Cover detail of The Queen of Poisons by Robert Thorogood

The Queen of Poisons by Robert Thorogood

I am coming at you on a Sunday this week after a restful few days. We've had quite the month here, travel, a few personal bits and some big work ventures meant I was feeling a little burnt out. So both me and my husband have been resting, eating the good food and binge-watching 9-1-1 which is our new favourite TV series. The weather is better as well. Our bit of recovery was needed and I am feeling a lot better now.

Did you watch the D-Day commemorations that took place this week? The coverage was very moving and the stories honest, raw and poignant. It is incredible to remember that these were ordinary people who were part of this vast operation, many lost comrades and friends. Their bravery shone through and those that lost their lives will never be forgotten. Our village commemorated the day with 8am bell-ringing, displays in the Church and village hall, a pie and pea supper and lighting of the beacon. Many came out and it was a wonderful community event.

Read all about the Shipyard Girls books

Talking of community events, we had our annual meeting for the Panto which this year will be Peter Pan. My husband is part of the stage crew and I am on props once more. Looking forward to starting rehearsals in September!

On with the review! Today's review is the latest in the Marlow Murder Club series and it is excellent.

The Plot

Geoffrey Lushington, Mayor of Marlow, dies suddenly during a town Council meeting. When traces of Aconite - the Queen of Poisons - are found in his coffee cup, it's clear he was murdered. But who did it and why?
Local sleuths Judith, Suzie and Becks (aka the Marlow Murder Club) are on hand to help the police investigate. As official Civilian Advisors they have free rein to interview suspects and follow the evidence to their hearts' content. Which is perfect because Judith has no time for rules and standard procedure.
But this case has them stumped. Who would want to kill the affable Mayor? How did they do it and is anyone else in danger? The Marlow Murder Club are about to face their most difficult case yet...

My Thoughts

There is something pleasing when I come to shelve this book. On my bookshelves, the Robert Thorogood sits next to the books by Richard Osman, and the colours match beautifully to the corresponding book in the series. And this is the first thing to note, this is perfect for the fans of Richard Osman's Thursday Murder Club Series.

The second thing to note is that Robert Thorogood is the creator of the popular Death in Paradise TV programme, known for its seemingly impossible crimes and locked door mysteries. You really observe similar in the Queen of Poisons, the action moved from the Caribbean to Marlow.

The murder is seemingly impossible. The pleasant Mayor drinks a coffee poisoned with Aconite during a Council Planning meeting. The coffee made with a randomly selected coffee pod. A figure handed out the drinks and set up the catering who nobody has ever seen or will see again. There is no motive, the Mayor a Saint. Was he even the intended victim? Or does the crime have anything to do with a proposed development under discussion at the meeting?

There are quite the list of suspects, involved in blackmail, backhanders, and all manner of dodgy dealings! To be honest I suspected them all at one time or another during the book.

The Marlow Murder Club are an excellent blend of characters/ Clever rule-breaker Judith, tough dog-walker Suzie and vicar's wife Becks who knows everybody in the Community each provide a unique set of skills. My favourite remains Judith who is finally forced to let go of her past (and hoarding tendencies) in this novel.

The location is lovely, and quintessentially English, dreamy homes by the lazy Thames waters. If you do get chance to watch The Marlow Mysteries TV Series then please do. Samantha Bond is an excellent Judith and the ever-sunny location is perfect.

This series continues to go from strength to strength and I very much enjoyed the solving of the murder. The camaraderie of the women is lovely as they navigate Judith's hoarding techniques, a difficult mother in law and new ventures. Very enjoyable and perfect to read on a summer's day witha. glass of Pimms.