Grace Among Thieves by Julie Hyzy
(Manor House Mystery, #3)
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Format: paperback received from Kaye Publicity
Read: 7/14/2012 — 7/15/2012
In Six Words: A bit predictable but still enjoyable.
1. Grace Under Pressure
2. Grace Interrupted
3. Grace Among Thieves
As curator and manager of the Marshfield Manor, Grace Wheaton is delighted to be part of the estate’s magnificent history, but no one told her solving murder was in her job description…
When Grace’s former professor calls to warn her that there have been a rash of thefts at various historical sites, Grace isn’t surprised—because Marshfield Manor has been targeted, too. She wonders if it has something to do with the film crew roaming the grounds, digitally immortalizing the manor, but then she gets distracted by an incident much more dire: the shooting of one guest and the murder of another.
Grace does her best not to go looking for trouble, but with a murderer on the loose, she can’t seem to leave the dirty work to the cops—especially since the killer still seems to be lurking around town, waiting to finish the job of making Grace history…
Why I Started Reading This Book and Final Verdict
Grace Among Thieves landed in my mailbox a few months ago. It had actually gotten slid to the back of my TBR pile because I was focused on working on series (and yes, even though this was a series, I hadn’t felt like adding it). But when Felicia, Kelly, and I started discussing our Profiling Mysteries event, I knew I had to read this one for our spotlight on cozy mysteries. Grace Among Thieves left me wanting to pick up the next book immediately upon finishing, and that is always the sign of a good series.
Because it had been over a year since reading Grace Interrupted, the second book in the series, it took me a little bit to resettle into the Marshfield Manor and company. Once I did, though, I found myself enjoying this mystery and the cast of characters with only a couple minor exceptions. The biggest aspect that bothered me was the constant reference to the fact that until Grace came to Marshfield Manor, there hadn’t any murders. Which I get. But I also feel that in series like these a certain amount of suspension of belief needs to happen. In other words, yes it’s odd to have so many murders happen, but it’s a cozy mystery series and it wouldn’t really be a series without the crimes happening.
I was able to guess who was behind the thefts pretty early in the book. While normally that’s not necessarily a good thing, I don’t think it detracted too much from the book overall. After all, I don’t really expect my cozy mysteries to be all twisty turny or be extremely suspenseful. And I have probably read enough mysteries to figure things out. Because yeah, I’m awesome like that. And while I figured out who was behind the thefts, I didn’t find out what the thieves were really after, so it wasn’t like I had solved the entire mystery.
One of my favorite characters in this book is actually Frances. She is both Grace’s assistant and the resident gossip, and she can be mean, but there’s something lovable about her. Perhaps it’s that she’s not as mean as she seems. Or that underneath all that gruff, she has the best of intentions for the manor. Or she leads a mysterious life that no one knows about on the weekends. And I think that Grace is really starting to come into her own as far as the manor is concerned, and who she is as an amateur sleuth. Grace’s romantic life is a bit involved this time around, and while I wasn’t completely satisfied with that, I am definitely sure that I want to see where it goes in future books.
Overall, Grace Among Thieves was a great cozy mystery, and perfect for a quick summer read. I am looking forward to whatever trouble Grace gets into next!