"Hour is Come" & "Fake Death" By Victoria Tait: Review/Giveaway/Interview

Reviews by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of Fake Death and a link to purchase it. We also have a short interview with Victoria about the series.

Introducing the Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery! Hour is Come & Fake Death by Victoria Tait


Twenty-eight years old is too young to be a widow. As a military wife, Dotty Sayers understood the possibility one’s spouse may become a causality statistic, but the reality can be overwhelming. The military is compassionate, her husband’s colleagues offer their deepest sympathies, and the other military wives, including her friend Morag McGill, are there to help Dotty navigate her life as a young widow. The military is allowing Dotty to remain in the home she shared with her husband Captain Alasdair Sayers, and they reiterate she’s still part of the military community and they take care of their own. She is the sole beneficiary of her husband’s military pension, but it won’t be enough to provide a living wage, so despite a lack of skill and experience, she’ll need to find a job.

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Hour is Come
Earns 5/5 Grandfather Clocks…Engaging and Compelling Cozy!

Dotty’s grief is made complicated by the pressure being applied by her late husband’s ex-wife, Angela Sayers. She has no legal claim to any of the death benefits, so she approaches Dotty about continuing the support for his children with a share of any of the money she’s received. Morag McGill has stepped in to act as a shield against any unreasonable demands by the first-wife, who essentially made her bed by leaving Al for another man, and now is finding it hard to lie in it. But, Dotty sees, or at least is manipulated to see, some validity in offering some money to the care for her late husband’s children. She agrees to offer some of the furniture she owns for auction, but stops short of giving up Banff, the black Labrador who is now her only companion.

Overzealous Angela and her appraiser/friend, Georgina “George” Carey-Boyd, show up unannounced to start tagging relevant items. Dotty approved most on the list, and the next day, the lorry drivers arrive to pick up the furniture for auction. Dotty is afraid a chest of drawers was taken before she could ensure it was empty of her husband’s things; she heads over to Akemans Antiques to double check. The people, including Gilly Wimsey, the manager of the antiques centre, offer condolences and allow Dotty into the warehouse to check for personal items. She finds the dresser, but is overwhelmed by a horrific odor…dead rodents? Losing her balance in such a crowded space, she falls into a grandfather clock…oops, it’s not mice, but the body of the missing office manager.

Strike of Success! I became a fan of Victoria Tait’s writing when reading her Kenya Kanga Mystery series, and I am so excited to give a big thumbs up to her new Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery series! This prequel book introduces a delightful young woman whose new life as a widow has also brought about a sense of “freedom.” She’s still struggling with some loneliness at home, but she is enjoying her working at the antiques center, making friends, and learning the nuisances of an exciting auction community. Dotty also has found, through unofficial means, that helping the novice Constable Varma is exciting, liberating in a way, and she just might have a knack for uncovering secrets. Along with a clever mystery fraught with lots of questions, curious details, and a bit of peril, Dotty has an important decision to make about her future. “I…” began Dotty. That’s the cliffhanger…what does she decide?

Fake Death Earns 5/5 Multiple IDs…Compelling and Clever Drama!

The bearded man strikes up a conversation about that day’s glorious military parade with a man next to the ram statue outside the Woolmarket Shopping Center. He tries to rouse him to send him home, but “He’s not sleeping.”

Earlier that week…Dotty is excited about her job at the antiques center, and following the doctor’s advice, she promises not to overexert herself. Business is booming as they prepare for the next auction by accepting, photographing, and cataloguing new deliveries. George and Gilly’s Aunt Beanie called asking for her nieces to come to the farm, but George is too busy, so Gilly asks Dotty to join her. She warns that Uncle Cliff might be a handful since he suffers from dementia which is on full display when he throws a fit on their arrival. Aunt Beanie calms him down and sets to tell Gilly the reason she’s asked her here…an imposter has taken advantage. Aunt Beanie discovered the man calling himself Reverend Seymour Simms is a fake. He said the diocese sent him to visit parishioners unable to attend services in person, but the local vicar can’t verify. It seems he absconded with her jams and jellies meant for the harvest festival, but what else has he stolen? Then more questions arise about other mysterious visitors, more missing items are discovered, and Dotty’s in the middle.

Sold! Victoria Tait’s first full-length book in the Dotty Sayers Antique Mysteries provides a smooth transition from the prequel Hour is Come answering the question about what’s next for Dotty, yet throwing in a few more obstacles since the battalion supporting her is being sent back to Scotland. She is still reeling from the attempted murder incident, and her first days back, she’s met with an imposter, clients reporting missing items, and a murder…I love it when things get complicated right off! The mystery of the victim’s identity is cleverly developed entangling many with stories of their own “mysterious visitor” ingratiating themself into their lives, and the mystery person’s aliases…brilliantly witty! Victoria’s writing style is very engaging from an informative narrative to friendly banter, from a complex mystery and investigation to both an anxious and amiable connection with law enforcement from diverse characters to realistic obstacles for the protagonist to manage. Yet, again, there is a decision needing to be made about Dotty’s future…where will she live…and with what four-legged companion?

Dotty Sayers Antique Mysteries

Hour is Come (2022) Sign up for Victoria Tait’s newsletter and receive this prequel free.

Fake Death (April, 2022)

Valued for Murder (releases June, 2022) is on Amazon Preorder HERE.

An antiques show. A dead diva. For Dotty, the truth is not always crystal clear.

Bidding for Revenge (releases August, 2022) is on Amazon Preorder HERE.

A charity event. A dead body. Can an amateur sleuth discover the truth?

Be a Big Victoria Tait Fan!

A military wife herself, and having been stationed all over the world, Victoria Tait brings a unique perspective to her work. In her Kenya Kanga Mystery series, a top 2021 favorite, she uses her experience of living in Kenya and interest in the flora and fauna to create an exciting six-book series with paraprofessional veterinarian Rose Hardie, also known as “Mama Rose” who gets entangled with conservation as well as many suspicious deaths. Check out Amazon for the complete series. The best place for people to find Victoria Tait and learn more about her and her books is her newsletter. Sign up on her website, and if you join the mailing list, you can download book one, Hour is Come, for free.

Facebook—Victoria Tait Author

Website—Victoria Tait

Bookbub—Victoria Tait

KRL Q & A with Victoria Tait

A new series…exciting! Why did you choose the antiques theme? Are you a collector?

After writing six books in the Kenya Kanga Mystery series, I decided it was time to try something new. The logic for me was a series based in the Cotswolds, in the central-southwest of England, as that was where we lived after leaving Kenya while my husband undertook training for his next job abroad.

The antiques angle is more a focus on auction houses. When we left Kenya, we sold most of our furniture since we couldn’t ship it back. I started attending local auctions to buy new pieces. I loved the atmosphere of the auction, hunting for bargains, but most of all, the people who ran and attended them. I knew they would make great characters for future books. Many of my characters and locations are based on my own experiences.

What is your inspiration behind the new Dotty Sayers Antique Mystery?

Before writing the series, I did a lot of reading and learning to improve my writing craft. My reading included ‘listening’ to the BBC’s dramatized productions of Dorothy L. Sayers’ Lord Peter Wimsey books. They are such fun, and I read more about the author, her life and her views. Did you know she was a cat fan? Her statue in Witham, a town to the north-east of London, is her and her cat.

Dorothy L. Sayers was a strong woman with a good education and my lead character is not, but Sayers’ wrote in Are Women Human?

“It is women’s given right as human beings to live a fully realised life, which most definitely includes the right to choose their own professional path, and the freedom not to have to place a man’s needs and demands above their own.”

I also learned about the maiden’s journey from an innocent to an individual, taking responsibility for her own future. These two elements formed the basis for my character, Dotty Sayers, a twenty-eight-year-old military widow who had a controlling father and a domineering older husband.

In Hour is Come, when her husband dies, she has to decide whether to return to her father or make her own way in the world, and of course, as this is a mystery, solving the case is part of her internal journey.

In Fake Death, she begins the first stage of the hero’s journey where her choice to stay within the safety of the military environment she knows and understands, or again, take steps to leave its over-protective confines and take responsibility for the way she lives her life.

What other Dorothy L. Sayers connections did you sneak in?

Dorothy L. Sayers fans will recognise Dr. Peter Wimsey, who comes across as foolish, but Dotty suspects he is hiding an intelligent brain. She also thinks he uses frivolity as a way to cope with the tragedies he witnesses in his medical profession. The other character Dorothy L. Sayer fans might wonder about is Norman Climpson. Like his namesake, Miss Katherine Climpson, in the Lord Peter books, he presents the ‘invisible,’ white working-class section of British society who feel they have lost their voice in the world.

You added another character with connections to the British military. Is it personal?

The military connection is me writing what I know, and have seen, and working it into the points above. As a military wife, I often feel invisible, and this was even more so during Covid. I was expected to give up my time to do certain things for the military, and I had no say in them as I was only a spouse. I know other wives who’ve had to give up jobs because they were expected to take sole responsibility for their children while their husbands continued to work. Ian Puck is the face of the military in the first books although he provides Dotty with far more help and support than I have received over the last couple of years!

To enter to win an ebook copy of Fake Death, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "fake,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen April 23, 2022. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter.  If entering via comment please include your email address so we can contact you. 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 goes up next week.

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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.


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