BOOK CLUB: A Routine Infidelity

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[Total: 5 Average: 4.8]

A Routine Infidelity by Elizabeth Coleman is a crime, murder mystery thriller with a side love interest, guilt, grief and complicated family relationships.

Edwina “Ted” Bristol is a private investigator. She longs for her business Edwina Bristol Investigations (EBI) to be famous.

Ted’s side kick is Miss Marple, her beloved miniature schnauzer. Her main income comes from her surveillance of cheating spouses and finding lost dogs. Her apartment and office are both in the inner suburbs of Melbourne.

The first client we meet is Chantel Considine who is a spiritual medium and Ted’s neighbour. Ted is convinced Chantel is a fraud and benefiting from the recently bereaved, as surely a medium would know if their husband was cheating and wouldn’t need to pay Ted for her services!

While investigating a cheating spouse, Ted stumbles across a plot to embezzle millions. Could this be the case to make her famous? So far it just has put her in danger and one of her surveillance suspects is murdered.

Then, there’s Ted’s sister Roberta “Bob” who has met a man on the internet. When Ted finds out she has sent him money, solving this catfishing scam becomes a high priority.

Ted has a strained relationship with her dad and her seven older brothers and her older sister due to a childhood trauma at age four. The truth about that day is a secret that she has kept buried for thirty years.

Ted is also passionate about her hobby, a medieval battle game of Swordcraft. Her battle opponent is a homicide detective, and there seems to be much more than just the sparks from their swordsflying in the air.

This is a great book to read. It is fun and entertaining, but also serious at times. I found it most enjoyable and loved the twist at the end.

The characters are fabulous, especially Miss Marple. They all intertwine together beautifully.  There is suspense on many fronts which keeps you reading, it is actually hard to put the book down.

Elizabeth Coleman is the successful screen writer who wrote for the TV series Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries.

I can’t wait for the next Ted Bristol Murder Mystery.

Thankyou to Pantara Press and Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to read this fantastic story.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club members are reading A Routine Infidelity by Elizabeth Coleman. You can read their feedback in the comments below, or add your own review.

10 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: A Routine Infidelity

  1. Elizabeth Coleman has produced an entertaining, thoroughly enjoyable mystery novel, that entertains from beginning to end, in “A Routine Infidelity.”
    Edwina Bristol’s Investigations is owned and operated by ‘Ted’ Bristol. She manages to solve a murder case, a catfishing case, and uncovers a million dollar embezzlement. None of which she can actually lay claim to, for various reasons, however, she is responsible for their eventual outcomes.
    Family secrets and relationships often hinge on Ted’s ability to complete her work. Romantic inclinations lead Ted to finally see a chosen path for both her personal future and her career future. But perhaps, all is not what it seems, as a new client appears on Ted’s doorstep in the late hours. This could lead to more disruption for Ted……….hopefully Ted Bristol returns in Elizabeth’s next book and we discover more about this intriguing Private Investigator based in downtown Melbourne.

  2. Thank you Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to review A Routine Infidelity.

    I found it to be easy to read and a good balance of lightheartedness, serious subject matter and twists and turns to keep you reading.

    It was great to see the personal relationships of Ted Bristol grow and evolve throughout the book as well as her as a character.

    As a fan of Miss Fishers Murder Mystery’s this book had me hooked.

  3. A lighthearted Murder Mystery that has it’s serious moments, crime, embezzlement, affairs, internet scams, private investigator and a dog. Twists and turns you won’t see coming, a highly enjoyable read that you will laugh out loud in places.
    Thank you Beauty and Lace and Pantera Press for the opportunity to read and review this book.

  4. This murder mystery novel by Elizabeth Coleman, who is one of the screen writers for Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, is a delightful read.
    The lead character is Edwina ‘Ted” Bristol who is a private investigator based in Melbourne. The majority of her work is serving writs and ascertaining whether a partner is cheating or not. She would love to have the opportunity to solve a “real” crime. Ted’s sidekick is her very cute miniature schnauzer, Miss Marple. Ted comes from a large family (seven brothers and one sister), interestingly her brothers all have names that could be male or female (Kerry, Kim, Robin, Mel etc) and her elder sister is Bob (for Roberta). Its clear early on in the novel that Ted has unresolved issues with her family in relation to the death of her mother. She was only four when her mother drowned on a day at the beach.
    One of Ted’s cases of “routine infidelity” turns into a major embezzling fraud case along with murder. Ted is determined to solve the case and get the credit for her business. Unfortunately, the police have other ideas. Ted, whose hobby is Swordcraft (a medieval battle game with live role-play) is often in the medieval battles pitted against a local policeman, Spike, and the two have a sparring relationship vocally as well as physically. Its soon clear there is also sexual tension involved.
    There are other stories within the novel, the main one is about Ted’s sister, Bob, being a victim of catfishing. Again, Ted is determined to solve this mystery and ensure her sister does not get dragged in any further. Also, Ted’s neighbour, a medium, Chantal warns Ted of dangers ahead.
    In addition to be aided by Miss Marple Ted has an IT savvy niece, Chuck, who helps her when she really needs a teenage brain to solve a technical issue.
    There are some interesting characters in the novel, and I can easily see it becoming a TV series. Perhaps as a screenwriter Ms Coleman’s writing particularly lends itself to being visual.
    I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and am looking forward to Ted & Miss Marple’s further adventures. Thank you to Beauty and Lace Book Club and Pantera Press for the opportunity to read this novel.

  5. “A Routine Infidelity” is a charming crime novel (now there’s a phrase I don’t use often) which should delight a wide range of readers. More complex than a cosy mystery, less violent than a hardboiled crime novel, this is nicely grounded with a touch of escapism.

    I really enjoyed reading this. There’s a touch of the sardonic style that I associate with the Phyrne Fisher novels – hardly surprising as Coleman has scripted the TV series’ derived from that, and actively name checks Phyrne. However, this novel and its’ heroine are original.

    Edwina “Ted” Bristol is a private eye in current day Melbourne. She’s only licensed as a civil investigator, so much of her work comes from cheating spouses. She dreams, however, of the day she’ll expose a real crime. She’s inappropriately thrilled when a case of a cheating spouse turns into a multi million embezzlement scheme. However, her investigation doesn’t go smoothly, and soon murder has entered the picture.

    Meanwhile, Ted’s beloved older sister has fallen prey to a catfisher, denting her heart and her bank account. Ted’s relationship with her large family is prickly and often problematic, but she adores her sister. Outraged, she sets out to find the evildoer and rend him limb from limb. Or at least make his life miserable.

    The plotting is excellent – there’s lots going on, not all of it connected. It’s a bit twisty, not easy to anticipate what’s going to happen next, but at the same time very easy to follow as it unfolds. It’s also very believable, and quite contemporary. I found the catfishing plot particularly current.

    Coleman chooses to gloss over recent issues (by which I mean the pandemic) but in other regards her Melbourne setting is vividly drawn. If you’ve ever been there, it’ll strike a chord. If you haven’t, you’ll be picturing it very accurately. This background isn’t particularly important to the story, but it contributes to building a story that is very immersive.

    I found Ted a vivid and realistic character. Maybe a tiny bit cliched at times, but there would have been a lot less to the novel if she had a happy homelife and no hang-ups. I think Coleman has used some tropes of the genre and a good understanding of people to build a complex and interesting person. Ted isn’t always likable, but I think most readers will be on her side.

    The final pages contain a loose thread so obvious it’s more of a rope; a sequel is coming. Most readers will be pleased to realise that. Reading this was a really enjoyable way to spend a day, and I’ll definitely be looking for the sequel.

  6. Thank you for the copy of A Routine Infidelity by Elizabeth Coleman.

    This is the story of Edwina ‘Ted’ Bristol who is a private investigator in Melbourne. She is new to the business but really starts off with a bang. She is looking into a possible infidelity which goes to embezzlement and onto murder. She has the help of her dog Miss Marple and they boldly go where others might not. She works next door to a possible psychic and they negotiate many different situations. There are many twists and turns in this book and I loved them all.

    Ted has an older sister Bob, seven older bothers and her Dad. She is fairly closed off emotionally due to an incident when she was young involving her mother. This affects her relationships and she spends a lot of time on her own or working. One thing she does love to do is Swordcraft, a physical battle game. She has friends here including a detective, and they end up helping each other. Ted does have trouble getting close to people, but throughout the book she learns more about herself and her relationships. It’s great to see her evolve and I’d love to read more of her adventures. Her relationship with her florist sister Bob is interesting and changes also.

    This book would appeal to many – those who love mystery and those who love learning about relationships. I didn’t realise how much I would enjoy reading about both together. I have fingers crossed for more of Ted’s story.

  7. Thank you to Beauty and Lace and Pantera Press for letting me read A Routine Infidelity by Elizabeth Coleman.
    I was easily drawn in by the character of Ted who works as a private investigator.

    Along the way we also become familiar with Chantal who is a medium and works in an office right where Ted also works.
    Teddy does not believe that Chantal is a real medium and thinks she is trying to dupe people out of their money. This becomes more of an issue when Chantal reads for Ted’s sister Bob and Chantal also keeps telling Teddy over and over that she is in danger but Ted doesn’t believe any of it.

    As the book goes on I felt myself hooked. It was a fantastic well written murder mystery that kept my attention and made me turn the pages quickly so I could find out what happened.
    All in all I think this was a great read. I highly recommend this novel.

  8. Elizabeth Coleman’s A Routine Infidelity is a little gem of a novel full of quirky loveable characters (and some distinctly unloveable!), drama, suspense and delightful heartwarming moments. I absolutely adored Ted’s family, especially Bob of course, the arch-enemy/close ally psychic neighbour Chantal, swordcraft whiz Spike and best of all Ted’s loyal sidekick Miss Marple. When run of the mill suburban surveillance spirals into million dollar embezzlement and murder, Ted and her readers are in for a rollicking ride!

    Many thanks to Beauty and Lace along with Pantera Press for the opportunity to read and review this charming new book, Elizabeth Coleman’s A Routine Infidelity.

  9. A fast paced, highly energetic story about a young female PI working in a male based industry. While we closely follow Ted and her family as well, showing a personal side to a PI and the issues surrounding this family, we also see inside Teds head and silent conversations with her dog.

    I found this book quite amusing at times but not a hard crime thriller. It was entertaining and lots of fun. The way it finished it appears there will be other stories to come, which I would love to read.

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