Read Scandal in Skibbereen Online

Authors: Sheila Connolly

Tags: #Fiction, #Mystery & Detective, #Women Sleuths

Scandal in Skibbereen

PRAISE FOR
Buried in a Bog

“Connolly’s latest is a captivating tale—sweet, nostalgic, and full of Irish charm, but also tightly plotted and full of twists, turns, and shocking reveals . . . Connolly’s County Cork Mysteries have a ton of promise.”


The Maine Suspect

“’Tis a grand thing . . . Connolly invests this leisurely series opener with a wealth of Irish color and background.”


Richmond Times-Dispatch

“An exceptional read! Sheila Connolly has done it again with this outstanding book . . . [A] must read for those who have ever wanted to visit Ireland.”


Shelley’s Book Case

“Full of charm and mystery . . . The locals are warm and welcoming and the central hub of the village, Sullivan’s Pub, is a slice of comfort. Throw in a dead body and a mugging in a nearby village and you have all the makings of a great whodunit.”


RT Book Reviews

“Anyone with a trace of Irish in them, and all of us who wish we could claim an Irish connection, will welcome the first book in the County Cork series . . . And, with a country with Ireland’s history, there’s certain to be fascinating murders and mysteries to come.”


Lesa’s Book Critiques

PRAISE FOR THE ORCHARD MYSTERIES

 

“Sheila Connolly’s Orchard Mysteries are some of the most satisfying cozy mysteries I’ve read . . . Warm and entertaining from the first paragraph to the last. Fans will look forward to the next Orchard Mystery.”


Lesa’s Book Critiques

“An enjoyable and well-written book with some excellent apple recipes at the end.”


Cozy Library

“The mystery is intelligent and has an interesting twist . . . [A] fun, quick read with an enjoyable heroine.”


The Mystery Reader
(four stars)

“Delightful . . . [A] fascinating whodunit filled with surprises.”


The Mystery Gazette

“[A] delightful new series.”


Gumshoe Review

“The premise and plot are solid, and Meg seems a perfect fit for her role.”


Publishers Weekly

“A fresh and appealing sleuth with a bushel full of entertaining problems.
One Bad Apple
is one crisp, delicious read.”

—Claudia Bishop, author of the Hemlock Falls Mysteries

“A delightful look at small-town New England, with an intriguing puzzle thrown in.”

—JoAnna Carl, author of the Chocoholic Mysteries

“A promising new mystery series. Thoroughly enjoyable . . . I can’t wait for the next book and a chance to spend more time with Meg and the good people of Granford.”

—Sammi Carter, author of the Candy Shop Mysteries

PRAISE FOR THE MUSEUM MYSTERIES

 

“Sheila Connolly’s wonderful new series is a witty, engaging blend of history and mystery with a smart sleuth who already feels like a good friend.”

—Julie Hyzy,
New York Times
bestselling author of
the White House Chef Mysteries

“[The] archival milieu and the foibles of the characters are intriguing, and it’s refreshing to encounter an FBI man who is human, competent, and essential to the plot.”


Publishers Weekly

“She’s smart, she’s savvy, and she’s sharp enough to spot what really goes on behind the scenes in museum politics. The practical and confident Nell Pratt is exactly the kind of sleuth you want in your corner when the going gets tough. Sheila Connolly serves up a snappy and sophisticated mystery.”

—Mary Jane Maffini, author of
the Charlotte Adams Mysteries


National Treasure
meets
The Philadelphia Story
in this clever, charming, and sophisticated caper. When murder and mayhem become the main attractions at a prestigious museum, its feisty fundraiser goes undercover to prove it’s not just the museum’s pricey collection that’s concealing a hidden history. Secrets, lies, and a delightful revenge conspiracy make this a real page-turner!”

—Hank Phillippi Ryan, Agatha Award–winning author of
The Other Woman

Berkley Prime Crime titles by Sheila Connolly

Orchard Mysteries

 

ONE BAD APPLE

ROTTEN TO THE CORE

RED DELICIOUS DEATH

A KILLER CROP

BITTER HARVEST

SOUR APPLES

GOLDEN MALICIOUS

Museum Mysteries

 

FUNDRAISING THE DEAD

LET’S PLAY DEAD

FIRE ENGINE DEAD

MONUMENT TO THE DEAD

County Cork Mysteries

 

BURIED IN A BOG

SCANDAL IN SKIBBEREEN

Specials

 

DEAD LETTERS

AN OPEN BOOK

Scandal in
Skibbereen

SHEILA CONNOLLY

 

THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP

Published by the Penguin Group

Penguin Group (USA) LLC

375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014

USA • Canada • UK • Ireland • Australia • New Zealand • India • South Africa • China

penguin.com

A Penguin Random House Company

SCANDAL IN SKIBBEREEN

A Berkley Prime Crime Book / published by arrangement with the author

Copyright © 2014 by Sheila Connolly.

Penguin supports copyright. Copyright fuels creativity, encourages diverse voices, promotes free speech, and creates a vibrant culture. Thank you for buying an authorized edition of this book and for complying with copyright laws by not reproducing, scanning, or distributing any part of it in any form without permission. You are supporting writers and allowing Penguin to continue to publish books for every reader.

Berkley Prime Crime Books are published by The Berkley Publishing Group.

BERKLEY
®
PRIME CRIME and the PRIME CRIME logo are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

For information, address: The Berkley Publishing Group,

a division of Penguin Group (USA) LLC,

375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.

eBook ISBN: 978-0-698-13733-2

PUBLISHING HISTORY

Berkley Prime Crime mass-market edition / February 2014

Cover illustration by Daniel Craig.

Cover photo:
Celtic Knots
© Shutterstock.

Cover design by Judith Lagerman.

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Version_1

 
Contents
 

Praise for Sheila Connolly

Also by Sheila Connolly

Title Page

Copyright

Acknowledgments

Epigraph

 

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Acknowledgments

 

One of the challenges of writing about a real village in Ireland is deciding whether to invent characters or to borrow from the ones who actually exist. In this book there are some of each.

Thanks once again to Sergeant Tony McCarthy of the Skibbereen gardaí, who answered my questions about how the investigation of a crime that strongly resembles the one included here would proceed. Police matters in Ireland don’t always resemble those in the United States, or what readers have come to expect in this age of
CSI
and digital evidence. You have to keep in mind the size of the places, which is reflected in the staffing of the garda stations. Skibbereen is a small town by American standards (with a population of about 2,700 people), and the garda station is small as well. When we met, I apologized to the sergeant for saddling the police force with a fictional crime wave, and I’ve given their fictional counterparts a lot of discretion in how they handle the events. If I’ve gotten it wrong, it is my error, and not due to the advice I was given.

Sheahan’s Hotel in Leap has been operated by the same family for more than a century. The current proprietors were generous in sharing information about hiring regulations, food service restrictions, parking requirements, and so on—the nuts and bolts of running an Irish pub in a small village. I hope I have used those details well.

The Townsend family lived in the manor house overlooking the harbor in Leap from the seventeenth century until the later twentieth century, and the building is as I’ve described it. However, it is now a retreat house rather than a family home. I’ve tweaked a bit of the family’s history for my purposes, although the founder of that family line, Richard Townsend, was a contemporary of the artist Anthony Van Dyck. I apologize to any Townsends who may read this book for muddling up their past.

If you’re planning a trip to West Cork—and you should!—you’ll find all the places mentioned, including Maura’s cottage (now in ruins) and Bridget’s just over the lane (still occupied), and the terrible road down the back of the hill. I have been thrilled by the warm responses from readers, who write to tell me that I’ve captured the spirit of Ireland and they’re ready to get on a plane.

And of course, I have to thank my agent, Jessica Faust of BookEnds, and my editor, Shannon Jamieson Vazquez (with whom I had many interesting discussions about Irish slang!), as well as the wonderful support network among mystery writers, including Sisters in Crime and the Guppies.

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