The Sanford 3rd Age club Mysteries
It’s summertime and the Sanford 3rd Age Club are living it up in the seaside town of Filey. But life is not without its problems for Joe Murray and his closest friends, Sheila Riley and Brenda Jump.
Was Nicola Leach’s death an accident or deliberate? Did Eddie Dobson fall into the sea or did he jump? What’s going on behind the innocent façade and closed doors of the Beachside Hotel? Where do the intimidating Irwin brothers fit into the picture, who raided Joe’s room and why did the mugger pick on Brenda?
Questions Joe and his sidekicks must find answers for if they’re to solve the mystery of The Filey Connection
It’s August and Gibraltar Hall hosts reality TV show I-Spy with Brenda as one of the contestants. Her Sanford 3rd Age Club friends arrive to welcome her back after a week’s stay in the house
Inside, feelings run strong between the Housies. Arguments become heated. Then one of them is found dead. With cameras covering most of the house, no one could have gone near the victim without being seen. No one from the outside could have entered the house without being seen. It must be suicide. But Joe knows it was murder and he must persuade the police of that. It’s a complex and maddening puzzle for the Sanford 3rd Age Club.
Can they solve the impossible murder?
It's the end of October and the Sanford Third Age Club are on one of their outings, this time to York, with an overnight stay in the haunted Palmer Hotel.
As the witching hour approaches, things begin to happen. A valuable necklace goes missing and a guest is found dead. Joe Murray and his constant companions Sheila Riley and Brenda Jump are in the thick of it once more. What is arrogant MP, Edgar Prudhoe, up to? How much does his prospective son-in-law, Callum McGuire, hate him? Is Deirdre Prudhoe really as drunk as she appears? What is the history behind Yvonne Naylor's mangled hand? And where does Geoff Vallance fit into it all? With ghostly goings on at The Old Inn, the puzzle is cranked up several notches when one of the suspects does a runner and a second body is found.
A host of suspects. A range of motives. It's a complex and maddening puzzle for Joe and his chums in this, the third in the STAC Mysteries series. Is the master detective up to it?
Christmas and the Sanford Third Age Club are living it up at the Regency Hotel. But on a snowy Christmas morning, there’s murder afoot, and it’s up to Joe, Sheila and Brenda to find the killer.
There are so many questions to answer. How much hatred flows round the hotel, what game is Jennifer playing, what is the meaning of the cryptic pictogram found near the victim, how does a long lost penny fit into it all and how many times will Joe have to search the hotel dustbins?
For the Yorkshire sleuths, it’s a taxing mystery, marinated in a yuletide party atmosphere.
Happy New Year!
The bells ring out over the city of Lincoln, and at the Twin Spire Hotel, the Sanford 3rd Age Club celebrate with their customary enthusiasm. It’s the kind of party Joe enjoys; a Murder Mystery Weekend. A drama designed to tax his powers of observation and deduction.
But dark forces are at work in the background. How much does Robbie Kendrew hate his boss and his rival? Is Melanie’s interest in Joe limited to the performing rights for his cases? How did Gerry Carlin manage to seduce Wendy so quickly? And the play turns to the reality of a murder at the murder mystery weekend.
Valentine’s Day approaches and a lonely Joe Murray has his eye on the newest member of the Sanford 3rd Age Club, Letty Hill. But when the Sanford Valentine strangler strikes for the fourth year in succession, Joe’s amorous inclinations are sidetracked.
And he doesn’t have far to look for the prime suspect...
A killer who leaves no trace, a public suddenly suspicious of him and a police officer with a personal grudge.
It’s Somerset for the Sanford 3rd Age Club and, at a busy charity weekend in the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, Joe, Sheila and Brenda are looking forward to a relaxing time.
But along with the chocolate for the Great Egg Hunt, someone has hidden a body, and even before the rain stops, the STAC are in the thick of it. Threatened with violence as he tries to learn the identity of the bad-tempered redhead wandering round town, embroiled in blackmail and hidden personal histories, while the body count rises, Joe and his two companions struggle to make sense of what is going on around them. With the Easter Bonnet Parade to come, it’s obvious these are no accidents.
They’re MURDER... amongst the chocolate eggs.
It was supposed to be a relaxing weekend off, attending a wedding in the Lake District, but it soon becomes a nightmare for Joe Murray. Not only has he had to shut down the Lazy Luncheonette for the weekend, but it’s intolerably hot and Brenda is in a bad mood and won’t say why. As if that’s not bad enough, the body of a photographer is found hanging by his own camera strap in a disused, derelict boathouse.
Who was Adam Pitman, what was his beef with bridesmaid Darlene? How well did the bride know him, what secret is the landlord of the Waterside Inn hiding? Questions, questions, questions.
And Joe is short of time to find the answers.
A heart attack or not heart attack? No one is sure, but everyone agrees on one thing. Joe needs a relaxing break in the sun. Where better than Spain’s Costa del Sol?
And so to Apartmentos Ingles, where Joe, Sheila and Brenda meet the permanent residents of Little England. But all is far from content in this community of expats. Is Rita Shepperton really trying to blackmail Joe, or is she just tapping him for a hundred euros? Does Colonel Holgate really imagine the British Empire still exists, or is he putting on a class act? Is it Joe’s naturally suspicious nature, or do the residents of Little England all have something to hide?
When a body turns up in the pool, even the police believe it was natural causes, but when Joe digs into the secrets and lies of this small community, he becomes convinced that there was nothing natural about this death.
It’s MURDER in the Mediterranean.
It's Yuletide again and faced with a demanding writer, Joe, Sheila and Brenda must deliver tales of murder and mayhem.
Who slaughtered Santa? Who committed a felony on a ferry, topped a teller and killed a copper? Did Lee really go gunning for a gumshoe? In the background there is the Novel of the Year award and Joe is faced with finding another brutal killer.
It's Christmas, but not everyone harbours peace and goodwill, and for the three sleuths, it means...
MURDER most festive.
They do like to be beside the seaside.
With The Lazy Luncheonette under threat of redevelopment, Joe, Sheila and Brenda take time off for the STAC Easter outing to Blackpool, fun capital of the North of England. But after a scrape with a drunken lorry driver on the motorway, Joe finds himself embroiled in a double murder at a parcel distribution depot where everything is done by the book.
Confronted with obstinate police officers, reluctant witnesses and a tangled puzzle of personality clashes, Joe is driven to distraction trying to pin down the killer. Hounded by a determined property tycoon and wooed by an amorous shop steward, Joe is sure of only one thing...
It's MURDER at the mail order depot.
It’s the height of summer, the days are long and hot and there’s not a cloud in the sky. But these are dark days for the relocated The Lazy Luncheonette.
And then along comes Sir Douglas Ballantyne, a billionaire threatened with murder, and he wants Joe to investigate.
Arriving at the Ballantyne residence, in the heart of Lancashire Witch country, Joe, Sheila and Brenda find that all is not happy families, but which of the sons, daughters and in-laws wants Sir Douglas dead?
When the old man is attacked and his life left hanging in the balance, Joe must tackle the closed ranks of the family in order to unmask a devilish and devious assailant.
Howling winds, driving rain, freezing temperatures. The New Year has come in with a nasty bite, but the Sanford 3rd Age Club brave the elements to visit Skegness for a performance of Hamlet, starring the granddaughter of one of their own. But when one of the cast is murdered on stage, it’s a call to action for Joe, Sheila and Brenda.
Shot or poisoned? Was the killing linked to drugs? Or was it related to a road accident in the dim and distant past. Does it involve the very public antipathy between the victim and star of a nearby pantomime?
With suspects who are all actors, how are Joe, Sheila and Brenda supposed to know who is telling the truth and who is lying?
A house fire on a sweltering summer morning comes as no surprise, but when a body is found in the ruins, the Sanford police soon have the prime suspect in their sights. Evidence mounts, an arrest is made, and Joe Murray is at his wits’ end before helps comes from an unexpected quarter.
How could all the evidence be wrong? There’s only one way. It was carefully constructed to point in the wrong direction, and Joe and his partner in crime-detection must pull out all the stops to prove it.
The fourteenth Sanford 3rd Age Club Mystery, and it’s Joe’s toughest, most dangerous case yet.
The Sanford 3rd Age Club are headed for the sunny island of Majorca and for Joe it’s a much-needed break. Denise has been killed in a car crash and he needs some serious stress-relief.
He has sun, sand and Sangria, but all is far from well. Was Denise’s death an accident or was she deliberately run off the road? Was that arrow meant for Joe? Who is posting threatening notes under his door?
The police in Spain and England pay scant attention to his rambling and as his paranoia grows, his friends in the 3rd Age Club rally round in a determined effort to fight the PERIL IN PALMANOVA
The Lazy Luncheonette is in mourning for Joe. Even the draymen, who suffered the worst of his acid tongue, are in bereavement for the missing proprietor of their favourite café.
While the police are hot on the trail of his killer, Sheila’s nephew, Detective Inspector Howard Riley of Cambridge CID, arrives in Sanford with the sad news that his elderly mother has passed away in the Squire’s Lodge Care Home.
Complications arise when Howard learns that his mother willed her estate to Squire’s Lodge in lieu of care fees… which have already been paid.
When the members of the consortium which owns Squire’s Lodge are murdered one by one, suspicion falls on the senior director, Ward Finch. Is he really murdering his colleagues for his personal financial gain? Or is there someone else lurking in the background, bearing a grudge against the consortium?
Taking on the investigative mantle of the late, lamented, Joe, Sheila and Brenda turn their attention to the murders, and find themselves followed wherever they go. Does Chad Milner have their welfare in mind, or is he threatening them?
The Sanford 3rd Age Club are off to Whitby, hunting treasure. But some things have changed.
Joe no longer travels with them, preferring to join his lady friend, Maddy Chester, and meet up with the rest of the club at the Westhead Hotel. But Sheila will not take part in the treasure hunt. She is harbouring a big secret, which she will not divulge even to her best friend, Brenda.
And all is far from well at the Westhead. The dictatorial Kim Ashton is on the verge of taking over the hotel, aiming her acid at the guests, staff, and even the organisers of the treasure hunt. Her partner and his son by a previous marriage don’t escape Kim’s vitriol either.
When a body is found within twenty-four hours of the 3rd Age Club’s arrival, a reluctant Joe, already driven to distraction cracking the cryptic clues on the treasure hunt, swings into action, bringing all his investigative skills to bear on the crime.
When no one else seems to care, why should you?
That’s the question Joe asks himself while the Sanford 3rd Age Club are whooping it at Gittings Holiday Park in sunny yet chilly Cornwall.
Sheila is absent, and Joe and Brenda are sharing a caravan (but that’s all they’re sharing). The general manager is attracted to him, the park comedian is not funny – and the star sensation is a young singer who can’t sing. And to add to Joe’s woes, when a body turns up on the beach, he finds the local police inspector abrasive and suspicious.
Major thefts of electronic equipment, a complicated murder with a range of suspects and a Joe almost at the end of his tether as he tries to crack… A Cornish Killing.