Lena Szarka has been shortlisted for the Dead Good Reader Awards 2019

I’m thrilled to let you know that Lena Szarka, my Hungarian cleaning detective, has been shortlisted for the Nosy Parker Award for Best Amateur Detective in the Dead Good Reader Awards 2019! I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who nominated her.

But it’s not over – the awards are decided entirely by a public vote. If you’d like to see Lena win, please vote here for her second outing, A Clean Canvas. Voting closes on Wednesday 17th July.

Thank you for your support – I appreciate it so much.

Witty and warm with an unsentimental core of steel

I’d be rather pleased if someone described me like this, so I was delighted with this review of A CLEAN CANVAS from Mat Coward at the Morning Star!

He goes on to say that the Lena Szarka mysteries ‘looks set to become a highly popular series.’

I hope he’s right.

Here’s the full review:

Elizabeth Mundy’s A CLEAN CANVAS is the second outing for Lena, a Hungarian cleaner living in North London.

This time she’s forced to investigate the theft of a painting from the Islington gallery she’s working at, when her unreliable cousin vanishes immediately after the robbery.

The only way to prove her innocence is to find the real culprit among the inhabitants of the weird world of art collectors, using the detective skills she’s learned from her domestic work.

Witty and warm but with an unsentimental core of steel in its chronicling of London’s guest workers, this looks set to become a highly popular series.

Fancy a ‘deliciously light and amusing souffle of a book’?

The Irish Independent is fast becoming my favourite newspaper! This weekend they ran a lovely review of A CLEAN CANVAS in their Book Brief section.  Myles McWeeney described it as ‘a deliciously light and amusing souffle of a book, the second in a series that is bound to run and run’.

And in case you missed it, last weekend they compared Lena to Agatha Raisin and described her as ‘formidable and funny’.

Clearly the Irish have excellent taste in books!

Full review here…

‘Lena Szarka is an ambitious young Hungarian immigrant working as a cleaner in London, ever open to new opportunities and seldom downcast by misfortune. One of Lena’s clients is Pietro Agnoletti, co-owner of the Agnoletti Archer Gallery in Islington. When a modern masterpiece, ‘A Study in Purple’ by Trudy Weincamp, goes missing after the opening night, suspicion falls on Lena’s young cousin Sarika, who has also disappeared. Convinced Sarika is innocent, Lena must embroil herself in the sketchy world of thwarted talents, unpaid debts and elegant fraudsters to clear her. A deliciously light and amusing souffle of a book, the second in a series that is bound to run and run.’

 

 

 

 

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