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Tuesday, 31 May 2022

‘Curtain Call at the Seaview Hotel’ by Glenda Young

Published by Headline,
12 May 2022.
ISBN: 978-1-4722-8568-3 (HB)

It has been a year since the death of her husband Tom, and Helen Dexter found herself sole proprietor of the Seaview Hotel, in the seaside town of Scarborough.

With the possibility of the Modernist Theatre on the sea front closing down, theatre manager Taylor Caffrey is putting on a play in two weeks’ time that he hopes will save the theatre, providing the play is a success, if not the Modernist faces the bulldozers.  

The theatrical group have booked eight rooms at the Seaview Hotel, but only seven breakfasts for you to cook, Helen tells Jean, her award-winning cook, as one room is for props. Then taking a deep breath says, ‘one of the troupe is a vegan’. Vegan? Jean sucked air through her teeth.

On arrival, Chester Ford, playwright, director, lead actor introduces his Dawley Theatre Group of merry men and women. Or as Helen quickly finds out, maybe not so merry. The star of the show Miss Carmen Delray is clearly not happy with Chester or the hotel.

But tensions between the guests is not Helen’s main concern, getting the hotel a fourth star is top of her list and she has heard on the grapevine that the hotel inspector is in the area.

The death of one of the actors, puts pressure on the group and the urgent need for a replacement. With the survival of the Modernist at stake, Helen finds herself roped in to helping. This also gives her a chance to study the other actors to see if she can get any idea who could be a killer.

If this wasn’t enough to keep her occupied, Helen has been receiving threatening phone calls, that make no sense to her. But then her car is vandalised.

With an intriguing mystery, this is the second book in this series, and I loved it. The characterisation is brilliant, and I enjoyed the personal relationships not only between the theatre group, but also the hotel staff. In my youth I worked in a seaside hotel, and it brought back so many memories reading it.  Highly recommended. More please.

Reviewer: Lizzie Sirett.

Glenda Young credits her local library in the village of Ryhope, where she grew up, for giving her a love of books. She still lives close by in Sunderland and often gets her ideas for her stories on long bike rides along the coast. A life-long fan of Coronation Street, she runs two hugely popular fan websites.

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