I was intrigued by this book when I read in some publicity blurb that the author was Anthony Horowitz. Mr. Horowitz is the screenwriter responsible for Midsomer Murders and Foyle’s War. I’m a huge fan of both shows, so his book, Magpie Murders, just had to be good.
It was even better.
Mr. Horowitz embeds a full(almost) mystery within another. The story begins with Susan Ryeland, the editor of best-selling author Alan Conway books. She introduces the reader to Conway’s latest manuscript, a book she warns changed her life, and not for the better. Mr. Horowitz then starts Conway’s tale, Magpie Murders: An Atticus Pünd Mystery, complete with front-matter pages.
Pünd is a delightful, German version of Hercule Poirot, faced with a fatal medical diagnosis. With the knowledge that he only has a few short months of life left, he travels to the village of Saxby-on-Avon, to solve what will surely be his last case. An English village murder of the highest caliber, Pünd’s story alone would have made a satisfying book. But, Mr. Horowitz pens Ryeland reaching the end of the manuscript only to discover the last chapter is missing, and that Alan Conway has died overnight.
Now, Susan is determined to find the missing manuscript pages and discover whodunit, while she’s gradually drawn to the conclusion that Conway’s death was anything but accidental.
As enthralling as an episode of Midsomer Murders, and with the clever device of a book within a book, Mr. Horowitz delivers. This book probably won’t make it to the library.
Clear the Bookshelf Challenge
This book review is for my self-imposed Clear the Bookshelf Challenge. I’m trying to make room on my bookshelf for new books. I’m up to date on my reading, just behind on the reviews, so catching up before the long weekend.
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