Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Strangling on the Stage by Simon Brett

When Jude loaned a piece of furniture to the local dramatic company, she had no idea it would lead her into playing a part in the play and solving a murder...

Severn House and Net Galley allowed me to download a copy of this for review (thank you).  You can get a copy after February 1st.

Jude and her neighbor, Carole, are good friends.  They're both single.  Jude is an extrovert and Carole is an introvert.  When she mentions the play to Carole, she thinks it's nonsense, but helps her get the chaise longue to the play location.

The characters really are characters.  They have egos, attitudes, and love to manipulate people.  The stuff going on behind the scenes is a lot more dramatic than the what's happening on the stage.  Two thirds of the fights are acting, not real.  They like to set the stage in life as well as in their performances.

When the main sponsor and actress walks off the set, Jude is approached to take her place.  It's a small part and she's happy to do it.  Carole is cynical and thinks she's silly.  There's nothing silly about murder.

I'm not sure what I think about the ending of this book.  The cops decide it was suicide; Jude and Carole prove it was not.  The part that bothered me was that they played judge and jury and let it be. The question that floats through my mind is:  "What would you do in the same circumstances?"  I still haven't answered it.

Happy reading!

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