My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Beginning a new mystery series is always a fun exercise. Sometimes it’s the setting that draws you in, other times it’s the plot and characters being promised for many books to come. With a title like ‘Death in Paris,’ how could anyone ignore Emilia Bernhard’s new series? When I saw it listed as an option in a cozy mystery group I belong to, I signed up and won the opportunity to read the book. It’s been quite the fun afternoon diving into this international story… took about 3 1/2 hours and offered lots of sharp wit, drama, and classic French attitude! (no offense intended of course… I adored it) And now I want to go to Paris again.
Rachel and her best friend, Magda, live in Paris. Rachel’s been there since college, and once dated the guy who was found dead in his soup. She’s got a new husband now, but it doesn’t prevent her from trying to figure out who killed her ex… even though it looks like he just had a heart attack. He was 60 to her 45, but he also had an adult son, a somewhat bitter ex-wife, a new girlfriend, a butler, a secretary of sorts, and a few other interesting people in his life. He was loaded, too… who wouldn’t want this Casanova dead!?!?!
As a new series, I found myself thinking about the story and the potential of the characters in the future. I enjoyed the French police captain. I liked Magda as a sidekick. And Rachel’s husband, Alan, is quite intelligent and charming. Rachel… she’s a bit quirky and kinda fun, but I wonder if she might be a little dry at times. She needs a little bit of a kick to be more charming like her husband or Magda. That said, I did connect with everyone, and I found it more believable than most other in this genre (although that’s why I love the genre, too). Rachel isn’t quite investigating the murder as much as she is discovering who might have wanted to hurt him — it’s a subtle difference. It’s less about who had access or alibis and more about the “WHY” in this case. The will left small inheritances to each of the women, and a large one to his son, but something seemed unusual about it all. Rachel needed to dive into the relationships to solve the reason why her ex had died.
As a start, there’s lot of potential. The cover is gorgeous. The writing style is good. The plot was strong, but I knew who the killer was from early on. It had to be based on many of the directions the non-murder aspects of the plot were going. But it was still fun guesswork and interesting suspense to watch Rachel get there. I wish I could’ve been in that library! Bernhard knows her literature… kudos to the author, thanks to the mystery group for the opp to read the book, and I’ll definitely take on more in the series in the future. It’s just ‘different enough’ to tell me I want to see a lot more!
For those new to me or my reviews… here’s the scoop: I’m Jay, an author who lives in NYC. My stand-alone novels, Watching Glass Shatter and Father Figure, can be purchased on Amazon as electronic copies or physical copies. My new mystery series, Braxton Campus Mysteries, will fit those who love cozy mysteries and crime investigations. There are two books: Academic Curveball and Broken Heart Attack. I read, write, and blog A LOT. First the book review goes on Goodreads, and then I send it on over to my WordPress blog at https://thisismytruthnow.com, where you’ll find the revealing and introspective 365 Daily Challenge –and multiple Readathons. You can also find all my social media profiles to get the details on the who/what/when/where and my pictures. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Thanks for stopping by. Note: All written content is my original creation and copyrighted to me, but the graphics and images were linked from other sites and belong to them. Many thanks to their original creators. Follow my blog with Bloglovin.