My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The Study of Silence is the third book in the ‘Lady Evelyn Mystery’ series written by Malia Zaidi. A cross between historical fiction and a cozy mystery, readers will find themselves whisked away to a time nearly a century ago when life was quite different. Solving murders was more complicated without the internet, cell phones, and other modern technology. Lady Evelyn must rely on her strong sense of intellect and intuition, and even then, people weren’t as direct as they are today.
In this installment, Lady Evelyn has returned to England with Daniel to complete the next phase of her education. While taking classes at a local women’s college, and living in a house with several other young ladies, she struggles to decide her future. It’s too soon to marry Daniel, and she wants a different kind of life than tradition. Unfortunately, she’s born many years too soon for what she wants (and deserves). Transitioning back to the lifestyle of an unmarried English girl is made easier when her cousin, Briony, and her four children, also return from Crete. As does a murder that happens the morning after Evelyn attends a party at another professor’s home. Who killed the man? While it shouldn’t matter to her, it does… so Evelyn does her best to search for the criminal while getting involved in all sorts of situations at her boardinghouse, with her missing niece, with some family matters, and finally, the actual murder.
Zaidi’s writing style and tone will absolutely make you feel like it’s the 1920s. Between her vivid descriptions, on-point dialog and tone, and slow yet methodical approach to solving the crime, readers can sit back and just let things unravel. It’s not a suspenseful hunt-down-the-killer novel. It’s a conversational approach to learning what you can and theorizing options, then looking for clues. As much as it is about the murder, it’s also about how a woman lived in the 1920s. Zaidi admits to taking a few liberties to make the story-line work better (totally okay with me!), but nonetheless, it was still a harsh life at the time. Zaidi navigates you down that path with ease, letting readers soak in the painful pressures on a woman in her 20s — you must get married, you must not do anything bad, you must look innocent at all times! Yikes… how is that even possible?
Silence is key in this book. The reasons for the murder unfold with each chapter, and you’ll never guess the killer or the reason why. It was buried too well, but in some ways, it was also quite obvious. That’s the sign of a smart author — it’s believable yet you will be shocked. Kudos to Zaidi for bringing out the best in Lady Evelyn. I’ve purchased the fourth book in the series which recently came out this year. I’ll be reading it next month, so I’m fully caught up in this excellent series.
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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 but with a twist. There are four books: Academic Curveball, Broken Heart Attack, Flower Power Trip, and Mistaken Identity Crisis. 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.