Sadly we have now reached the end of the republication of the Jenny Starling Series by Faith Martin. Each day this week I will be featuring a book from the series in sequence. Today is book 1: The Birthday Mystery
THE BIRTHDAY MYSTERY by Faith Martin
Available from Amazon
Discover a new series of whodunits by million-selling author Faith Martin. These classic-style mysteries will have you scratching your head to work out who the murderer is. Meet Jenny Starling: travelling cook and reluctant amateur detective.
Please note this book was first published as “BIRTHDAYS CAN BE MURDER” under Faith Martin’s pen name JOYCE CATO.
Jenny Starling is catering the twenty-first birthday party of a pair of posh twins, Alicia and Justin.
But when she arrives at their parent’s country house, she is immediately met by the police. A young man has drowned in the pond. Was it an accident or murder?
Then just after midnight everyone gathers for a champagne toast. But one of the guests falls down dead.
The police are baffled and there is a whole party full of suspects. But when it comes to someone adding the extra ingredient of poison to her own precious recipes, Jenny isn’t going to take it lying down. She has a reputation to protect.
Jenny Starling won’t stop until the murderer is found.
This is the first of a series of enjoyable murder mysteries with a great cast of characters and baffling crimes which will keep you in suspense to the final page. Perfect for fans of classic whodunits by authors like Agatha Christie, LJ Ross, TE Kinsey, and J.R. Ellis.
In her late twenties, Jenny Starling is an impressive woman. Physically, she stands at 6ft 1inch, and has shoulder-length black hair and blue eyes. Curvaceous and sexy, she’s a modern single woman, living the lifestyle that suits her – that of a travelling cook. Her famous (and now very rich) father, is a ‘celebrity’ cook, divorced from Jenny’s mother. Jenny drives a disreputable cherry-red van, and is happy travelling the country catering events and cooking great food. She is on a one-woman crusade to bring back ‘real’ food. And definitely doesn’t like having to divert her attention from achieving the perfect Dundee cake or creating a new sauce recipe by having to solve a murder. She finds crime very distracting, especially when there is chocolate to temper or pike to poach. Nevertheless, she is very good at reading people, and with a quick and agile brain, becomes very good at unmasking killers. And her always-undaunted sense of humour goes a long way in keeping her sane when all around her people are dropping like flies.
What the Bloggers thought:
The Quiet Geordie
This is a solid start to the new series. The plot works very much of the formula of the Hillary Greene series, so if you enjoyed those you are likely to enjoy these. There are plenty of red herrings along the way. Read more here
Joanna Larum’s Reviews
The first in a new series by Faith Martin and one I have been waiting for since the Hillary Greene series finished. There is a new main character, Jenny Starling, a professional caterer to the super-rich, who will no doubt travel to many houses in many places so there is the possibility of so many murder mysteries. Read more here
So easy to read and it’s my first by Faith Martin, it sure won’t be my last. Afternoon murder films are my guilty pleasure for sure, and I could totally see this adapted for TV. Read more here
Ginger Book Geek
I knew that I had found another cracking series with a female lead that I couldn’t fail to warm to. This book soon became addictive for me. It isn’t a particularly long book and I seemed to race through it. I was so focussed on the book, the mystery, the storylines and the characters that I didn’t notice just how quickly the pages were turning- it was almost as if they were turning themselves. Read more here
Nicki’s book blog
Linda Strong Book Reviews
This is a murder mystery with a great cast of characters. There are an assortment of possible suspects, all with motives. There are a few surprises along the way. Next to Jenny, my favorite character is the cat. This is a kinder, gentler murder mystery and I really look forward to following Jenny on her further adventures. Read more here
The Birthday Mystery is written like a fun game of cluedo. You have a huge list of suspects with motives but no idea which one it is. Faith Martin throws some excellent red herrings in there too to really make your brain work. Read more here
On The Shelf Reviews
The Birthday Mystery is a novel you can really get your teeth into, with a tasty mystery and sumptuous sounding food which made me feel very hungry while I was reading it! Read more here
The twist and turns and the reasoning behind them were excellent. I managed to realise who done it before the grant reveal in the book and I was really, really glad I haven’t lost my touch! Read more here
The Bookworm Drinketh
This mystery was told in a very unique fashion! While mainly told from the POV of Jenny the hired on travelling cook, as Jenny met new characters or as different things unfolded it would randomly flit to anther character’s POV so that you momentarily saw either Jenny or a situation out of those characters eyes. It was a very unique narration! Read more here
Black Books Blog
Overall this book took a bit of time to get into, but it was quite a nice easy read and will look forward to reading the next in the series. Read more here