Title: Murder Takes the High Road
Author: Josh Lanyon
Publisher: Carina Press
Release Date: April 23rd, 2018
Genre(s): MM Romance Suspense/Contemporary/Thriller
Reviewed by: LenaRibka
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Librarian Carter Matheson is determined to enjoy himself on a Scottish bus tour for fans of mystery author Dame Vanessa Rayburn. Sure, his ex, Trevor, will also be on the trip with his new boyfriend, leaving Carter to share a room with a stranger, but he can’t pass up a chance to meet his favorite author.
Carter’s roommate turns out to be John Knight, a figure as mysterious as any character from Vanessa’s books. His strange affect and nighttime wanderings make Carter suspicious. When a fellow traveler’s death sparks rumors of foul play, Carter is left wondering if there’s anyone on the tour he can trust.
Drawn into the intrigue, Carter searches for answers, trying to fend off his growing attracton toward John. But as unexplained tragedies continue, the whole tour must face the fact that there may be a murderer in their midst—but who?
I think this book can make happy not only the fans of Josh Lanyon, but in the first place the lovers of the classic mystery genre a là Agatha Christie.
Some essential prerequisites are needed: a bunch of strangers, who are put together for a while. In OUR case it is a colorful mixed group of tourists on the bus trip ‘Tour to Die For’ for the fans of mystery author Dame Vanessa Rayburn. This tour takes place only once per year and leads the lucky participants through the beautiful landscape of Scotland, all well-known mystery places from Vanessa’s books and ends with an absolute highlight: the tour participants spend some days with their idol on her private island in her own castle.
Who wouldn’t want to enjoy this extraordinary tour, even not being a fan of a popular publicity-shy mystery author? For sure not Carter Matheson. And it doesn’t matter that the tour that was booked by Carter personally one year in advance has a little inconvenience – his ex is on this tour either. With his new boyfriend. So we have also an interesting triangle (as an essential prerequisite).
Or should I name it rectangle? Because…who could imagine? – a singe attractive insurance man in his best age joins the tour at the last minute. (I ask myself how did he manage to get a free place?!) John Knight.
- And what a surprise – he is not only good looking, he is obviously gay!
And of COURSE we have a murder case, a bad weather at the end, no telephone connection to the mainland, and MANY SUSPECTS, and not least, picturesque landscape, charming little villages and interesting locations of historically rich Scotland .
I really enjoyed this new novel by one of my favorite MM Romance writers. It is a nice cosy murder mystery, don’t expect a cold shiver running down your spine while reading it, but be prepared to find some funny and of course hot moments. It has REALLY all good elements that defines a potentially successful novel in the genre. I can’t even explain why I didn’t enjoy it much more. But for now I don’t even know if I’m going to read the next book in the series.
My recognized issues: there were many names of the travelers, I found myself not be able to memorize them all at once, especially during reading the first half of the book I had to turn back (again and again) to remind me who was who. That was a bit annoying. There were some moments that could be cleared easily (IMO), but they weren’t. I don’t like when a healthy logic has to be sacrificed in order to artificially stir the things up or make a situation more thrilling. I HAD fun with Carter and John together, but I still don’t know what to think about John and I can’t say that I definitely want to know more about their relationship. I also wasn’t THAT tied to the story itself. I could put it down every second and not to come back for a whole time.
My incomprehensible issues: I just haven’t got myself emotionally attached to this book, and I don’t have a perfect explanation for it for you.
But it is Josh Lanyon. So, of course it is a recommended read.