Suspenseful from the first page to the last, A Testament to Murder is perfect for fans of And Then There Were None, Murder on the Orient Express, and Crooked House
A dying billionaire. Nine would-be heirs. But only one will take the prize…
At the lush Villa Calypso on the French Riviera, a dying billionaire launches a devious plan: at midnight each day he appoints a new heir to his vast fortune. If he dies within 24 hours, that person takes it all. If not, their chance is gone forever.
Yet these are no ordinary beneficiaries, these men who crossed him, women who deceived him, and distant relations intent on reclaiming the family fortune. All are determined to lend death a hand and outwit their rivals in pursuit of the prize.
As tensions mount with every passing second, retired Scotland Yard investigator Jasper must stay two steps ahead of every player if he hopes to prevent the billionaire’s devious game from becoming a testament to murder…
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EXTRACT FROM THE BOOK!!
“Everybody slept well?” Malcolm asked at breakfast. His deep-set eyes wandered past the faces along the breakfast table. Theodora had the distinct impression they lingered longest on the pale face of that American gold-digger. Despite her attempt to cover up the shadows under her eyes with makeup, she still looked exhausted. Perhaps a clever trick to gain sympathy?
Theodora reached out for her teacup and took her time to sip the vibrant Earl Grey. It was her favourite flavour. So very thoughtful of Malcolm to ensure it was in the house. It had to be hard to get good tea here in France.
Theodora didn’t really understand what people found so appealing about France. The language was atrocious, the men short and badly dressed, at least in the countryside. They all had terrible moustaches and used too much gel in their hair. The women were maddeningly thin and elegant, with laughter that tittered like bells. A country full of horrible men and enviable women had to be a nightmare to live in.
“Patty can’t stand thunderstorms, can you, darling?” that worthless artistic nephew of Malcolm just said. He tried to grab his wife’s hand, but she avoided his fleshy fingers and crumbled her bread even further. Theodora bet she had slept like a baby and had only made her face look worn to appeal to Malcolm’s sympathy. Would he fall for it?
Theodora took another sip of tea, her gaze wandering to Howard. Before she came down to breakfast she had studied her secret stash again, all the things in her possession that she could use against the people gathered here. She had tried to determine with whom she should start. The complication was that she had no idea who was in the will today. She had to target someone whose turn was yet to come. Who would be afraid to lose Malcolm’s goodwill and who would give her money to keep her mouth shut about what she knew.
Even if Malcolm’s fortune wouldn’t end up with her, because someone killed him before her turn came, she’d gain something out of this whole loathsome gathering. Something to support herself off, after life began anew. She couldn’t quite imagine living in a world without Malcolm but if the doctors were right, it would soon become a reality. It was so new and strange it frightened her and at the same time filled her with an energy she hadn’t had in years. She could go travelling. She could buy things. She didn’t know anything she wanted right now, but she could find things. She could make life full again. But she needed money for that. Money one of the people along this table had to give her.
Cecily probably hated her the most. But Cecily also had the most to lose. Once Malcolm knew Cecily had betrayed him with Howard, long before he had ever hit her and Cecily had filed for divorce, Malcolm would certainly not leave all of his fortune to her. That would mean one less candidate. But did Cecily have access to money to pay Theodora for the pictures in her possession? Or would Cecily have to go to Howard? Howard had already wanted to leave last night. If he realized he was under attack, he might indeed go. Taking Cecily with him and thus removing the person Theodora needed. Did she need Cecily at all when she could also direct her attentions to someone else? The question was: did that person have access to money? Theodora thought so, but she wasn’t sure. If her assumptions about a secret fortune hidden well from the rest of the world were wrong, she wouldn’t get a thing out of her clever plan.
Theodora’s hand was shaking as she put the teacup down. This choice could be the most important of her life. She had to get it right.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Armed with cheese and chocolate, Vivian Conroy sits down to create the aspirational settings, characters with secrets up their sleeves, and clever plots which took several of her mysteries to #1 bestseller in multiple categories on Amazon US and Canada. Away from the keyboard, Vivian likes to hike (especially in the Swiss mountains), hunt for the perfect cheesecake and experience the joy in every-day life, be it a fiery sunset, a gorgeous full moon or that errant butterfly descending on the windowsill.