3.5 stars to the second book, Murder on the Orient (SS), in the Agatha Christie Book Club mystery series, written by C.A. Larmer. I read the first book in this series last year and hadn’t realized several more were already written. This installment was on-sale via Amazon last week for only .99, so I purchased it and found time to catch up this week as I’m focusing on a goal to get current with all my book series. All-in-all, it was a clever mystery with lots of fun stuff.
Alicia and her sister take a cruise near Australia. It’s a modernization (of sorts) of a similar one that tread the ocean in the early 20th century when the Titanic went down. It’s meant to be similar to the fateful train ride in Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. With a cast of a dozen or so strange and hilarious travelers, Alicia’s book club friends try to settle into a good time… until the Captain’s wife is thrown overboard and another patron has a supposed heart attack. When a third victim turns up, something is definitely off! The book club tries to investigate, but one of them, Anders, asks them to stay out of it, as he’s the temporary doctor on the ship. Something’s not right, and Alicia won’t let it sit tight. Of course, she must investigate. When she solves the crime, there are remnants of the fateful train ride it’s meant to shadow, but I assure you, the killer is not the same sort of type. It’s quite a new version in this book.
I’ve got mixed feelings on this book. Parts were very strong. Parts were weak. I felt the book club characters were a little too vague and disconnected. Alicia wasn’t as invested as she was in the first book, but she did play a good detective again. It was missing something, yet I can’t quite put my finger on the root cause. That said, much of it was good. The mystery was strong and had lots of red herrings, angles and valid facts. There were a few plot lines weaving together, and ultimately, they had something to do with each of the deaths. But how they all interacted was quite a mystery until the very end.
I like Larmer’s writing style. There are a few quirks in the story and character dialog, which may or may not be American versus British English, then some Australian being thrown in on the cruise. I found myself thinking “that’s an odd response” hoping it would later be clarified, but it wasn’t. Maybe it was me! I still enjoyed the story and the overall setting. I will read the next one soon, too.
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 book 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 on this site where 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.