In the Dead of Winter (An Ivy Towers Mystery)

In the Dead of Winter (An Ivy Towers Mystery)

4.4 7
by Nancy Mehl

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A sad errand brings Samantha “Ivy” Towers back to Winter Break, Kansas — the small town where she spent her summers as a child. She’s taken on the job of making funeral arrangements for her Aunt Bitty. Ivy has curly red hair, boundless curiosity, and a keen ability to spot “facts”



A sad errand brings Samantha “Ivy” Towers back to Winter Break, Kansas — the small town where she spent her summers as a child. She’s taken on the job of making funeral arrangements for her Aunt Bitty. Ivy has curly red hair, boundless curiosity, and a keen ability to spot “facts” that don’t make sense. Almost immediately, Ivy begins to suspect that Bitty’s death, caused by a fatal fall in her bookshop, wasn't accidental after all.

A missing book, a message scrawled by an unknown person, and an extra coffee cup leave Ivy with more questions than answers. And then, her childhood friend Amos Parker, now the sheriff of Winter Break, becomes surprisingly anxious to get Ivy out of town.

As Ivy uncovers the truth behind her aunt’s “accident,” she finally finds a place to call home and also rediscovers the young girl she tried to leave behind

“Nancy Mehl weaves her cozy spell so skillfully that I was enthralled from page one. Ivy Towers is an appealing heroine, Winter Break, Kansas the ideal location, and supporting characters lend depth to the delicious plot. Nancy Mehl's writing style is exceptional and her books highly recommended.” – Midwest Book Review

Editorial Reviews

Betty Webb
“This small book is a big, bright gem, and Samantha Ivy makes a welcome addition to the sleuth-with-a-message genre.”
Tosca Lee
“Ivy Towers and Winter Break, Kansas are unforgettable. I can't remember when a fictional person or place has staked such a claim on my heart and mind.”

Product Details

Greenbrier Book Company
Publication date:
The Ivy Towers Mysteries , #1
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Sales rank:
File size:
466 KB

Meet the Author

Nancy Mehl’s novels are all set in her home state of Kansas. “Although some people think of Kansas as nothing more than flat land and cattle, we really are quite interesting!” she says.

Nancy is a mystery buff who loves the genre and is excited to see more inspirational mysteries becoming available to readers who share her passion. In the Dead of Winter combines two of her favorite things… mystery and snow.

“Unfortunately, our past several winters have been pretty dry. I enjoy writing fiction because I can make it snow as much as I want!”

Before she began writing full time, she spent many years as a popular book reviewer. She has reviewed for the Charlotte Austin Review,, Midwest Book Review, and The Wichita Eagle.

Nancy spends her spare time working with her volunteer group, Wichita Homebound Outreach. WHO seeks to demonstrate the love of God to special people who need to know that someone cares. She lives in Wichita, Kansas, with Norman, her husband of almost forty years.

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In the Dead of Winter 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Kelly_B More than 1 year ago
Cozy mysteries have recently become my genre of choice, and books like In The Dead of Winter are exactly why. Ivy Towers arrives in Winter Break surrounded by a whirl of snow. Weather wise it is stormy and barely an opportune time to arrive in Winter Break as Winter Break holds onto snow with every last bit of its being. Thus the delightful name that rings icily true. The main issue is of course, Ivy is arriving to handle the estate and funeral arrangements for her dear great aunt whom she hasn't seen in quite a while. Ivy spent summers there as a youth, but now she is a college student with a semester left before taking on the world. She is headed for a new and exciting future and uses her middle name, rather than Ivy, to claim it and leave behind the uncertain girl she once was. The problem is you really can't be the new you when you bring yourself to your old stomping grounds. Ivy is now in Winter Break where the population is tiny and everyone knows everyone's story and business. Though things should be clear cut on aunt Bitty's demise, Ivy has been left a note that causes her suspicion, and despite knowing most everyone in the small town, there is no small list of suspects. Ivy has only a few short weeks before her final semester, but she isn't heading anywhere until she knows what happened to the woman who was just like a mother to her. As Ivy searches for answers, the reader is introduced to a town that despite its overwhelming amount of snow and ice, sounds utterly delightful. Delightful even as one is searching along with Ivy for answers. Perhaps I feel this way because of the time I spent in my own icy stomping grounds in Maine and Rhode Island. In The Dead of Winter was a much needed break from everyday for me. I enjoyed the escape into the small town of Winter Break and all its residents whose varied eccentricities made each one more interesting than the next. The place was charming which is saying a lot for a town that is situated in just such a way that winter really likes to kick it and stick around. I am usually rather good at guessing who the murderer is in cozy mysteries, but I did not get this one right away. I enjoyed Ivy's interaction with the other townsfolk and that Ivy was an average girl next door type and not your typical obvious beauty. She was flawed like the rest of us, but with a good heart, dreamer's mind, and a small dash of insecurity. This was so much more interesting for me than some of the typical heroines you find in books. I think that might be why I like cozy mysteries so much. People are a lot more normal even though their circumstances might not be. Some parts may have been tied up a little too quickly in the end, but it did not detract from the overall story. I enjoyed it a great deal, and I am already looking forward to reading the next book in the series "Bye Bye Bertie" which I have already ordered. I won this book a long time ago and was not remotely requested to do a review. These opinions are truly my own.
Cherylpm More than 1 year ago
This was one of my favorite books. Recommend all books in this series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a nice start to a cozy series. The plot was very well written. There were So many character that could have committed the crime. I am going to read more in the series. It will be interesting to see if the main character is happy with the choice she made at the end of the book!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my first book by Nancy Mehl & I was very impressed with this inspirtional mystery--I plan on reading more of her books
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed the whole series; I just wish there were more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a goodbook if you want to readsomething quick and simple. The characters were likeable enough.