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Monday, December 23, 2013

A Dickens Junction Mystery: The Edwin Drood Murders by Christopher Lord

Hi there!
Welcome back to the site that aims to please the reader in you every day of the week, Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

So, the Christmas holiday is almost upon us.  Are YOU ready?  AS for me, I’m trying to be though I DO think that this season has flown by WAY too fast.  Missed out on enjoying the whole kit and caboodle thanks to being so busy with work and what not….le sigh.  At least there were good reads to be had, right?  RIGHT!  Speaking of which, today’s blog tour guest fits that bill and another quota of my own, just right.

What’s that second quota?  Why, my Dickens requirement of the season!  Didn’t know about that one now did ya?  ^_^  Those that follow my site now for  more than a year, might remember this from last season but allow me to enlighten you.  Each year, I endeavor to read a version of that classic Dickens novel A Christmas Carol.  I already accomplished that tradition this year thanks to the awesomely adorable work via BabyLit but that doesn’t mean that the fun has to stop there.  When I saw this Dickens stewed work come through the old email box, I read about it…pondered it…and more quickly than not decided I needed to be in on the action…and trust me, there is plenty to go around.  Ready to meet today’s blog tour guest and book of choice?  Let’s!  Gents, don your top hats; gals, grab your bonnets.  Time to celebrate the day Dickensian style with…

A Dickens Junction Mystery:
Christopher Lord

About the book…
The Droodists have arrived in Dickens Junction.  Local bookstore owner Simon Alastair has his hands full in his role as co-chair for the latest convention honoring Charles Dickens’s uncompleted novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood.  A movie star, a pesky blogger, dueling scholars, a stage hypnotist, and an old family friend (among others) all have claims on Simon’s time.  In addition, some Droodists are clearly more – or less – than they appear, including a mysterious young man by the improbable name of Edwin Drood.

When a priceless ring and a rare Dickensian artifact go missing, Simon and reporter-partner Zach Benjamin learn that someone will do anything – including murder – to obtain an object of desire.

The first sign that something was amiss should have been all the last minute attendees…considering this is something of an UBER fan event, eyebrows should have been rising.  The second tell tale sign, the fact that one of the participants is named (or at least registered as being so) after the character of unknown fate in the novel at the center of their society’s planned discussions.  Just a little too coincidental for my taste to not raise suspicion.  Anywho…

What we have here is a meeting of the literary minds with a large helping of drama, a dash of mystery, and a little romance thrown in for good measure.  Whatever side of the Dickensian camp you fall into or out of, you’re sure to find some enjoyment from this little gem…or rather NOT so little.  The gem, not the book.  The Heart of Helsinki  is the gem at hand, out of hand, and back again, though not the only treasure at risk…we’ll get to that part in a minute.  This sparkly number currently belongs to one Osma Dilber, a sweet little elderly lady who is smart as a whip, and nice as can be.  Whomever would set their sights on bringing harm to her deserves it back on them twice fold.  Strong and steady, that’s who she is…and a kindly friend to those in the Dickens know and even those not quite so.  Also on the so side of things…

Meet Simon.  He’s our leading man in a sense; full time bookstore proprietor, Dickensian enthusiast, and amateur-ish sleuth.  He had his hands in the crime solving cookie jar once (in book 1) and found he liked the taste; though he would not wish the circumstances he’s found himself ensconced in on anyone, especially to simply practice his detective skills.  Anywho…Simon along with his partner Zach make an formidable and enviable pair.  How so?  Well, it’s not their stature, though their standing with the community is flawless, but rather the way they work together and help balance each other out both professionally and personally.  These two gents are genuine high quality and the results they produce in all they tackle are held to the same standards.  But I digress, I am getting way off topic…let’s circle back to the story.

Many are introduced in this “play” but only MOST will see it through to the very end.  That’s right my friends…it’s called The Edwin Drood MURDERS for a reason.  The way things unfold is rather curious, both as they progress and the final curtain call.  There are staged scenes straight out of the suppositions of dedicated Drood fans as well as those with less than cultured taste.  Think Bonesbut less on the morgue research and with English accents.  Does it work?  You bet…as does the flash of personal events our lead couple is sorting through.  Random note…I couldn’t help but notice a greater number of same sex relationships represented than in most stories I’ve read.  Whether done with intent or simply an after thought inserted subconsciously due to the author’s preference, I shan’t guess but trust me, it makes them no more or less likeable; just another set of literary characters to know, enjoy, and welcome back the next story round.

In conclusion, though a bit too Clue-ish for me at times, I still enjoyed my time in Dickens Junction and in fact wouldn’t be too surprised if you heard of me visiting once again in the near future…bookishly of course.  There’s a little matter of not having read book 1, The Christmas Carol Murders, that I would like to clear up, if you know what I mean (*adds to wish list*).  ^_^  The characters were many, those notable fewer on my roster…then again, I am rather picky about who I pick up and take with me upon book’s end.  Come ride the literary roller coaster and see if you can’t guess who’s who and done what with whom where, why, and how…before Simon says (Ha!  Sorry, I couldn’t resist that pun.)

Review copy received courtesy of Jessica at Mindbuck Media.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this promotion as well as those forth coming, be sure to stop by their official site.  To learn more about Dickens Junction both past, present, and future, start your journey now with a virtual visit and see what lies in store for you. 

Until next time…happy reading!

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