Forget cold hard crime, Cozy is just as thrilling

There was a lovely piece in the Sunday Independent in Ireland by Anne Marie Scanlon about cozy crime last weekend, describing it as the perfect way to ‘banish the bleaks’ of the cold winter months.

A CLEAN CANVAS is described as ‘the second of a, hopefully long, series featuring Lena Szarka, a Hungarian cleaner and amateur detective by Elizabeth Mundy.’ Scanlon compares Lena Szarka to Agatha Raisin: both are ‘formidable and funny women who like men’.

Get your own dose of warming cozy crime here, or if you’re still to be convinced you can read the full article here.

A CLEAN CANVAS is published today!

I’m thrilled that today is publication day for the second novel in the Lena Szarka series, A CLEAN CANVAS! It sees Lena dust off her detective skills when a masterpiece goes missing from a gallery she cleans in Islington.

Embroiling herself in the sketchy world of thwarted talents, unpaid debts and elegant fraudsters, Lena finds that there’s more to this gallery than meets the eye.

Please look out for it in your local book shop, or you can order it on Amazon here.

In other news, my second baby is also out now! Violet was born 30th December at 10.24pm weighing 7lb 11oz of gorgeousness. She’s not available on Amazon but you can see a little picture of her here.

Happy new year!

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Cover reveal: A CLEAN CANVAS

I’m very excited to share the gorgeous cover for the second book in the Lena Szarka Mystery series:  A CLEAN CANVAS.

ACC cover

It’s out on 3rd January 2019 (4 days after my second baby is due!) and sees Lena tracking down the perpetrators of an art heist in a gallery she cleans.

Click to hear a free excerpt from the audio book, read by the wonderful Rula Lenska, currently gracing the cobbles of Coronation Street. Or pre-order on Amazon to be the first to read!

Full blurb and some lovely early feedback below.

Crime always leaves a stain…

Lena Szarka, a Hungarian cleaner, dusts off her detective skills when a masterpiece is stolen from a gallery she cleans with her cousin Sarika.  When Sarika goes missing, accusations start to fly.

Convinced her cousin is innocent, Lena sweeps her way through the secrets of the art scene. But with the evidence against Sarika mounting and the police on her trail, Lena needs to track down the missing painting.

Embroiling herself in the sketchy world of thwarted talents, unpaid debts and elegant fraudsters, Lena finds that there’s more to this gallery than meets the eye.

‘This second in the series crackles along with a fresh sense of fun’ Vaseem Khan

‘This is a witty and engaging story, as warm and satisfying as a bowl of goulash‘ LC Tyler

‘An intriguing mystery, memorable characters and a highly entertaining romp through the London art world’ Jackie Kabler

 

 

 

 

 

 

IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES reviewed on Reviewing the Evidence

There’s a very insightful review from Larissa Kyzer on Reviewing the Evidence. She describes IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES as “the perfect of-our-moment set-up that would be compelling even if it weren’t for the crime plot”.

“As a rule, the fundamental premise for most mystery series featuring an amateur detective is a shaky one. After all, elderly spinsters, small town librarians, and mystery authors don’t generally live the kind of lives that lead them to get mixed up with one violent crime, let alone many. This, then, is one of the fundamental delights of Elizabeth Mundy’s debut IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES: her protagonist—the plucky and ambitious Lena Szarka—literally goes through other people’s dirty laundry for a living.

Lena is a Hungarian cleaner in London, living a version of that all-too-common and none-too-glamorous immigrant experience. Namely, she works exhausting hours at an unskilled, low-paying job while living with multiple roommates and dreaming of the day that she’ll finally get a foothold in her adopted home. Add to that the fact that she’s an Eastern European in post-Brexit London, forced weather all manner of oblique microagressions and blatant discriminations (“You’re Romanian, too, aren’t you? You come here to beg”), and you have the perfect of-our-moment set-up that would be compelling even if it weren’t for the crime plot.” Read more

 

How to create a heroine for our time – Writers & Artists

Before I even started writing my first murder mystery novel, I knew I wanted a strong woman as my heroine. I was sick of female victims suffering and femmes fatales seducing. I wanted a modern woman solving crimes.

So I was delighted to be asked to write a piece about creating a strong, modern heroine for the Writers & Artists website.

Read the full article here.

IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES reviewed in the Morning Star

I’m so pleased with this lovely review from Mat Coward of the Morning Star. He tells us that ‘this debut novel begins a series featuring an appealing, and more believable than usual, amateur sleuth.’

When I wrote IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES it was important to me that I showed a different, more positive side to immigration, and I’m delighted that the socialist paper the Morning Star has chosen to review my book. 

Let’s hope he’s right when he says that ‘it’s a long time before Mundy runs out of plots’!

‘LENA and Timea have know each other since they were children in a small village in Hungary.

In IN STRANGERS’ HOUSES by Elizabeth Mundy, a desire to see more of the world has brought them to Islington where they work as cleaners in private homes.

When Timea vanishes, Lena is convinced that one of her client has silenced her after she uncovered one too many secrets with her duster. The police don’t agree, so it’s up to Lena to find her friend

This debut novel begins a series featuring an appealing, and more believable than usual, amateur sleuth. The daily help set-up, along with the guest worker subculture, should mean it’s a long time before Mundy runs out of plots.’

The Morning Star