thought that the mystery was perfect and the ups and downs. The twist and turns kept me up all night reading this book. I thought this was amazing and I will read every book that comes out in this series!!! Absolutely obsessed!!!
I just reviewed A Clock Stopped Dead by J.M. Hall. #NetGalley
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It was an absolute pleasure to be back with the three friends again accompanying them on their amateur sleuthing outing. These books are great fun which keep me hooked from start to finish with all the twists and turns. Keep them coming J M Hall they really are an absolute treat.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an ARC in return for a honest review.

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This was my first book with Thelma, Pat and Liz as more or less enthusiastic amateur sleuths. And although I liked it, I think I must go back and read the first two books, because I was sometimes really struggling with these characters. At a certain point they all blended together and I had to go back and see who’s married to whom and what is happening with children moving back home and husbands changing careers. However, I’m a fan of these kind of books (no need I think to mention other authors/series here) and it turned out to be a nice read. Not spectacular though, but maybe this is because I couldn’t get my head around the ‘supernatural’ part of the story and thus on figuring out what was really happening.
What made this book enjoyable for me was the fact that Thelma, Pat and Liz are very unlikely crime solvers, and the setting of a small village where everybody knows everybody – and secrets galore!
Thanks to Avon Books and Netgalley for this review copy.

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This is the third outing for the trio of retired school teachers and while it could be read as a standalone novel it would probably be a richer experience to read the books in order. The previous two books concentrated on the friendship of the three protagonists but I felt this one looked at their family relationships in more detail. The change of focus, for me, led to a more disjointed approach to crime solving although the skills of primary school teachers were still functional! An easy read set in a beautiful part of the world.

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Liz, Pat and Thelma all have issues to deal with but when an ex-colleague tells them a tale of supernatural happenings they are fairly sceptical. However, a chance encounter leads them to look into a couple of suspicious deaths and the three friends are back into their sleuthing mode again.

This is a very gently cosy crime novel which is the latest in an enjoyable series. I love the North Yorkshire setting and the way that modern life impacts on a very traditional set up. It's not high fiction and it's fairly predictable but Hall's books are solid and reliable - they're also rather fun.

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