Pray for a rainy day! It’ll give you the perfect excuse to curl up with Kate Kingsbury’s latest book in the Pennyfoot Hotel Mystery series. Cecily Sinclair Baxter is planning a Christmas gathering for the children of Badgers End where they’ll get to meet Father Christmas. Unfortunately, her plans go awry when he fails to appear and a footman falls off the roof to his death. As Baxter tries to solve the mystery of the dead footman, the missing Father Christmas, and the apparent clown ghost haunting her hotel, she’s also deeply suspicious of her husband and the charming singer down from London for the holidays.
This tasty tidbit can be best described as a cozy English mystery. The plot is filled with plenty of twists and turns and stuffed with period detail (pre-World War I). The hotel is staffed with all the requisite characters – mad French chef, Cockney housemaids, stern housekeeper – that are well depicted, if somewhat predictable. Overall, I’d recommend settling in with a cuppa and some biscuits to enjoy this one.