The Death of Lucy Kyte: A New Mystery Featuring Josephine Tey [NOOK Book]

Overview

An unexpected inheritance plunges beloved British mystery author Josephine Tey into a disturbing puzzle of dark secrets connecting the present and the past in this intriguing historical mystery brimming with psychological tension.

When Josephine Tey unexpectedly inherits Red Barn Cottage from a godmother she barely knows, the will stipulates that she must personally claim the house in the Suffolk countryside. But Josephine is not the only benefactor?a woman named Lucy Kyte is ...

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The Death of Lucy Kyte: A New Mystery Featuring Josephine Tey

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Overview

An unexpected inheritance plunges beloved British mystery author Josephine Tey into a disturbing puzzle of dark secrets connecting the present and the past in this intriguing historical mystery brimming with psychological tension.

When Josephine Tey unexpectedly inherits Red Barn Cottage from a godmother she barely knows, the will stipulates that she must personally claim the house in the Suffolk countryside. But Josephine is not the only benefactor—a woman named Lucy Kyte is also in Hester's will. Sorting through the artifacts of her godmother's life, Josephine is intrigued by an infamous murder committed on the cottage's grounds a century before. This old crime—dubbed the Red Barn murder—still haunts the tight-knit village and its remote inhabitants. Is it superstition, or is there a very real threat that is frightening the locals? And is the truth related to the mysterious Lucy Kyte, whom no one in the village admits to knowing? Surrounded by the shadows of obsession, abuse, and deceit, with a palpable sense of evil thickening around her, Josephine must untangle historic tragedy from present danger to prevent a deadly cycle from beginning once again. 

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
04/01/2014
Upson's fifth title (after Fear in the Sunlight) in her historical series featuring mystery author Josephine Tey once again ratchets up the psychological suspense. This outing finds Tey in rural Suffolk.
Publishers Weekly
★ 04/14/2014
Lyrical prose (“sheaves of corn stood abandoned, like the forgotten tents of a retreating army”) and subtle plotting make Upson’s fifth novel featuring real-life mystery writer Josephine Tey a worthy successor to Fear in the Sunlight, a PW Best Mystery of 2013. Tey, who’s struggling with writing a biography, is surprised to learn of a bequest from her godmother, actress Hester Larkspur (who was a close friend of Tey’s mother), as she herself barely knew the woman. Larkspur has left her a Red Barn Cottage in Suffolk located near the site of a notorious murder, and the will gives the writer the choice of sorting through its contents, including the actress’s papers, or having them all destroyed unseen. Tey decides to take a look at what she’s inherited, and, in the process, learns some unsettling details about the circumstances of her godmother’s death. In addition, the cottage may be haunted. Upson lays out the suspicious events gradually, but amply rewards her readers’ patience with a satisfying resolution that feels true to life rather than pat. Agent: Gráinne Fox, Fletcher & Co. (June)
Booklist
“Upson’s fifth Tey mystery is a hauntingly atmospheric story based on fact with personal reverberations for Josephine herself. A worthy addition to this intriguing series starring a real-life mystery writer and set in between-the-wars England.”
From the Publisher
"A carefully crafted tale of heartbreak and haunting." —-Kirkus
Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Upson…possesses great skills in creating character-driven novels that evoke a strong sense of place, spins this sad but seductive story with grace and intelligence.”
National Examiner
“Upson’s fifth book in the Tey series skillfully weaves a plot of intrigue, deceit and obsession.”
Kirkus Reviews
2014-03-18
Three generations of homeowners feel the effects of a violent murder in rural England. Hester Larkspur's will, leaving Red Barn Cottage, in Polstead, Suffolk, to her goddaughter Josephine Tey, has a strange codicil. If Josephine wants the cottage, she must sort out Hester's papers, evaluate their worth and let someone named Lucy Kyte take what she most needs from the cottage. No one, not even Hester's lawyer, knows who or where Lucy is. When Josephine first visits the place, it's in such sad disrepair that she isn't sure she'll get what she needs, either. The cottage was named for the barn where Maria Marten, a willful young Polstead woman, was murdered and buried more than a century ago. In her prime, Hester was a beautiful and popular actress best known for her role in a play based on the murder, and she fueled the legend by writing a diary that's a fictionalized account of Maria's tragic life, as recounted by her best friend. While Josephine gets to know both Maria and Hester through the diary and struggles to make Red Barn Cottage more livable for herself and her lover, Marta Fox, she's increasingly aware that something is amiss. Not only did Hester die while huddled away in a tiny room that fills Josephine with dread, but some restless presence also demands her attention. Marta, like Josephine, an independent and clear-thinking woman of the 1930s, doesn't dismiss the idea of a ghost in the house. But Josephine begins to suspect that a living person has played an important part in the more recent history of the cottage—and may mean harm to its new owner in this carefully crafted tale of heartbreak and haunting. Upson's (Two for Sorrow, 2010, etc.) attempt to engage real-life mystery writer Josephine Tey in a murder is not for those who want a quick-moving story. For more patient readers, the contemplative tone and historical detail yield their own rewards, along with a couple of clever surprises.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062195463
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/10/2014
  • Series: Josephine Tey Series , #5
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 42,356
  • File size: 720 KB

Meet the Author

Nicola Upson is the author of four previous Josephine Tey mysteries, including An Expert in Murder, and two works of nonfiction. She has worked in theater and as a freelance journalist. A recipient of an Escalator Award from the Arts Council England, she splits her time between Cambridge and Cornwall.

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