Mini Reviews – Murder to Music by Margaret Newman (1959)

The current lockdown means lots of reading time and that has led to my being very far behind on my reviews. To catch up I’ll be writing several more condensed reviews and mix them in from time to time. Now, on to my first mini review.

The Metropolitan Choir, under the direction of Assistant Director Owen Burr, is performing Evan Tredegar’s latest composition at the Royal Festival Hall. As the performance ends the music comes to a crescendo of sound, and in that moment Burr is shot dead. Burr has alienated many within the choir with his discourteous comments and thoughtless behavior, resulting in a long list of suspects. 

Superintendent Simon Hudson attended the concert and is assigned to the case. Unfortunately, he’s also dating one of the sopranos, Delia Jones, and quickly puts her questioning their relationship by questioning her innocence. The spat doesn’t last long and soon Delia is providing helpful tidbits to assist Hudson with his case. 

But then a tenor goes missing and is Tredegar attacked. There may be more than hurt feelings at work here.

The plot is intriguing, the characterizations and relationships fairly well done. However, Newman gives away the identity of the murderer and their motive, with multiple easily spotted events and statements. Now normally that wouldn’t really bother me, but it happened so early on that the rest of the story felt like one long anticlimax. Newman could have used it to her advantage, using it as a sort of cat and mouse game, buuuut she didn’t.

In short, this was just an ok kind of read for me.

My Judgment – 3/5

Prior Rulings – Kate @ Cross Examining Crime

Vintage Mystery Extravaganza –  Vintage Themes 2015 – Bingo: Read one book set in the entertainment world

Calendar of Crime Reading Challenge – December #4: Christmas 

Source – Review Copy (Agora Books)

4 thoughts on “Mini Reviews – Murder to Music by Margaret Newman (1959)

    1. No problem. It could have been much better. I really think Newman could have taken advantage of that early “reveal” and turned it into an interesting inverted mystery.

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