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Death on Beacon Hill (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #3)
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Death on Beacon Hill (Nell Sweeney Mysteries #3)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  2,040 Ratings  ·  105 Reviews
Boston governess Nell Sweeney returns in an all-new Gilded Age Mystery
1869: As governess to the Hewitts, Irish immigrant Nell Sweeney belongs to no particular caste--hers is halfway between her Irish brethren and the Boston Brahmin. But now, a double murder involves both maid and mistress--and it will take cooperation by rich and poor alike to solve it.
ebook, ebook edition, 272 pages
Published July 9th 2010 by Smashwords (first published March 1st 2005)
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Review written October 23, 2016

4.3 Stars - As always a GOOD historical 'whodunnit' listening. Dear guvernant Nell Sweeney (and her anguished dashing hero Doctor) keeps its strong hold on my interest.

Book #3

I hoped, crossed my fingers and it was a safe guess. Death on Beacon Hill was yet again another good (8 hours) audiobook (narrated by Leigh Ryan) experience in this lovely lighthearted historical mystery series.

The first part Still Life With Murder got 4.5 stars (rounded up to 5) and I was as
Jul 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-library
This one seemed slightly different than the first two in how they went about solving the mystery. There wasn't a lot of 'detecting' on Nell and Will's parts, they just went around talking to the people involved until the truth came out. Not that that's not a valid way to solve a mystery. =) And there were still plenty of suspects to speculate about how/why they might have done it. Some interesting new background characters were introduced in such a way as I'm expecting them to show up again in t ...more
Feb 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh what can I say? I adore Nell, Will and P.B. Ryan!

Another great book! Although I found a bunch of spelling mistakes in the nook eddition of this one and even one little writing mistake!
At one point Dr. Foster gets up of the park bench where he sat next to Emily and Nell sits down in the space he vacated. Then not three sentences later he sits down and puts his arm around Emily. Well either he sat in Nell's lap, or he sat down on the other side of Emily and it was not spelled out..Things like t
Stacy Dempsey
Jun 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I started reading this series last week when book 1 was a free book on Kindle. I adore the characters and cannot wait to read on.

This was my favorite of the first three books. I enjoy the constantly evolving relationship between Nell & Will, and the writing truly follows the politeness and often overlooked complexity of life during the period. The author manages to fill in some background on the characters throughout the text so that you can understand the character interactions without hav
Jan 29, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a quick read, and made a good "recreational fluff" book for me. I did not realize it was book three in the series when I picked it up, but the author tosses in enough summary of any important story elements that came before to make the book readable. I was happy to see that the author really did seem knowledgeable about 1869 Boston, and her understanding of ladies clothing of the era seemed more thorough than what I find in some historical fiction.

The plot consists of a combination
Jun 21, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book #2 of the Gilded Age mysteries and the first one that I read in this series. Governess Nell Sweeney is fond of the Hewitt's driver, Brady, so when he comes to her and begs her to clear his niece young Fiona's name, Nell swings into action. All of Boston is talking about the murder of the famous retired actress Virginia Kimball. Her dead servant girl Fiona is found in the same room, both fatally shot. The police is quick to blame the actress' murder on Fiona, since she's Irish, ignoring all ...more
Audrey Jane
Feb 01, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
This series is getting better and better. So far this installment is my favourite out of the series. I felt more invested in this intricate intrigue. The culprit was not obvious until approximately two third into the book, I had a harder time guessing this time. We get introduced to a lot of new characters. I can't wait to learn more about Max Thurston, I hope he appears in the following books. And there's a lot of progress on the romantic front as well. Nell and Will form a great sleuthing duo.
Aug 15, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, read-in-2010
Again very detailed description of the aftermath of a murder scene and fascinating insights into forensic science of the time, and I finally have the impression the romance is taking off (considering the internal time frame it all makes sense) - still too little Gracie, though ^^.

I love the introduction of a very flamboyant minor character who will show up in the next book as well, and was led along by the red herring until the end again.
Death on Beacon Hill is a short, low-key cozy mystery. There's not any personal danger to Nell or Will, and the murder reveal is low stakes, very matter-of-fact. So it's not really a thrilling sort of mystery. I did enjoy the puzzle, and how the relationship between Nell and Will is progressing (or not). They spend plenty of time together in this one and the tension is palpable at times.
R.P. Dahlke
Aug 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I Loved these books! Galloped through the first, then gobbled up the rest in the series. Wonderful historical mystery! My favorite thing in the world--I can't imagine writing it, but this author does it with style. There are 6 books, and all tug at your heartstrings. Poverty and glitz in the Golden Age of London. These books have it all! Highly recommended
Dec 29, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even though I read the first three books in quick succession, I thought each book felt refreshingly different. Loved the chemistry between Nell and Will in this one - the romance arc is almost as strong as the main mystery plot IMO.
Edward Beavers
Jun 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Boston Celebrity Murdered

Boston Celebrity Murdered

An excellent telling of a murder that brings a wealth of characters in the story and gives a hint of their reasons for possibly being the murderer.
Mar 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great addition to this series.
Nov 10, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
ive read the first 3 in this series. well written and from a great, more proper time in our culture. great stories to pass the time.
I love these mysteries & the developing relationship between Nell & Will.
Tom Beetham
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read, minus some smut

I could do without all the sexual comments and themes. Beyond that, the author is definitely talented. However, this was my least favorite book in the series so far.
Stacie  Haden
Great historical mystery series.
Linda Palmstrom
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great book!

Loved the adventure and mystery! Enjoyed imagining the streets of Boston and familiar locations as the story unfolded. Recommended as a great and entertaining read.
Nov 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Being in Mallorca my reading habits is slightly different. More like; you take what you have. I do have a small library here, but most of the books I have already read, but there are of course still some. It would not be me if there wasn’t a TBR shelf or two!

Then there is the iPad where I save books for a day when no actual paper books are appealing. Being on a holiday it is nice with some easy going novels to spend the days in the sun. I subscribe to some newsletters who offers free or very che
Katie Bee
Wavered between two and three stars for this one.

It's competently written and there's nothing obnoxious about it. Some of the characters are interesting. I continue to like Nell.

But Nell's position, which was idiosyncratic to the edge of believability to begin with, has become increasingly tenuous in its connection to reality. Forget her backstory, which can be handwaved as "her employer doesn't know of her exceedingly dubious past or that she's married (or that her husband is imprisoned". Even
Linda Trzyna
Feb 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am thoroughly enjoying PB Ryan's Nell Sweeney mysteries. In Book 3, we learn more about Nell's background and enjoy just the hint of romance between Nell and Will. Looking forward to Book 4!
Set in post-Civil War Boston, the author creates a most likable character in Nell Sweeney. When a retired former actress is murdered along with her maid who supposedly murdered her employer, Nell seeks to discover if this is the case. Her surrogate father, Brady, is the maid's uncle. Devastated by her death and the verdict, he assures Nell that his niece would never do such a thing.

As Nell begins to investigate, she encounters Will Hewitt, the father of her daughter. They have remained friends a
This one isn't my favorite because I felt like it was an introductory book. They needed to introduce some characters and didn't want to add back story into the next book and make it longer. They also needed some plot points to come around with Will changing his life style. The mystery was also a little lite and a little bit of a stretch at the end with the family friends family members.
There seems to be a lot more Gracie in this book, but she's there for comic relief a lot of the times.

I do li
V.r. Christensen
These mysteries are so much fun. Rarely predictable. And even when one guesses it just about right, the hows and whys of it all turn out to complex they mystery so much, one wonders how Ms. Ryan imagines it all. And yet, for all the complexity, they never seem overly contrived, or confusing. It's like a great ball of string that eventually gets unwound. For all the fun of watching a mystery get solved, of a murder and its evidence and its suspects being examined, I think what truly has me hooked ...more
May 24, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Now this book got odd...

Nell is back at it again, when a fellow servant asks her to look into the death of their niece, a serving girl. I actually enjoyed this story-line, and it seemed very plausible (for once). I liked to see good things happening to Nell's supporting characters (Will and the constable are great supports for her). Then the ending was just...weird. What a way to wrap up a perfectly good mystery. What, did P.B. Ryan run out of room? Out of time? Accidentally kill off the charact
Adrienne Testa
Jun 24, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Nell Sweeney, the Hewitt's governess and Will Hewitt come together to investigate the death of an actress, Virginia Kimball and her maid, Fiona Gannon. Nell Sweeney is asked by the Hewitt's driver Brady to investigate the death of his niece, Fiona. Virginia Hewitt kept a diary of her affairs with the rich and powerful of Boston. Her diary detailed the intimate details of their sexual relations and she then blackmailed them to kept their secrets. When Virginia Hewitt and her maid Fiona turn up de ...more
Theresa Brandt
Mar 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great entry...

I think I'm getting better and faster at spotting the red herrings and figuring out the real culprit in the mysteries being solved by Nell Sweeny and Will Hewitt, but that doesn't lessen my enjoyment of this series of books.

I really have to applaud this author's restraint in developing the relationship between Nell and Will. I'm sure the temptation is there to rush them to the bedroom, but she has worked hard to allow it to evolve logically and rationally. There is palpabl
Aug 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, historical
Almost as good as the first!! I loved finding out about Virginia Kimball and her world - I almost wish I knew her before she died, myself! The conflict was well situated, so that it kept you guessing right till the very end, and the climax extremely well done. As always, Will captured my heart and squeezed it a few times for good measure, and his and Nell's interactions were both sweet and gratifying. I enjoyed the secondary characters, especially Isaac Foster and Orville Pratt! Nell really came ...more
Feb 29, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-edition
This installment of the Nell Sweeney/Will Hewitt mysteries was great! A maid and her mistress both killed in what appears to be a double murder. The mistress being a former paramour of Will's and a once famous but now faded actress. The maid is the niece of Brady (I think it's Brady) and she has been accused post-mortem of the murder of Virginia Kimball. Nell sets out to clear her name and prove that she didn't do it. Of course, as usual, Will's brother Harry is a prime suspect (again? really?) ...more
Apr 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When Nell's dear friend and co-worker for the Hewitt's, asks her to help clear the name of his niece who has been accused of murder and thievery, and killed during the alleged crime, Nell takes on some of the most influential men in the city in order to find out just what did happen. She meets up with Will Hewitt, who knowing the sort of trouble Nell can find herself in while doing her own investigations, offers to assist. Nell is getting very attached to Will, but with her position as governess ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Nell Sweeney Mysteries (6 books)
  • Still Life with Murder  (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #1)
  • Murder in a Mill Town (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #2)
  • Murder on Black Friday (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #4)
  • Murder In the North End (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #5)
  • A Bucket of Ashes (Nell Sweeney Mysteries, #6)
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