Cherringham, Episodes #7-9 by Matthew Costello and  Neil Richards Cherringham, Episodes #7-9 by Matthew Costello
Narrator: Neil Dudgeon
Series: Cherringham #7, #8, #9
Published by Lübbe Audio on September 27, 2016
Source: Purchased
Genres: Cozy Mystery
Length: 7 hrs 59 mins
Format: Audiobook
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four-stars

Set in the sleepy English village of Cherringham, this cozy detective series brings together an unlikely sleuthing duo: English web designer Sarah and American ex-cop Jack. Each of the self-contained episodes is a quick listen for the morning commute, while waiting for the doctor, or when curling up with a hot cuppa.

The Body in the Lake

Cherringham parish council has invited Laurent Bourdain, the mayor of a French village on the Brittany coast, to a gala reception to join the two villages in a mutually beneficial twinning. The venue: Lady Repton's manor house, which her grandson hopes to turn into a world-class conference center. An elaborate dinner worthy of the French dignitary has been prepared. But as the night wears on, and the wine flows, the mayor will vanish from the celebration, only to be found floating dead in the nearby lake. An accident it would appear-until Jack and Sarah start to piece together what really happened to the body in the lake.

Snowblind

One of the worst blizzards in years hits Cherringham, cutting the village off from the rest of the world. Just outside town, in a gothic mansion behind towering walls, stands Broadmead Grange, a struggling retirement home. One of the home's residents, poor old Archy, becomes Cherringham's latest victim after he loses himself out among the snow drifts. Did Archy really just fall victim to the elements, or was foul play involved? Jack and Sarah take on the case to dig up the truth.

Playing Dead

When Cherringham Drama Society invites a local television celebrity to direct their Christmas show, they get more publicity than they bargained for. Someone's out to sabotage the event, and rehearsals spin into chaos. Jack and Sarah are asked to investigate and soon discover that there's a darker mystery taking place behind the scenes ...

Cherringham is a charming English village – aren’t they all – that has more than its fair share of murders. Happily, Sarah, a web designer, a Jack, former NYPD, make a good team who can apparently solve the mysteries that for whatever reason people won’t take to the police or that the police can’t solve. I like that they are good friends, that Sarah’s family and Jack are close but there’s no romance, a hint that maybe it will happen eventually, but none of that will they/won’t they garbage. And they both bring their own skills to the table. Sarah is good at talking to people and digging for information online. Jack is a little tough, prefers paper files to online and doesn’t mind a little breaking and entering for a good cause. There are few situations he’s afraid of, while this whole crime business is still fairly new to Sarah.

“The Body in the Lake” was my least favorite. First, I didn’t get the whole “twinning” thing. Second, I’m not a fan of people getting drunk and doing stupid things, in fiction or real life.

“Snowblind” had an interesting twist. Sarah and especially Jack are honestly concerned about the residents of the nursing home, and they’re right, something bad is going on. The gun stand-off scene in this one was really good.

I’ll be honest, I like theater mysteries. “Playing Dead” seemed a bit short, but I like the theater setting. And no one was actually killed, which is a change.

I started listening to #10 at lunch. I’ll listen to a few more then probably move on to something else.

About Matthew Costello

Matthew Costello was born in 1948 and writes novels and nonfictional works as author and coauthor. Some of his books have been adapted into film versions and he wrote for some TV channels like the BBC. He also scripts and designs videogames.

About Neil Richards

Neil Richards has worked as a producer and writer in TV and film, creating scripts for BBC, Disney, and Channel 4, and earning numerous Bafta nominations along the way. He’s also written script and story for over 20 video games including The Da Vinci Code and Starship Titanic, co-written with Douglas Adams, and consults around the world on digital storytelling. His writing partnership with NYC-based Matt Costello goes back to the late 90’s and the two have written many hours of TV together. Cherringham, the crime fiction series set in the Cotswolds, is their first crime fiction as co-writers.

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