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Christmas is Murder: A Rex Graves Mystery (edition 2008)

by C.S. Challinor

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918132,676 (3.09)27
Member:keepps
Title:Christmas is Murder: A Rex Graves Mystery
Authors:C.S. Challinor
Info:Midnight Ink (2008), Kindle Edition, 203 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
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Christmas is Murder: A Rex Graves Mystery (Rex Graves Mysteries) by C.S. Challinor

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Rex Graves is a Scottish lawyer who has been invited to visit his mother's best friend, Mrs. Smithings, at her inn for Christmas. Shortly before he arrives, the first guest dies and soon another follows. Rex is determined to solve the mystery of the murders before it adversely affects Mrs. Smithings business or the health of any of his fellow guests. Thanks to a large snowstorm what ensues is your basic locked house mystery.

The characters here are mostly stock and thinly drawn. The plot is not particularly intriguing because we don't care enough about the people who die. This is intended as the first in a series and is the author's first book. Perhaps the rest will improve, but I don't think I'm going to take the chance of reading the second book. If you're a big fan of cozy mysteries though, this could be fine - the violence happens off stage. ( )
  JenJ. | Mar 31, 2013 |
This is great fun to read. The first book in the series has Scots QC Rex Graves (attorney for those of us in the US) visiting the home/motel of his mothers best friend for Christmas. Arriving in the middle of a snowstorm, Rex is greeted with a dead body and a cast of characters that are as diverse as they are interesting. With more bodies showing up, Rex needs to solve the mystery of who is killing the guests, and why? There are a couple of small "bumpy" spots in the story but on the whole I loved it and can't wait for the sequel to come out so I can continue to look at life with Rex. ( )
  bookswoman | Mar 31, 2013 |
Nice to throw a holiday themed mystery into the usual 'Christmas trash' romances. And here ends the reading of holiday books! ( )
  wwrawson | Mar 31, 2013 |
Fun lightweight mystery. ( )
  TanteLeonie | Mar 31, 2013 |
Christmas Is Murder is basically Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None in The Mousetrap's setting. Scottish barrister Rex Graves has been invited to spend Christmas at an inn in the south of England run by his mother's oldest friend. A heavy snow has cut off vehicular access from the village, so Graves arrives on foot to find that one of the guests has died tragically on the previous day. A second death soon follows. With no land or wireless telephone access to the village and no way for the police to reach the inn, Graves takes charge of the investigation.

The author adds nothing new to this much-used plot. All of the characters are two-dimensional. Their behavior is erratic and the dialogue is unfocused. I found unintended humor in some passages, such as when Graves, intending to be helpful, tries to distract another character from dwelling on the second death by asking that character to describe the scene of the first death. How much sense does that make? My recommendation is to stick with Christie and pass on this book. ( )
1 vote cbl_tn | Dec 11, 2010 |
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Book description
[Publisher Copy] Christmas in the English countryside -- what could be more charming? Not even a blizzard can keep Rex Graves away from Swanmere Manor, a historic hotel in East Sussex. But instead of Christmas cheer, the red-haired Scottish barrister finds a dead guest. Was it a stroke that killed old Mr. Lawry? Or an almond tart laced with poison?
When more guests die, all hopes for a jolly holiday are dashed. Worst of all, the remote mansion is buried under beastly snow. No one can leave. Confined with a killer, no one can enjoy their tea without suspicion and scrutiny. Rex takes it upon himself to solve the mystery, but the most intriguing evidence -- a burnt biography of President George W. Bush -- offers few clues. Could the killer be the sherry-swilling handyman? The gay antiques dealer with a biting wit? The quarreling newlyweds? Surely, it's not Helen D'arcy, the lovely lass Rex seems to be falling for . . .
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0738713597, Paperback)

Christmas in the English countryside -- what could be more charming? Not even a blizzard can keep Rex Graves away from Swanmere Manor, a historic hotel in East Sussex. But instead of Christmas cheer, the red-haired Scottish barrister finds a dead guest. Was it a stroke that killed old Mr. Lawry? Or an almond tart laced with poison?
When more guests die, all hopes for a jolly holiday are dashed. Worst of all, the remote mansion is buried under beastly snow. No one can leave. Confined with a killer, no one can enjoy their tea without suspicion and scrutiny. Rex takes it upon himself to solve the mystery, but the most intriguing evidence -- a burnt biography of President George W. Bush -- offers few clues. Could the killer be the sherry-swilling handyman? The gay antiques dealer with a biting wit? The quarreling newlyweds? Surely, it's not Helen D'arcy, the lovely lass Rex seems to be falling for . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:29:27 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Christmas is murder-- when you're stranded in East Sussex with a killer. When guests at a secluded Victorian hotel start dying, all hopes for a jolly holiday are dashed.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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