Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Death at the Selig Studios” as Want to Read:
Death at the Selig Studios
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Death at the Selig Studios

(Emily Cabot Mysteries #7)

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  31 ratings  ·  17 reviews
The early summer of 1909 finds Emily Cabot eagerly anticipating a relaxing vacation with her family. Before they can depart, however, she receives news that her brother, Alden, has been involved in a shooting death at the Selig Polyscope silent movie studios on Chicago's northwest side. She races to investigate, along with her friend Detective Henry Whitbread. There they d ...more
Paperback, 248 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Allium Press
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Death at the Selig Studios, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Death at the Selig Studios

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  31 ratings  ·  17 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Death at the Selig Studios
I won this book in a goodreads drawing.

A historical mystery set in Chicago during the early years of the 20 century.

A man is found dead in an early silent movie studio. The Sleuth's brother is a primary suspect. Our very progressive sleuth aids the police in poking around, and soon enough finds the fairly obvious perpetrator.

Most of the characters are annoying.
Kate Baxter
This seventh book in the Emily Cabot Mystery series was my first foray into this collection and no doubt, not my last. The lead character, Emily, is a professional, strong and modern woman of 1909 Chicago. She has a couple of children, is married to a science professor and assists the honorable and forthright Detective Henry Whitbread with all things murderous.

The first murder occurs early on in the book and much to Emily's dismay, her brother Alden appears to have been involved. Though he clai
Jul 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
The show must go on, as the saying goes – and the “film people” in McNamara’s seventh Emily Cabot mystery take this to extremes, to the heroine’s bafflement.

In this entry, set in 1909, Emily is in her thirties, a married mother of two and lecturer at the University of Chicago. Series regulars, like her friends Detective Whitbread and policeman “Fitz” Fitzgibbons, play major roles, as do the colorful personalities involved with the Selig Polyscope Company, a prominent American motion picture stu
May 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Emily Cabot, university lecturer who sometimes helps the police solve crimes, is back with a new adventure. Death at the Selig Studios takes place in Chicago in 1909. Emily's brother, Alden, has been accused of murder at the early silent movie studio, and she works to find answers and to clear his name.

I have a long time interest in silent movies, and belonged to a wonderful silent film society in my city for several years. That said, I was not familiar with the Selig Studios in Chicago. I found
John Gaines
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Reviewed for LibraryThing. Free copy provided by publisher in exchange for an objective review.

While there is nothing particularly praiseworthy about the mystery aspect of this Emily Cabot Mystery, the fact-based setting makes Death at the Selig Studios very much worth reading. Set in the Selig Polyscope movie studio (a real place) in 1909 Chicago, it opens up a whole area of movie history that I knew very little about. Before Hollywood even existed, short one-reel silent movies were being made
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads, cozies
Received a Kindle copy as a GoodReads giveaway. I haven't read any of the previous Emily Cabot mysteries, but I enjoyed this book and I'm interested in seeing what's next. Emily was a strong female lead. Her prejudices sometimes got in her way, and although it was a little irritating, her attitudes probably reflected common views at the time. My impressions of some of the regular (I think) characters were somewhat negative. Emily's brother Alden seemed awful, very selfish and sulky. Maybe he dis ...more
Stuart Miller
Sep 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Now in her seventh adventure, Emily Cabot finds herself involved with the new moving picture industry when a Chicago film censor is found murdered on one of the sets of the Selig Polyscope Studio at Irving Park and Western, then on the fringes of Chicago. She is dismayed to find that her brother Alden is the chief suspect and--unbeknownst to her--quit his reporting job to become a screenwriter and may be quitting his family as well. As we've come to expect with this series, there is a fascinatin ...more
May 28, 2018 rated it it was ok
The dreadfully dull main character, Emily Cabot, reacts to every line spoken to her with an incessant inner dialogue, continually going over every possible murder scenario, and snobbishly judging everything and everybody connected with the movie making. Her negativity ruins what could be a fun setting for a mystery, with various interesting individuals outside of the usual standards of Victorian propriety. She also does nothing to actually solve the mystery, with a very frustrating ending to a f ...more
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
What a mystery! This was a fascinating historical mystery with wonderful tidbits about Chicago’s movie history. I spent a lot of time looking items up online as so much of what was mentioned in this book was new information for me. Death at the Selig Studios by Frances McNamara is a ton of fun. When a murder happens at the Selig Polyscope Company, Emily Cabot (now Chapman) is involved in trying to solve the murder. While the murder and the sleuthing felt at times a bit frustrating or predictable ...more
Sheila Cohen
Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was ok
I didn't love this book. I found Emily (the main character) very annoying. I also felt that it was very obvious who the murderer was early on (although there were still some surprises). All in all, though, I found it very dull. ...more
Sep 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018, mystery, reviewed, own
Death at Selig Studios is the first of Frances McNamara's Emily Cabot mysteries that I've read, though it is the seventh in the series. I really enjoyed the historical setting and learning about the early studios in Chicago. I can't say I was surprised by resolution but it was an enjoyable read. ...more
Rebecca Burgess
Sep 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways, mystery
I enjoyed how the history of silent movies was incorporated. A who done it that never quits.
Jul 21, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2-goodread_wins
I won a kindle version #GoodreadsGiveaway
Aug 27, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting mystery novel set in the early 1900's. I enjoyed it. ...more
Monica Fastenau
Mar 25, 2018 rated it liked it
*Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
Barbara D
Aug 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed this book!
rated it really liked it
Sep 20, 2018
Sep 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Goodreads, Allium Press, Kindle and Ms. McNamara for a fun little mystery. It is a fun mystery that should not offend anyone. It makes for a great summer read, Thanks
Janet Licari
rated it liked it
Sep 13, 2018
Malachy M
rated it it was amazing
Dec 02, 2019
Sherry Markowitz
rated it really liked it
Jan 23, 2019
rated it really liked it
Mar 29, 2021
rated it liked it
Nov 20, 2019
rated it really liked it
May 31, 2020
Diane Waldo
rated it really liked it
Jun 29, 2018
Beverly Powell
rated it really liked it
Sep 29, 2018
rated it it was amazing
Feb 07, 2018
Dianne Hurley
rated it really liked it
Sep 07, 2019
Melissa Cheresnick
rated it really liked it
Dec 23, 2018
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Quentins
  • Half-Truths and Semi-Miracles
  • Back When We Were Grownups
  • Santa Fe Mojo (Vincent Malone #1)
  • Murder in the Woods (DI Skelgill Investigates, #8)
  • The Shades: A Novel
  • Soho Ghosts (Soho #2)
  • River Bodies (Northampton County, #1)
  • Half Moon Bay (Clay Edison, #3)
  • Designs on Ivy's Locket (Wrenn Grayson Mystery, # 2)
  • Malicious (Morris Brick , #3)
  • As Sick as Our Secrets
  • Murder at the Wake (DI Skelgill Investigates, #7)
  • The Nightingale Murder (Maria Kallio #9)
  • If You See Kay Run (Badge Bunny Booze Mystery #1)
  • Proper Goodbye (Wild Raspberries #2)
  • Murder in an Irish Pub (Irish Village Mystery #4)
  • Forgive Me, Alex
See similar books…
Frances McNamara grew up in Boston, where her father served as Police Commissioner for ten years. She has degrees from Mount Holyoke and Simmons Colleges, and formerly worked as a librarian at the University of Chicago. When not working or writing she can be found sailing on the Charles River in Boston or beaching on Cape Cod.

Other books in the series

Emily Cabot Mysteries (7 books)
  • Death at the Fair
  • Death at Hull House
  • Death at Pullman
  • Death at Woods Hole
  • Death at Chinatown
  • Death at the Paris Exposition

Related Articles

Why not focus on some serious family drama? Not yours, of course, but a fictional family whose story you can follow through the generations of...
198 likes · 69 comments