Death at the Seaside by Frances Brody | Book Review

Death at the Seaside by Frances Brody

It’s nice to finally get stuck back into
reading and reviewing books after a few hectic weeks of uni and placement! A
couple of months back, I got an email from Clara Diaz at Little, Brown Book
Group asking if I wanted to be part of a blog tour for Death at the Seaside by Frances
I had a look into the book and in the end, I decided to go for it
and have a read outside of my normal comfort zone. I’ve never read anything by
Brody before this novel, so the characters and her writing style were all new
to me, but it was a book that I thoroughly enjoyed for a ridiculous number of
reasons. The cover is absolutely gorgeous and I really think it reflects the era
of the novel.

The story is a pretty simple one at first
sight. Kate Shackleton, the hero of Brody’s previous novels, is feeling a
little bit worse for wear and wants to take a break from her job as a private
investigator. She heads to Whitby in Yorkshire to spend some time with a school
friend and the mother of her god-daughter, Felicity. When she arrives, she
decides to reminisce a little and revisits the jewellery store where her late
husband, a wartime fatality, bought her engagement ring. She discovers the shop
owner dead in the backroom and finds herself involuntarily caught up yet
another mystery. In the meantime, Felicity has vanished completely; as an
audience we learn that she’s gone, with her boyfriend, in search of her
long-lost dad, a dad she knows very little about. It later emerges that the
dead jeweller has links back to Alma, leaving a very interesting case in Kate’s
very capable hands. I’ll stop there with my little summary of the story as it’s
one of those that you actually have to read yourself to truly appreciate (and
no-one likes being spoiled!)

The characters are incredibly likeable and I
could definitely see myself picking up some of her other books as a
consequence. Luckily, I didn’t need to have read any of her others to
understand what was going on here. I found myself instantly attached to Kate
and loved her quick witted personality and loved everyone else as well- I found
the chapters involving Felicity a little less conclusive than the others and
would have liked to have a little more from her perspective. The writing style,
and consequently the storyline, is particularly easy to follow and by no means
sacrifices the prestige of the writing itself. I find myself judging a book by
how the story progresses; this one had little titbits of information released
at a time, which I definitely preferred and the ending itself made sense and
didn’t have any fateful plot gaps which befall so many other novels. It kept me
guessing as to who the perpetrator was right until the end- my favourite kind
of story- and it wasn’t an ending which made me go “HOW? WHAT? WHY?” My absolute
‘tell’ for a terrible ending – I was very pleased to not have that tell, here!

I’d like to thank Clara at Little, Brown Book
Group for my paperback copy, I’m so chuffed to have had the opportunity to read
and review such a fabulous book. I’d definitely recommend that you give it a go
if you enjoy classy, sophisticated texts with an essence of crime. This text is
definitely one that you read all snuggled up on the sofa with a cup of tea (in
the finest bone china teacups) in one hand and a cucumber sandwich in the other.
The perfect easy read for any book lover.

3.5/4 out of 5.