Murder at the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This is the first book in a new series, set in the 1930’s. It’s billed as Christie-esque (as in Agatha Christie) and it pretty much lives up to that. Agatha Christie is one of my favorite authors and this book has similar elements, including a large cast that is sometimes hard to “manage.” Made a little more so by the constant reference of people as Mr or Mrs/Miss so and so. For some reason, this makes it hard for me to see them as individuals, though I know this is how people addressed one another back in the day.
The book also offers a somewhat romantic element and I couldn’t figure out who I was supposed to root for - the playboy husband (Milo) or the previous suitor (Gil). In the end, I simply chose my side and hoped it worked out. It did.
Premise - Amory Ames is invited to the seashore, Brightwell Hotel, by former suitor, Gil Trent, whose sister, Emmeline, is engaged to a scoundrel. He’d like Amory to advise Emmeline to basically dump the scoundrel. As Amory’s marriage is a little on the rocks, she’s in a position to give advice about the disadvantages of marrying a scoundrel. A couple of days into the trip, the scoundrel meets his end by tumbling over the side of a cliff. Gil is accused; Amory sets out to prove he’s innocent. In the midst of this, Milo shows up and basically becomes Amory’s partner in figuring out who done it.
The sleuthing is fairly typical, though at least there is a reason - to prove Gil innocent. There is the Inspector, but he’s a friendly sort of guy and one I liked. Amory and the Inspector do get on fairly well, which I appreciated. I thought some of her snooping was a bit over the top, but it fit the story.
Overall, I enjoyed the mystery, which had a few twists and an ending I didn’t see. Though, at times, the “romance” seemed to be a bit more than the mystery, but it didn’t really detract from the mystery. Instead, we get to learn a bit more about Amory. I’d love to say more about Amory and Milo, but that would probably spoil a little of the story.
I’m looking forward to reading the next book in this series. If you like Agatha Chrisite’s mysteries and the 1930’s, give this book a go.
I received this as a Goodreads Give Away, but the opinion is solely mine.
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