Murder of Convenience by Linda Shenton Matchett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Geneva Anderson is twenty-three and seeing impaired and she feels stifled by her overprotective parents. She is livid when she learns that they have arranged for her to marry a man she doesn't love because of their fear that she will one day be blind and alone; she is even more distraught when he informs her that he probably won't remain faithful and that this will be a marriage of convenience only. When she hears about the USO she realizes that this could be her chance to break away and prove that she is capable of taking care of herself so she hurriedly leaves her home. The man that she is trying to escape follows her and is found murdered and suddenly Geneva finds herself facing the possiblility of being both blind and in jail. What follows is a story filled with mystery, intrigue, romance and history. Geneva gets a job as a singer with the USO and her sweet nature and beautiful voice make her popular with the soldiers. She also earns the attention of the musical director Devon Royal but she doesn't believe that he could possibly be interested in someone who may one day be blind. As she struggles to prove her innocence she encounters many people with motives as she uncovers multiple clues and even becomes involved in an undercover sting operation with The Pinkerton Detective Agency. Devon steps in to help her and it is with his support and protection that the true killer is finally discovered.
I am a fan of history and it is apparent that the author did a lot of research of this time period. I enjoyed learning about the patriotism of the young women who joined the USO so that they could support the war effort and we see how very important that performing for the troops was to help the morale of the soldiers serving in WWII. There are mentions of popular entertainers such as Dinah Shore and Ann Miller who performed for the troops and Linda Shenton Matchett uses some of the popular slang of the period, such as "I'll give you all the skinny" and "regular gumshoe" to make the story more realistic. She also mentions the rationing of food and there is one instance when Geneva puts on a pair of nylons and she wonders how the costume department was able to get them.
Matchett's story also satisfied my love of mysteries and I was kept busy trying to figure out who did what and just how it was done. I was very surprised when I finally learn the killer's identity.
And finally, this is a story of hope, faith and forgiveness, both human and divine. Geneva and Devon believe in the power of prayer and they often talk to God. The granting of forgiveness is shown through Geneva's relationship with her parents and through a character who realizes that he has failed to live a life that is pleasing to God.
I thoroughly enjoyed Murder of Convenience and I recommend it to all who enjoy Christian fiction filled with history and mystery.
I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
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