Friday, 1 November 2019

Murder by the Minster - Helen Cox - Social Media Blast

Delighted to be part of the social media blast for this twisty, murder mystery. There’s something paradoxical about the title because it almost sounds cosy and cuddly until you consider the ‘murder’ bit! But minster, librarian and Yorkshire paint a cosier picture than the story I’ve just read!

And the paradox continues because much of this book seems to have some of its toes dipped firmly into a chick lit pool whilst the others are even more deeply dipped into a dark, murky, murdery mere. But in spite of this being a murder story there was a warmth that runs through it all.

Kitt Hartley is our main protagonist, a librarian whose best friend is arrested for the murder of her ex boyfriend.  I’m not going down the spoiler route so I’ll say little else about the plot in case I give anything away. But I did realise who the perp was. But then I read a lot of murder stories. I think they encourage a certain way of thinking…..unless I am a potential murderer. Aaaaah! However it’s one thing to spot who ‘dunnit’ it’s another to unravel exactly how, why and where they did it.

As a story it fits perfectly into the cosy crime genre not that crime is ever really cosy but it lacks the brutal harshness that some crime thrillers contain. And whilst it is not a totally light hearted read there are sufficient lighter moments that prevent the reader getting bogged down into a quicksand of gore and bleak unpleasantness.The dynamic between Kitt and the Detective Inspector is interesting and possibly going to be developed in further stories? I understand this is to be a series. Kitt is an interesting character, feisty to the point of bluntness sometimes and with generous helpings of initiative that could potentially embarrass the police if she weren’t actually helping them with their enquiries! Her colleague Grace is a delight, a willing sidekick and she provides many of the lighter moments in the book. 

So, immerse yourself in an entertaining read.  There’s something to make you laugh, a little to make you cry, much to make you think and it concludes with all the crime ends tied up so you can put the book down with that lovely satisfied feeling you get from a book with a proper ending. 

My thanks to Ella Patel at Quercus Books for a copy of this novel.

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