And I was right. About the good time I'd have reading it, that is. But Rules of Murder is by no means just a Dorothy Sayers rip-off. There was a taste of Dorothy Sayers' influence in the matter of characters and style, it is true; as well as a bit of Agatha Christie flavor in the setting; and the tiniest bit of P. G. Wodehouse fun around the start of the story. However, that only added to the charm of this delightful and clever book. Julianna Deering is an accomplished mystery writer in her own right.
What can I say? Rules of Murder combines the Golden Age Mystery feel with a Christian fiction flavor, perfect for old mystery buffs who want to read something newer or romance lovers who want to get into mystery. I'm happy to say there were a couple twists and turns in the plot that surprised me and I didn't guess the murderer 'till the very end (quite an accomplishment on the author's part.)
A few months ago, when I was thinking of writing a mystery myself, I looked up Father Knox's Rules of Detective Fiction and was very disappointed when my oh-so-lovely plot broke one of the rules. But I'm delighted to see Julianna Deering intentionally break almost all of his rules and still end up with a clever story. As a matter of fact, I'm a little miffed I didn't get to the idea first.
My rating: 9 out of 10
Disclaimer: Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group.