Rules of Murder – Julianna Deering

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4/5 English Countryside Estates

On The Back:

Drew Farthering loves a good mystery, although he generally expects to find it in the pages of a novel, not on the grounds of his country estate. When a weekend party at Farthering Place is ruined by murder and the police seem flummoxed, Drew decides to look into the crime himself. With the help of his best friend, Nick Dennison, an avid mystery reader, and Madeline Parker, a beautiful and whip-smart American debutante staying as a guest, the three try to solve the mystery as a lark, using the methods from their favorite novels.

Soon, financial irregularities at Drew’s stepfather’s company come to light and it’s clear that all who remain at Farthering Place could be in danger. Trying hard to remain one step ahead of the killer–and trying harder to impress Madeline–Drew must decide how far to take this game.

My Thoughts:

An engrossing start to a historical series, Rules of Murder took some of the classic ‘rules’ of the murder mystery genre and broke them. It was entertaining, light, and fun.

Drew was an excellent main character. I absolutely LOVE the stiff upper lip British people have in many historical mysteries. I find it extremely hilarious, and it honestly makes the difference in a book. Though it was less pronounced in this book than in say, Murder at the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver (which is a superb book that I highly recommend), it was still in the book, and it added to the characters. Madeline was also wonderful, the point of view switched between both her and Drew, and it again, simply added to the book. I usually hate the switching POV, but for some reason it worked in this book. Nick was also wonderful, though I hope the next book focuses a bit more on him.

The setting was wonderful; I loved the town and I adore this time period. However, the mystery fell flat. It went so many different ways that it had amazing potential, but unfortunately I guessed most of it before the ending. It was overall lackluster, yet it had great potential.

Overall a good book, the mystery had the potential to be amazing, the characters were great, and in my book an author can’t go wrong with this time period. I’ll read the next one.

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