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Sheila Malory Books In Order

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Publication Order of Sheila Malory Books

Gone Away / Mrs Malory Investigates (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Cruellest Month (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Shortest Journey / Mrs. Malory's Shortest Journey (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon
An Uncertain Death / Mrs. Malory And The Festival Murder (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Murder on Campus / Mrs. Malory: Detective in Residence (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Superfluous Death / Mrs. Malory Wonders Why (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death of a Dean / Mrs Malory: Death of a Dean (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Only Good Lawyer / Mrs Malory and the Only Good Lawyer (1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dead And Buried / Mrs Malory: Death Among Friends (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Fatal Legacy / Mrs Malory & the Fatal Legacy (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
Lilies That Fester / Mrs Malory and the Lilies That Fester (2000)Description / Buy at Amazon
Leonora / Mrs Malory and Death by Water (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Delay of Execution / Mrs. Malory and the Delay of Execution (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death in Practice / Mrs Malory and Death in Practice (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Silent Killer / Mrs Malory and the Silent Killer (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
No Cure for Death (2005)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death in the Family (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Time to Die (2008)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mrs. Malory and Any Man's Death (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mrs. Malory and a Necessary End (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death is a Word (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon

The name ‘Sheila Malory’ refers to a series of cozy mystery novels written by Hazel Holt. The books follow the exploits of a retired academic from a small town outside London who solves crimes.

The Sheila Malory series is occasionally called the Mrs. Malory Mysteries series. Both names emphasize the important role Mrs. Malory plays in the story.

Sheila Malory is first introduced to readers in ‘Mrs. Malory Investigates’. That particular novel centers on the disappearance of Lee Montgomery, a woman that was engaged to Charles Richardson, a man whose friends hated his fiancé.

Malory comes into play when Richardson asks her to solve Lee Montgomery’s disappearance.
The protagonist of the series, Sheila Malory is a long-time resident of Taviscombe, a sleepy seaside village in England. Malory was married and she was happy. But then her husband died.

She spent two years mourning his passing. In that time, she sought solace in the company of her pets. This was on top of pursuing her passion for 19th Century literature. Malory has always boasted a curious spirit.

And Charles Richardson, one of the central characters of the first Sheila Malory novel, only seeks her out because she has a knack for digging up the truth. Like most cozy mystery heroines, Malory did not set out to become an amateur detective.

She merely noticed that she had an affinity for noticing details that other people missed. She also had a talent for interacting with people in a way that encouraged them to let their guards down, giving her vital clues to mysteries.

While Malory did not set out to solve mysteries and crimes, she also made no effort to pass the vital clues she collected to the police. She did not think it was her place to participate in their investigation and she was by no means interested in muscling her way into their work.

However, whenever the police stumbled and if Malory became convinced that they did not have the capacity to solve the mystery at hand, then she would make it her business to resolve it on their behalf.

By the time readers meet Sheila Malory in the first Malory novel, she has grown accustomed to performing investigations on cases surrounded by mysterious circumstances.

She is driven merely by the thrill of solving puzzles and getting to the truth. Each new installment in the series pits the heroine against a new mystery, one that endeavors to test her mettle and stretch her intelligence to its limits.

Most of the mysteries presented in the Malory series have a personal connection to the heroine. She is either directly connected to the victim or those individuals involved in the mystery have sought out her help, in which case she has no choice but to proffer her investigative skills.

A number of the mysteries play out within the confines of Taviscombe which explains Malory’s frequent involvement. Taviscombe is a small close-knit community. Most people know one another.

And whenever someone in the community befalls some sort of tragedy or encounters a complication in their life, not only is Sheila Malory guaranteed to hear about it but she cannot help but investigate.

There are Sheila Malory novels that take the protagonist away from her home village. Malory is a passionate woman. She is a retired academic, so her work will sometimes draw her away from Taviscombe.

The heroine also has a son in college called Michael who will demand her attention from time to time. Wherever Malory ends up in England, she cannot help but stick her nose into situations that do not smell right.

It is worth mentioning that Malory has been compared to Agatha Christie’s Miss Maple on multiple occasions, though Hazel and Agatha’s heroines definitely vary.

Miss Maple wasn’t the warm and cuddly type. And she always thought the worst of everyone. .Malory, on the other hand, is very warm and interactive. She never misses an opportunity to extend kindness to other people.

And it is often the friendly nature of her interactions with victims and witnesses of crimes that allow her to glean so many clues about the cases she has on her plate. Hazel Holt, the author, repeatedly disputed suggestions that Sheila Malory was inspired by Miss Maple.

It is worth noting that the Sheila Malory series spends a lot of time following its heroine around as she goes about her daily business. In fact, some readers have complained that the Malory novels have too much padding.

The various titles spend many chapters peeking into Malory’s life as she eats, sleeps, feeds her pets and talks to her neighbors. Though, it is for this very same reason that a lot of fans are drawn to the Malory novels.

They enjoy the effort Hazel injects into bringing Malory to life and making her feel like a real person living a cozy existence.

+The Author
Hazel Holt was a British novelist who was so well acquainted with the author Barbara Pym that she eventually wrote Pym’s biography. Holt was also charged with finishing one of Pym’s novels following her passing.

Hazel was already in her sixties when she wrote her first book. She is the mother of Tom Holt, also a novelist.

+Mrs. Malory Investigates
Everyone knows that Lee is a gold digger. She only wants Charles Richardson’s money. But Charles’ friends have tried and failed to convince him of this fact. So they are quite excited to learn about Lee’s disappearance.

But Charles actually loved his pretty fiancé and he isn’t ready to let her go. So he hires Mrs. Malory, a woman who had a heavy crush on him, to find Lee.

+The Cruellest Month
Sheila Malory is in Oxford where she is visiting her son and hanging out with her friends. The widow was enthusiastic about doing research at the Bodleian Library. But then a loathsome woman was found dead.

Now Malory has a case on her hands. Some of her friends think the death was an accident but Malory isn’t convinced. From what she can tell, the victim was a blackmailer, which means that she made many enemies along the way, one of whom could have killed her.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Sheila Malory

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