Mrs. Mohr Goes Missing

Mrs. Mohr Goes Missing

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“An ingenious marriage of comedy and crime.” —Olga Tokarczuk, Nobel laureate and author of Man Booker International Prize winner Flights

A charming, witty, and deliciously spooky mystery, inspired by the work of Agatha Christie, following a bored socialite who becomes Cracow’s most cunning amateur sleuth.

Cracow, 1893. Zofia Turbotynska—professor’s wife and socialite—is bored at home, with little to do but plan a charity auction sponsored by the wealthy residents of a local nursing home and the nuns who work there.

But when one of those residents is found dead, Zofia finds a calling: solving crimes. Ridiculed by the police, who have declared the deaths of natural cause, she starts her own murder investigation, unbeknownst to anyone but her loyal cook Franciszka and one reluctant nun. With her husband blissfully unaware of her secret, Zofia remakes herself into Cracow’s greatest—or at the very least, most surprising—amateur detective.

Full of period character and charm, Mrs. Mohr Goes Missing proves that everyone is capable of finding their passion in life, however unlikely it may seem.

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  • A Zofia Turbotynska Mystery

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  • Format: eBook

  • ISBN-13/EAN: 9780358150954

  • ISBN-10: 0358150957

  • Pages: 368

  • Price: $9.99

  • Publication Date: 03/17/2020

  • Carton Quantity: 1

Maryla Szymiczkowa
Author

Maryla Szymiczkowa

MARYLA SZYMICZKOWA is a pseudonym for partners Jacek Dehnel and Piotr Tarczynski. Dehnel is the award-winning author of numerous books, including the novels Lala and Saturn and the poetry collection Aperture. Tarczynski is a translator and historian. They live in Warsaw, and Mrs. Mohr Goes Missing is their first shared project.
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A
Translator

Antonia Lloyd-Jones

ANTONIA LLOYD-JONES is a prize-winning translator of Polish literature. She has translated works by many of Poland's leading contemporary novelists, including Nobel laureate Olga Tokarczuk, as well as authors of reportage, crime fiction, poetry, screenplays, essays, and children's books. She is a mentor for the WCN Emerging Translator Mentorship Programme, and from 2015-17 was co-chair of the Translators Association.
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  • reviews

    Praise for Mrs. Mohr Goes Missing

    “The unravelling of the mystery is ingenious and takes us through a social setting quivering with snobberies and dos and don’ts. It’s fun and sparky and the glimpse of turn-of-the-century Polish manners and mores is beguiling.” —Daily Mail 

     

    “Charming and moreish…Conjures up the delightful books of Dorothy L Sayers . . . The perfect diversion for annoying commutes.” —Stylist 

     

    “While there is a strong whiff of Agatha Christie in this book, it is much more than a pastiche . . . The story fuses high comedy with an evocative portrayal of the period . . . Ably translated.” —Sunday Express 

     

    “An ingenious marriage of comedy and crime.” —Olga Tokarczuk, Nobel laureate and author of Man Booker International Prize winner Flights 

     

    “Highly comical . . . An extremely absorbing novel.” —Kurzojady 

     

  • excerpts

    In which we meet the household at an apartment on St. John’s Street, learn how Vienna is taking its revenge on Cracow, what one can do with seven stallions, and how to cure many a case of cholera; we also hear about the great value of certain books, the equally great rapacity of the ladies from a certain society, and the tragic accident that befell the Hungarian envoy all because of a bottle of slivovitz. 

     

    It was Saturday, 14 October 1893. All morning a large cloud, dark gray with streaks of sapphire blue, had been hanging above number 30 St. John’s Street in Cracow—?known as “Peacock House” because of the fine sculpted bird above the main entrance?—?threatening rain. 

     

    “Come along, Franciszka,” said Zofia Turbotynska gloomily, fearing the worst?—?by which she meant having to pay twenty cents for the ride home in a cab. “The shopping won’t do itself.” 

     

    And then, ignoring the cook’s aphoristic answer (“On Saint Jerome’s, either it rains or it don’t”?—?though in fact this particular sacred figure had been commemorated a fortnight ago), she went into the hallway, did up two rows of small black buttons on her boots, pulled on her cherry-red kid leather gloves, donned a new hat bought at Marya Prauss’s fashion emporium, and examined herself in the mirror. 

     

    Zofia, née Glodt, wife of Professor Ignacy Turbotynski of the medical faculty at Cracow’s Jagiellonian University, was approaching her fortieth summer, but she noted with approval that she was really quite comely. Perhaps over the past year she had gained a minimal amount of weight, but she carried herself erect and still had an alluring figure. A healthy complexion with no pimples and very few wrinkles?—?just one was more distinct, on her forehead, between the brows, perhaps too often knitted. An oval face, the features rather stern, but softened by nicely defined eyebrows and keen eyes with dark lashes .?.?. a slightly hooked nose .?.?. and lips?—?well, the lips could have been fuller, but she consoled herself that her thin lips gave her the look of a refined Englishwoman. 

     

    She reached for an umbrella from the porcelain stand, which was bristling with her husband’s walking sticks. Briefly her fingers fluttered over the handles?—?a silver parrot’s head with topaz eyes, a rolled-up elephant’s trunk, an ivory knob (donated a couple of years ago by his grateful students), and a small, glossy skull (a souvenir of his last year at medical school)?—?and finally extracted a Chinese dragon chasing a pearl: a present, as Zofia liked to mention, from her sister, who lived in Vienna. Just one more backward glance into the mirror?—?playful enough for her to find herself pleasing, and stern enough for Franciszka not to dare counter it with a smirk?—?and they were ready for the march to Szczepanski Square. 

     

    They went the usual way: down St. John’s Street, then St. Thomas’s, with an occasional reluctant glance at that cloud, which was gathering, swelling, and seething over the Piasek district. 

    “It’s sure to be pouring in the outskirts by now,” said Franciszka, seemingly into space, though with patent reproof. But she knew that in the life of Zofia Turbotynska there were sanctities greater than the elevation of the host, including a proper Sunday luncheon, and thus an equally proper Saturday shopping expedition. 

     

    By now they had reached the end of St. Thomas’s Street, and so Franciszka, who was walking slightly behind with a basket over her arm, knew what would happen next: as soon as they came level with the Alchemist’s house, the bow on Zofia’s hat suddenly twitched and turned to the right, followed by the rest of the hat and her head. The time had come for a groan, for this was where “that crime” came into view, “that hideous shack, worthy of a station halt in a garrison town”?—?in other words the enormous bulk of the covered emergency staircase, tacked onto the City Theater a couple of years ago after the fire at the Ringtheater in Vienna. 

     

    “I realize that almost four hundred people burned to death there,” Zofia would say, “but is that a reason for Vienna to take revenge on Cracow with this monstrosity? Fortunately we’ll have our new theater in a matter of days!” 

     

    And so there was the ritual groan, and then the bow moved back into place. Now they had to move on to serious matters.

Available Resources

Related Categories

  • Format: eBook

  • ISBN-13/EAN: 9780358150954

  • ISBN-10: 0358150957

  • Pages: 368

  • Price: $9.99

  • Publication Date: 03/17/2020

  • Carton Quantity: 1

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