Title: Murder Most Austen
Author: Tracy Kiely
Release Date: September 4, 2012
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Rating: 4 out of 5
Elizabeth Parker is headed to England with her aunt Winnie for the Jane Austen festival which happens annually in Bath. On the plane, Winnie gets into an argument with a professor named Richard Baines, who claims to be an expert on Jane Austen but actually just proposes outlandish theories in order to get attention. Elizabeth and Winnie do their best to ignore him, but Aunt Winnie’s friend at the festival makes it her mission to tell off Professor Baines at every opportunity. However, when Professor Baines is murdered and suspicion falls squarely on Aunt Winnie’s friend, Elizabeth must step up to unmask a murderer once again.
One of the things I always mention about Tracy Kiely’s Elizabeth Parker mysteries is that, while there are elements of Jane Austen in them, they aren’t actually about Jane Austen. Therefore, anyone suffering from Austen fatigue would still enjoy them, as they’re fun and engaging mysteries. Clearly, that isn’t the case for Murder Most Austen; this time, the author takes the reader squarely into the heart of Austen fandom and, happily, it works quite well.
If you’re not a Jane Austen fan at all, you probably won’t appreciate Murder Most Austen, but now that the furor over everything Austen has died down, it’s easy to kick back and enjoy it. As always, the novel doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s lighthearted, yet the mystery is interesting and keeps the reader guessing through the twists and turns. Elizabeth is a delight, as always; she’s really the highlight of this series, as she’s smart and savvy.
Cozy mystery fans should definitely take note of this series. It’s interesting and the novels are very well-written. It’s not difficult to pick up this series, as Kiely ensures that readers don’t have to read the books in order. If you’re looking for a fast, fun read that’s effortless, Murder Most Austen is a great choice.
Other books by Tracy Kiely: