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Monday 6 June 2016

'Digging Up the Dead' by Jill Amadio

Published by Mainly Murder Press, 2016.
ISBN 978-0-9861780-5-4

In her second adventure Tosca Trevant becomes embroiled in the death of a publisher.  Tosca is living in California with her daughter having been reassigned to America by her London newspaper.
Gossip columnist Tosca, (whose name does reflect an interest in opera), had offended the Royals and so been forced to relocate from the UK.  Tosca has managed to find suitable gossip on the fairly wealthy Californians since she is good at ferreting out information but it isn't really the reporting she wants  to do.   

The island she lives in is charming with attractive cottages and a relaxed pace of life but Tosca pines for rainy UK and in particular for her native Cornwall.  Her efforts to use Cornish words and to persuade people of the value of her homemade mead add amusement to the proceedings.  She also hopes that a scoop will enable her to change from gossip reporting to the crime beat.

The death of Sally Hirsch occurs at a party where Tosca is present.  Sally was the publisher of the books of a dead crime writer and the party was given by his daughter.   It is suggested that unpublished manuscripts by the writer exist and this leads to much speculation.  The rich background to this tale includes Tosca's efforts to expand American knowledge of Cornwall, the danger of poisonous garden plants, priceless historic musical instruments collected by another person involved with the publishing world, and the work of bringing music to Alzheimer sufferers.  The sea features strongly as a place for leisure and as a potential danger for boaters and swimmers.

Tosca is a feisty heroine who pursues the mystery doggedly.  Gradually disparate items come together to make a coherent explanation of  deaths.  There is a thrilling climax to Tosca's sleuthing!
Reviewer: Jennifer S. Palmer
The first book about Tosca was Digging Too Deep.

Jill Amadio hails from Cornwall, U.K., like the character in her crime series. Amadio was a reporter in Spain, Colombia, Thailand, and the U.S.
She is a true crime author, ghosted a thriller, writes a column for MysteryPeople ezine, and freelances for My Cornwall magazine. She is a member of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and Crime Writers Association UK. She lives in Southern California.

Jennifer Palmer Throughout my reading life crime fiction has been a constant interest; I really enjoyed my 15 years as an expatriate in the Far East, the Netherlands & the USA but occasionally the solace of closing my door to the outside world and sitting reading was highly therapeutic. I now lecture to adults on historical topics including Famous Historical Mysteries.

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