A peculiar combination by Ashley Weaver

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The stylish cover won me over and when I read that Ashley Weaver was an Edgar-nominated author and that A peculiar combination was set in England during World War 2 with murder, spies and romance, I knew that I was in for a treat.

Electra (Ellie) McConnell is skilled at picking locks and breaking into safes. Her cousins Colm and Toby are off fighting in the war, and when her Uncle Mick’s business as a locksmith begins to fail, in need of funds, the pair decide to break into the home of a rich person. However, they are caught and taken to a large house where Major Ramsey is waiting for them with a proposition – go to jail or break into a safe to retrieve valuable blueprints that may be going to Nazi Germany. Ellie is keen to defend her country and as events unfold her skill set and her bravery make her a useful agent for the British Army.

I enjoyed this mystery, especially the character of Ellie, who emerges as a feisty young woman whose ability to break into safes and pick pockets proves to be just what Major Ramsey needs in the attempt to stop the sale of blueprints to the Nazis. Ramsey is big, handsome and a follower of rules, while Ellie is smart and often prepared to break the rules so sparks fly when the two get together.

All the ingredients for a thrilling spy mystery - danger, murder, narrow escapes, dastardly villains and London in black out - make for a winning combination of cosy mystery and historical fiction. I will certainly be following this series.

Themes: Mystery, Espionage, World War 2, London.

Pat Pledger