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Murder at Hotel 1911: An Ivy Nichols Mystery (Hardcover)
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A hotel clerk prone to panic attacks turns amateur detective in this elegant and atmospheric murder mystery.
If you want to spend a night amid the luxury and charm of the early 20th century, book a room at Hotel 1911. You'll find 28-year-old Ivy Nichols behind the reception desk. The hotel is Ivy's only link to the family that abandoned her when she was a small child. Now, plagued by panic attacks, she pedals her sea-green Schwinn bicycle to work every evening, hoping desperately to hold on to her job.
When wealthy, imperious Ms. Swain arrives at the hotel and belittles Ivy, the young woman seeks consolation in the welcoming kitchen of George, the hotel's chef. Despite her tormentor's barbs, she dutifully informs George that Ms. Swain has a deadly allergy to shellfish. So when Ms. Swain collapses at dinner and dies, the police suspect that the chef made a tragic, inexcusable error. Desperate to save George's career, Ivy sets out sleuthing. She learns that numerous people in and around the hotel had motives to contaminate Ms. Swain's plate. Among them are Jeffrey Swain, the victim's son and heir; painter Rose Jewett; and British expat Hemal Sandeep.
Even after the police find traces of shellfish in George's kitchen, Ivy is determined to clear her friend's name. But the stress of the investigation, in a hotel filled with suspects, threatens to precipitate another terrifying panic attack...or something more deadly.
About the Author
Audrey Keown set her mystery series in Chattanooga, Tennessee, the place she calls home. She lost her heart to the city in the early days of its downtown revival, and its bridges, coffee shops, breweries, parks, and people are its mixtape back to her. For ten years she wrote professionally for Chatter magazine and the Chattanooga Times Free Press, which sharpened her storytelling skills for cutting into fiction writing. Themes of redemption and connection to history often find their way into her work. Like her protagonist, she has battled anxiety and writes about mental illness in her fiction in hopes of helping lift the stigma. This is her first book.
Praise for Murder at Hotel 1911:
“Readers will look forward to Ivy’s story unfolding in future installments. Keown is off to a good start.”
“This character-driven debut combines a knotty mystery with the believable real-life problems of its appealing sleuth.”
“An enjoyable amateur detective yarn.”
“A great whodunit mystery that has a Clue flare and a charming setting, in a mystery that gives a much-needed voice to the struggles of anxiety and panic attacks.”
—Manhattan Book Review
“Ivy is a refreshing character, as are the supporting characters around her.”
—Red Carpet Crash
“An exciting and entertaining mystery with an eye-opening glimpse into the life of someone struggling with an anxiety disorder.”
“Set in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Murder at Hotel 1911 offers the perfect blend of humor and villainy with lashings of southern charm. A sparkling debut!”
—Hannah Dennison, author of the Honeychurch Hall mysteries
“Murder at Hotel 1911 is an engaging mystery with a few welcome razor blades hidden under its cozy exterior. Audrey Keown has created a hotel to appeal to Downton Abbey fans.”
—Simon Brett, author of the Fethering mysteries