A Cloud of Witnesses

(5 customer reviews)


A Martha and Marya Mystery ~ Book 2



By Emily Hanlon

Life at Saint John of the Cross Parish in Pequot Bays should have returned to normal after one of its priests was cleared of murdering a parishioner and the true killer put behind bars. But a troublesome new group called Dies Irae has moved in, led by the fire-and-brimstone Father Thaddeus. When one of its devoted followers dies under suspicious circumstances, Father Seamus enlists Martha Collins to help him oust Father Thaddeus from the parish. But when a second member of Dies Irae dies, the Purple Pest detective, Marya Cook, shuffles back into action. Can Marya unmask another murderer before he or she strikes again—or will Martha become the next victim?

In this sequel to Emily Hanlon’s phenomenal debut, Who Am I to Judge?, the scatterbrained octogenarian sleuth, Marya, and her sensible sidekick, Martha, are back in action with new twists and turns, an assortment of scheming suspects, and of course, plenty of purple-penned notecards.


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5 reviews for A Cloud of Witnesses

  1. Ciniso

    While different than anything else I have read, I really got invested in this book. It is the first book I have read that was so intensely Catholic. Not being Catholic myself, I still found it incredibly interesting and a great book for cultural insight, which I especially appreciated since my grandfather was Catholic and it was kind of taboo to talk about. I loved getting a glimpse into this part of his life.

    I found it to be engaging from the start, but it really sucked me in at about 50% and I had a difficult time putting it down. In point of fact, I didn’t put it down (not for lack of trying!) and finished the second half of the book in one go. I smiled frequently and really chuckled aloud at one part in particular. While this is a murder mystery and it does have a couple brief descriptions some might find disturbing, I found it to be a very enjoyable read and I had no idea “who done it” until Marya told us. While A Cloud of Witnesses does not end on a cliffhanger, it seems like there may be a good set-up for a third book. If this is the case, count on my reading it! I will definitely be looking for more from this author.

    On an unrelated note, I enjoyed the variety of large words found in this book and used the dictionary for many of them. If you don’t want to do this, you would be fine reading without knowing the exact meaning, but always find it fun to try to pick up new vocabulary, or at least be impressed that an author can use words I have never seen.

    While I received a complimentary copy of this book, I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

  2. Candide Weekes

    A Cloud of Witnesses by Emily Hanlon was a great read.
    I loved how the authors discribed the main characters and how they interacted with each other.
    I also read the first book in the series called Who Am I to Judge and I think I prefered that one.
    But the themes of mystery and solving crimes waere present on both novels and I really enjoyed the stories.
    I also love how unique Mary ais and how her mind works to solve the crime.

    — I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publishers. I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone. —

  3. Megan

    This is the second book in the series, though its the first book I’ve read by this author. The author did a really good job making this book be able to be read as a stand-alone book, even though its second in the series, as I never felt lost while reading it. I enjoyed both Martha and Marya, but I think Marya is my favorite character. The way her mind works, and how she tends to go off on rabbit trails during conversations was very endearing.
    The mystery really kept me guessing from the start. Some of it I figured out, but the final reveal of the murder was still a bit of a surprise. I had suspected the character but was never fully sure if they were guilty of not.
    I also enjoyed getting a peak into the Catholic faith more, as this book has a strong Catholic faith element. It was interesting seeing some of the inner workings of the faith. Overall this was a very enjoyable, cozy sort of mystery. The setting was charming, and the characters provided both humor and intrigue. I’d recommend for anyone who enjoys a good cozy mystery but wants one with an extra dose of faith.
    I received a free advanced copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. That review did not have to be positive. All thoughts and opinions herein expressed are completely my own.

  4. Stephanie

    A cozy mystery. It is a good Christian themed Mystery. It kept me guessing. I liked Marthas inner thought dialogue. The author does a good job introducing the characters. It is the second book of a series. I would suggest if you wanted more back story to read the first book. It is an excellent book, and I would definitely recommend to others looking for a Christian themed Mystery.
    I received a complimentary copy of this book, I was not required to provide a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

  5. Carol Graft

    The adventures of Martha and Marya continue in the next installment by Emily Hanlon.

    While I did read Book One “Who Am I To Judge” before I read this one I don’t think it’s absolutely necessary.

    It is helpful to know how Marya and Martha connected but there is a bit of flashback and commentary that alludes to the previous book.

    Martha and Marya couldn’t be more opposite and yet they find a way to work together.
    Martha is steeped in volunteer roles in her church, Marya is an octogenarian congregant. It was a delight to see these “church ladies: work together and start to become friends, as unlikely as that seems.

    Somehow, they wind up involved in a murder investigation. Not with police approval, of course.
    In this book two we start to see glimpses of their past.

    Martha’s methods are very meticulous, much to Marya’s dismay. Marya’s methods seem extremely random and far out of the ordered life that Martha insists upon. And yet Marya has a knack for finding out information that Martha doesn’t . She also has a knack for handing out just the right Bible verse or Lutheran quote at just the right moment.

    I think even if you don’t practice the Catholic faith you will enjoy this cozy mystery. Those that do practice will understand even more the humor, nuances, and the elements of the Catholic church/parish life.

    Plus, I am sure we all know “church lady” types, whether we attend church or not.

    I am looking forward to more adventures from Marya and Martha.

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