Basil seemed to be very much amused by the fact that I had once again indulged in another Waterstones’ recommendation, given how the last one had turned out. It was no surprise that I was somewhat cautious and a little more suspicious than I had been previously. Despite all this incessant deliberation, I couldn’t help myself as cosy murder mysteries are evidently my bookish kryptonite. Plus, it also helped that I was familiar with the Death in Paradise series, both on screen and in book form. So, in the end, I cut myself a piece of freshly made banana bread, poured a glass of milk, and immersed myself in The Marlow Murder Club.
The trio of protagonists were an odd bunch that instantly connected with each other and although each had their own struggles, they were definitely a force to be reckoned with. They were all endearing characters that had such vivid personalities.
Judith’s eccentricity stood out and was infectious; it was hard not to get swept along with her ideas. What made this an even more compelling read was the mystery that surrounded Judith, and how, even though she was amazing, there was something that didn’t quite sit right. Becks had brilliant character development throughout; it was satisfying seeing her overcome her own obstacles as she challenged the changes life had thrown at her. Suzie could be described as being grounded and although she could be oblivious to people’s emotions and social protocol at times, she was also observant of details.
One aspect that was really well done was that Judith, Becks and Suzie all contributed in some way or another to solving the mystery. The trio are soon joined by an over stretched DS Malik, who at first, was a little iffy. Once the story began to flesh out her personality, it was easy to sympathise with her situation and the position she had been put in.
“…as far as I can see, she could be our killer.”
Beck’s eyes widened in amazement.
“That’s not posible, she does yoga!”
Although, it was ultimately Judith that put all the pieces of the puzzle together, she could not have done it without the others. Moreover, it was interesting to get brief glimpses of the other characters through the eyes of the other protagonists. However, it would have been more enjoyable had these glimpses been more than quick snatches of thoughts.
The writing itself was simplistic in nature and made this an easy, chilled read. The plot was fast paced with a handful of twists and clues that thrown in for good measure. Splashes of humour made some scenes truly laugh out loud moments. Under the protective comedic shell however, a deeper meaning could be found related to the serious issues that comes with aging. These were not dwelt on too much, yet there was still a serious undercurrent that stuck as the story progressed. The conclusion of the mystery was nicely tied up and everything made sense.
The Marlow Murder Club offered a well-crafted mystery with endearing, quirky characters. The fast-paced plot and simple writing made this to be an enjoyable read.
P.S. Within minutes, the detective figured out what the murder weapon was. It was a brief case 😉