cover image Moonflower Murders

Moonflower Murders

Anthony Horowitz. Harper, $28.99 (608p) ISBN 978-0-06-295545-6

Bestseller Horowitz’s masterly sequel to 2017’s Magpie Murders finds Susan Ryeland, who misses her previous work as a London book editor and publisher, discontent in her new life running a struggling hotel in Crete. Then she’s visited by Lawrence and Pauline Treherne, the owners of Branlow Hall, an upscale Suffolk hotel, who think she can help in finding their missing daughter, Cecily. Cecily disappeared shortly after calling her parents to say that an injustice had been done. At the time of Cecily’s wedding at Branlow Hall a decade earlier, Frank Parris, a hotel guest, was bludgeoned to death in his room. One of the staff, Stefan Codrescu, was convicted of the murder based on powerful circumstantial evidence. Cecily told her parents on the phone she was convinced of Stefan’s innocence after reading a mystery inspired by the Parris murder by the now deceased Alan Conway, one of Susan’s authors. Susan accepts the Trehernes’ generous fee and travels to Branlow Hall to investigate, which involves looking into Parris’s death and rereading the Conway novel for clues. Horowitz, who matches a baffling puzzle with a sympathetic, flawed lead, has never been better at surprising the reader and playing fair. This is a flawless update of classic golden age whodunits. Agent: Jonathan Lloyd, Curtis Brown (U.K.). (Nov.)