Murder at Midnight: A Rex Graves Mystery

C.S. Challinor. Midnight Ink (midnightinkbooks.com), $14.99 trade paper (216p) ISBN 978-0-7387-3976-2
Challinor’s tedious sixth Rex Graves mystery (after 2012’s Murder of the Bride) finds the Scottish barrister celebrating New Year’s (“Hogmanay” in Scottish parlance) at his Highlands retreat. The 13 guests—an unlucky number, as one of them is quick to point out—are having a merry time making resolutions, sipping whisky, and discussing a local mystery: long-lost Jacobite gold that’s said to be buried in the area. At midnight, the power goes out, a knock sounds at the front door, and two of the revelers, a couple who entered into a late-in-life marriage of convenience, are found dead. Who among Graves’s guests was plotting murder amid the holiday cheer? The red herrings are easy to spot, and the killer’s identity is equally unsurprising, despite a strained motive. The characters are so superficially developed that the opening dramatis personae list proves utterly necessary to keeping them straight. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 06/09/2014
Release date: 08/01/2014
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 216 pages - 978-0-7387-4002-7
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