The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths

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The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths

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Category: Crime
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: It's just on the serious side of cosy crime but is a good read even if you're normally more of a fan of the Dr Ruth Galloway mysteries. I finished it all too quickly!
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 352 Date: October 2020
Publisher: Quercus
ISBN: 978-1787477636

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When a 90-year-old-woman with a heart condition dies peacefully in her armchair, it really shouldn't be suspicious and that was the view taken by DS Harbinder Kaur until she spoke to Peggy Smith's carer. Natalka Kolisnyk was adamant that there was more to Peggy's death than met the eye - particularly as she knew that there was no heart condition and that Peggy had worried that she was being followed. Then there was the fact that Peggy was a 'murder consultant' who helped authors with knotty plot lines in their books: she knew more about murder than any elderly woman should need to know.

All that could have been glossed over but the masked gunman who burst into Peggy's flat when Natalka was boxing up Peggy's books and removed just one book - well, that was a little harder to dismiss. People who had been thanked in the postscripts of crime books were being killed. And so there came about a group of people who were determined to get to the bottom of what had happened. Edwin Fitzgerald lived near to Peggy in the Seaview Court retirement complex. He called it Preview Court and couldn't help but think about that Morecambe and Wise sketch every time he did so but then he'd think that it was a preview of what was to come. Benedict Cole owned the coffee shack on the front at Shoreham-by-Sea. He had been a monk and had left the monastery not because he had lost his faith, but because he saw himself as married. Finding the woman was harder, though, but he was drawn to the other member of the group - Natalka the carer.

Harbinder Kaur still lived at home, despite being in her thirties. He mother, Bibi, was keen to get her married, even promoting the possibilities of the 'Sikh What's Up Group'. Harbinder hadn't yet explained to her parents that she was gay and the man who cringingly called himself her 'work husband' - DS Neil Winston didn't count as a relationship. He was just plain annoying. She found it best to think of him as a small, wild animal.

It's just on the serious side of cosy crime, which wouldn't normally be my chosen reading matter but I'm an immense fan of Elly Griffiths' Dr Ruth Galloway mysteries and I was expecting something of similar depth. Was I disappointed? Well, no. It's Elly Griffiths, so the writing, characterisation and plotting are all excellent and there's a vein of humour running through the story which kept a smile on my face.

I'd like to thank the publishers for making the book available to the Bookbag.

As I read I couldn't help but think about Richard Osman's The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman. There's a similar cast of characters - from a retirement complex - and they have the same sort of unusual backgrounds and determination not to let age beat them. If you like one book you're sure to enjoy the other. We can also recommend The Chorister at the Abbey by Lis Howell.

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