The Scarlet Wench (The Nora Tierney Mysteries, #3) by M. K. Graff



The author sent me a copy (mobi format) in exchange for an honest review (member of Rosie’s Book Review Team).


My rating:  4  of  5  stars

(by Goodreads)

In this third Nora Tierney Mystery, American writer Nora awaits the arrival of a travelling theatre groups who will stage Noel Coward’s play “Blithe Spirit” at her temporary home, Ramsey Lodge in England’s Lake District.

Her son now six months old, Nora must juggle parenting with helping her friend Simon Ramsey run the lodge. She’s also hoping to further her relationship with the only lodge guest not in the cast: Detective Inspector Declan Barnes, ostensibly there from Oxford for a hiking trip.

When a series of pranks and accidents escalate to murder during a horrendous flood, Nora realizes her child is in jeopardy and determines to help Declan unmask a killer.

Contemporary but written in traditional English mystery style, the book contains chapter epigrams that are lines from the play. A copy of the book has been requested for Noel Coward’s archives by his estate.

A mixture of amateur sleuth and police procedural, British mystery author Rebecca Tope says: THE SCARLET WENCH has all the ingredients of a good read: atmospheric setting, intriguing characters, complex plot and excellent writing.”


Genre(s):  Mystery, Suspense

Series:  The Nora Tierney Mysteries, #3

Length:  222 pages

Release Date:  2014-05-12



“She’s the writer who lives here with her baby,” Callie answered.

Simon reflected that Callie’s remark neatly summed up the situation. “You’re in the William Morris Suite,” he announced and led the way upstairs.


My Opinion

This book reunites the readers with American writer Nora Tierney and her son Sean. The impending arrival of a theatre group about to stage “Blithe Spirit” promises a house full of paying guests for the staff at Ramsey Lodge. Strange things happen within the group, reawakening Nora’s inner sleuth – much to DI Declan Barnes’ sorrow. As a reader, I automatically tried to solve this strange case – and enjoyed it!

With The Scarlet Wench, M. K. Graff has created a thrilling suspense story with local flair. The story comprises a broad variety of believable and often pretty complex characters, nicely woven situations and interesting interactions to solve a set of crimes. I had a great time reading The Scarlet Wench – it is a very intriguing read. I was drawn into the story right away, thrilled to solve the mystery alongside Nora and Declan. This is for you if you like female sleuths, crime writers, suspense with twists and local flair and a little interwoven romance.

A suspenseful book and/or series to read again. I’m eagerly waiting for the opportunity to read the previous volumes of the series.


In brief:

Plot Full of surprises
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
Characters Complex


About the author

Marni Graff is the author of The Nora Tierney Mysteries, published by Bridle Path Press ( She writes the weekly crime review blog Auntie M Writes ( and is a member of Sisters in Crime.

A former registered nurse who wrote “on the side,” Graff has published articles, interviews, poetry and creative non-fiction. She wrote for seven years for “Mystery Review” magazine and is also the Managing Editor of Bridle Path Press.

Teaching creative writing, running the Writers Read program in NC, and participating in writing workshops fill out her days. She lives in rural coastal NC on a river and shares her home with her husband and Spinone, Radar.


Connect with the Author:

Amazon:  M. K. Graff
Amazon (US):  buy link
Amazon (UK):  buy link


Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about The Scarlet Wench?  Or – if you did not yet read The Scarlet Wench  – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

My question for you cinephiles:
If The Scarlet Wench was filmed – who should direct it, who could you imagine as actors?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂





4 thoughts on “The Scarlet Wench (The Nora Tierney Mysteries, #3) by M. K. Graff

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