Monday 16 December 2019


The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a book I found during my thrift store adventures with hubby. It's also my first PD James book, and it most certainly won't be my last.

Here's what I thought about the four stories...


This is an interesting story told through the eyes of a grieving widow who also happens to be a bestselling crime novelist and was in the Air Force. It's about the time she was invited to spend Christmas with the grandmother she barely knew and a cousin she didn't know...

I really enjoyed the narrative, mood and the mystery at the core of everything. It's not a straightforward situation, but one that begs to be solved and all responsible for the crime to be punished. It's more an echo of how the world was after so much was lost to war, and how sometimes blood really is thicker than water.

Also, the nice twist right at the end is really genius. Loved it.


Wow. This was so wickedly clever in its execution. Everything starts out semi-normal. I mean, the creepiness exudes from the main character pretty early on. And by the time I got to the last page... That twist! 😳

Gabriel Ernest happens to stop by a building from his sorbid past. A place where an awful crime happened and he had the chance to set the record straight. But really, that's barely scratching the surface about what's really going on.

The conundrum Gabriel found himself in while he tells his story is one most of us would have no trouble sorting out. Yet, there's something very selfish and immoral about this guy.

This is another awesome story.


Well, I knew arsenic would make an appearance sooner or later. 😄

When Adam Dalgliesh's godfather asks him to investigate a crime that happemed a long time ago because otherwise he won't accept an inheritance, the Chief Superintendent agrees. And finds some very curious things...

While I enjoyed this story, it didn't have the intensity of the previous two. I didn't feel as intrigued by the characters, or attached to do the mystery. It's still very well written and has an unexpected result that I really liked.


This is another story featuring Adam Dalgliesh, but this time he's a Sergeant.

On his way to his aunt's cottage for Christmas, a man leaps out onto the road and asks for his help in finding a phone. Apparently, his uncle who lives in Harkerville Hall, has committed suicide.

But when Adam gets there, he finds several clues that don't add up...

I enjoyed the murder-mystery vibe of this one. A cop finds himself inside an old house with a strange family that seems to be hiding something. The deeper he delves, the more he discovers that someone is lying.

This crime/mystery Christmasy short story collection is just what I hoped it would be. It's quite disturbing, but also fun. It's full of unreliable narrators, old buried secrets, weird families, an intriguing crime novelist, a detective who knows his stuff, and murder most foul.

The mention of Agatha Christie and Sherlock Holmes was also a very cool way to pay homage to the mystery/crime writers who paved the way.

Great collection! 🕵

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