23 July, 2022

#BookReview :: Death and the Conjuror by Tom Mead - #Mystery @TomMeadAuthor @partnersincr1me

A periodical setting. Locked room murder. A retired magician helping with the investigation.

Set in London in the 1930s, the story begins with the murder of Anselm Rees in his study. A well established psychiatrist is murdered and there is nor witness, no clues and the police do not even have the murder weapon. So, Joseph Spector is brought in to help because of his experience with the trades of illusion. As the investigation starts, George (Scotland Yard) and Joseph discover dark secrets - about Rees’s family history, his daughter and his patients. There is no dearth of suspects. And then an impossible heist occurs and our investigators are left to wonder if the murder and the theft are connected.

There is something about mysteries set back in time before modern forensics, when all the investigators had was knowledge of human psychology and their own wits to solve a case. I also love to see the world as they were before. The way people spoke, dressed and carried themselves - so formal, yet there is something charming about it. 

In Death and the Conjurer, our victim is a psychiatrist with some very ‘difficult’ patients and as such it would be very obvious to think that one of them may have a grudge (or not) and killed the victim. But then the author also presents us with a matter-of-factly daughter who doesn’t seem to be in any sort of despair over losing a parent and her less than gentlemanly boyfriend. There is a wide cast of characters for sure, to keep us looking. And Joseph Spector is an interesting character. I would have loved to know more about him, and wonder whether the author did not give us enough background on him to maintain a mysterious air about the character. Either way, I think Joseph’s character stands out enough to hold a certain interest. His way of thinking is something I enjoyed reading about whether or not I myself was thinking in the same lines.

A medially paced narrative, with just enough details about the setting and the plot, and a protagonist who is different helps keep the pages turning. 

I have to admit that it’s been a while since a book has kept me guessing till the last possible moment and so, I absolutely enjoyed this book. I will be looking out for other books in the series.

Review Copy received from Partners In Crime Tour 

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1 comment:

  1. Woohoo! So glad you enjoyed this. I've seen such great posts for this, I can't wait to get my hands on a copy!