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Mrs. Jeffries Wins the Prize

Mrs. Jeffries, Book #34

By Emily Brightwell

ISBN: 9780425268117

Author Website:


Mrs. Jeffries Wins the PrizeBrought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt


Mrs. Jeffries is back in the New York Times bestselling Victorian series, perfect for fans of Downton Abbey.


The ladies of the Mayfair Orchid and Exotic Plant Society are known for a bit of friendly rivalry, but the backstabbing has never been literal—until now. When Hiram Filmore, an orchid hunter and supplier, is found dead in Mrs. Helena Rayburn’s conservatory, Inspector Witherspoon is called in to weed out a murderer.

When it comes out that Mrs. Rayburn and her flowery friends knew each other from long ago, Mrs. Jeffries begins to suspect that there’s more to unearth about this case than meets the eye. Now she, along with the rest of Inspector Witherspoon’s household and friends, will have to dig up the past to figure out which gardening gentlewoman had a grudge worth killing for…

A Mrs. Jeffries Mystery

She keeps house for Inspector Witherspoon . . . and keeps him on his toes. Everyone’s awed by his Scotland Yard successes—but they don’t know about his secret weapon. No matter how messy the murder or how dirty the deed, Mrs. Jeffries’ polished detection skills are up to the task . . . proving that behind every great man there’s a woman—and that a crimesolver’s work is never done.



I have to say I was unaware of this series before this installment. It is a very long running one and if you enjoy Victorian mysteries, you will love this one. Mrs. Jeffries Wins the Prize is the stuff that lovers of this genre adore. A cast of amateurs investigating in the background, an upstairs/downstairs type of hierarchical order and some seriously stuffy old dames. Mrs. Jeffries keeps house for Inspector Witherspoon and her staff are the source of his success. Mystery, competition and murder run amok in this fun read.

Society ladies are serious rivals for winning a contest open to the prim members of the Mayfair Orchid and Exotic Plant Society. Mrs. Helena Rayburn is not happy with the newest member, but she really loses it when orchid hunter Hiram Filmore is found dead in her precious conservatory. And the shears sticking out of his back are part of a special set that belongs to the pompous Mrs. Rayburn. As news of the murder gets back to the inspector’s household, they gang have to get things going to find the murderer and the answers for their beloved lawman. When it comes to light that all of the ladies and the dead man knew each other in India, secrets start to become revealed.

This book is the perfect clue drive, whodunit Victorian mystery. As I have said this is the first in this series that I have had the pleasure to read. I was easily able to catch up on all the characters and their machinations. Although there are a lot of characters, so some of their individual quirks may have slipped by me. I enjoyed the interplay of the all the characters and the way they worked together to get to the bottom of things. The minor characters were also entertaining and played their own part in the story line.

Mrs. Jeffries Wins the Prize is an entertaining mystery filled with a large cast of characters. It is well written and author Emily Brightwell’s style is easy to read and captivating. I would say anyone who enjoys a good Victorian style mystery should be a fan of this book and this series. Plant lovers will especially enjoy this one. As a flower and plant enthusiast myself, I loved the details the author included. That said, it was not overdone, so even if you hate plant life you will not get bogged down in it. Fans of Agatha Christie’s characters and BBC murder mysteries will feel at home reading this book. This is the 34th in a long running series, so I am sure they are all wonderful.