I saw this cover over at Editing Everything, and I was lucky enough to get the ebook from NetGalley. (Thanks, Verushka for the heads up.) Update: evidently I didn't see the cover on Verushka's blog. If you have has a post on book covers recently including the Poppy Redfern cover, let me know.
Tessa Arlen also writes the Lady Montfort series in which Lady Montfort and Mrs. Jackson, her inimitable housekeeper, solve murders in the early 1900's. Since I've enjoyed that series, I was happy to give Poppy Redfern a try.
The book opens with the final stages of Poppy's training to become an Air Raid Warden, giving a view of how those subjected to the nightly bombings in London managed to get to safety during an air raid.
The wardens had a range of duties, such as advising local people on air raid precautions and enforcing the night time ‘blackout’ to ensure no artificial lights were visible from the air. During a raid, wardens were responsible for monitoring and reporting bomb damage, and for helping to coordinate the response of other civil defence services. Source
Having completed her training, Poppy returns to her small village and begins her nightly rounds checking to see that the blackout rules were being followed. Previously, a small country village wouldn't have attracted much attention, but the recent installment of an American air base increased the possibility of an attack.
The arrival of the Yanks created some hostility in the village because local girls began dating the young men. When two young women who had been dating Americans are murdered, the anger and distrust increases. An American airman is arrested and held on base, but Poppy isn't sure that the American is guilty and joins an American pilot in a little investigating.
When a third young woman narrowly escapes the same fate, Poppy's private investigation becomes more serious--and dangerous.
Poppy Redfern and the Midnight Murders provided interesting historical information, appealing characters, and an enjoyable mystery. The guilty party isn't too difficult to figure out, but the wartime adventure was nevertheless a pleasure.
Historical Mystery. Nov. 5, 2019. Print length: 320 pages.
On the subject of the Blitz, this site has some amazing photos.