Nothing But Her Name (Silver and Simm Victorian Mysteries, Book 9) by Cynthia E. Hurst

Release date: February 25, 2019
Subgenre:  Historical mystery, Victorian mystery

About Nothing But Her Name:


Clock repairer Jacob Silver usually prefers to stand on the sidelines of life, but he gets more action than expected when he agrees to replace a missing player at a village fete ‘Aunt Sally’ competition. Play comes to an unexpected end when a body is discovered and the promised prize money is snatched away. Blackmail, bribery and an old secret all play their part as Jacob and his wife Sarah help find out who in their Cotswold town is determined to win at all costs – and what the ultimate prize might be.

‘Nothing but her Name’ is the ninth book in the Silver and Simm Victorian Mysteries series.




“Mr Jamison has assured me the competition will be scrupulously honest,” Carey said, ignoring a skeptical snort from Sarah’s corner. “Actually, I couldn’t say how one would cheat at such a game, although more than twenty years of policing have taught me that someone who is determined to break rules or laws will find a way to do so.”
“No doubt,” Jacob said, “especially with that kind of money at stake. Perhaps you will be asked to officiate, to ensure no one attempts to cheat. Or will the Witney police force be fielding its own side in the competition?”
“Heaven forbid,” Carey said, a smile lighting his usually serious face. “I believe Sergeant Bell and the constables have played this game in their leisure hours, but I think we shall be far too busy with other activities during the fair itself. I explained as much to Mr Jamison when he was outlining his plan to me. The best we can do is be on hand if any kind of trouble occurs.”
Jacob nodded in understanding. People in the small Oxfordshire market town worked very hard, many of them in some aspect of the wool and weaving trades on which Witney’s prosperity was based. As a result, when a rare holiday came along, they celebrated with equal enthusiasm. Drunk and disorderly behavior was regretfully common, so Carey and his small police force would have their hands full enough without taking time out to throw sticks at a target.
“It will be something to look forward to, I imagine,” Jacob said. “With that large a prize being offered, the competition should be fierce.”
 “Let’s hope it don’t get too fierce,” Sarah said. “I’d hate to see someone get their teeth knocked out or suchlike, even if there is some money at the end of it. Those wooden sticks could be a bit dangerous.”
“How large are they?” Jacob had been visualizing small pieces of wood, not big enough to do any real damage.
“About like this.” Sarah held her hands about eighteen inches apart and he winced. “And this big around.” She indicated a diameter of more than an inch. “Proper weapons, they’d be, if someone lost their temper.”
“Yes, I see what you mean.”
Carey drained the last drops of ale and set the glass down on the table.
“We shall do our best to maintain order during the fair, particularly at that event,” he said. “Will you be attending the festivities, Jacob? I know there’s a religious basis to it, but as with the Twelfth Night celebrations, that tends to be forgotten in the general celebration.”
Jacob ignored the pleading glance Sarah was throwing in his direction.
“Possibly,” he said. “I suppose it won’t hurt to wander by and perhaps watch part of this Aunt Sally competition.”
“There’s always lots of food and drink, and people showing off their new summer clothes,” Sarah said. “Music and a maypole, too, I expect, and foot races for the little ’uns. It’s great fun.”
“We shall see,” he said.
Sarah smiled, knowing she would persuade him to attend, and he smiled back, to let her know he was aware of that.


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About Cynthia E. Hurst:

Cynthia E. Hurst is the author of two mystery series set in contemporary Seattle, the R&P Labs Mysteries and the Zukie Merlino Mysteries, and the Silver and Simm Mysteries, set in Victorian England. Like her characters in the R&P and Zukie novels, she grew up in Seattle, then graduated from the University of Oregon with a journalism degree. She worked on newspapers and magazines in the Pacific Northwest and in Britain, and also spent five years as a housing officer for British military families.
The R&P Labs books were inspired by the small Seattle laboratory where her parents – both scientists – worked, and the Zukie books by her Italian relatives. The Silver and Simm series takes place in Oxfordshire, her home since 1984.