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Magpie Murders Hardcover – October 6, 2016
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About the Author
Anthony Horowitz is the author of twenty bestselling children's books, including the Alex Rider series. He is also a TV screenwriter. He lives in North London. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
"Magpie Murders" is set in both current-day and 1955 London, as well as a small town near Bath. Two murders occur in the small town and famous detective Atticus Pund becomes involved in figuring out the case. He comes to the village and begins his investigation. THIS is the plot in a book written by author Alan Conway. The book is the ninth in the "Pund" series and Susan Ryeland, Conway's editor at his London publisher, Cloverleaf Books. The reader begins the journey into the Russian dolls by reading Alan Conway's novel. But the ending of the book is literally missing and when Ryeland tries to piece together the novel, the other dolls begin to show themselves. Anthony Horowitz writes ALL his voices with a firm, yet clever hand. For some reason, the reader keeps the places, plot points, and characters separate, even as the book turns into another book, and turns yet again. Horowitz has the last word in his novel.
I've read very few novels as cleverly plotted as this one. It's a delightful book and I can heartily recommend it.
A page or two into the book and readers will figure out that they are looking at the manuscript of a novel. The characters, plot, etc. don't match the cover blurb at all, so the inclination is to skip ahead to find some connection to what has been promised by the publisher, reviews, etc. That found, around page 220 aka page 4 (author's way of reminding that a second story has been launched), the reader (this one, at least) can go back to the first part of the book with some partial understanding of what is eventually in store as far as sequence is concerned.
While the packaging is rather unique and intriguing, one of the two core stories here is classic British cozy, set in Post-WWII England. Bodies fall (mostly at the local manor house); motivations are examined by a traditional private eye type working with the local cops; and all is revealed eventually in a kind of group tell-all session.
The second story, much more complex and modern, has its own wind-up and wind-down and features an editor/sleuth who follows the plot in the first story to expose the crime and criminal in part two. There is a lot of inside publishing humor--snide references to Midsomer Murders, Agatha Christie etc. and writing for eventual pick-up for TV-filming.
Confused? Well, that's in least in part because my review probably doesn't sort things out as well as could be. Nevertheless, you will unscramble the various parts easily enough and, I predict, enjoy this all the way to its juicy ending. A very fine story and a lot of fun.
I was intrigued by the premise of the story - a murder story within a murder story.
The book begins with an editor reading a new manuscript.
We get to read the manuscript alongside the editor until the point where the detective knows 'whodunit' and then the editor discovers the final pages are missing! Cue drum roll.
From here the current time mystery deepens as the publishers hunt for the missing pages and dead bodies turn up.
I thought the ending of the second murder mystery was a little predictable and went on for slightly too long but I loved the entwining of the plots and characters.
I'm afraid I lost interest in their fate or what century they were living in.