Hollie Bush's Reviews > A Beautiful Blue Death

A Beautiful Blue Death by Charles Finch
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Mar 15, 09

Read in March, 2009

The author owes a serious debt of gratitude to Dorothy L. Sayers. If you believe that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then this book is downright effusive. The author is also a little too eager to demonstrate his mastery of historical trivia, which can take you out of the narrative - and wears a little thin as the novel progresses.
That being said the book is a fun and charming historical mystery that will undoubtedly be enjoyed by those of us who love Dorothy L. Sayers, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, et al. The book hits all the right notes for a good mystery and neatly plays into the one thing that ties together all types of mystery lovers - an innate need to see justice prevail. It so rarely happens in real life. Personally I'm not a fan of the blood and gore type of vigilante justice and prefer the more reasoned and gentlemanly justice that can only be found in novels these days.
The book is well written by someone who knows how to use language, but doesn't feel the need to show off. There is also the added benefit of an intelligent and resilient female character who is loved for her strength, and strength of character, and not just for being pretty and rich. She promises to become more of a central character in future books in this series (the author has already written the sequel which I plan to read soon) and I hope that her early promise is not squandered.
"A beautiful Blue Death" is a good first novel, careful readers will note a few inconsistencies in the plot, but they can be forgiven since the author has managed to create such a charming and comfortably familiar tableau. I hope the second novel improves on the first, while retaining all of the charm.
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