Posted to Death (Simon Kirby-Jones Series #1)

Posted to Death (Simon Kirby-Jones Series #1)

by Dean James


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781575668857
Publisher: Kensington
Publication date: 04/01/2002
Series: Simon Kirby-Jones Series , #1
Pages: 242
Product dimensions: 5.84(w) x 8.48(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Dean James is the Agatha Award-winning author of several works of mystery nonfiction as well as two mystery series.

Table of Contents

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Posted to Death (Simon Kirby-Jones Series #1) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
hoosgracie on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Cute cozy mystery starring Simon Kirby-Jones, a gay writer and vampire. First in a series.
NewsieQ on LibraryThing 8 months ago
We learn on page one that our hero is 1) a vampire and 2) gay. Soon we discover Simon Kirby-Jones, Ph.D., is NO garden-variety vampire. In fact, he is not the blood-sucking sort at all; on the contrary, the sight of blood makes him a trifle queasy. A recent arrival in the tiny English village of Snupperton Mumsley, the New-Age vampire is asked to join the St. Ethelwold¿s Church Restoration Fund Committee ¿ and it¿s at the first meeting, he¿s introduced to many of the characters that will shortly become murder suspects. Although Kirby-Jones is an unusual hero for what is essentially an English village mystery ¿ albeit an offbeat, quirky one -- the other characters are quite typical. With names like Lady Prunella Blitherington (nee Ragsbottom), readers know from the get-to that they¿re in for some fun.Dr. Kirby-Jones (formerly Sam Jones of Pleasant Springs, Mississippi and Houston, Texas) moves into Laurel Cottage to continue his very successful writing career. Allowed by modern pharmaceuticals to avoid some of the more unpleasant aspects of being one of the living dead, he gains a few benefits from the transformation. For one, he only needs two hours¿ sleep ¿ leaving him 22 hours to write. And write he does. Known for English history and biography, he also writes very popular historical romance and hard-boiled-detective fiction under the pen names Daphne Deepwood and Dorinda Darlington. As he narrates the tale, readers will quickly note Kirby-Jones has no problems with self-esteem ¿ in fact, quite the opposite. He manages to look down his distinguished nose at just about everybody. But why shouldn¿t he? He¿s smart, rich, handsome (so he tells us) and, since he¿s already dead, doesn¿t need to worry about the ills that befall mere mortals. He can¿t be done in by the usual methods ¿ unless he winds up overdosing on garlic or taking a wooden stake in the heart, he can live on indefinitely. The other characters, as I have mentioned, are the standard fare in English mysteries: the vicar and his devoted wife; the young lord of the manor; and the ¿horsy¿ postmistress who seems to snort a lot. Then there are the Colonel, the local detective inspector and a Jane-Marple-ish character that turns out to be a 400-year-old vampire. Well, she¿s not that typical.All the suspects and the victim are members of the church¿s Restoration Fund Committee or the local dramatic society. The two groups have come together to plan a theatrical event to benefit the Restoration Fund. When Abigail Winterton suggests a putting on play by an anonymous local writer, a play about moral decay in an English village much like Snupperton Mumsley, Kirby-Jones senses a threatening element in the suggestion. Maybe even a hint of blackmail. His foreboding is proven right when Ms. Winterton is found dead, the murder rather bloodless as in most ¿cozies.¿ Kirby-Jones, who has time on his hands, decides to do some investigating of his own, as he uses the opportunity to meet his new neighbors. He unearths lots of village secrets ¿ but which one was dark enough to warrant killing the person who threatened to reveal it? Posted to Death is not a book I would have selected, being put off by the blood and violence associated with vampires. That would have been too bad, because I really enjoyed it. Kirby-Jones is a likeable and believable character. The plot is well-drawn ¿ no loose ends -- and the author plays fair with his readers. The writing moves along at a fast pace, and the book was a fun read. First published in Mystery News, April-May 2002 issue. (This was my very first published review.)
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Guest More than 1 year ago
The newest member of the quirky English village of Snupperton Mumsley is Simon Kirby-Jones, an American author of bodice rippers and mysteries (under pseudonyms). Simon is also gay and a vampire but thanks to advances in modern medicine, he is able to hide his condition from the rest of humanity. By taking two pills daily, he can walk in sunlight, eat and drink food, and has no need for human blood.

Simon takes immediately to village life and is delighted to discover another vampire, Jane Hardwick, living in the village. The two bond immediately and when the local postmistress is murdered, the pair embarks on their own investigation to uncover the culprit. They find that everyone had a reason to hate the gossipy women who threatened to expose their secrets via a play that she wrote for a local dramatic society production. As Simon closes in on the killer, he finds his own ¿undead¿ life in jeopardy.

POSTED TO DEATH is a cozy mystery that puts down home Lone Star charm (Simon is a Texan) in an old-fashioned English village within a realistic slight bite sleuth tale. Dean James has captured the essence of village life in such a manner that readers can enjoy the story line without taking it overly seriously. The hero is admirable, lovable and as eccentric as the rest of the locals, which is the main reason he and Snupperton Mumsley are made for each other and the audience.

Harriet Klausner