Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Magpie Murders - Another Summer Read

Couple of things before I get to actually reviewing the book.

First, growing up in Duncanville, Texas in the late 60's meant once I had finished all the children's books (which occurred in early middle school), I had to move onto adult fiction. The librarians carefully let me read a lot of Gothic novels and Agatha Christie mysteries. And what better introduction to murder mysteries than Agatha?

Second. I had read about magpies but had never seen any until I moved to Montana. We just don't have them in the South. So I was thrilled to finally see some. I'm now over my excitement of them.

However...


when I caught sight of this book, I couldn't resist. And boy, am I ever glad I didn't!

Horowitz writes Magpie Murders as a book within a book. Kind of a Neverending Story approach.

The premise of the book is fairly simple - to start. Alan Conway is a best selling author and Susan, his editor. Problem is, he is more than a bit of a jerk, but a huge money maker for her publishing house. Susan settles down to read his latest manuscript. And then the trouble begins!

The 'book' within the book is a great tribute to the Christie style. Set after WWII in a small village in England, it comes complete with the lord of the manor, the village busybody, a foreign detective with troubles of his own, and a couple of murders. That story alone is worth reading the book for.

At the end of the book (or is it), Susan discovers fiction is mirroring life and is soon on her way to solving her own mystery.

Since the page count is different based on which 'story' you are reading, I can't tell you the page count, but it's  probably about 500 pages. So not a one day read. Which is just fine. You'll want to draw this out. The book within the book makes me want to go back and reread Agatha this summer if nothing else. 

Of course, a cup of tea would be required.

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