Murder at the Mikado
By Julianna Deering
This is the third book in the Drew Farthering Mystery series. I reviewed Death by the Book about six or so months ago, and I read the first book, Rules of Murder after I read Death by the Book.
What do you love in a mystery? Clues, multiple suspects, style, multiple murders, red herrings, and few obvious clues that help you solve the mystery. A classic whodunit. Ah, but this is more than that.
The subplot is the romance between Drew and his newly engaged fiancée, Madeline, who, in truth, have only known each other six months. They met in the first book, Rules of Murder, fell in love at first sight, and the rest is supposed to be history. But will it be?
A former flame of Drew’s shows up unexpectedly and pleads with him to clear her of a murder charge. Madeline is totally against Drew’s participation, even as she helps him decipher clues and move closer to a solution.
It seems that Fleur Landis is a beauty, and a master seductress. Madeline says she believes that Drew isn’t attracted to her anymore, but her heart has a hard time overcoming her own fear of losing Drew, as she lost another some years previous.
To the main plot – Drew stays on the case and little-by-little uncovers motives, suspects, more bodies, and finally figures out what happened. There’s a great scene in the vein of the classic gathering of suspects where the truth comes out. As a result, a shocking surprise occurs that has life-changing implications for a number of the characters.
I won’t summarize the murder plot for you. The romance was more fun, and got quite heated, but not in the way you might suspect.
What I will do is tell you who I liked, and who I didn’t like, as characters. I didn’t like Fleur, and I didn’t blame Madeline for not trusting her. In Fleur’s defense, however, she had apparently settled down from her femme fatale ways, having gotten married to one of Drew’s accountants at the factory, and had a child.
That’s who I liked – Peter Landis, Fleur’s little four-year boy. He was adorable. I liked him and his father very much. Peter just loved Drew’s cat, Mr. Chambers, and the cat liked him, too.
Of the three novels, I liked the second one, Death by the Book best, but that’s only because I like the main characters to be in danger, and Drew certainly was. Although I guess you could say that there was danger of a different sort for him and Madeline in this book. Did they get married, or did they break up? They certainly had one whale of an argument that hurt both of them.
I rate this four stars. I’m notorious for only giving five-star ratings to books that blow me away. This one didn’t blow me away, but I liked it. And if I say I liked it, I really do.
I liked it. I wanted to read it. It is quite satisfactory. Oh dear, am I beginning to sound a bit British?
I received an ebook version complimentary from Bethany House and Net Galley in exchange for my honest opinion.