To get you all in the mood for Halloween, I have a fantastically spooky review for you!
“Act 1 Scene 1- Murder” by A. H. Richardson.
What’s it about?
Talk about drama! To celebrate the opening of his new play, the playwright invites the entire cast to his mysteriously medieval mansion for a gala dinner. As the curtain rises on this festive feast, a scene of chaos occurs when the leading man is murdered. Who could have done it? And why? Old friends – Inspector Stan Burgess, Actor Berry Beresford, and Sir Victor Hazlitt – question an outlandish cast of frightened actors and household staff. The plot thickens with yet another murder occurs, and the intrigue continues until…
I honestly thought his book was great. I have previously read and reviewed A. H. Richardson’s novel “Murder in Little Shendon” and it really reminded me of an Agatha Christie novel. However, I think I may have spoken too soon because this book I believe could have been written by Christie herself. A typical setting, an abundance of stock characters and murder- what else could you ask for?!
I think the characters really bring out the story- the cast of the play (hence the title) all have their own personalities; charisma, charm, wit, mystery, playboy, posh etc. I felt like these characters jumped out of the book onto the stage. I also felt this way about the author’s previous novel. Richardson has a way of making her characters come to life and I certainly think this story could be easily adapted into a stage play (Ironic since this starts off as a stage play 😉 ).
The setting is absolutely brilliant- what better place for a murder to take place than an old mansion made to look like a medieval property the guests cannot leave? Spooky eh?! The author’s descriptive language really sets the scene, drawing you further into the story.
There were, on a few occasions, the odd slow spot. It broke the tension up and I was rushing to get back into the action. Additionally, at times I was a tad confused as there were so many characters, but this added to the investigation in a way because you could see how hard a job the Inspector had finding out whodunit! It was easier once you got to know the characters as they all had their own unique individuality.
If you’re an Agatha Christie fan, this book is for you. Equally, if you want to start reading British murder books, this story is fab as it has all the elements of a good murder with an added modern writing style.
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Hope you enjoyed this review! Keep your eyes peeled for my KING COUNTDOWN in the run up to Halloween!
Happy reading! LX
Thanks to Kelsey Butts at Book Publicity Services for supplying me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
And thank you to the author A. H. Richardson! Can’t wait to read your next book!