Pursuit in Provence

A 1956 master tape of an Elvis Presley recording never released becomes the object of a chase through the French countryside. A small-time crook and a ruthless collector want it. A shady promoter in the music business wants it. A cowboy wants it. And they’re all following Jordan Mayfair…


An architect from Savannah, Georgia, Jordan travels to Provence with visions of Roman ruins bathed in magical light, exquisite foods and wines, and alluring Frenchmen that will make her forget she’s just turned fifty. Her holiday takes an unexpected turn when her suitcase vanishes, and a hit-and-run hits too close to home. Danger follows her to the peaceful village of Fontvieille, where sketches by Van Gogh have disappeared. When Felicity Blake, Jordan’s old friend from sorority days, turns up in Fontvieille, Jordan wonders if Felicity is following her, too. Pursued through ancient tunnels and narrow, twisting village streets, Jordan becomes an unwilling player in dramas as intricate and intriguing as the secret passages she discovers.

Among the colorful inhabitants of Fontvieille, Jordan finds her alluring Frenchman, but Monsieur Broussard, wealthy patron of the arts, may be stealing rather than trying to recover the missing sketches that have the town in a frenzy. More than anything, Jordan needs to figure out who she can trust as she finds her way through a labyrinth of art, rock-and-roll—and murder—against the captivating backdrop of Provence.

Based on 84 Reviews
Little Bird
March 31, 2023

5.0 out of 5 stars If you love Provence, a must read

Oh, what a wonderful book and mystery. So love the historical tours they went on and the very descriptive views of the scenery. The mystery itself was very intriguing and full of fun and excitement, and a little romance too. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will definitely read the next! Her writing and descriptions are better than most when it comes to international mysteries.

Deb G
May 6, 2018

5.0 out of 5 stars I totally enjoyed everything about this book

I totally enjoyed everything about this book. The characters were wonderful, and so true to life I wish I could meet them. The plot was unique and complex-kept me guessing to the end. And the setting was so well drawn that I want to schedule a trip to Provence. Marvelous!

January 25, 2016

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars

A fun read and a good mystery! And reading about the delicious food and wine made me jealous.

September 2, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Travel Mystery

In this mystery, Phyllis Gobbell’s writing, humor, and story remind me of Jan Karon and Murder She Wrote — comfortable, light-hearted, and mysterious. The added element of travel in the Provence region is delightful. Jordan Mayfair is a widowed single mother, caught up in intrigue centered on a lost suitcase! Read the book!

valerie belew
August 5, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read!

Ms. Gobbell’s book is truly engaging, and I was engrossed from the very first page until the end. The novel is extremely well-written, and I am already looking forward to finding out what Jordan Mayfair gets into next! Excellent read!

Steve M. Hays
July 15, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars sometimes funny, and always beckoning to the reader

July 15, 2015 Pursuit in Provence by Phyllis Gobbell This is an outstanding mystery novel. The characters are intriguing and believable. The story is mysterious, sometimes funny, and always beckoning to the reader. I found no “downtime” with the book. I will look very much forward to the next Jordan Mayfair mystery. Ms. Gobbell has placed herself above Lee Child and Jack Higgins (two of my favorites). No doubt she will continue to write with elegance and magic.

July 11, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars A Page Turner

Pursuit in Provence is a compelling beginning to Phyllis Gobbell’s promising Jordan Mayfair series. Her excellent writing gives the reader a vivid sense of place, whether it be Savannah GA or the south of France. Her character descriptions are well drawn, both in terms of their personalities and physical characteristics. Her evenhanded first person voice brings Jordan to life as a protagonist, reflecting both her strengths and weaknesses. The secondary characters are strong and, in certain cases, provide welcome comic relief. The mystery, while intricate, is highly believable. All in all, Pursuit in Provence is a page turner — perhaps the top accolade for a mystery.

Frances White
May 30, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars

Very good.

Louise Beauchamp
May 1, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed reading Phyllis Gobbell's PURSUIT IN PROVENCE

I enjoyed reading Phyllis Gobbell’s PURSUIT IN PROVENCE. Jordan Mayfair, the main character, travels to Europe with her uncle on her first vacation in a long time. Once she reaches France, the mysterious events begin on a train ride to Paris. This is a good book with a Nashville connection. I am looking forward to her next book in the series.

April 24, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read

Pursuit in Provence is a great read. It is part exciting mystery and part detailed travel guide with just enough of each. The characters are quirky and delightful. From Jordan herself to her uncle to her family back home and the friends she meets on the trip, the people are well drawn, believable, and likable. I recognized many of them from my own experiences. There’s just enough romance and humor to keep things interesting while the plot’s twists and turns kept me up long after lights-out. And the setting! The setting is memorable and so well described that I vicariously traveled the French countryside enjoying the fabulous food and drink of Provence. I think I actually gained a pound or two just reading! Don’t miss Phyllis Gobbel’s debut novel and get ready for more Jordan Mayfield adventures!

C. Patterson
April 6, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Can't wait for the next novel in the series!

I read this novel over the course of a weekend, not because it was not interesting and easy reading, but too many life interruptions. It is an engaging old-fashion murder mystery and great read. The chapters are short but adventure abounds. The author clearly knows her characters, their quirks, and the French country with its scenery and wonderful food and wine. The reader becomes so immersed with the characters, it is like being on the adventure with them. Wonderful start to a new series and I can’t wait for the next one.

Shannon Thurman
April 6, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoy the beauty of Provence (with a sliver of murder thrown in)

Architect Jordan Mayfair begins what should be a relaxing vacation in Provence with her uncle, a renowned travel writer. In quick order, her bags are lost, and her world turns upside down as it seems she is being stalked. Who would do such a thing to an attractive middle-aged tourist from Savannah, Georgia, and more importantly, why? This terrific read offers picturesque French scenery and exquisite food adventures as Jordan struggles to figure out who is friend and who is foe. Take this one to the beach, sip an aperitif, and enjoy Jordan Mayfair’s adventures in the delightfully written Pursuit in Provence.

Mary Freels
April 3, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars I Could Not Put It Down!

Phyllis Gobbell’s Pursuit in Provence is masterfully written. From cover-to-cover, the reader is given just enough information to keep the interest piqued without giving away a single surprise turn of events (and there are several sprinkled throughout the narrative). Much like life in Provence, the story line moves along at a comfortable pace. This tempo gives the reader ample time to bask in the beauty of Provence and the imagination ample time engage all five senses—by book’s end, I could almost smell the lavender in the air! It is easy to connect with the protagonist, Jordan Mayfair. Even though the character is experiencing events that seem extraordinary, she does so with a depth of emotion that makes her seem very real. I could easily identify and relate to the motivations and mindset of the character. Pursuit in Provence is an excellent book to curl up with and allow it to take you to far away to this magnificent region of France. I can hardly wait to see where Ms. Gobbell will have our Jordan travel next!

Tilden J. Curry
April 1, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Read for Mystery Lovers

In this superb Jordan Mayfair mystery, set in the exquisite environment of Provence in southern France, Phyllis Gobbell takes us on the most suspenseful journey of an adventurous woman of fifty on holiday from her normal life as an architect in Savanna, Georgia. There is much to keep the pages turning: murder, theft of valuable paintings, the surfacing of an unknown recording of Elvis and the evil means of a rich collector to secure it, flashes of romance, sleuthing through dark tunnels, investigative work, unique characters, well written prose, etc. In addition, a strong sense is gained of what it must be like to visit Provence in September with it’s great restaurants, fines wines, historic structures, invigorating weather, beautiful scenery and local color. I cannot wait to read what comes next for Jordan Mayfair in her future encounters abroad.

Richard F. Romfh
March 28, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars A lady on vacation in Provence finds herself dragged, unwittingly, into a theft scheme

Jordan—50, an architect with auburn hair, observant, curious, and intuitive, a widow with grown children—takes a much-needed vacation to Provence with her uncle Alex—72, who’s writing a travel book about Provence. This trip is one where everything seems to go wrong: Alex’s passport goes missing making them miss their flight; they end up at a different airport and have to take a train, Jordan’s luggage disappears, and an intrusive friend from college days shows up with her wheeling-dealing husband and treat Jordan as a long, lost, best friend. Jordan and Alex take us to a tourist hotel in Fontvieille in Provence and treat us to the local sights and restaurants. Jordan discovers she’s being followed. One of the followers gets killed. Then Jordan meets Millie, a woman with a tour group; the two hit it off and explore the tunnels that wander beneath the ancient town. They’re almost accosted, but uniquely extricate themselves. Things happen: coincidences that aren’t coincident, missing works of art, events that at first seem unrelated but aren’t. The police inspector tells her to let him solve the crime. But Jordan is in the middle of things, and, methodically, tries to clear things up. The novel is an easy, fast read. Chapters are short. Each character has a distinct voice that the reader will recognize. The author knows the area and her background descriptions make me want to visit Provence. The Story has suspense, close calls, romance, theft, and murders (off-stage) that kept me turning pages. This is not a slow-moving Agatha Christie-style cozy. Pursuit in Provence moves and places you there with the characters. Just when you think things are quieting down, something else happens.

Anita R. Stinnett
March 26, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Mystery with Just the Right Amount of Romance

Pursuit in Provence is exciting mystery with just the right amount of romance. I felt I was sleuthing thru France with Jordan Mayfair while enjoying great food and wine. I could not wait to find out what would happen next. I am ready for another Jordan Mayfair Mystery!

Judith A. Regenberg
March 24, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars I was amazed at the feel for France that Phyllis was able …

This was an exciting page turner. I was amazed at the feel for France that Phyllis was able to express in the book. Really felt as though we had been taken there. The interweaving of the characters kept me captivated.

March 20, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Gets Your Heart Racing and Your Travel Juices Flowing

Gobbell’s Pursuit in Provence is a captivating read. I found myself in the midst of luscious Provence with Jordan Mayfair and her quirky yet affable uncle following the twist and turns of a delicious mystery that kept me guessing right up to the end. I hope this isn’t the last we hear of Jordan Mayfair!

Corabel Shofner
March 19, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars What Do Elvis and Provence Have in Common? Jordan Mayfair.

Phyllis Gobbell’s latest book reminds me why I love a good “cozy.” Pursuit in Provence, a Jordan Mayfair Mystery is the first in a mystery series featuring Jordan Mayfair, an American architect from Savannah Georgia. No sooner does Jordan arrive in Europe with her 72 year old uncle than she loses her luggage at the Bruxelles Midi station. Her lovely trip begins to unravel before she even reaches Provence, as her search for the luggage leads her into the heart of art heists, betrayals, murder and a wild chase across the french countryside, all for an Elvis recording. But never fear, there is no lack of food, wine, art, romance and lively characters to keep the pages turning. Phyllis Gobbell has co-authored two books based on true crimes which are well known in Nashville, Tennessee: A Season of Darkness (the Marcia Trimble murder) and An Unfinished Canvas (the Janet March murder.) CorabelShofner.com

Rita Welty Bourke
March 18, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Art, Avarice, and Murder

A lost suitcase in a Brussels train station, a Georgia woman in distress, a Texas cowboy to the rescue: these are a few of the ingredients of this cozy. The cowboy is killed by a hit-and-run driver, and Jordan Mayfair is embroiled in a mystery whose tentacles reach into an art museum in Fontvieille and a recording studio in Nashville. Art, avarice, and murder, it’s all there, seasoned with intimate dinners in Paris, visits to ancient historical sites, and underground passages beneath Jordan’s hotel. Read this on a chilly evening while you’re sitting before a blazing fire. Take it with you to the beach. Keep it beside you when you’re in your car waiting to pick up the kids from dance class.

Mary Buckner
March 18, 2015

5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Pleasure for Mystery Lovers

I read this novel in one sitting, just couldn’t put it down. A grand old-fashion mystery and a great read! Author Gobbell draws characters that I feel like I know, and the sleuthing is first-rate. Best of all is the warm sunny scenery of Provence. Reading this book is like taking an adventurous tour through southern France. This is an excellent start to a new series, and I’m already eager for the next novel to appear.

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