Fear In The Sunlight-Nicola Upson

Fear In The Sunlight
Nicola Upson
Harper, Apr 9 2013, $14.99
ISBN: 9780062195432

In 1954 Scotland Yard’s Archie Penrose learns that someone confessed to the murders of three women during the filming of Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window in California. That same person also admitted to killing three people two decades earlier in Portmeirion, Wales.

In the summer of 1936, mystery writer Josephine Tey celebrates her fortieth birthday with friends at a resort in Portmeirion, Wales. Movie director Alfred Hitchcock films the gala while wanting the rights to her novel A Shilling for Candles that his wife Alma gave to him to read as a possible adaption to the big screen. The renowned director also plans to deploy experiments in how people negatively react to the belief they caused someone else’s death. While many of the Tey party believe Hitchcock is a pest, someone brutally slashes to death an actress at a cemetery. Hitchcock has gotten what he wished for as long time friends look at each suspecting one another is the killer. Scotland Yard Chief Inspector David Penrose becomes involved in the investigation.

The latest Tey-Penrose “Golden Age” historical British mystery (see Two for Sorrow, An Expert In Murder and Angel with Two Faces) is a tense whodunit based on the real encounter between Tey and Hitchcock in Wales over filming her novel. Although a cast that Cecile B. DeMille would relish slows down the storyline, fans will appreciate this psychological suspense as the joyous birthday bash turns from a happy occasion into a fearful one.

Harriet Klausner

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