Thursday, July 18, 2019

Murder by Ghostlight

Murder by Ghostlight. (Charles Dickens & Superintendent Sam Jones #3) 2019. 277 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: The actor on stage seemed to be asleep, one long white hand hanging from the arm of the velvet chair, and the white of his shirt showing momentarily in the flickering lamplight. His head was on his chest and he was quite still.

Premise/plot: Murder by Ghostlight is the third novel in J.C. Briggs' mystery series starring Victorian writer Charles Dickens. Dickens does not solve crimes alone; he works with Inspector Sam Jones. Briggs does a good job of peopling her world. The mysteries build on one another in terms of stories and relationships.

Dickens is NOT in London when the mystery opens--he and his friends, acquaintances, are putting on a show in Manchester. But the show--the last show anyway--did NOT go as planned. After the performance, one of the actors (or is it?!?!?!) is found onstage. The Manchester Police actually suspect Charles Dickens of the crime! Silly police. Of course, that gets cleared up relatively quickly--after a night in jail. Can Dickens help solve the murder BEFORE more murders are committed?

My thoughts: I enjoyed this one. There is just something so lovely about these mysteries. I'm not sure I would call them cozy. I personally would...but maybe someone else wouldn't? These mysteries often have multiple bodies and sometimes the crime scenes can be horrific. But I love spending time with Dickens and Jones. I love spending time with the other characters we've come to know and care about. (Some of them are children.)

What makes a man a murderer? When comes the moment that he steps off the precipice into the abyss? When exactly does he condemn himself? For whether he escapes or not, he condemns himself to exile from humankind. He becomes a hunted, homeless beast. 

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comment:

Lark said...

This is such a fun time period! I think I'd enjoy this mystery series a lot.