A SAINTLY KILLING, the third Faith Morgan mystery, continues the story of a British policewoman turned vicar (minister). While mostly settled in her new role at St. James in the village of Little Worthy, Faith is feeling slightly overwhelmed with all the preparations for the church's 900th anniversary. (Just what activities would be significant enough to mark a 900th anniversary, anyway?) When the body of Sal Hinkley is discovered, Faith sets aside her stack of "post-it" notes and begins to investigate who might want the controversial artist dead? Did her death have anything to do with her commission for the anniversary painting of St. James?
To me, Martha Ockley's writing is a perfect example of a cozy mystery. Faith is warm and genuine, and readers will care about her decision to be a vicar, her former life as a police officer, and her continuing feelings for her department partner and boyfriend Ben. And the side stories of her sister and her mother who has early stage dementia add another realistic layer, but one that is gentle and true, not one added for drama or mere filler. I liked being transported to Great Britain -- its language and quaint villages. Imagine being the gardener or parishioner of an edifice that has stood for 900 years. or living in a blacksmith's cottage that has belonged to your family for more than five generations? Being American, I can't claim such a heritage, but reading gentle British fiction gives me the tiniest taste.
If you liked MURDER SHE WROTE, ever read Agatha Christy, or consume one of the new cozy mystery series like candy drops, why not give Martha Ockley a try? It'll be a trip. I want to thank Kregel Publications and Lion Fiction for the opportunity to read a copy of this book and review it.