An Elderly Lady Must Not be Crossed; Helene Tursten
Soho Press - 10/4/2021
An Elderly Lady Must Not Be Crossed, is a deliciously delightful series of connected mysteries featuring Maud, a feisty, cunning, 88 year old (almost 89) retired language teacher. She is a woman who has a unique way of doing away or at least getting even with those who get in her way and/or irritate her or the people she cares about. When the police question her she has a way of pretending she is a bit senile or has a hearing problem and can't find her hearing aids. Of course this all works to her advantage because, seriously, who would expect an 88 year old woman of murder and mayhem?
This series begins with an overview of the last story from her earlier collection about an antique dealer who meets an unfortunate demise at the hands of Maud when she perceived he was trying to take advantage of her in a deal gone bad. So it's time to get away from Sweden and take a luxury vacation joining (7) strangers on a safari to South Africa. Don't worry about Maud she's sharp, she's spry and can take care of herself just fine.
In most of these very brief stories Maud recalls an incident from an earlier time in her life and proceeds to tell the reader all about it. For example, there was a time when Maud was a teacher and was then demoted to a sub when another teacher returned from her leave. Also, when her young developmentally disabled sister was bullied and Maud found a way to get even with the two bullies or, the time she found her neighbor in tears over things the woman's son had done and there is more to delight in as well.
Table of Contents
- An Elderly Lady Begins to Remember Her Past
- Little Maud Sets a Trap
- Lancing a Boil
- The Truth About Charlotte
- The Peter Pan Problem
- An Elderly Lady Takes a Trip to Africa
- Cookie Recipes (probably best not to attempt these)
While I enjoyed the latest adventures with Maud series, I think I liked her first in this series: An Elderly Lady is Up To No Good (2018) just a tad better (review here). Although this could certainly be enjoyed as a standalone of short crime mysteries, I highly recommend reading and enjoying the books in order - I doubt you will be disappointed, Maud is an unforgettable character. The writing is often witty, the stories work beautifully as the reader is privy to Mauds every depraved and misdirected thought which makes the reading and listening experience quite fun.
This book was expertly translated. I was lucky enough to have access to both the Highbridge audio (NetGalley), read by Ann Richardson who was excellent as well as the eGalley provided by Soho Press and Edelweiss.
Rating - 4.5/5 stars