Many thanks to RaRaResources for inviting me to take part in the blog tour for Elizabeth Mundy and ‘A Clean Canvas’. Here is my review for my stop on the tour today:
Crime always leaves a stain…
Lena Szarka, a Hungarian cleaner, dusts off her detective skills when a masterpiece is stolen from a gallery she cleans with her cousin Sarika. When Sarika goes missing too, accusations start to fly.
Convinced her cousin is innocent, Lena sweeps her way through the secrets of the London art scene. But with the evidence against Sarika mounting and the police on her trail, Lena needs to track down the missing painting if she is to clear her cousin.
Embroiling herself in the sketchy world of thwarted talents, unpaid debts and elegant fraudsters, Lena finds that there’s more to this gallery than meets the eye.
What does TWG think?
Apparently ‘A Clean Canvas’ is the second book in the series – it reads perfectly fine on its own though, luckily!
Elizabeth Mundy’s book isn’t your typical ‘crime’ novel. It’s a lot tamer than that. A cozy mystery if you will. I don’t really read many books from this genre as I usually like a bit more oomph in a storyline, however I was pleasantly surprised by what I read as, overall, I did enjoy it.
Lena may just be labelled as the ‘cleaner’ but there is a lot more to her that meets the eye. I weirdly liked the fact that she struggled to make sense of certain English phrases as it enabled me to see a softer side to her personality. I found her to be quite harsh at times, and to be honest, I don’t think that we have seen Lena’s full potential as a character. I know that she played detective in ‘A Clean Canvas’, but I feel as though she has more personality waiting to be discovered.
I enjoyed the uniqueness of the storyline as well as the surprising levels of intrigue which kept me guessing more often than not. I did feel as though the overall storyline wasn’t as smooth as I would have liked, with it feeling staggered at times. However, I am very pleased that I decided to pick up this cozy mystery as it was certainly something different to lose myself in. I don’t think I would turn into an art connoisseur anytime soon, but if Lena can hold handfuls of her own tricks, I certainly won’t be ruling it out!!
About the author.
Elizabeth Mundy’s grandmother was a Hungarian immigrant to America who raised five children on a chicken farm in Indiana. An English Literature graduate from Edinburgh University, Elizabeth is a marketing director for an investment firm and lives in London with her messy husband and two young children. A Clean Canvas is the second book in the Lena Szarka mystery series about a Hungarian cleaner who turns detective.