A Black Tie Affair
A Black Tie Affair and Other Mystery Stories

by Elizabeth Elwood
Author of To Catch an Actress and Other Mystery Stories

Opera singer and part-time sleuth, Philippa Beary, returns in the second of a series of lighthearted mystery books featuring the Beary family. In A Black Tie Affair and Other Mystery Stories, Philippa—together with her feisty city councillor father and her detective inspector brother—foils would-be criminals in a variety of settings. The lively tales take the various members of the Beary family all the way from the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia to the city of New York.

In the title story, set against the backdrop of the world of professional singing, Bertram Beary thwarts the poisoning of a beautiful prima donna during a New Year’s Eve gala performance of Die Fledermaus. Clever variations on other operatic plots are woven into “The Fall of Tosca” and “Gilda Died for Love”. The world of figure skating is featured in “The Mephisto Waltz Jump”, when rivalry between two young champions at the skating rink results in a catastrophic accident—or was it an accident? And an abandoned dog becomes the key to the unravelling of a deadly plot in “A Grim Ferry Tale”.

With subjects that range from political controversies to disasters at the Christmas pantomime, these nine intriguing stories will challenge mystery lovers everywhere.

Praise for A Black Tie Affair and Other Mystery Stories

Well-crafted stories which will delight mystery fans. – Kirkus Discoveries
This book will be loved by readers of traditional British authors such as Dorothy Sayers or Agatha Christie. – Jan de Grass, The Coast Reporter
Elwood’s believable situations, natural dialogue and wit make her stories a pleasure to read. – Annie Boulanger, Burnaby Now
Another fine production of the Beary family … I found great enjoyment reading the stories. There is a very pleasant tone and ambiance around these people … very good descriptive imagery that sets a scene … Original and evocative. There are many [examples] I could cite that elevate [the author] from the common run of writers in the genre. – Barbara Kay, National Post columnist
With subjects ranging from political to pantomime, anyone who likes a mystery will find something to enjoy. – The British Columbian
Writing short stories that draw you in and keep you reading is not an easy task. A Black Tie Affair succeeds with wit and charm. – Don Graves, The Hamilton Spectator

EXCERPT: With a wealthy husband to provide for her material needs and a series of lovers to cater to her other requirements, Natalia’s life had been as comfortable as a luxury cruise. But recently there had been a few ominous ripples on the ocean’s surface. Her husband was as courteous as ever, but there was something subtly different in his manner—an absence of some hard-to-define quality, like the wind quietly disappearing before a storm—that rendered her uneasy; and her current paramour was proving tedious. The passion and intensity that made Andrei Narumoff a fine Rigoletto also caused him to be jealous and volatile, and the scene he had thrown at Luigi’s studio that morning had been witnessed by far too many people. Natalia’s husband had always amiably turned a blind eye to her occasional adventures, but the one thing he would not tolerate was indiscretion, and she was beginning to be concerned that his current excessive politeness might be the prelude to rough waters. Yes, thought Natalia, Andrei would have to go.

From ‘Gilda Died for Love’, the fifth story in A Black Tie Affair and Other Mystery Stories

Elizabeth Elwood is the author of The Beary Mystery Series.  She is also a playwright whose plays have entertained audiences all across Canada. Born in England, Elizabeth lives with her husband in Vancouver, British Columbia. Visit her online at www.elihuentertainment.com.

A Black Tie Affair and Other Mystery Stories
Author: Elizabeth Elwood
Publisher: iUniverse
ISBN: 978-0-595-42850-2 (paperback)
978-0-595-71233-5 (hardcover)
Publisher’s Choice Editorial reviews say, “This is a winner.”