Death by Water places Phryne and companion, Dot, on a cruise ship sailing around New Zealand of all places. Phyne has been hired to investigate a series of jewel thefts on board the S.S. Hinemoa. She’s been given a luxury berth of course (Dot’s in second class so she can get all the gossip from the maids), and along with a vast wardrobe of low-cut evening dresses, she’s wearing a dazzling but fake sapphire pendant. This will help her tempt the culprit into action.
Soon there is a goodly assortment of potential perpetrators, most of whom share Table Three in the dining room. Could it be Albert Forrester, a photographer with an eye for the ladies, or sullen Mr West who is led a merry dance by his flirtatious young wife? There’s young Jack Mason who is full of fun and Professor Applegate, an expert on all things Maori. The Melody Makers is an all-girl band who keep the music pumping.
Murder lurks in the shadows, however, and it isn’t surprising with illicit romance, dark secrets and blackmail keeping the plot humming along. As does the dramatic New Zealand scenery. Greenwood has the tone just right for the 1920s and Phryne, as always, delights with her modern, flapper style. There are twenty novels in the series, and I haven't come across a dud yet; these are ideal novels for lazy afternoons by the fire or at the beach - any time really.
Posted by JAM
Catalogue link: Death by Water