December 12, 2015

Book Review || Death on Demand

Death on Demand
Death on Demand, Book 1
Carolyn (G.) Hart

Published: originally released in Feb, 1987

Bantam Books, mass market, 195p
ISBN: 978-0-553-26351-0

At Annie Laurance's Death On Demand bookstore on Broward's Rock Island, South Carolina, murder most foul suddenly isn't confined to the well-stocked shelves. Author Elliot Morgan's abrupt demise during a weekly gathering of famous mystery writers called the Sunday Night Regulars is proof positive that a bloody sword is sometimes mightier than a brilliant pen.With Annie in the unenviable position of primary police suspect, the pretty young mystery maven and her wealthy paramour, Max Darling, embark on an investigation into a classic locked-room mystery with high stakes. For failing to unmask a brutal and ingenious killer could mean prison for Ms. Laurance. While success could mean her death.


Death on Demand is a wonderfully descriptive and deliciously deceptive offering, and is the first in the Death on Demand series. Harking back to the whodunit style of mystery that made small town murder and classic Agatha Christie so popular.  Death on Demand is a wonderful introduction to a fabulous series - and while not the first book I've read in this wonderful series, I decided that it was high time to go back to the very beginning to see how it all began when I happened across it on Book Depository.

They say that opposites attract, and that is definitely the case with Annie Laurence and Max Darling.  Annie is a down to earth pragmatic soul from a less fortunate background, while Max has lived life in the fast lane with seemingly endless wealth.  The quintessential idle wealthy man about town, Max is actually far more intelligent than most people give him credit for.  And when he teams up with Annie, they're a force to be reckoned with.  I love the combination of Max and Annie, and the way she gets so frustrated with him. 

But, with the murder of a much detested author occurs in her bookshop, Annie herself becomes the prime suspect in this mystery.  With a police chief who is a real hard arse, who lets his emotions rule his investigation, tries to pin more than one death on Annie's head, it is Max who comes to her rescue... much to her annoyance.  Max is a peach, trying to support his girl - well, girl to be {he hopes} - yet Annie's continued sleuthing sets a cat among the pigeons and sets a killer on her trail.

Well written, fast paced, and with interesting characters, and good dialogue, this cosy mystery series is a must for anyone who wants to add a good whodunit series to their bookshelves.  Plus, there is also a nostalgia thing that happens for anyone born before the internet became a 'thing', as we get to read about those the new gadgets like the Apple computer, or a car phone the size of a brick, that we take for granted today, but were such a revelation and time saver at the time these books were being written.

A solid start to the series.

Until next time,

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