The Moving Finger by Agatha Christie

The Moving FingerJerry and Joanna Burton have relocated to the village of Lymstock to recover, he from injuries received in a plane crash, she from a failed relationship. Unfortunately, they don’t realise that they’re in an Agatha Christie novel, and that the village’s women are being plagued by a series of poison pen letters. Needless to say, things escalate as the wife of the local solicitor commits suicide and when another girl dies, it falls to Jerry to sort things out. Well, until a certain little old lady shows up…

The third Miss Marple book, following The Murder At The Vicarage and The Body In The Library, this is another review in my re-evaluation of the Miss Marple mysteries. So far, I’ve actually been rather disappointed with the re-reads so far. Is this the one to break the pattern?

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Death In Elysium by Judith Cutler

Death In ElysiumMeet Jodie Welsh. After a successful career when she has earned more money that she knows what to do with, she astonishes herself by falling in love and marrying Theo, a vicar in Lesser Hogben, a village in Kent. As she works out how to be a vicar’s wife, she finds herself in a village that is struggling to survive in the modern world and sets her mind to helping out.

However, there are strange goings on in the village and when a young man who Jodie has taken under her wing disappears, she suspects the worse. And when a body turns up, things begin to take a turn for the worse. What exactly is being built on nearby land? How far is someone willing to go to keep their secrets? And is Jodie at risk as well?

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The Death of Lucy Kyte by Nicola Upson

death of Lucy kyteWhen Josephine Tey’s godmother, the actress Hester Larkspur, dies, Josephine is astonished to inherit her home, a remote cottage in Suffolk. Needless to say, things aren’t as simple as that – there is a second beneficiary by the name of Lucy Kyte who nobody seems to have heard of.

A shadow hangs over the house – it is close to the location of the notorious Red Barn murder that took place nearly a century before, a murder that still casts a shadow over the local community. Is it possible that danger still lurks from a century before – or is there a more present threat to Josephine? And who exactly is Lucy Kyte?

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Non-Stop – Puzzle Doctor At The Movies

Non-Stop or “Liam On A Plane”. Liam Neeson is Bill Marks, an Air Marshall on a non-stop (hey, that’s the title!) flight across the Atlantic. After a brief hint at the fact that Marks has some personal issues (who’d have guessed it!), he receives a text on his secure pager. Basically if 150 million dollars isn’t wired to a bank account in twenty minutes, then someone on the plane will die. And then the twenty minute countdown will start again… and again…

Non StopWhy this film? Well, it’s directed by Jaume Collet-Serra, the director behind Neeson in Unknown, a film that I enjoyed a lot – not sure why I didn’t post a review, but it’s a clever puzzle, so I’ll take a pass at it again in the future – and I’d heard a couple of mutterings somewhere that this was a “proper” mystery, albeit with over 200 suspects, so I’d thought I’d give it a go. Strap yourself in…

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Posted in Film and TV | 11 Comments

The Puzzly – The ISOTCMN Book of the Month – June 2014

June – busy for a number of reasons that I’ve mentioned already. Add in a trip to London to watch Richard Armitage in The Crucible – good, if a bit arty, but a warning that it’s nearly four hours long and the seats were like sitting in an expensive mousetrap would have been nice – exam season, builders… Not a good month for reading.

Which is a shame because I’ve been rather deluged with review requests. Five out of the six books that I read were review copies of new releases and re-releases and one of the other reasons for the lack of reading was my attempt to push through another book that had been sent to me which I just couldn’t get interested in. As ever, no names – I’m sure it’ll appeal to the right reader.

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Posted in Book Of The Month, Paul Doherty | 2 Comments

Audio Review: The Dead Side of the Mic by Simon Brett and Jeremy Front

Dead Side Of The MicCharles Paris, jobbing actor extraordinaire is preparing for a role as a grandfather, staying with his estranged wife Frances while his daughter, Juliet, is waiting for a new arrival. His luck seems to be in, as he lands a job at the BBC Radio Drama department, basically recording anything that comes along. Of course, one thing that comes along is a corpse…

Andrea Gower, the studio manager, has been making some discrete inquiries about something that has peaked her interest. Possibly not discrete enough of course, as she is found in her booth having cut both of her wrists. As ever, Charles is first on the scene and to his eyes, something seems very wrong. It’s hard enough to cut one of your wrists – could anyone simultaneously cut both? He’s soon on the trail of a murderer – one who’s willing to strike again if necessary…

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Posted in Audiobooks, Charles Paris, Simon Brett | 5 Comments

The Conjurer by Cordelia Frances Biddle

The Conjuror1842, Philadelphia. On a stormy night, the river Schuylkill bursts its banks and seemingly sweeps Lemuel Beale to his death, although no body is found. His daughter, Martha, is convinced that he is still alive, but things look bleak.

Meanwhile, in the nearby city, street girls lie murdered, one with her tongue cut out, an event described from afar by Eusapio Paladino, self-styled conjurer, clairvoyant, necromancer and somnabulist. As Paladino hints at secrets held by Martha’s social circle, it seems that a number of people’s lives are intertwining until events build to a murderous climax.

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