"Murder at Royale Court"By G.P. Gardner: Review/Giveaway

by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a signed copy of this book and some magnetic bookmarks, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.

Welcome to Fairhope, Alabama!
Cleo Mack is a divorcee from her first marriage and a widow from her second. She is also a college professor from Atlanta having been offered a nice early retirement package; she has to decide before the fall semester whether she'll accept. Although her daughter Stephanie hopes she'll move nearer to her in Birmingham, Cleo is very taken with what she sees of the retirement community of Fairhope described as "an ordinary little California coastal town that just happens to be located in Alabama." Exploring the lovely shops and restaurants and meeting some very friendly senior citizens, she falls into not only a nice place to live, but a job. Her background in social work may just be what Harbor Village needs. In Murder at Harbor Village (2018), Cleo discovers a dead body in the pool. The victim was not well liked, so karma took care of that, and Cleo? She has found a place to retire.

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Murder at Royale Court earns 5/5 Cadillacs...Entertaining and Clever!

Cleo Mack has settled in as Executive Director of Harbor Village, and is busy, busy, busy with maintaining and renovating the facility, managing the staff, seeing to residents' needs, and providing a nice environment. First up is Grand Concours, an antique auto show which will also serve as a fund raiser for the local hospital. Car exhibit, raffles, gala, and a guest speaker are expected to interest more than the Harbor Village residents. The Village of Fairhope may be overrun with tourists, too. But...murder? Cleo is enlisted by one of her neighbors who is worried that someone close to her may be implicated. She's off on the trail of another killer as she navigates an overbearing wannabe suitor, a pushy ex-husband, and lots of senior citizen antics!
Image Source Lyrical Press

Another very enjoyable read! Life after retirement, even early retirement, should be marked with a bit of adventure...but murder? And as a retired teacher myself, it seems our heroine works way too hard for my idea of a post retirement life...and running into suspicious deaths? Only in my cozy books is that exciting! The murder mystery follows a traditional cozy formula, but with a surprising level of justice that makes this clever read a favorite. The additional storylines offer some intriguing predicaments about the retirement facility and its staff that seem ripe for continued shenanigans. Cleo can't get away from her ex-husband who is in some way her boss, and as conflicts arise it's hard not to be disappointed that she doesn't tell him where to get off. I really enjoy the first-person narrative punctuated by Cleo's mature perspective and her perspective on many of the quirky residents. Although I was entertained by Gardner's descriptive writing style and dialogue, it seemed some of the description of day-to-day behaviors like getting drinks, driving around, and being at home was a bit more than I liked. However, I really enjoyed this second book and am eager to read more.

Alert! The third book, Murder at the Arts and Crafts Festival, is set to release in December. Cleo will be knee-deep in "juggling apartment sales, quirky residents, and a fast-moving romance" along with another murder.

Be a Big Fan!
GP Gardner actually lives in Fairhope, Alabama, with her writer husband and as her website bio states "a once-feral cat."

Website - GP Gardner

To enter to win a signed copy of Murder at Royale Court and some magnetic bookmarks, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "royale,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen June 22, 2019. If entering via comment please include your email address. If entering via email please include your mailing address in case you win (we will not use your address for anything else). You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week!

You can use this link to purchase the book. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. This sounds fun. I work at a nursing home, so I can imagine the kinds of "senior citizen antics" that can happen. I'll have to check this out.

  2. Would love to win and read this. doward1952(at)yahoo(dot)com

  3. This sounds exciting! I enjoy cozies with seniors and retirees, especially after having worked as a caregiver. Thank you for the chance to win! jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

  4. Love the cover! JL_Minter(at)hotmail(dot)com

  5. Sounds like a fun read, would really like to read.

  6. I'm interested and intrigued. I do want to read it! The story sounds so good! Thank you for the chance. Donakutska7@gmail.com

  7. Sounds like a fun read! I would love to read this!

  8. Sounds great! Legallyblonde1961 at yahoo dot com


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