The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is perfectly timed for the Halloween season, a Gothic Groundhog Day thriller with a twist as our hero starts each new day in a different one of the house guests attending a week-long country manor house party that ends with a big ball celebrating Evelyn Hardcastle’s birthday. A celebration cut short by Evelyn’s murder and our hero, Aiden, must solve her murder in order to escape this endless mystery.

It’s ingenious in a way. How better to solve a mystery than to inhabit different witnesses, seeing what they see, experiencing what they experience, and always acting to change the outcome. But it’s complicated because our hero is not the only one trying to solve the murder and escape, so collaborating is counter-productive. What then does it mean when someone collaborates. Do they really want to help or to sabotage? So much to ponder.

I think The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle is ingenious. It’s far more original than “Gothic Groundhog Day” sounds. It’s so incredibly original that I found myself more caught up in the device than the plot. It also became so damn complicated–not so I couldn’t follow, but so that I thought it got tedious. It was a constant and then this happened and then this happened. I began not to care.

However, I am not much into the supernatural. For people who really are into Gothic thrills and complex skullduggery that will pull a new zombie rabbit of a hat (there are no zombies) then this book will be perfect for them.

I received a copy of The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle from the publisher through NetGalley.

Advertisements