If you’re looking for an easy read with murder and mystery, then A Necessary Murder will be right up your street. Set in 1863 London, this is the second book in the Heloise Chancey Mystery series.
The book opens with the brutal murder of three-year old Margaret Lovejoy. A few days later a similar killing takes place on the doorstep of fashionable courtesan Heloise’s home. This sets off a string of events which finds Heloise caught up in the centre of the savage killings.
As well as being a courtesan, Heloise is also a professional detective. Heloise’s character is very modern for 19th century Victorian society. She is strong-willed, independent and sexual. She is also vain, superficial and selfish; more concerned with her looks and dresses than the welfare of those close to her I felt. Hence I do struggle to care about Heloise.
However there is one passage where I really celebrate Heloise as she echoes what a lot of us modern women are now publicly thinking when we get unwanted male attention:
As I walk, I can feel their eyes inch across my body…
I’m just walking, damn it. Times like this… it feels different. It slithers under my skin, trembles there self-consciously, reminds me of a dark night long ago.
I felt that A Necessary Murder is not really Heloise’s story, but rather the character Amah’s story. The pages focusing on Amah show depth. It was Amah’s story that stirred my empathy and I wanted to read more about her; the impact of her past and how this was connected to the killings.
The plot is full of twists, but if I’m honest the twists lacked dramatic tension for me. I found it a tad disjointed and at times I was a bit confused as to who some of the characters were. Towards the end of the novel I also felt it got a bit silly.
Although slightly confusing at times, generally this book is easy to read. I progressed through it quickly. Therefore if you want a murder mystery where you don’t need to think too much, this could be a good book for you.
A Necessary Murder is the second novel in the Heloise Chancey Mystery series. I read the first one, She Be Damned a few months ago when I picked it for my book group to read. That too I found a fairly easy read. I will go on to read more but that’s because Amah intrigues me and I’m interested in how her character will develop.
To coincide with the publication of A Necessary Murder today, I have kicked off the blog tour. If you’re intrigued by this book and want to read the reviews of my fellow book bloggers too, please take a look below at the blog tour. Out today, you can also buy your copy from Amazon and other book shops.
Thank you Legend Press for inviting me to take part in the blog tour of A Necessary Murder in return for my honest review.