The Santa Klaus Murder Book Review

The Santa Klaus Murder Book Review

Title: The Santa Klaus Murder
Author: Mavis Doriel Hay
Published: 2015, Poisoned Pen Press
No. of Pages: 252
Cover Price: $12.95 Paperback, $9.95 Kindle

The Poisoned Pen Press has resurrected a series of British mysteries that were originally written in the 1930s. The Santa Klaus Murder was written by Mavis Doriel Hay in 1936, and has all the elements of a good, old fashioned suspense thriller. The books in the series have been compared to classics such as those written by Agatha Christie; they are well-written, clean with no sex or graphic violence, and keep readers guessing until the end. In this novel, as the dysfunctional Melbury family meets for Christmas at the estate of Sir Osmond Melbury in Flaxmere, Sir Osmond is discovered murdered in his study. As the police investigate, their main suspect is Oliver Whitcombe, a guest who was wearing a Santa suit at the request of Sir Osmond. Sir Osmond’s three daughters are there, as well as his son, and since he is getting older and has some medical problems, his children have been curious about the will. Sir Osmond did not approve of his oldest daughter’s marriage, and it is thought she may not be included in the will. Another daughter married a man to please her father, and has been miserable. Whitcombe is Sir Osmond’s choice for his youngest daughter, Jennifer, but she is in love with Philip Cheriton and is resigned to give up her inheritance to marry him.

While the story may seem a bit complicated, Hay has made it very understandable and easy to read, weaving humor and British scenarios throughout. As the story goes on, readers will enjoy the suspense, and also the interesting and odd characters that make up the Melbury family. Hay did an excellent job creating her characters, and they seem very real, bringing new meaning to the much used phrase “you can’t pick your relatives.”

For readers who are looking for a light, fun suspense novel, The Santa Klaus Murder is a good choice. It is a great read for the Christmas season, not only because it takes place over the holiday, but also because even avid readers are busier at Christmas time and this novel goes fast.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

This book may be purchased at Amazon:
The Santa Klaus Murder: A British Library Crime Classic (British Library Crime Classics)
The Santa Klaus Murder: A British Library Crime Classic (British Library Crime Classics Book 11)

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