Friday, June 14, 2019

Murder by the Minster

Murder by the Minster is the first book in a new cosy mystery series by Helen Cox. Due out 1st July from Quercus, it's 374 pages and will be available in ebook format.

I generally love cosies with bonus points for librarians, England, university/academia. This book checked all the boxes, really.  I wasn't familiar with the author previously, but the cover and the premise caught my eye. I'm glad I gave it a try because it is engagingly written and the author is adept with the technical aspects of story arc and tension as well as 'showing, not telling' (no info dumping).

There's a lot to like about this book. It flows at a pretty good pace, the author has a fair ear for dialogue, and there are several disparate plot threads well interwoven (even a foreshadowed potential romance). What didn't gel for me is the utter incompetence of the local constabulary and their seeming willingness to go along with a (to them) random amateur interviewing witnesses and precipitating dangerous situations. The cops also detain people seemingly willy-nilly. Some of the dialogue was, to me, a bit clunky and impacted my suspension of disbelief.

I never warmed to main character Kitt, and thought her rather brusque and off-putting.  I did like oddball clairvoyant Ruby, perhaps she'll be a continuing character.

All in all it's a well written cosy and a diverting read. It often takes a few books before a series really finds its feet, and I'm certainly willing to let this one do so. (I just hope Kitt lightens up a little bit in future).

Three and a half stars.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

No comments:

Post a Comment