The Mask of Midnight by Laurie Stevens

A Palette for Love and Murder
by Saralyn Richard

Black Opal Books
ISBN 978-1644372043
Publication Date: January 14, 2020
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A Palette for Love and Murder

Review by Liz Gatterer

Saralyn Richard’s newly released novel, A Palette for Love and Murder, is a delightful return to Detective Oliver Parrott and the posh world of Brandywine Valley, Pennsylvania. Many of the characters first introduced to us in Murder in the One Percent (The Killer Nashville 2019 Readers’ Choice Silver Falchion winner) have returned in this tale of art, love, and murder. In this story, newlywed Parrott is tasked with solving the case of stolen art from the area’s most notable artist and wealthy resident, Blake Allmond. Several of his paintings have disappeared from his estate—a theft noticed first by his live-in girlfriend, Elle Carmichael (who has a very interesting back story of her own, to boot). Just as the investigation is beginning, Allmond is murdered in his New York City apartment. While the murder investigation is outside of Parrott’s jurisdiction, the two crimes must be related, so Parrott is set to solve the theft and, hopefully, assist in solving the murder.

Richard’s writing style is perfect for this genre. Her story lines are detailed and logical but still warm and exciting. Even when dealing with tough subjects, like Parrott’s wife’s PTSD from her time serving in Afghanistan, Richard’s compassion and gentleness shine through. Her characters are well developed and endearing to the reader. She has created a diverse and fascinating cast of characters. I hope there will be many more books in this series. We would all be lucky to have an Ollie Parrott in our lives.

Liz Gatterer attended Tulane University while living in New Orleans. It was there that she first began working with authors in the printing industry. Originally from Upstate New York, she moved to Nashville with her husband to pursue their careers (his being music). Three (absolutely fabulous) children later, she has returned to the working world in the industry she loves. She currently lives in Spring Hill with said husband and children, dogs, cats, and various other creatures. The necessity of multitasking has led her to an addiction to audiobooks – but, when able to, she still prefers to curl up with a good book (and a child in her lap).