Published by Faber and Faber on March 3, 2020
Source: Net Galley
If you want to get away with murder, play by the rules
A series of unsolved murders with one thing in common: each of the deaths bears an eerie resemblance to the crimes depicted in classic mystery novels.
The deaths lead FBI Agent Gwen Mulvey to mystery bookshop Old Devils. Owner Malcolm Kershaw had once posted online an article titled 'My Eight Favourite Murders,' and there seems to be a deadly link between the deaths and his list - which includes Agatha Christie's The ABC Murders, Patricia Highsmith's Strangers on a Train and Donna Tartt's The Secret History.
Can the killer be stopped before all eight of these perfect murders have been re-enacted?
One thing I think everyone can agree on with this book is it split the readers. A lot of people loved it, a lot of people didn’t so much and then you have the people in the middle of the Venn diagram. That’s me, I am in the middle. But no matter what it definitely has you talking!
I thought it was a clever idea, a perfect kill list. Mal makes a list, we all do that, we all list our favourite books, favourite characters, genre etc. He made a list of the 8 perfect murders from different iconic, deemed so, books. This is all well and good and innocent until you travel to the dark web. Then the waters get muddy and well, the murders happened.
For the most part, I enjoyed the book, it was something different and I thought it a clever idea. I did get a bit lost with some of the characters but that could be because I was listening to it and it didn’t always hold my attention. When it did have my full attention I was right there Mal and Gwen trying to find out who “Charlie” was. The other thing, well I felt the ending was a bit flat. The showdown between Charlie and Mal, well we all saw that coming. I was surprised by some of the confessions though.
Everything is from Mal’s perspective and I don’t think we got enough time to warm to anyone. So when bombshells started to drop, I wasn’t all OMG! However, I liked the format of the book being through Mal’s voice as it is his memoir, it is his story, so he tells it as he wants it to be told and I respect that.
This is a short and sweet review because I don’t think I can add anything new and mainly because I can’t decide how I feel about it. I think I want to like it but I also feel that despite the cleverness and quirk of it, it is not a book I may remember.
Until next time xxx
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: