This week’s BotW Death at the Opera and also is a bit of a compare and contrast. I read of Gladys Mitchell’s Mrs Bradley Mysteries last week – this one I loved and the other I could barely get through. As I didn’t read a huge amount last week – and two of them were books I’m reviewing for Novelicious (which I can’t preempt here) – I’ve made Death at the Opera my book of the week. Death at the Opera ticks a lot of my boxes – it’s a murder mystery set in a girls school – but Mrs Bradley is a bit different to a lot of the Golden Age Sleuths. She’s going to track down whodunnit, but she’s not necessarily going to hand them over to the authorities when she does. And that’s what makes her interesting – she wants to know, but often without having a yearning for justice for the victim – she’s more detached and curious than some of the other dectectives of the time.
Death at the Opera is fulled with interesting and intriguing characters, some of whom have very modern attitudes, and a twisty turny plot that I didn’t work out until right at the end. I absolutely zipped through it and went straight on to another Mrs Bradley from the to-read pile (I picked up three from the charity shop a couple of months back) – and what a contrast that was. I really struggled with Come Away, Death. I didn’t like the characters or the setting and I found it really difficult to get into. I finished it, but only just – and only because I liked the Death at the Opera so much I was hoping it would improve. But I guess when a series is so long running there’s bound to be a few duds. Hey ho.