Today I’m on the blog tour for The Golden Hour, a 1920s murder mystery. Many thank to the author and Emma at damppebbles blog tours for sending me a copy of the book to review.
Lady Evelyn Carlisle has barely arrived in London when familial duty calls her away again. Her cousin Gemma is desperate for help with her ailing mother before her imminent wedding, which Evelyn knew nothing about! Aunt Agnes in tow, she journeys to Scotland, expecting to find Malmo Manor in turmoil. To her surprise, her Scottish family has been keeping far more secrets than the troubled state of their matriarch.
Adding to the tension in the house a neighbour has opened his home, Elderbrooke Park, as a retreat for artistic veterans of the Great War. This development does not sit well with everyone in the community. Is the suspicion towards the residents a catalyst for murder?
A tragedy at Elderbrooke Park’s May Day celebration awakens Evelyn’s sleuthing instinct, which is strengthened when the story of another unsolved death emerges, connected to her own family. What she uncovers on her quest to expose the truth will change several lives forever, including her own.
With the shadow of history looming over her, Evelyn must trust in her instinct and ability to comb through the past to understand the present, before the murderer can stop her and tragedy strikes again.
My Review: Although I enjoy strange and dark crime stories I also like the more gentle ones like Agatha Christie and Ngaio Marsh wrote so when this book popped onto my radar I was intrigued, particularly as I live in Scotland and know the areas where the book is set.
This is not the first book in the series though it is the first I have read. I don’t think it is essential to read them in order. This one is set in a location and mainly with characters that I don’t believe have been in the previous books so it works well as a stand alone. There is enough background information given to clear up any questions.
I liked Evelyn Carlisle, she’s a nice mixture of caring and considerate but also not bowing to what others want or expect if she doesn’t agree with it. The suspicious nature of the villagers towards Elderbrooke Park felt realistic, people are always suspicious of change and in the story some in the small community are shown to be very bad at accepting change, and incomers.
There’s a lot, but not too much, description in the story and it gives a good sense of where the characters are at that point int he story. The only thing I would say I had a problem with was the length, I found it a bit too long for the type of story it is but that’s my opinion and others won’t necessarily agree with me. Either way this is an enjoyable story, with good, lifelike characters and a few bits of danger. Definitely worth checking out at least one of the books in this series.
About the author:
Malia Zaidi is the author of the Lady Evelyn Mysteries. She studied at the University of Pittsburgh and at the University of Oxford. Having grown up in Germany, she currently lives in Washington DC, though through her love of reading, she resides vicariously (if temporarily) in countries around the world.