The Smart Woman Series

Author: Dowd, Victoria

Publication Date:

May 2020



Original language and publisher

English | Joffe Books

Territories Handled

France, Netherlands, Scandinavia

Territories Sold

Audio (Tantor Media)
Estonia (Eesti Ramaat)
Sweden (Lind & Co, in a two-book deal)


Crime & Thrillers

The Smart Woman Series

Author: Dowd, Victoria


A darkly comic golden age murder mystery!



  • Fiction Winner of the People’s Book Prize 2020/2021

A faded country house in the middle of nowhere. The guests are snowed in. The murders begin.

Withering and waspish, Ursula Smart (not her real name) gate-crashes her mother’s book club at an isolated country house for a long weekend retreat. Much to Mother’s chagrin. Joining them are Mother’s best friend, Mirabelle, Aunts Charlotte and Less, and Bridget with her dog Mr Bojangles. It doesn’t matter that they’ve read Gone Girl three times this year already, this retreat is their chance to escape bustling suburbia. But someone has other ideas.

A body is found in the grounds. Is a lone killer hunting them? Or has one of their own group embarked on a killing spree? What they need is to stop sniping at each other long enough to solve the mystery before the killer strikes again. What they need is a guide to survive.


BODY ON THE ISLAND (Book 2 — February 2021)

  • Shortlisted for the People’s Book Prize 2021/2022
  • #80 on Amazon AUS
  • #85 on Amazon UK

Ten stranded strangers. No way to escape.

Ursula Smart (not her real name), realizing therapy alone cannot teach her how to survive this life, is determined to make some changes. She signs herself up for a survival course — along with her mother, aunts Charlotte and Mirabelle and Bridget.

But the promised gentle weekend of foraging and camping in the Outer Hebrides swiftly turns into a desperate battle for survival.

Their boat capsizes. Washed up on an uninhabited island, the Smart women face starvation, freezing conditions and — worse — no Wi-Fi.

Then the murders begin.

Someone is killing off them one by one. Will the Smarts escape, or will they be next?


THE SUPPER CLUB MURDERS (Book 3 — September 2021)

The phones are out. The roads have flooded. There’s no way in or out. And the murders have begun.

Ursula Smart and her mother, Pandora, are invited to a supper safari at Greystone Castle with their ever-adventurous book club. Their hosts are Lord and Lady Black, who bought their titles and have taken up residence in the castle at the edge of a picturesque Dartmoor village. But the quaint, idyllic façade soon fades as festering resentments begin to surface. Ursula and Pandora sense all is not well at Greystone. And when the Midnight Gun fires, their suspicions are proved right. Death is all around them in this ancient castle—in the priest hole, the murder hole, on the ducking stool.

The Smart women race to solve a seemingly impossible murder, even as the body count rises. Who will be next?