Married to Murder #1


The Ella Westin Mysteries

Married to Murder #1

Published 01/27/2011
6,214 words

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The soon-to-be Mrs. Ella Westin doesn't remember adding 'solve a murder' to her bridal to-do list but when she stumbles over the dead body of her matron of honor, it looks like she'll have no choice. Especially as her groom is the one and only suspect.

Throw in bad weather, a deaf hairdresser, a ruined wedding cake and a not so retired pirate and it's enough to make Ella want to throttle everyone in sight.
Can she catch the killer before the wedding is called off? Or will she be Married To Murder?


"Jennifer Oberth's Married To Murder is a fresh and quirky new addition to the cozy historical mystery scene. Ella Westin is a witty and determined sleuth and Oberth's writing is wonderfully comedic."

-Jamie Freveletti, author of Running From the Devil, winner of the Lovey Award & 'Best First Novel' by the International Thriller Writers & Barry Award for 'Best Thriller'.


"Married To Murder is a fun whodunit with snappy dialogue and a tongue-in-cheek delivery of the plot. Mystery readers should enjoy this story - I know I did."

-Evelyn David, author of the Sullivan Investigations Mysteries


"Loved this book."

-Carol Bright


"Charmingly written, light-hearted mayhem. If it was TV (and maybe it should be) it would be a cross between a murder mystery and a situation comedy."

-Ursula Stange


"With a smart, sassy heroine, there was no way I wasn’t going to like this story. Jennifer Oberth does a great job of developing the main character (which is not always the case with short stories). Additionally, the plot moves along quickly, the dialogue is realistic, and the mystery is, well, mysterious. Dontcha hate it when you figure out the end waay before the character does? Fortunately, this story isn’t predictable or trite in anyway. I enjoyed reading it and so will you if you enjoy mysteries, Mrs. Marple, or female law enforcement officials."

-Hannah Young


"With tongue firmly in cheek, Ella runs her wedding day, a murder investigation, and everyone else she comes in contact with. As well as being funny, the story offers a good mystery puzzle which isn’t always easy in a short story. I think we’ll be seeing more of Ella."

-Lisa Deckert


"This is such a fun story to read and I laughed out loud throughout! Less then 20 pages long (in the e-pub version) I was able to read it while my 2 year old slept and by the end of it had me wanting to read more stories with Ella and her friends. As it is a short mystery the story moves quickly, but the writing is sharp and flows well. The twist in the end surprised me and as an novice sleuth, that does not happen very often, which was very impressive! I highly recommend this story and I am sure Jennifer’s other stories are just as enjoyable."

-Jennifer Alexander


"Angela Landsbury meets Ms. Marple… This was a fun short read of less than 30 pages… Ella Westin combines a dry wit with a keen mind and is a character that was interesting to share an adventure with… I think that in the short amount of words and pages that the author used this was a tale that fleshed out nicely and had a pretty cool twist at the end… I have to admit I deduced the “villian of the plot” near the end but not fast enough to spoil the entire experience….

I also would like to see what other adventures there is in store for us, if any, starring Ella Westin!"

-Jackie B


"In Married to Murder, Jennifer Oberth introduces the reader to a quirky new character on her wedding day. The supreme commander of the law of nature is a guy named Murphy and weddings are no exception! It’s bad enough tripping over it your murdered Matron of Honor without having your husband to be as the number one suspect.

"Ella is due to become Mrs. Joe Westin in three hours but first all she has to do is bake a new wedding cake and prove her husband-to-be innocent by finding the real murderer. She must do all of this while wearing her wedding dress. In addition she is trying to figure out what her soon to be in-law family (a bunch of “Retired” Pirates) is up to.

"Set in 1875 New England this short story is written in a stark dry style as a first person narritive incident report. Ella is an agent for an unnamed United States agency and she is very good at her job as an investigator. It will take all of this talent and ingenuity as well as a great deal of Yankee stick-to-it-ness to accomplish her task.

"This story is enjoyable and entertaining read for everyone! You will not be disappointed by it."


Buy Married to Murder!

Personal Notes:

I originally wrote this story for a writing contest (the New England Crime Bake Anthology) for mysteries that had to be written by a New England author or have a New England  setting.

I had done so much backstory on a certain character in the Masked Rider: Origins that I decided to put all that research to good use instead of letting it sit in my handwriting on notebook pages (so...many...pages...) gathering dust.

Thus Ella and Joe Westin came to life. Instead of being part of Jack Westin's backstory that would never see the light of day, we were invited to their wedding.

I picked Maine for the New England state. That's where Jessica Fletcher lives, right? How could I go wrong?

I didn't win the contest, but Ella and Joe were now alive. I had no choice but to write about their honeymoon. And then going home after the honeymoon. And then Ella moving into Joe's father's mansion.

If it wasn't for this contest, I never would've written this series.

I'm forever grateful for this turn of events, and I hope you are too!