It’s too nice out to be in front of the computer, so let’s jump right into this week’s Saturday Selection: A Beautiful Blue Death by Charles Finch.
About the Book
A Beautiful Blue Death is a mystery novel set in Victorian London. Charles Lennox, who burns up his spare time as an amateur detective, has just been asked by his neighbor lady to poke around the circumstances regarding her maid’s death. The maid had recently left employment with the neighbor to work at another house to be closer to her fiancee and, well, ended up a bit dead. Lennox quickly determines she didn’t commit suicide, but is then faced with sorting out who in the house might have killed her and why.
Add to this that the new employer heads up the royal mint and has just transferred a huge stockpile of gold to his home, he’s got a houseful of suspicious guests, and Lennox is forcibly being told to stay off the case and you’ve got a great story.
How Was It?
With its setting, its time period and its subject matter, this book could have so easily fallen into every Sherlock Holmes cliche there ever was. It’s clear that Finch takes great pride in following in the footsteps of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and some elements will be familiar to Holmes fans: amateur detective, brother that holds a position of power, and a resistant police detective who ends up needing help. But Lennox somehow takes these bits of familiarity and makes everything seem completely fresh and new.
Not only does Lennox weave a great tale that keeps the reader guessing and does an excellent job dropping you into the heart of Victorian London, but he also creates characters you care about. And you just have to wonder if Lennox will ever get a comfortable pair of boots…or if he’ll realize he and his neighbor are made for each other.
I breezed through the first of the Lennox mysteries and am eagerly waiting to dive into the next: The September Society!