Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Book Review: Murder in Greenwich Village by Liz Freeland (Louise Faulk Mysteries #1)

Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Strong characters, interesting mystery
Cons: One niggle, pacing
The Bottom Line:
Murder in the past
What happened to the roommate?
Intriguing debut

The Murdered Roommate

Last year, one of my favorite books was by Liz Ireland, a new to me author.  As I was investigating this author, I realized she’d written three historical mysteries under the pen name Liz Freeland.  Intrigued, I picked up the first, Murder in Greenwich Village.

It’s the summer of 1913, and Louise Faulk has been living in New York City for six months.  She’s enjoying life in the big city after growing up in a small town in Pennsylvania.  She’s got a job at a publishing company thanks to her aunt, and she’s renting an apartment with Callie, a model who is trying to break onto Broadway.

One evening, Louise and Callie return home to discover that Callie’s cousin, Ethel, who had been staying with them for several weeks, has been murdered in their apartment.  When the police bring in a friend of Louise’s from home for the crime, Louise sets about trying to figure out who really did it.  But why would anyone want to kill Ethel?

The book doesn’t waste much time jumping into the story, introducing us to Louise and Callie not too long before they find Ethel dead.  However, the pace was a bit off at times.  Which isn’t to say it wasn’t a good book.  As Louise investigates, she finds a few surprises about Ethel along the way to the climax.  I did feel like one thing was never quite resolved to my satisfaction.  Louise had reached one conclusion, but I don’t buy it as being the right one.  But that could just be me.

Louise is a great character, and I enjoyed getting to know her here.  The book set up quite an interesting character arc for her, and I’m curious to see where things go from here.  The suspects were just as intriguing, and the rest of the regulars are a fun and entertaining bunch.

The book is more serious than I was expecting.  It fits given where the story goes, but I just wasn’t expecting it so it threw me a bit at first.  Know that the book does delve into some topics that the cozies I normally read avoid.  This is more a traditional mystery than a pure cozy.  As long as you are expecting it, you’ll be fine.

Someday, I will get to visit New York City in real life.  When I do, I will feel like I know the history thanks to several historical mysteries I’ve read set there over the years.  This is another great one that brings the city of 1913 to life.

I will definitely be visiting Louise again.  I loved the characters I met in Murder in Greenwich Village, and I want to know what happens to them next.

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