Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What We're Reading: Death by Water

Death by water : a Phryne Fisher mystery, by Kerry Greenwood, popular novelist from Australia.

The 15th title in the "Phryne Fisher mystery" series takes place on SS Hinemoa, a luxury liner bound for New Zealand. The name "Hinemoa" was adapted from the chieftainess of a Maori tribe (the first Polynesian settlers of New Zealand) who falls in love with a young man from another tribe whose relatives don't approve the union. This true love story is the greatest love story in Maori History.

The year is 1928 and someone on board has been stealing jewelry from the ship's passengers; Phryne Fisher with her beauty, poise, and intelligence is the best detective that would blend in with the first class passengers in order to solve the mystery without jeopardizing the reputation of the cruise ship.

As a bait, she wears a magnificent fake sapphire, the Maharani, that lures the thief. Phryne's social observations are enlightening and the conclusions reached by logical deduction lead her to solve the mystery. The description of New Zealand is wonderfully told and entices the reader to visit the country.

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