Read The Dagger Before Me by Heather Haven Online


The Dagger Before Me is the first in the Persephone Cole vintage Mystery Series, formally called Persephone Cole and the Halloween Curse. What would Sam Spade be like if he was a woman? Halloween finds Percy Cole backstage, during the previews of the latest Broadway production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, where there’s double, double, toil and trouble....

Title : The Dagger Before Me
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780988408654
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 293 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Dagger Before Me Reviews

  • Eva
    2018-11-16 19:19

    I really despise this archetype of a strong middle-class intelligent woman. Persephone, this uncommonly tall Jewish redhead is described as excellent at her job even if she has just started her first case. So how can she be so sure about her skills and ability to solve this theatrical mystery? Above all, although she is gluttonous and fat (I'm tempted to say obese), men are pretty much fond of her; another pathetic cliché about an unusual (and/or inner) beauty. Heather Haven is probably writing poorly her own fantasies about an allegedly attractive lard. My impression was that I was reading a feminist novel about fat-acceptance straight from Tumblr, and certainly not in accordance with WWII period. Did the author ever conduct any research on this historical era?Letters from Evelyn to Elsie are utterly unnecessary and they do strictly nothing for the narrative.The book cover is so trashy that I have still not recovered.

  • Michelle
    2018-11-10 22:29

    Good bookYou people should just read this book yourselves and write your own review on this novel yourself and I really enjoyed reading this book very much so. Shelley MA

  • Philip
    2018-11-28 03:13

    Good, fun read! More later.

  • Judy & Marianne from Long and Short Reviews
    2018-12-07 00:11

    Originally posted at: and her family just might be as nutty as the pistachios she craves!Percy is certainly not the stereotypical mother of the 1940s. She’s a tough woman with an attitude big enough to match her 5’11” frame. She possesses a sharp mind and an even sharper tongue. I love the way she handles people, men in particular, who doubt her abilities as a detective. Though she can be brash at times, Percy also knows how to turn on the charm when she needs to. I can just as easily picture her buttering up a potential witness with free food or roughing up a hostile one.What I like most about Percy is that she is completely unapologetic about who she is. She knows she’s a good detective and simply goes about her business the best way she can and doesn’t let anyone stand in her way. She lets insulting comments about her height and weight roll right off her back. Even though Percy projects a tough attitude, she has a soft spot for her family, especially her young son. The moments she spent with him really softened her character and served to make her even more likable.As much as I love Percy, she is the only truly rounded character in the book. I would really like to get to know some of the eclectic members of her family a bit more, especially Percy’s parents. Any couple who would name their three children Adjudication, Persephone, and Serendipity has to be worth getting to know better. Perhaps I’ll have that opportunity in future installments of the series?The mystery Percy works on in this tale is intriguing. The list of suspects is very long. So many of them seem to be hiding something that it is very hard to sort out who was hiding what. Percy has great instincts and a knack for getting people to reveal their secrets, even if she has to fudge the truth a little. While it is very entertaining to watch Percy stare her suspects down, I don’t think it is entirely realistic that her suspects would always fall for her bluffs. Some failures mixed in with the successes would have made this mystery more believable.Overall, I enjoyed reading Persephone Cole and the Halloween Curse. Percy is a great character, and I found myself smiling and laughing at her antics throughout the story. Anyone looking for a fun, fast read should certainly give this book a try. I know I’ll be on the lookout for more about Percy and her adventures.

  • Alastair Rosie
    2018-11-29 20:13

    Set in New York, 1942, The Dagger Before Me is book one in the Persephone Cole Mysteries in the great tradition of Mike Hammer. Persephone (Percy) is a hard boiled lady detective who has taken over her father's business. PI work back then was traditionally a man's world and Percy is trying hard to break the stereotype image of women as being homemakers. She has a son but no partner thus she has even more to fight against than your average woman all things considered. When an actor falls to his death at a theatre, she is called in by a panicky director who mistakes her for an office girl in her father's business. He is wary of taking her on when he finds out she is the PI but Percy is able to convince him that women can investigate crime as well and thereby hangs a tale that takes us into the New York theatre scene. The play is MacBeth, which has a long running tradition of never referring to the play as MacBeth, rather it's 'the Scottish Play.' Not long after Percy begins to nose around other things start happening in fairly predictable fashion, after all it is a murder mystery, leading us on a trail of betrayal and deception where no one is what they seem. There are red herrings and excerpts of letters between the two plotters as they discuss their crime and Percy's progress.I found it to be an enjoyable read. Percy isn't described as exceptionally good looking, rather beefy in her physical makeup and at times too abrupt. A little softening around the edges might be in order for subsequent books but Haven has created a believable character rather than a cardboard cutout ex beauty queen. She's real enough and has plenty of room to grow and develop in upcoming books, there are places where the narrative could be tightened up but it's easy to say that after the book is published. I really couldn't fault the book, the plot twists were perfectly logical and that's why we read crime isn't it? She gives us enough description of New York in the early forties without making it sound like a travel guide. You could see this as a movie to be perfectly honest, the only question being who would they get to play Percy?I'd give it four out of five and recommend it as a good first book in the series. There's plenty of time to expand and develop Percy's character in Iced Diamonds.

  • Patricia Reding
    2018-11-17 22:24

    I downloaded a free copy of The Dagger Before Me from Amazon. In exchange, I offer this, my fair and honest review.The Dagger Before Me is one of stories in The Persephone Cole Vintage Mystery Series. (Note the terrific covers. I mean really, who doesn’t love a great fedora!) In it, Heather Haven introduces us to Persephone Cole, known as Percy. Percy is trying to find her way the “man’s world” of the 1940s. Living with her parents and son, she seeks to take over the family investigation business, while keeping it a secret from her Pop. I found Percy engaging. I liked her moxie. Not exactly feminine, people “often remarked that between her wild hair, thin body, and daffy personality, she reminded them of a Dandelion caught in a windstorm.” (I like that word-picture.) Percy does things like: “she popped a nut into her mouth and separated the meat from the shell with her teeth.” Haven offers delightful and “punny” prose: “What color the interior was supposed to be was difficult to say. I’m going with drab.” Or how about this one—when Percy looks up at a man, we read: “It was novel, looking up to someone not standing on a stepladder.”Most notable, Haven seems to have caught the real-life feel of the 1940s with things such as the manner in which people react to Percy, a reference to someone having a “Dick Tracy jaw,” and with Percy’s introspections (“Percy had seen something like that worn by Fred Astaire in a movie once.”). All in all, these features rang true and made for a fun—and different—read.Posted on Amazon, and BookLikes, added to my Facebook page and two Google+ review groups, tweeted and cover pinned.

  • Leslie
    2018-11-18 03:31

    The first Persephone Cole mystery (also published under the title "The Dagger Before Me"). I liked the character of Percy (as her friends and family call her) and the 1940s New York City setting. Unfortunately, I found the mystery itself somewhat predictable -- I figured out 'whodunit' pretty early (although perhaps (view spoiler)[I was helped by the fact I recently finished an Evelyn Waugh book! (hide spoiler)]) which normally I am not good at doing. I was assisted in that by the format (which I didn't like) of every other chapter being from the killers' perspective.Another thing that bothered me was a picky detail -- the author consistently misspelled the name of the famous actor Laurence Olivier. How hard is it to check that sort of detail?? I checked the newer edition (with the new title) and this error remains uncorrected. I know that I am being very picky but this indicates a sloppiness on the part of the author/editor/publisher which I find upsetting.

  • Cheryl
    2018-12-11 21:11

    I'll begin by saying I know this author from some online groups and have enjoyed another series she writes.This one is a vintage mystery, set in the early forties, with a six foot heroine named Persephone; Percy for short.She's a single mother when single mothers aren't generally the norm. She's also a private detective when female private detectives certainly aren't the norm. She's had to fight for her career.When a theater producer hires her to find out who murdered his lead in Macbeth, she jumps into the fray. She even takes on the part of a witch to try to ferret out the killer.She's tough and eager to prove herself. And, being our heroine, in the end she triumphs!Good read, filled with period details such as the price of bread. If you like vintage cozies, you'll like this one.

  • Norma Huss
    2018-12-01 19:22

    Persephone Cole (Percy for short) is a female detective in early 1940s New York during World War II. There's great historic atmosphere (sweaty because it's non-air-conditioned summer) dealing with strange accidents in the theater district. She detects undercover as a manager who doesn't really know that much about managing, but she's right up there with detecting, including gun-handling. The nicely convoluted plot kept me guessing, and the ending was wholly satisfying. Definitely recommended for readers of historic mystery (with sassy women).

  • J.Q. Rose
    2018-12-03 19:41

    The Dagger Before Me is filled with the culture of the fabulous '40's era. What a time. Heather Haven is just the storyteller to tackle a story about a strong heroine P.I. who is determined to bring in a murderer and cash for her family. Her family is well drawn and well, let me say, goofy. Really fun reading about them and Persephone's method of tracking down the bad guy. Immerse yourself into the 40's with this entertaining read.

  • Joyce
    2018-12-07 00:38

    Percy, one of the first female detectives in the 40's is quite the character. She just doesn't seem to fit in anywhere let alone as a detective. She is working hard to prove to her father that she can do this. There are lots of funny moments in the book and although I tried to figure out who was behind all the murders and mayhem I didn't until near the end of the book. This wasn't my usual type of book, I did still enjoy it and would read more by Ms. Haven in the future.

  • Marva
    2018-12-08 00:34

    Persephone Cole is growing on me each book I read. If you like your mysteries light-hearted with fascinating settings described well by the author, then you won't go wrong with any of the Percey Cole mysteries. I've read two now and wouldn't mind reading more.

  • Gail
    2018-11-26 03:38

    This is a good cozy mystery. There was enough action to keep me interested. I think this was one of Heather Haven's earlier books. I don't think it is as well written as her later onew. However, this story kept me interested enough to want to read more books in this series.

  • Lisa Shafer
    2018-12-09 23:32

    The characterization is good, and the plot works. This is a fun little historical cozy mystery.The Kindle edition needs some good editing, though. There are strange paragraph breaks all over and a fair number of misused homophones and stray apostrophes.

  • Glenda
    2018-12-08 02:23

    About a female private eye years before it was accepted for a lady to be a PI. Good read. Author is a good story-teller and it is profanity free. I appreciate that. Hope she writes more in the series.

  • Gloria Johnson
    2018-12-03 23:18

    I read this one because the crime takes place during a stage production of Macbeth, and that idea appealed to me. Everyone was beginning to believe the curse of "the Scottish play." The mystery was not all that exciting, and the characters were only mildly appealing.

  • Elizabeth Bailey
    2018-11-18 02:23

    I liked this a lot. An unusual heroine PI, working at a period when women were not known in the trade. She was slick, clever and a change from the norm. Will read more of this series.

  • Linda T
    2018-12-05 23:34

    Good World War 2 setting. Interesting back stage theater mystery. Loved the female protagonist.

  • Johnnie
    2018-11-28 00:41

    This was a great vintage mystery. And to have a woman as the detective was so delightful. Move over Sam Spade, here comes Ms. Percy Cole!!

  • Timeforme
    2018-11-23 00:28

    The plot dragged a bit and the characters didn't really draw me into the story.