Murder Off The Page
By: Con Lehane
Bookish Tip: It’s a cozy read so a blanket is a must!
Special thanks to Minotaur Books for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
A note from bartender Brian McNulty, Raymond Ambler’s friend, confidant, and sometimes adviser, sets the librarian sleuth off on a murder investigation, one that he pursues reluctantly until a second murder upends the world as he knows it. The second victim is a lady friend of McNulty’s—and the prime suspect is McNulty himself.
As Ambler pursues his investigation, he discovers that the murdered woman had a double life. Her intermittent visits to the city—a whirlwind of reckless drinking and illicit liaisons with men she met in the cocktail lounges—had their counterpart in suburban Fairfield County Connecticut where, as Dr. Sandra Dean, she practiced dermatology and lived in a gated community with a doting husband and a young daughter.
While Ambler looks into the past of Dr. Sandra Dean to understand the murder of Shannon Darling in the present, NYPD homicide detective Mike Cosgrove investigates the men in Shannon Darling’s life. She might have been murdered because she frustrated the wrong man. It could have been a jealous wife. In fact, any number of people might have murdered Shannon Darling. Or, as Ambler suspects, did someone murder Dr. Sandra Dean?
Yet, no matter which way he turns, McNulty emerges as a suspect. Ambler’s dilemma seems insurmountable: Should he keep searching for the truth behind the murders if the deeper he probes, the more evidence he finds that points to the morally rumpled bartender as a murderer?
There comes a time as a reader where you enjoy a book simply because it is captivating and yet, cozy. Murder Off the Page by Con Lehane is this book for me.
Raymond Ambler, a librarian at the New York Public Library, receives a note from his good friend and confidant, Brian McNulty that sends Ambler and Adele Morgan on a murder investigation. Brian, himself, is the main suspect and he needs his friends to do some amateur sleuthing. With the reluctant help of a detective, Ambler and Adele set forth to clear McNulty’s name.
Murder Off The Page is a good, old school mystery with twists and turns that will keep you guessing until the very end. Every single one of the main characters are likable and relatable. The story is well written, enthralling and fast paced.
In between all of the mystery, there is a little romance and a little family drama mixed in which carries over from the other two books in the series. Do not let that deter you. Murder Off The Page can be read as a standalone. I found the romance and the drama actually adds to the layers of the story. It is not forced nor does it make the reader feel left out from NOT reading the other two books.
Read it. Murder Off The Page is a story of friendship, love, drama and a whole lot of mystery.