A Murder of Magpies by Judith Flanders: Review
I enjoyed every minute of this mystery novel. It features Samantha, an middle-aged editor working for a London publishing house.
Single and living alone, she hardly has an exciting life but is nevertheless dragged into a mystery by one of the author’s whose work she edits, Kit Lowell.
The first sign that something is about to happen is when a police inspector calls on Samantha (Sam as she is known) one workday morning. A courier carrying packages has been involved in fatal hit and run accident – and his parcels have disappeared. Was one of these packages intended for Sam?
Getting back to work, she considers the latest book written by Kit. He is in the fashion industry and has written a tell-all about a recent scandal within the industry. Sam needs to check with her firm’s lawyers that this isn’t libellous.
She chats with Kit on the phone and they agree to meet to discuss his book. Typically, Kit is late, much to Sam’s irritation, but in fact it’s worse than that. Kit has completely disappeared.
Shortly afterwards, ‘workmen’ try to persuade Sam’s neighbours to let them have the spare key to Sam’s apartment while she is away at work. They are foiled by Sam knows that no workmen were expected. Who wanted to access her apartment and why? Is it connected with Kit’s disappearance?
Stranger thing begin to happen and although the police seem to be unconcerned with Kit’s disappearance, Sam becomes increasingly concerned. Because of its scandalous nature, the manuscript of Kit’s book is kept under lock and key but someone was trying to get it – Sam was beaten up during an attempted burglary of her home.
Someone means business – are they going to any lengths to prevent the book from being published? And where is Kit?
The stars of this book are the finely-crafted female characters. Sam is down-to-earth, determined and very funny. You’ll enjoy reading about Miranda too – Sam’s young goth assistant. But the real star of the book for me is Helena, Sam’smother. A successful lawyer, she lives and works immaculately, she’s a workaholic who still finds the time to attend galleries, theatres and dinner parties but has a wealth of hidden depths.
I highly recommend this book and you can find out more and read reviews at Amazon.
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