I enjoy a good murder mystery and really fancied reading this, as it’s set in the 1930s in a theatre. The look of the paperback is great too – a striking cover, plus the feel of the paper is perfect and the font is a good size. (I do hate a tiny print!) So, top marks so far, but what of the content?
The story centres on Robert ‘Bertie’ Carroll going to the Palace Pier Theatre in Brighton, where one of his plays (Murder by Association) is being performed. However, during the show, one of the cast is murdered. Luckily, Bertie is accompanied by his old school pal Detective Chief Inspector Hugh Chapman, who immediately starts investigating…
I enjoyed getting to know the cast and to see the dynamic between them all during the rehearsal. All the characters are brilliant, I loved them. The whole theatre setting is wonderful, the pier adding to the atmosphere in a way that a West End theatre wouldn’t have done.
One tiny criticism is that there’s a bit too much description in some parts, but that’s my own personal tastes and I tend to be critical of long descriptive passages in any book.
I love the humour in the book and there’s great dialogue too. It’s well-paced and like any good book in this genre, you have fun trying to work out “whodunnit” from the clues and interviews with the suspects throughout. It certainly had me guessing.
Bertie is the best character, I loved him and would like to read more books with him in the starring role. His double act with Hugh is good fun too. I enjoyed Death on the Pier and would definitely read more books written by Jamie West.
The Palace Pier Theatre.
Renowned murder mystery playwright Bertie Carroll turns real life detective when his leading lady is shot and killed on stage, in full view of an unsuspecting audience.
Once the curtain falls and the applause subsides, the horrible truth begins to dawn on the cast of suspects backstage. But as motives, secrets and old rivalries begin to come to light, the murderer is still waiting in the wings.
With the help of Chief Detective Hugh Chapman, an old friend from school, Bertie must put his amateur sleuthing skills to the test to unravel the ultimate whodunnit.
The debut novel from Jamie West is set in and around The Palace Pier Theatre in Brighton, a lost theatre, lovingly recreated.