Retrieving a Client from London Gets Complicated
Obviously, I have several cozy sub-genres I go back to quite regularly. One I always intend to read more of is travel cozies. One of the few travel cozies I do enjoy is Wendall Thomas’s Cyd Redondo Mysteries, so I was thrilled to see Cyd return with Fogged Off.
If you are new to the series, Cyd runs her family’s travel agency, located in New York City. Until recently, Cyd herself hadn’t done much traveling, but that has started to change. Sadly for her, it seems like murder, mayhem, and endangered animals are always close behind when she does get to leave home.
Shep Helnikov has died while on his yearly trip to London. He has been a loyal client of Redondo Travel for years, but when reviewing his file, Cyd is shocked to learn that Shep had recently booked a side trip to Paris, a side trip that voids his insurance. Suddenly on the hook for the expenses of returning Shep’s body to the states, Cyd jumps at an offer to pay for that if Cyd will go over and escort his body back personally from Shep’s employer.
Of course, things are never as easy as they appear. Shep was a renowned scholar on Jack the Ripper, and someone seems to be after the research that Shep had acquired for his next book on the subject. Cyd’s uncle Leon is also on the trip, but despite a promise to her aunt to keep an eye on Leon, he heads off on his own as soon as they’ve cleared customs. Then there’s the fact that Shep might not have died from natural causes. Will Cyd ever get back to the states? Or will this doom Redondo Travel?
As you can tell, there is a lot going on here. That makes the book hard to put down. Cyd has so much stuff to sift through to figure out what is really happening that it keeps the pages turning. I’ll admit, sometimes, with a plot this crazy, it is easy to lose track of things, but I never felt that was the case here. Author Wendall Thomas does a great job of keeping all the balls in the air and reminding us just what is going on with each of them as the stakes continue to rise.
Even more impressive is how she brings all the elements together for a logical and suspenseful climax.
And yes, we get another appearance by an endangered animal. As if Cyd’s life weren’t complicated enough.
This is a mystery mixed with a caper, so some of the characters can be a bit broad. We actually have a mix of fully developed characters and those on the broader range of the spectrum. However, they all work in this story. It helps that the broader characters aren’t on the page as much. They all felt like they perfectly fit into this book.
Yes, as a caper, this story includes a liberal dose of humor. I was smiling the entire way through and laughed at a few of the situations that Cyd found herself in.
This book does include a smattering of four-letter words. It’s a bit more than I would have liked if it were up to me, but overall, it’s a minor issue.
Fogged Off is an entertaining mystery with plenty of twists and fun to keep you engaged. If you are looking for your next arm chair travel mystery, book through Cyd Redondo, Redondo Travel.