Friday, July 11, 2014

Murder at the Mikado
Julianna Deering

Just as Drew Farthering thinks he has reached smooth waters, Fleur Landis, an old flame, reappears in his life. She's married now, no longer an actress, and he expects she'll soon disappear--until she comes to him in dire need. The lead actor in her old troupe's production of The Mikado has been murdered, and Fleur is the police's number one suspect.

Drew would love nothing more than to just focus on his fiance, Madeline, and their upcoming wedding, but he can't leave Fleur in the lurch--even if she did break his heart once. As Drew, Nick, and Madeline dive into the murder, they discover more going on behind the scenes of the theater troupe than could ever have been imagined. Nearly everyone had a motive, and alibis are few and far between. It's Drew's most complicated case yet.

Excerpt from Murder at the Mikado:

"I couldn't risk your not seeing me. I–" Fleur had a lace handkerchief crumpled in one hand, and now she touched it to her trembling lips. "I'm in the most awful trouble, Drew, and I was hoping you might be able to help me."
"Perhaps you ought to be talking to the police. I know a Chief Inspector Birdsong who–"
"No." She shook her head, again pressing her handkerchief to her mouth. "You don't understand. The police are the ones I'm going to be in trouble with!"
"Perhaps a solicitor then."
"No, no." Her voice was nearly a sob now. "I need someone unofficial, someone who can keep my name out of it. Poor Brent, the scandal would kill him."
Drew narrowed his eyes at her. "Just what are you afraid you'll be accused of?"
"Haven't you seen the morning paper?"
He shook his head. "Shall I have it brought in?"
She sniffed and then nodded three or four times. "I couldn't– Oh, Drew, I couldn't possibly tell you the awful details."
He tried to figure out how much of her fright was real and how much of it was put on to sway him, but it didn't matter. Whatever this was, it wasn't his place to help her.
He rang for Denny, and in just another moment Drew had that morning's paper in hand. One bold headline caught his eye.


Drew looked up at Fleur. "Ravenswood? It was his troupe you were in back in
Oxford, wasn't it? What happened?"
"Read it." A single tear traced down her porcelain cheek, and she immediately blotted it away, forcing herself to sit up straighter. "You'll want just the facts, and that will tell you better than I would be able to."
Madeline was already reading over his shoulder, and he hurried to catch up.

Local celebrity, actor John Sutherland Ravenswood, born Henry Percival Sutherland, was found at
two o'clock this morning in his dressing room at the Tivoli Theater, bludgeoned to death with an empty champagne bottle. Ravenswood's wife and leading lady, Miss Simone Cullimore, already having gone home after last night's performance, called the theater to speak to Ravenswood before he left for the evening. Conor Benton, another of the actors, and one of the workmen found the star's dressing room locked, and receiving no reply to repeated knocks and calls, forced the door open.

Again Drew looked up at Fleur, skipping the remainder of the article. "What does this have to do with you? Did you kill him?"
"Drew!" Tears sprang to her eyes, and once more she pressed the frothy bit of lace to her mouth, her body shaking. "I know what you think of me after– after
Oxford, but you can't believe that of me. Not murder. Please tell me you don't."
"I haven't seen you in six years, Mrs. Landis," he told her. "And even back then, I can't say I really knew you. How would I know what you're capable of?"


JULIANNA DEERING has always been an avid reader and a lover of storytelling, whether on the page, the screen or the stage. This, along with her keen interest in history and her Christian faith, shows in her tales of love, forgiveness and triumph over adversity. A fifth-generation Texan, she makes her home north of Dallas with three spoiled cats and, when not writing, spends her free time quilting, cross stitching and watching NHL hockey. Her new series of Drew Farthering mysteries set in 1930s England debuted with Rules of Murder (Bethany House, 2013) and is followed by Death by the Book and Murder at the Mikado (Bethany House, 2014). Also, writing as DeAnna Julie Dodson, she has written a trilogy of medieval romances (In Honor Bound, By Love Redeemed and To Grace Surrendered) and four contemporary mysteries for the Annie's Attic series. She is represented by Wendy Lawton of the Books & Such Literary Agency (
Step into time . . . Historical Fiction by DeAnna Julie Dodson

Also, writing as Julianna Deering, The Drew Farthering Mysteries: 
Rules of Murder
(Now Available from Bethany House)


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