A Cold White Sun: A Constable Molly Smith Mystery

( 2 )

Overview

It’s the end of March and Trafalgar, British Columbia, is preparing for the last influx of the seasonal skiers. Teachers, parents, and students are preparing to relax at home or head off on vacation. But for high school English teacher Cathy Lindsay, the week of relaxation doesn’t work out as planned. She’s gunned down by a sniper on a hiking trail, her small dog the only witness.

Cathy Lindsay is an unlikely candidate for a murderous ambush: she was a respected teacher, in an ...

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A Cold White Sun: A Constable Molly Smith Mystery

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Overview

It’s the end of March and Trafalgar, British Columbia, is preparing for the last influx of the seasonal skiers. Teachers, parents, and students are preparing to relax at home or head off on vacation. But for high school English teacher Cathy Lindsay, the week of relaxation doesn’t work out as planned. She’s gunned down by a sniper on a hiking trail, her small dog the only witness.

Cathy Lindsay is an unlikely candidate for a murderous ambush: she was a respected teacher, in an apparently solid marriage to an Internet developer, living a quiet life. Sergeant John Winters, with the help of young Constable Molly Smith, digs into the Lindsay marriage and friendships, searching for a motive, but one thought continually niggles at the back of his mind: is it possible this was not a random killing but a case of mistaken identity?

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In Delany’s solid sixth Constable Molly Smith mystery, Molly and Det. Sgt. John Winters struggle to discover why an unseen sniper shot Cathy Lindsay—a Trafalgar, British Columbia, high school teacher—as she was out skiing. On the surface, Cathy was a perfectly unremarkable person. On closer examination, the police discover that her personal life was a baroque mess of infidelity and unrequited crushes; they can’t even rule out the possibility that some overwrought, entitled student (or parent) killed her after receiving a bad grade. Most disturbing is the possibility that Cathy was not personally targeted, that her life can offer no insight into her death, and that the police are helpless to prevent her murderer from striking again. The final resolution owes less to sleuthing than to simple human flaws of a realistic but dramatically unsatisfying sort, but the author’s quietly competent sketch of police work in a small town will keep readers turning the pages. (Aug.)
From the Publisher
"Though Molly flirts with danger, Delany (More than Sorrow, 2012, etc.) sticks to her usual formula, though this time, the simultaneous motivation yet randomness of the killer’s actions are hard to swallow."—Kirkus"Another brisk whodunit in a beautiful western Canadian setting with an appealing protagonist in Molly, whose personal life gets as much attention as her professional one."—Booklist

"[T]he author’s quietly competent sketch of police work in a small town will keep readers turning the pages."—Publisher's Weekly
"The lack of motive for a high school teacher’s murder puzzles British Columbia officers Sergeant John Winters and Constable Molly Smith on their sixth case (after Among the Departed)."—Library Journal

From the Publisher
"Though Molly flirts with danger, Delany (More than Sorrow, 2012, etc.) sticks to her usual formula, though this time, the simultaneous motivation yet randomness of the killer’s actions are hard to swallow."—Kirkus"Another brisk whodunit in a beautiful western Canadian setting with an appealing protagonist in Molly, whose personal life gets as much attention as her professional one."—Booklist

"[T]he author’s quietly competent sketch of police work in a small town will keep readers turning the pages."—Publisher's Weekly
"The lack of motive for a high school teacher’s murder puzzles British Columbia officers Sergeant John Winters and Constable Molly Smith on their sixth case (after Among the Departed)."—Library Journal

Library Journal
The lack of motive for a high school teacher's murder puzzles British Columbia officers Sergeant John Winters and Constable Molly Smith on their sixth case (after Among the Departed).
Kirkus Reviews
An unexpected murder in a small town has the cops turning over every stone for a plausible suspect and motive. When high school English teacher Cathy Lindsay, a wife and mother, is gunned down while walking her dog Spot, the quiet town of Trafalgar, British Columbia, can't imagine who'd be moved to commit such a crime. Sgt. John Winters begins where all good investigations begin—with the husband—and works to uncover the secrets of the small town, though he finds nothing that would tie a soul to Cathy's murder. Constable Molly Smith wants to assist in the investigation, not only to learn the truth and get justice, but also since she'd like to work her way up to detective one day. Besides, the case might get her mind off the mysterious man she just met on the ski slopes. Though she's been comfortable with the company of Adam for a while now, the stranger is as determined and driven a skier as she, and Molly wonders if she's missed something. Her mother, Lucky, encounters romantic troubles with her gentleman friend—Molly's boss, Chief Constable Paul Keller. And John's wife, Eliza, has problems of her own with her employee, Margo, whose obsession with a male customer may lead her to more trouble than she expects. Though Molly flirts with danger, Delany (More than Sorrow, 2012, etc.) sticks to her usual formula, though this time, the simultaneous motivation yet randomness of the killer's actions are hard to swallow.
Booklist - Staff Reviewer
The intuitive Winters, taking advantage of a careful killer’s one mistake, finally puts an end to the puzzle in this sixth entry in the Molly Smith series, recently optioned for Canadian television. Another brisk whodunit in a beautiful western Canadian setting with an appealing protagonist in Molly, whose personal life gets as much attention as her professional one.
NY Times Bestselling Author - Julia Spencer Fleming
"6th in her critically acclaimed Constable Molly Smith series, A COLD WHITE SUN places Vicki Delany's marvelous storytelling on full display. Delany's formidable Canadian sleuth, Molly Smith, pits her skills against an ice-cold killer, just as her personal life heats
up. I love this series!"
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781464201608
  • Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
  • Publication date: 8/6/2013
  • Series: Constable Molly Smith Series Series
  • Pages: 250
  • Sales rank: 665,976
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Having taken early retirement from her job as a systems analyst in the high-pressure financial world, Vicki Delaney is settling down into the rural life in bucolic Prince Edward County, Ontario.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 15, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Life in Constable Molly Smith¿s Trafalgar, BC, usually is tranqu

    Life in Constable Molly Smith’s Trafalgar, BC, usually is tranquil, with lots of skiing in the winter and kayaking and hiking in the summer: a tourist’s haven. Except this particular winter witnesses the senseless murder of a high school English teacher, shot in the back while walking her dog. There are no witnesses and no evidence. It remains for Sgt. John Winters to follow up. Molly plays a minor role in this investigation, as opposed to previous entries in this series.

    The novel develops more as a study in character development, as the various persons inhabiting the resort town continue with their lives, while Winters frustratingly seeks the culprit. Attention is paid to Molly’s love life, as well as that of her mother, Lucky, widowed for a few years and keeping company with Molly’s boss, Superintendent Keller. The reader is given deep insight into the family of the murdered victim: a two-timing husband, a 10-year-old daughter and a disinterested teenage son. Then there is an employee of Winters’ wife, Eliza, who embarrassingly sees in various males the son she had to give away at birth.

    All the plots and sub-plots are melded artfully, keeping the pages turning swiftly. The characters are superbly drawn, and descriptions of town life well described. And the skiing scenes float by smoothly. The author moves between the various plotlines with ease, and the novel is recommended.

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  • Posted August 14, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I love a good murder mystery and this book certainly fits the bi

    I love a good murder mystery and this book certainly fits the bill. It is the sixth book in the Molly Smith series. Molly is a police officer in her hometown of Trafalgar, British Colombia. Trafalgar is a resort community so there is a mix of permanent residents and vacationers making it a great setting for a murder mystery series since there is a reason for large numbers of strangers to be in town. There are several important characters (police) working to solve the murder. Friends and family members are also important to the story. Having multiple characters that are all well drawn and interesting gives a feel of realness to Trafalgar, British Colombia. I assume that many of these characters are in other books in the series. I hope so because I enjoyed the humor and warmth they add to the story. This is definitely a series I want to read more of.

    Cathy Lindsay is an English teacher at the local high school. She is married with two children. She is shot while taking her morning walk alone with her dog. She appears to have no enemies and no one can think of any reason why someone would want to kill her. Sergeant John Winters with the help of Constable Molly Smith and others investigate her life both at school and at home. Cracks appear in the marriage and one of the teachers Cathy worked with is acting strangely.

    Disclosure: I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaway on the premise that I would review it.

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