a Crime novel packed with humour and characters that get under your skin
Published by: Viking
Firstly many thanks to the publisher for sending an arc and inviting me to be part of the blog tour in return for an honest review.
In the Coopers Chase retirement home a murder is about to be committed, fortunately this is right on the doorstep of the Thursday Murder Club, a group of four elderly retired people who normally take an interest in old cases, now they have a real life murder to solve.
To be honest I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started to read the book, however a few pages in and I needn’t have worried. For what we have is a wonderfully told somewhat cosy crime novel.
There is a freshness to this book and as much as this is a crime novel, it is also very much a story about the characters of the Murder Club and they definitely make the story.
Without wishing to give anything away. The plot centres around property developer Ian Ventham and his plans to expand the Coopers Chase retirement village, however not everyone is happy about this. In addition there are also crimes committed in the past which some would like to stay buried in the past.
Richard Osman certainly knows how to create and write characters, he has created an eclectic ensemble of characters each of who bring something to the table in the hunt for a Killer, led by the formidable Elizabeth formerly an Intelligence officer, someone who clearly knows her way around with a knack for getting what she wants, ex nurse Joyce, former militant trade unionist Ron and ex psychiatrist Ibrahim. Each of these characters is wonderfully written and brought to life on the page. The Police in the form of DCI Chris Hudson and PC Donna De Freitas are not written in a way that undermines their ability, however thanks to Elizabeths and her former contacts they always manage to appear to be one step behind, though this is not really the case. Another character who shouldn’t be overlooked and who ended up being my favourite is Bogdan.
Whilst there methods might be somewhat unorthodox and the way they go about things somewhat unusual this for me just made it such an enjoyable read.
It is definitely the characters which make the book, the book which it is, a cleverly concocted plot written with a pace to match its setting. It is most definitely a compelling and engaging read
The narrative is told from two main viewpoints, one form a diary kept by Joyce and the other being the main story line. The book is peppered with a dry wry humour and some genuinely laugh out loud moments. I loved the way the Thursday club has to fit around the other residents own clubs, as the setting is a retirement home the subject of age and why the residents are there cannot be overlooked, however it is dealt with in a wholly sympathetic way.
There are plenty of twists and turns and red herrings along the way to ensure that the crimes are at the heart of the book and there is a killer to be found.
A fantastic addition to the crime writing world, I eagerly look forward to reading more of the exploits off the Gang of Four
I have no hesitation in recommending this even for those who usually like their crime a bit more hard boiled.