The Strings of Murder, Oscar de Muriel


The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel (2015)

Genres: Mystery, Historical Fiction, Thriller, Horror

Format: Paperback

Pages: 407

Reading Time: 06/03/16 – 25/03/16


This novel was one that I had my eye on for a while, the blurb didn’t give away too much but it did imply a good mystery:

‘Edinburgh, 1888. A virtuoso violinist is brutally killed in his home. Black magic symbols cover the walls. The dead man’s maid swears she heard three musicians playing before the murder.

But with no way in or out of the locked practice room, the puzzle makes no sense…’

This immediately hooked me and had me wanting to join in on the journey of the mystery. This novel did comprise the perfect elements for a crime thriller; employees that hate each other, a small community of suspects and the many questions. However, I felt that these were all a little too obvious in their conformity to the genre.

I was a little disappointed that the mystery was hyperbolised on the blurb, it made it seem a lot more dramatic than it actually was. I was really pulled in and engaged at the start of this story, but the middle lost me a bit and queued me into a reading slump. Before reading this book I was averaging about a book a week, but this really slowed me down and took me about three weeks to read. I do also partly attribute this to having to write a dissertation, a script and another essay.

Nearing the end of this book I found it suitably creepy and was glad I was not reading it in an empty house – so it wins back some points there. I read the last hundred pages in just over an hour, so it definitely gripped me again nearer the end. I would probably read the sequel, but it won’t be my priority with the to-be-read pile I have.

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