Murder, She Encountered

Murder, She Encountered

by Peg Cochran

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A gutsy Manhattan socialite encounters murder and corruption at the World’s Fair in this captivating historical cozy mystery for readers of Victoria Thompson, Susan Elia MacNeal, and Rhys Bowen.

New York City, 1939. A rising star at the Daily Trumpet, Elizabeth “Biz” Adams has been sent to the World’s Fair—billed as the “World of Tomorrow,” a look toward a brighter future even as the drumbeats of war grow louder—to cover a robbery. What she stumbles upon instead is a dead woman, dumped into the Aquacade’s pool with a nylon stocking wrapped around her neck.

Elizabeth snaps a photo as the police arrest Joey Dorman, a gentle young hot dog vendor who made no secret of his obsession with the murder victim. Even though she’s thrilled that her photo makes the front page, the fear and confusion evident on Joey’s face are haunting. So Elizabeth vows to prove his innocence—or his guilt—with her partner at the Daily Trumpet, Ralph Kaminsky. Meanwhile, her romance with Detective Sal Marino is heating up, and Elizabeth is more determined than ever to follow her heart.

But when Kaminsky’s efforts to expose the real killer land him in the hospital, Elizabeth is forced to continue the investigation on her own. And as she tries to narrow down the long list of suspects, she discovers a dark secret running through the Fair—a secret some would kill to protect.

Look for all of Peg Cochran’s delightful mysteries featuring Elizabeth Adams, which can be read together or separately:

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780525479741
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/03/2019
Series: Murder, She Reported Series , #3
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 18,039
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Peg Cochran is the bestselling author of Murder, She Reported and Murder, She Uncovered; the Farmer’s Daughter Mystery series; the Cranberry Cove Mystery series; the Gourmet De-Lite Mystery series; and the Sweet Nothings Lingerie Mystery series (as Meg London). Originally from New Jersey, she now lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

“Grab your hat, Biz. We’re going to the World’s Fair.”

Elizabeth Adams looked up from the photographs she was sorting through to find Ralph Kaminsky, veteran crime reporter for the Daily Trumpet, leaning over her. 

He was wearing his suit jacket, which moments ago had been hanging on the back of his chair, and his battered hat was plunked on top of his bristly gray hair.

“The World’s Fair? Why?”

Elizabeth had wanted to go since the Fair opened in April, and she and her friend Irene had planned to make a day of it at the end of the month. The Fair was being billed as The Dawn of a New Day and Elizabeth had read about some of the attractions including the Perisphere where an auditorium the size of Radio City Music Hall housed a mammoth model of the city of tomorrow.

“Looks like there’s been a robbery. Some crook held a gun to the head of one of the concession stand workers and demanded he hand over all the money in the till. If we get out there fast, we can snag an interview with the victim. My source swore on the blessed Virgin that he didn’t tell any other reporters about the story.”

Elizabeth tossed the photographs she was holding back on her desk and reached for her camera.

She was more than happy to get out of the newsroom. Sun glinted through the grime on the windows, and the room was stifling in the July heat. She prayed there would at least be the ghost of a breeze outside.

“Where are you headed?” Fred Culver, one of the Daily Trumpet’s newest reporters, said as he passed Elizabeth and Kaminsky on their way to the elevator.

He was quite young and had a bit of fuzz on his upper lip. Elizabeth was never sure whether it was a nascent mustache or he’d missed that spot shaving.

“We’re headed to the World’s Fair,” Kaminsky said, slapping the younger reporter on the back as he walked by.

“Some people have all the luck,” Culver shot back.

“Seniority,” Kaminsky said with a wink and a nod.

The force of the July heat hit them as soon as they exited the revolving door of the Daily Trumpet building. There was a slight breeze but it was barely strong enough to flutter the ribbon on Elizabeth’s hat. She felt the fabric of her shirtwaist dress clinging to her back as they walked toward the IND subway stop at Forty-second Street and Sixth Avenue. 

Elizabeth dropped her nickel into the slot in the turnstile and pushed her way through. She and Kaminsky joined the crowd waiting on the subway platform, many of the men fanning themselves with their hats and the women daintily pressing lace-trimmed handkerchiefs to their damp foreheads.

A gust of foul smelling air came rushing down the tunnel—pushed into the station by the arriving train. Elizabeth was grateful that it wasn’t crowded and she and Kaminsky were able to get seats. She couldn’t imagine being pressed against some stranger in this heat.

They shuffled off the train with the rest of the passengers at the Smith-Ninth Street Station in Brooklyn where once again they stood on the platform waiting for the S Special train that would take them right to the World’s Fair grounds.

Elizabeth was relieved when they were able to get seats near a window that was open an inch or two. Unfortunately the breeze that came through the crack did little more than blow the hairs around her forehead. It certainly did nothing whatsoever to cool her down. 

The subway emerged from the darkness to continue its journey above ground. It went over a bridge, which elevated it above another set of tracks below, through the Jamaica Yard until finally it rattled over a pine wooden trestle that took it across swampy marshland. Elizabeth stared out the window, craning her neck when she thought she saw a snowy egret standing amidst the reeds.

And then they were pulling into the World’s Fair station. Elizabeth felt her excitement rise at the thought of finally seeing the fair even if she wouldn’t be visiting any of the pavilions. She’d been reading about it ever since it opened—all the amazing exhibits—from the World of Tomorrow to Billy Rose’s Aquacade. It was all New York had been talking about for months.

The train came to a stop and the doors hissed open. Elizabeth followed Kaminsky to a row of turnstiles leading to the exit.

He turned toward Elizabeth. “You have to put in another nickel,” he said, reaching into his pocket. “Taking the train all the way to the Fair costs a dime. Highway robbery if you ask me.”

Elizabeth dutifully dug out her change purse, chose a nickel from the handful of coins, and inserted it into the turnstile. She looked back over her shoulder as they emerged from the station, which had been built especially to accommodate fairgoers. Independent Subway was spelled out in individual letters across the front and the large clock above it put the time at nearly noon.

They joined the handful of people waiting in line to pay their admission.

“Seventy-five cents,” Kaminsky said, pushing his hat back on his forehead. “They really nickel and dime you to death these days.” He turned to Elizabeth. “But don’t worry—the paper will pay you back.” 

Kaminsky gave a bark of laughter and slapped himself on the forehead. “I forgot. You’re one of them rich society dames. What are a couple of dimes and nickel--you’re probably rolling in dough.”

Elizabeth gave him a stern look. “Hardly,” she said, without elaborating. No need to tell Kaminsky that she was saving every penny she could in order to have the first and last month’s rent on a place of her own. Kaminsky would think she was crazy trading the comfort of her family’s Madison Avenue apartment for a cold water flat. 

Girls like Elizabeth were expected to live at home until they married but she’d made up her mind that she wanted to be on her own first. She didn’t want to be one of those women who went from her parents straight to the arms of a husband.

The subway terminal was in the amusement zone, a two hundred and eighty acre area and one of seven zones at the fair. They heard the excited shouts of children from the Children’s World exhibit to their right as well as the squeals from the fairgoers braving the parachute drop at the other end of the zone.

“Look at those fools,” Kaminsky said, cocking his head in the direction of the ride, “paying forty cents to have the wits scared out of them.”

“I don’t know,” Elizabeth said, skipping a bit to catch up with Kaminsky’s long strides, “I think it looks like fun.”

Kaminsky stopped in his tracks. “I dare you.”

Elizabeth raised her chin. “Oh? Are you paying?” She put out her hand. 

Kaminsky laughed. “Okay, Biz,” he said using the nickname he’d bestowed on Elizabeth, “you’re on. But later. We’ve got a robbery victim to interview first.”

“Excuse me,” Kaminsky grabbed the arm of a young man scurrying past pushing a trash cart. “Do you know where the hot dog stand is?”

The young man pushed his cap back and scratched his forehead. He pointed in the distance. “On the other side of the lake. Past the amphitheater by the Fountain Lake gate.” 

“Thanks.” Kaminsky touched the brim of his hat.

They made their way around Fountain Lake, past the amphitheater and past the stucco Mediterranean revival Florida pavilion where palm trees swayed in the slight breeze, until they spotted the blue and yellow Childs concession stand. A young man, in a matching blue and yellow uniform, was busy turning a dozen hot dogs with a fork. He looked up and smiled as Elizabeth and Kaminsky approached.

“How many? Two?” The fellow looked at Kaminsky and raised his eyebrows. “Three?”

Kaminsky shook his head. “You the fellow who was robbed?” He gestured to Elizabeth. “We’re from the Daily Trumpet.”

“Robbed?” The young man scratched his head. “I think someone’s been pulling your leg, mister. All I’ve been doing all day is selling hot dogs. I don’t know where you got that idea from.”

Kaminsky pulled a handkerchief from his pocket and wiped the back of his neck. “I got a tip that someone was robbed. Robber held a gun to the guy’s head and took all the money out of the till.”

“I haven’t heard nothing like that,” the vendor said. “And I’ve been here all day. I haven’t even had a chance to take a trip to the john.” He looked up suddenly. “Excuse me, miss,” he said to Elizabeth. “I didn’t mean no offense.”

Kaminsky swore under his breath. He turned to Elizabeth. “That Robert Belcher. He’s gonna pay for this. He set me up.”

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Murder, She Encountered 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Anonymous 14 hours ago
Cute historical cosy mystery Elizabeth Adams is a society girl going against the grain by working as a photographer for the newspaper. When her and her reporter/mentor go to the World’s Fair to cover a murder they decide to investigate further. I liked that Elizabeth was a strong character trying to be an independent woman while still being conscious of her family’s feelings and societal standards. I did feel at times like the author was making a very deliberate effort to include period details to the point where it felt forced? It was not enough to destroy my enjoyment of the story. I would like to see this character developed further.
chefdt 5 days ago
Murder, She Encountered is the third book in the Murder, She Reported mystery series. Elizabeth “Biz” Adams, photographer for the Daily Trumpet and reporter, Ralph Kaminsky gets a call to head out to the World’s Fair to report on the finding of a body in the Aquacade. As they are approaching the Aquacade they pass the police escorting Joey Dorman who has been arrested for the murder of Florence “Flo” Grimm. Flo worked at the DuPont exhibit, who was promoting their latest discovery...nylon hose, which Flo had been strangled with. Biz and Kaminsky don’t feel that Dorman is guilty and set out to learn who the killer might be. In their questioning of Flo’s co-workers, they are considering her boyfriend as a prime suspect, but soon they also have to start considering some of her co-workers. Just as they are on the right path to solving the murder, Kaminsky needs to be hospitalized and Biz begins to wonder if the killer will be found. But then Biz realizes that she has been on several assignments with Kaminsky and decides that she just might be able to learn who the killer might be. I love this series, not only are the books well written and told, but they also have a wonderful cast of characters. In addition, the reader also learns what life was like, in this book, 1939, living conditions and costs of various items. I also enjoy reading about Biz and how she deals with her mother. The mother wants Biz to find a young man from society and marry and give up her job at the paper. But Biz has met Detective Sal Marino and feels that he might be the man she would like to have a romantically involved with. I’m anxiously awaiting the next book in this very interesting series.
dibbylodd 5 days ago
Another excellent addition to this series. It's delightful to see the characters developing professionally, personally, and romantically. The World's Fair makes an exciting and diverse setting for all the adventures. Kaminsky is lucky to have a smart and forceful friend looking after him!
Linda romer 5 days ago
I really liked Murder, She Encountered. Another good murder mystery by this Author. I have enjoyed all three books in this series. Elizabeth and Kaminsky are at it again chasing leads to quite a few murders at The World's Fair. A good story with bold characters and a very good ending. #MurderSheEncountered #NetGalley I give Murder, She Encountered 4 stars for its good murder mystery. I would recommend this book to Cozy Mystery Fans.
Tangen 5 days ago
World's Fair, NYC, murder investigation, murder, newspapers, reporter I thought it was great! A woman with brains who isn't afraid to use them and discovers her calling along the way. Biz was born into an upper class family but that's just not a good fit for her. She's been the camera person for an experienced newsman and they're on the crime beat. On the grounds of the 1939 World's Fair, the first body is in the show swimming pool and the sleuthing begins. There are other bodies that don't appear tied to the original at first, an interesting police detective, red herrings, and plot twists. Don't miss this one! I requested and received a free ebook copy from Random House Publishing Group - Alibi via NetGalley. Thank you!
Shelly9677 5 days ago
I love that these books are unique among the cozy genre. They have a grittier, more mysterious air to them while still avoiding the violence and gruesome details of other crime genres. To me this series truly reflects the Golden Age of detective fiction. It is 1939 and a young woman is found dead at the World’s Fair in bustling New York City, with of newly available nylon stockings tied around her neck. Elizabeth “Biz” Adams snaps a photo of the unfortunate scene which lands on the front page of The Daily Trumpet newspaper. She should be thrilled, but she can’t help but notice there is a disconnect between the crime scene and the man arrested for the homicide. Biz and her mentor, reporter Ralph Kaminksy, decide to do a little digging. But when Kaminsky ends up hospitalized, Biz is forced to investigate on her own. She soon finds there are some secrets people will kill to keep. There are twists and turns while motives abound. This is the third in the series. The first is, Murder, She Reported. The Second book is, Murder, She Uncovered. If you’ve missed the previous books, I highly recommend you read them too. However, this is a wonderfully written book that stands alone as well.
nfam 5 days ago
Murder at the 1939 World’s Fair Elizabeth “Biz” Adams, a photographer, and her colleague, Ralph Kaminsky, a reporter, are at the l939 World’s Fair in New York City reporting on a robbery. Instead they encounter a murdered young woman found in the Aqucade’s pool with a nylon stocking around her neck. Elizabeth snaps a photo as the police arrest Joey Dorman, a young hot dog vender. He’s terrified and says he’s innocent. Elizabeth’s photo makes the front page, but she can’t forget the frightened look on Joey’s face. She’s convinced he’s innocent, and she and Kaminsky set out investigate. When Kaminsky is injured, Elizabeth decides to continue alone. The World’s Fair is a perfect setting for this cozy mystery. The author does a good job of describing the marvels on display as well as bringing in the tense atmosphere as the world careens toward war. Elizabeth is a perfect heroine for this era. She comes from a wealthy family. Her mother wants nothing more than to see her married, but Elizabeth wants to make her own way. If you enjoy cozy mysteries this is a good series. The books have serious mysteries to solve, but keep any illicit sexual encounters out of the story line. I received this book from Net Galley for this review.
MKF 6 days ago
Biz Adams and Ralph Kaminsky are meant to be photographing and reporting, not solving crime but that's what happens in the third installment about a wealthy young woman who steps out of her family expectations to follow her own interests. This time, Biz's photo of Joey the hot dog vendor accused of murdering a woman he was clearly obsessed with, bugs them enough that they go out and investigate. Bad things happen to Kaminsky but Biz remains determined to find the truth. There's a nice little romance going on with Detective Sal Marino. This is a quick read with nice atmospherics from the World's Fair. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. A historical cozy.