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Judith Flanders

Author of The Sam Clair Mysteries

September 12, 2019

“Oh, just kill me now.” I didn’t shriek that out loud, just clenched my teeth more tightly. It was eight thirty and already the day couldn’t get much worse. I’m always at my desk by eight, not because I’m so wonderful, although I am, but because it’s the only time of day when no one asks me anything, when I can get on with some work, instead of solving other people’s problems.” From Murder of Magpies, page 1

Samantha Clair is an overworked London book editor whose gossipy fashion industry friend has written a racy manuscript. After the friend goes missing, it becomes clear that somebody wants to stop the manuscript from being published. Sam, with the help of her Goth assistant, her wealthy, well-connected mother, and her cute boyfriend, Scotland Yard detective Jake Field, is on the case. In another book in the series, Sam and Jake attend a neighbor’s theater production expecting lots of drama and death. They’re not at all shocked when the second act opens with a body hanging from the rafters, until they realize that it is an actual person, who has been murdered. And that person is the play’s director, who, it turns out, was not at all well-liked.

The Sam Clair mysteries are filled with snappy dialogue, Sam is not shy about sharing her thoughts, her mother is a hoot, and it was entertaining to be swept along into the apparently exciting life of an editor. I imagine the author sitting at her desk all those years, thinking about ways to kill people off, maybe even authors whose work she was currently editing.

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