Title: Death at the Anchorage (Kipper Cottage Mystery #4)
Author: Jan Durham
Published on: 13 November 2022
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Death at the Anchorage is the fourth book in Jan Durham’s Kipper Cottage Mystery series.
It’s valentine’s Day and hearts are beating fast in the small fishing town of Whitby. Well, hearts are beating fast for all the wrong reasons. Liz McLuckie is the Anchorage Retirement Home with Iris, attending a seance.
Liz is not a believer, all right. She had arrived at the retirement home with Iris and ended up as a witness to a séance. At the seance, the spirits suggests there is a murderer in their midst. Apart from Liz and Iris, there are five residents of the retirement home. Is one of them a murderer?
The next day, one of the five retirees, Clara Bendelow, is found dead. Murdered, to be precise. She was Iris’s friend. Iris is devastated to hear of her dear friend’s untimely death. Liz finds herself, once again, in the midst of a murder mystery.
First line: Liz McLuckie didn’t believe in life after death, and she certainly didn’t believe that Ouija boards had mystical powers, and yet here she was, sitting in the Anchorage Retirement Home, curtains drawn in the middle of the afternoon, taking part in a séance.
Jan Durham is one of the most talented authors out there. Four books in a year, a brand new series and each installment is a BEST in the series. Wow! How do you do it, Jan? One masterpiece after another!
The story begins with a séance. The next day, one of the retirement home residents is found dead. Yes, the spirits did say there was a murderer in the retirement home. But Liz is a non-believer in mediums, psychics and whatnots. So, how was she to know that their ‘prediction’ would come true?
Liz learns from Iris that Clara’s brother was murdered thirty years ago. And the man who was responsible for his murder had recently resurfaced in Whitby. Clara knew who he was and what he did to her brother. So, is it possible that he killed Clara too?
Detective Inspector Flint is not Liz’s favorite person in the world. Flint is always looking for an opportunity to arrest Liz for ‘interfering in a murder investigation.’ Flint believes where there is a crime, Liz is always around – or has something to do with the crime. As if!
Iris plays a major role in this story. Well, I had to mention this because Iris is a bit HARD OF HEARING and literally SCREAMS EVERY WORD! Gosh, this was so funny. At times, it did feel like IRIS WAS LITERALLY SCREAMING IN MY EAR.
I have always hoped that Liz would find love again. She did feel attracted to Benedict, all right. But she was hurt when Benedict choose the local vicar over her. But it’s all in the past now. The vicar and Benedict are no longer together. Liz does not want to move on, though. It’s been five years since her husband Mark died but Liz never gave moving on and finding love again a thought. I feel the need to mention this because throughout the story, we see how things have changed between Liz and Benedict. Like, one wants to make peace while the other wants to avoid this talk all-together.
The mystery behind the murder(s) kept me guessing till the end. The psychics, mediums and spirit world is explored further in the story. There’s something called The Third Eye Society who claim to speak to the dead. Liz visits them all right. But ends up being warned by the conman – the same guy who had supposedly murdered Clara’s brother thirty years ago…
I loved the ending. The killer’s identity was a shocker. I never saw it coming. Kudos to Liz once again for coming face-to-face with the killer… wait,that didn’t sound right. Liz and the killer – recipe for another murder! Thankfully, that doesn’t happen here. Phew!
Each book in this series can be read as a standalone but I suggest you start with book #1. This is a highly recommended series from me. Excellent storytelling. Likable characters. Mystery to keep one guessing till the end and whole lotta fun.