Book Review: “Murder Across the Ocean” by Charlene Wexler

Murder Across the Ocean was self-published in 2014 and published by a traditional press in 2023

In reading novels, I find that if I “like” the main character in the book, I’m anxious to find out what happens to that character.

In the case of Murder Across the Ocean, by Darlene Wexler, I immediately identified with the novel’s main character, Lori Brill. She is 70 years old and lives in Arizona. She also re-met handsome Josh Wheeler during a stop-over in Chicago between flights to London to visit her granddaughter. She also spent the night with Josh once they both arrived in London. This is the second book in the “Laughter and Tears” book series following the adventures of Lori. The first book was Lori and was also published in 2023. (If you look on, Murder Across the Ocean is listed as the first book in the series, but it supposed to be listed as the second book in the series. The link on the book title is linked to the current edition and not to the earlier publication.)

Because I am of a “mature” generation, I understood the lady’s joy at this late-in-life reunion and lovemaking, something rarely talked about in books. However, as Lori was taking a morning shower and remembering the bliss of the night before, somebody entered the couple‚Äôs hotel room and murdered her lover. Lori discovers the body and of course, becomes a suspect.

During the murder investigation, Lori learns that Josh had not become a good guy. In fact, he had swindled many people out of millions of dollars, and the murderer was probably looking for the money.

The murder means Lori embarks on an adventure she never imagined. It includes spending time with her devoted and somewhat impatient granddaughter, Cate, a graduate student at the London School of Law. Initially, Lori would have to call Cate with the news, “Help! I’ve been arrested for the murder of my ex-lover.”

The story goes on and involves a Lori kidnapping and hospitalization, two loves of the granddaughter and possibly another elder romance for Lori, this time with a detective.

I had wondered why the author chose to write a story with an older main character, then I read about the author. Charlene Wexler is a native Chicagoan (I spent my working career in Chicago). She has been a teacher, a dental office manager and is a wife, mother and grandmother. Wexler is also retired and is writing books. She knew the main character in the story, probably from a real life experience.

I recommend this book to anyone who likes fast-moving mysteries with a bit of romance as well, and I particularly recommend the book to friends of mine who are in the “mature” category. A visit to a granddaughter can be very interesting.


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