- File Size: 3742 KB
- Print Length: 313 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 148011054X
- Publisher: Createspace (October 13, 2012)
- Publication Date: October 13, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B009QKN8NQ
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #206,180 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Manuscript for Murder (The Hartfield Mysteries Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 313 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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So I am going to use a review system some have suggested.
What did I like about this novel:
The first thing that came to mind as soon as I finished it was that Alexa and Joe had such chemistry and both of them seemed blind to that.
Second was the self confidence that Alexa always had...and parts just got stolen by an evil individual.
Third, was that as much as he took away parts of her, she did not relent in living her life and doing what she usually would do. At least for the most part.
Fourth, I loved her explanation as to the role of justice and how that relates to her novels.
What I didn't like:
The ending. Not because it ended. I didn't like who the person was that was behind this. Or maybe I totally got off track from the beginning from what seemed like a book group meeting and then became an individual with a vendetta. They just seemed to not coincide. (That is not usual for a book by this author, so as I suggested, the issue is most likely mine and a misunderstanding.)
For some reason the characters of Martinez and Darren really bugged me. Martinez is just clueless and why Varney puts up with him made no sense. Darren was kind and good for Alexa but at the end he seemed over eager and just bothered me.
Sometimes I felt the novel skipped around or I was missing pages, although I wasn't. Again, this may just be me.
I really enjoyed this novel. I think I need to reread it again. I was struggling with a migraine, so that may have influenced some of the "issues" I had.
I love the character of Alexa, in general, as well as with Joe and the two kids down the way. I love her self confidence and just who she is as a person. I truly hope she doesn't stop writing or sharing her novels or changes genres.
I recommend this novel as the first in the series (I have read the others and loved them).
So go see if you can figure out who is creating all the mayhem in Fairbury, and beyond, and how they are imitating her writings almost exactly.
I struggled to put it down and didn't want it to end. I would've liked to spend more time immersed in Alexa's fictional world. A small amount of romance made my swoony heart happy without taking away from the plot.
I loved the book, but I did struggle with small amounts of head hopping. If I wasn't a writer, I wouldn't have noticed it. I didn't feel it detracted from the book.
I highly recommend this book and give it 5/5 stars.
I was given a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
"Manuscript for Murder" is Mrs. Havig's latest published novel. Although not her first book, it does claim the honor of her first published mystery, as well as the first in the Hartfield Mysteries series.
Alexa Hartfield is a successful, well-known mystery writer, living in the small town of Fairbury. Though her books tell of grisly murders and heartless killers, she spends her own days with much more tranquility. Dressed in her favorite Medieval gown, a Regency dress replete with bonnet and shawl, or perhaps clothed in a 1950's ensemble, she walks to the bookstore or the market, flies to different cities for her book tours, goes to church, and befriends her neighbor's two children. By most people, she's considered eccentric at best. Few people really know her though.
Then the unthinkable happens. After a strange experience with a broken light bulb leaves Alexa with a cut hand and a tiny real-life mystery, she decides to twist the experience to fit her newest book. When, however, a woman turns up dead within 24 hours of Alexa writing the scene, the author is angry and confused. Then a second murder follows the second murder in her book... and a third.
The victims have nothing in common, except Alexa's unpublished book. They don't even reside in the same town! The newspapers dub him (or her) the Plagiarist Killer. Who is he? What does he want? And who will he strike next?
The Writing Style:
I've seen some people comment that the beginning of "Manuscript for Murder" is slow. I have to disagree. I found the opening chapter just odd enough to be utterly intriguing. We begin by seeing into the killer's thoughts - a theme that continues throughout the book, dropping us clues to his identity, but never enough to name him.
Throughout the rest of the book, Mrs. Havig follows much the same style as in "Ready or Not" or "Noble Pursuits". She does spend considerable time describing Alexa's varied and unique wardrobe, but with one exception, it never seemed to bog down the story. Instead it gave a more defined image of the mystery author as we followed her from scene to scene.
Mrs. Havig also managed to be among the few mystery authors to announce the villain before I figured it out. I had my suspicions, but they were shallow and brief. Usually, I know who the villain is before the hero or heroine.
Mrs. Havig has proven before that she's good at writing believable characters. This book is no exception.
Alexa was well developed and relatable. By the end of the book, the reader was able to get to "know" her well. She's flawed like the rest of the world, but she has a kind heart and a likable personality. From her relationship with her family, to her reaction to the murders, to how she relates to other people, we see her character from all sides and angles.
Joe, the police officer that we see investigating the most, does seem less three-dimensional than Alexa. He was still well written though, as well as slightly unpredictable. His character seems to slowly emerge, almost as if from hiding.
As to my favorite character... That would be Alexa's brother, Wes. I liked his relationship with his sister, his compassion, and just his overall personality. Second favorite, is a tie between Joe and Alexa.
In conclusion, this book is a good mystery, with memorable characters and settings. Definitely worth reading