Detective, Mystery & Thriller

Who killed Vivien Morse – Diana J. Febry

DCI Peter Hatherall has his work cut out for him when a murdered woman in the woods, a mysterious stranger and an old case are seemingly connected …

Peter Hatherall Mystery #4


Do you know DCI Peter Hatherall? The man is “impeccably dressed” though less in shape – his idea of fighting his mid-forties consists of colouring his hair of which he is “irrationally proud” and having a 10 year younger wife. He’s a bit grumpy, eager to follow hunches, but insists on proof for others’ gut feelings. I didn’t know him and his team – I am so glad to have met them in this wonderful whodunit and classy detective novel. It is a pleasure to read, to puzzle and connect the dots, I too wanted to find the culprit for Vivien Morse’s murder.


It’s typical English weather – rainy, muddy and overcast. A murdered woman is found in Silver Lady Woods – high heels laying nearby. Who is she and why would she walk into the woods with pumps instead of Wellingtons? Before DCI Peter Hatherall attends the crime scene, he bumps into a nagging woman from the neighbourhood watch, complaining about a druid and a dog walking in the woods – with robe and sandals.

Peter dismisses the druid and dives into the murder case to find the murderer of Vivien Morse – the identity of the battered woman in the woods. Vivien is a social worker, who saw the good in anyone. She had a restraining order for her soon to be ex-husband Nigel Morse due to the fact that he couldn’t keep his hands to himself. Vivien’s boss Jane Salt thinks Nigel is a troublemaker and should be the police’s main suspect for the murder.

So when Peter, DI Fiona Williams, Sergeant DS Abby Ward and the rest of the team start investigating, they first consider the obvious suspect: husband Nigel Morse. While driving to Nigel’s house Peter and Fiona hear on the car radio of Rob Creer being hospitalised, a convicted con man who ‘resides’ in Shoreham Prison. Little do they know that it is the first but by far not the last time they hear the name of this notorious crook and “burglar of the rich and famous” during their murder inquiry. Back to Nigel Morse, sales representative for a toy company, a success to himself, a failure to the rest of the world. He looks scruffy just like his house – but Fiona swears the new suits she sees hanging about are expensive, however, Peter refuses to believe so.

When Fiona and Peter visit the Bassetts, their daughter Ellen being Vivien’s last house call, again the name Rob Creer comes to mind: he deliberately drove Ellen of her bike years ago – turning her into the mental wreck she is today. Kathy, who found Vivien, is a nurse; as it happens she is known to visit the Bassetts regularly.

When next Vivien’s boss Jane goes missing, the police are getting more and more confused. It appears everyone in this case, be it a victim, witness or client, is in some way connected to the others, the dots are visible, but there are too many lines to connect! What is going on and why does that crook’s name Rob Creer keep popping up and what has the druid in the woods got to do with all this?

My Thoughts

This detective is the fourth in the DCI Hatherall Series and all I can think is ‘why didn’t I spot this series before?’ It’s got the right ingredients I love as a lifelong Agatha Christie fan: an intriguing and puzzling plot and interesting characters, with whom you can easily connect.

It’s witty, gritty, there is a murder to solve completely with the usual suspects. There’s the humour in between, like the appearance of the sandaled druid walking in the mud and the tractor hunt (sorry, cannot tell you more). I want to read all the books in this detective series!

The Peter Hatherall Mysteries:
#1 The Skeletons of Birkbury
#2 Bells On Her Toesmy review
#3 Point Of No Return
#4 Who Killed Vivien Morse
#5 Twisted Truth – my review

About the Author

Diana J. Febry Author Image

British author Diana Febry calls herself “an accidental writer of mysteries with quirky characters.” As you can see she loves horses and horse riding, but also dogs, books, live theatre and the beautiful countryside of Gloucestershire.

Book Info

‘Who Killed Vivien Morse’ is available at Amazon:

 Ebook  550 KB (195 pages)
Publisher  Wings ePress, Incorporated (1 Aug. 2016)
 Nook book ISBN-13  2940153107110


  • Diana J Febry (@DianaJFebry)

    Wow! Thank you so much. I saw this a couple of hours ago but felt too overwhelmed by your fantastic review to respond. I would love you to review the rest of the series. Technically it starts with The Skeletons of Birkbury. It isn’t perfect and the series really starts “proper” with Bells On Her Toes but I’m immensely proud of my first book. I came home from work in a bad mood one day and said to my daughter, “How do you put words on the computor?” She patiently told me how to turn it on and created a word document for me. Those words became my first book. In fact I wrote my first three books before going back and asking, “How do I get on the internet thingy?” To say I was totally clueless would be the under-statement of the year and I still type with only one finger.

    • Caroline Vincent

      Thank you, Diana! So pleased you like it and what a wonderful story about how you created your first book! It’s my daughter who was at the start of my blog – I guess our daughters inspire us and give us just that little nudge to move forward. Lovely x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: