Camels, kasbahs and chaos but not necessarily in that order.
Down on his luck, Harry is invited by his Aunt Jessica to accompany her on one of her history tours. When one of the group is murdered and the victim’s wife is arrested, neither Harry nor Aunt Jessica is convinced she is guilty. Harry’s attempts to investigate land him in trouble and only with Aunt Jessica’s help can he avoid arrest himself.
‘Judith Cranswick’s new series has all the twists and turns of the closed mysteries of Agatha Christie with added mobile phones! It is a little way into the novel before our first dastardly deed arrives. but the author uses this time to establish her characters. the wonderful Aunt Jessica whose life has been colourful to say the least. and her adult nephew, whose sheltered life his aunt intends to break him free of. There is a motley cast of characters on the trip and our two protagonists finally discover the guilty in a satisfying conclusion. The backdrop of Morocco is excellently drawn, with all the sights tastes and smells woven deftly into the tale, but then travel mysteries are Judith Cranswick’s speciality…’
‘The thing about Judith Cranswick’s books is that you get a wonderful tour of whatever place the story is set in. Judith’s descriptions of various locations in Morocco makes the reader ‘see’ everything. No need to go on an actual tour; just read Judith’s book! She shows her depth of knowledge about Morocco, from the city of Marrakech to the villages in the mountainous regions, including the traditions and the food.’
‘Told in the best tradition of Agatha Christie, this book swept me up and set me down in exotic Morocco. It was a delight to read a story which didn’t depend on gratuitous violence to make it entertaining. Really enjoyed reading this!’
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Murder in Morocco in Pictures
Location is one of the most important things for me as a writer. I need to be able to picture exactly where the action of each scene is set. My characters are always from my imagination, but the settings are real.
The locations for all but my first two novels have been inspired by holidays, but unlike the Fiona Mason Mysteries, our holiday to Morocco was never intended as a research trip. It was only because I had finished the final draft of Blood Across the Divide and had a three month wait before the research trip for the next Fiona Mason novel that I decided I would try writing a new series. Our holiday to Morocco had exceeded all expectation and was still fresh in my memory. What had helped make it so special is that the travel company was working with the Royal Academy who provided an accompanying history lecturer who pointed out things we might well have missed and who gave us lectures in the evenings. The idea for a novel began to take shape, though suffice it to say, our lecturer was nothing like Aunt Jessica.
Although I had made no notes, I did have literally hundreds of photos to help me when I came to write.
Here is the group’s hotel with balconies on each floor looking down into the foyer. On first evening the tour group is taken for dinner at the villa of the city’s former governor.
The next day, they visit the Mausoleum of Mohammed V and the Hassan Tower and go for dinner on a dhow.
Chefchaouen and Fez
The beautiful blue and white city of Chefchaouen turns out to be an adventure in more ways than one! And in the weavers workshop in Fez, Harry is given a Touareg turban and Aunt Jessica is dressed up as a desert Berber.
The Desert Camp
The trip into the desert was one of the great highlights of the tour, but Harry did not enjoy the camel ride!
The fateful dinner and evening entertainment around the campfire that ends in a fatal stabbing.
The picnic and the lad at the pottery who melted the hearts of the ladies.
The Argan workshop
After watching the ladies extract the precious argan oil from the nuts, Jessica and Harry do some more sleuthing.
The market and the farewell dinner