I am woefully behind on reviewing ARCs because of my two-week travelling holiday. I am still away from home but this is a part of a more settled holiday with regular routines and no need to hunt out places for food. I will probably be making up for the lost (but not really) time and you might see more regular activity on this blog. I am also still catching up on the older reviews by other blogger’s posts for the past couple of weeks as well.
I started this one ages ago, nearer to its actual publication date last year. I did not get along with the narration and moved on to something else. The time I took to get back to it turned out to be a good thing because the second time around I managed to read it without distraction and like it.
We are introduced to a tiny Cornish town, with its own castle kept away from mainland during low tide. Guinevere is at the castle for the summer to help catalogue the books owned by the Lord of the castle. The summer does not go according to the way she imagines it would. There are two books in this collection, I liked the first better than the second but overall were good reads.
The first book focuses on our lead protagonist’s arrival to the town and her taking in the general dynamics of everyone around. In the middle of a historical re-enactment, a murder is committed and everyone is a suspect. A non-local inspector comes into the scene and Guinevere ends up working with Oliver (the second son of the castle owner) to try and crack the clues. There is a steady working towards the end, each step is painstakingly presented to us and we are there for every event. The solution to the case was well done and was simultaneously expected and unexpected.
The second case follows closely at the heels of the first book with treasure hunters descending on the town, each with a different stake in the finding of a goblet. Once again a body is found as well as theft. The duo of the previous story start to piece things together again and everything follows the same pattern of discovery.
I liked the stories but found the narration to be different from my norm, I find it hard to really enjoy books with dialogues as the major part of the book (I cannot explain better than that). It seems a little over the top at times considering the background situation in which the dialogues are delivered. For the most part, the characters seemed believable and we are introduced to them properly and given time to digest their eccentricities. I would recommend this to those who like reading cozy mysteries set in rural backdrops.
I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the review is completely based on my own reading experience.