Tuesday, January 21, 2020

A Christmas Party by Georgette Heyer

A Christmas house party has been planned in the English countryside that has brought together a motley crew of characters that seem to share a mutual disdain for each other.  When one guest in murdered, the local police call in Inspector Hemingway from Scotland Yard to solve the crime.  Which one of the house guests is the murderer?

This is the first Georgette Heyer mystery that I have read, but I am a huge fan of her Regency romance.  I’ll admit this one read a bit slow for me and I think I need to try out another of her mysteries to see if I like them or not.  The fact that almost all of the characters were extremely unlikeable made it hard for me to get into the novel.  The mystery itself was very clever.  I had a suspicion about the murderer, but they way it was all put together was unique and very interesting.

Overall, A Christmas Party was a clever mystery with unlikeable characters.  I need to read more of Heyer’s mysteries to determine if I like them or not.

Book Source:  Purchased from Amazon.com.

Carols and Chaos by Cindy Anstey

Carols and Chaos is a perfect book for the fans of the “downstairs” antics on Downton Abbey.  Set during the Regency period in England, Carols and Chaos is the story of lady’s maid Kate Darby and valet Matt Harlow.  Kate belongs to the household at Shackleford Park, but Matt is there acting as a valet to two brothers who are guests.  Kate and Matt have a lot in common and sparks fly between them.  They soon find themselves entwined in a mystery when Matt’s friend, footman Johnny goes missing.  Where has Johnny gone and is foul play involved?

I didn’t know until the end that this book is a follow-up to Suitors and Sabotage.  It worked as a stand alone novel.  I need to read this other book as well.  I really loved the scenes in Carols and Chaos of Matt and Kate together.  I also enjoyed the mystery.  It was interesting seeing Kate’s small-town life in the village nearby.  I do wish there would have been more of Kate and Matt actually working at the estate and enjoying more of the Christmas festivities.

Overall, Carols and Chaos was a fun book for the holidays.

Book Source:  Purchased from Amazon.com