We’ve met Benedict on another blog post, but this time I’d like to highlight his Historical Cozy Mystery Series, Lord Edgington Investigates…
Lord Edginton has retired from the Metropolitan Police and is in retreat at Cranley Hall. He hopes for quietness and peace, but the arrival of his sixteen-year-old grandson, Christopher, changes his perspective and together the two of them begin their adventures. Murder and crime are no match for this family dual.
You can find out more about the Lord Edgington Investigates from Benedict’s Website. While you’re there be sure to sign up for The Benedict Brown Readers’ Club. You can also follow Benedict on Facebook and find his books on Amazon.
What made you decide to write a Historical Cozy?
I’ve always loved Golden Age detective fiction and my mother was a history teacher for fifty years and has been a big influence on me, so when I was choosing to write a second mystery series, a historical cozy seemed the way to go.
Tell us what time frame your stories are in and what setting or world?
The first book in my “Lord Edgington Investigates…” series takes place in England in 1925, with my releases continuing more or less in real time so that the seventh book I’ve just written takes place in summer 1926. I adore the 1920s for their style and exuberance and have tried to invest my books with a lot of period detail. I am from Surrey in the south of England and created the fictional estate of Cranley Hall, for my characters to inhabit in the beautiful countryside there.
Who is your protagonist? Tell us a bit about them and why they were chosen.
My narrator is the sixteen-year-old grandson of a famous detective, Lord Edgington. The renowned grandfather has spent the last ten years in seclusion in his country pile but is pulled out of retirement when a member of their family is killed at a grand ball. I wanted to create two central characters with a big gulf in their personalities and thanks to Christopher’s innocence and his grandfather’s wisdom, they’re a true odd couple.
What sets your mysteries apart from other cozies?
The first thing that readers often tell me is that they fall in love with the relationship between the grandfather and grandson. It is a very sweet central theme to the mysteries without being saccharine. As the books progress, their connection to one another develops and young Christopher improves as a detective thanks to his grandfather’s brilliance.
How much research do you do to create your story, and how much do you include in your books?
I love researching this series and always find fascinating elements from history to include, which are often linked the real-life settings I choose. For example, in my fifth book “The Tangled Treasure Trail” I set the book in central London and filled each scene with details of the history and geography of that incredible city, as the characters speed about on scavenger hunts through the warren of old streets. I also spend a lot of time researching the fashions and language of the time. I attempt to avoid anachronistic words and expressions, so I always have an etymological dictionary at hand.
Do you feel the crimes committed in historical cozy are very different from a contemporary cozy?
I started my cozy career with the contemporary series “The Izzy Palmer Mysteries”, and I think there often is a lighter feel to my Lord Edgington books. My books are gore-free in all cases, and both series have a lot of humour in them, but it’s true that the 1920s books normally turn the focus away from the blood and injuries that might otherwise be featured in my contemporary series.
I have several more Historical Cozy Mystery authors to introduce you to! I hope you are enjoying finding out more about a new genre of cozy mysteries, or learning about some old favorites!