Publication date: April 14, 2015 by Alibi
Source: digital ARC from Publisher via TLC Book Tours for an honest review
Description from Goodreads:
Sure to delight readers of Jacqueline Winspear and Ellis Peters, Medium Dead features Queen Victoria herself—and she’s rumored to have slain a local psychic in Newton-upon-Sea. Now the task of clearing her name and catching the real killer falls to Dr. Alexandra Gladstone.
Under Victoria’s reign, women are barred from calling themselves physicians, but that hasn’t stopped Alexandra Gladstone. As the first female doctor in Newton-upon-Sea, she spends her days tending sick villagers in the practice she inherited from her father, with her loyal and sometimes overprotective dog, Zack, by her side.
After the corpse of village spiritualist Alvina Elwold is discovered aboveground at a church boneyard, wild rumors circulate through the charming seaside village, including one implicating a certain regal guest lodging nearby. Tales of the dead Alvina hobnobbing with spirits and hexing her enemies are even more outlandish—but as a woman of science and reason, Alexandra has no doubt that a murderer made of flesh and blood is on the loose.
Finding out the truth means sorting through a deluge of ghostly visitors, royal sightings, and shifty suspects. At least her attentive and handsome friend Nicholas Forsyth, Lord Dunsford, has come to her aid. Alexandra will need all the help she can get, because she’s stumbled upon dangerous secrets—while provoking a deadly adversary who wants to keep them buried.
Medium Dead is the fourth in the Alexandra Gladstone series, but it works well as a standalone book as well. I haven't read the other books and I had no problems because the author does a nice job handling any needed information from previous books.
I found Medium Dead to be a light, easy-to-read mystery that was fun and held my interest throughout the fairly short story. There are lots of interesting characters including the medium mentioned in the title, various villagers and Alexandra's friends and a variety of shifty characters who may not be quite what they seem. I thought the setting was appropriate for a Victorian ghostly mystery with enough storms, fog and graveyards to keep any reader happy.
While the story is light and pretty fast-paced, it isn't particularly alarming or a thriller -- I'd definitely categorize this one as a cozy mystery. I did enjoy reading about daily life of the villagers and Alexandra herself. She isn't a typical female for the time - being a doctor during the Victorian era was quite unusual for a woman. Even though she can't call herself a physician, she still is able to practice medicine - and turns out to be a better doctor than some of the top male doctors of the time.
Fortunately, the ghostly activity is pretty clearly man-made, but it was still fun trying to figure out who was behind the activity, how they did it and why. Medium Dead is one of those books that can easily be recommended to a wide variety of readers because it is so fun and enjoyable and easily read in a day or so. I would also happily read more in the series.
About the author
Award-winning novelist Paula Paul was born on her grandparents’ cotton farm near Shallowater, Texas, and graduated from a country high school near Maple, Texas. She earned a BA in journalism and has worked as a reporter for newspapers in both Texas and New Mexico. She’s been the recipient of state and national awards for her work as a journalist as well as a novelist. Her previous novels featuring Dr. Alexandra Gladstone, including Symptoms of Death, have appeared on bookstore and online bestseller lists. She is also the author of the Mystery by Design series, which she wrote as Paula Carter. She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
To learn more about Paula, visit her WEBSITE.
Paula Paul’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:
Monday, April 13th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Monday, April 13th: Melina’s Book Blog
Tuesday, April 14th: 100 Pages a Day
Tuesday, April 14th: FictionZeal
Wednesday, April 15th: Fictionophile
Thursday, April 16th: Psychotic State Reviews
Friday, April 17th: It’s a Mad Mad World
Monday, April 20th: Buried Under Books
Monday, April 20th: A Book Geek
Tuesday, April 21st: From the TBR Pile
Wednesday, April 22nd: Reading Reality
Thursday, April 23rd: The Reader’s Hollow
Friday, April 24th: Snowdrop Dreams of Books
Monday, April 27th: Bibliophilia, Please
Monday, April 27th: Under a Gray Sky
Tuesday, April 28th: Bell, Book & Candle
Wednesday, April 29th: A Chick Who Reads
Thursday, April 30th: 2 Kids and Tired