Governess Flora Maguire is on her way home on the S.S. Minneapolis to England from New York after the wedding of her employer’s daughter. Conscious of her status among a complement of only first class passengers on the ship’s maiden voyage, she avoids the dining room on the first night, and meets the charming Bunny Harrington on deck. Flora finds the body of a man at the bottom of a companionway, but when his death is pronounced an accident, she is not convinced, and, having experienced her own tragedy as a child in the form of her mother’s disappearance, is driven to find out the truth. Flora starts asking questions, but when she is threatened, followed by a near drowning during a storm and a second murder, the hunt is now on in earnest for a killer. Time is running out as the Minneapolis approaches the English coast. Will Flora be able to protect Edward, her charge, as well as herself, and discover who the murderer is? Is her burgeoning relationship with the handsome Bunny Harrington only a shipboard dalliance, or something more?
At some point while reading Murder On The Minneapolis, I wrote to Anita Davison via Twitter and told her how much I was enjoying her book. I just had to share it. I hadn’t even finished it, but I knew it would be one that I would highly recommend.
If you’ve read Murder On The Orient Express and Death On the Nile by Agatha Christie, you might already know what this is about: a mysterious murder and lots of suspects forced to spend some time together. The main character is Flora Maguire, a young governess in charge of bringing Eddy -her “pupil”- home. The S.S Minneapolis is a fascinating ship, but Flora thinks she doesn’t belong there. All the passengers are incredibly rich and seem to be keeping secrets. And then she find the body of a man at the bottom of the stairs, but everyone seems to think it was an accident… But was it?
As you can imagine, there’s a lot of people on the ship, so there are many characters to learn about (and at first it was a bit confusing). However, they were all well-crafted and the author took its time with characterization so you got to distinguish them all, with their peculiarities and weird personalities. My favorite was Eddy, although he doesn’t appear that much, but I’m pretty sure that he will have a bigger part in the next installments.
I couldn’t help but think that Agatha Christie would be quite proud of this book. It just pushed all the right buttons for me: great characters, an amazing setting and a wonderful mystery where you can’t trust anyone. Don’t worry, you won’t guess the ending. It’s all so twisty and fun, with hidden motives and evil characters… a delightful beginning for a series that I will definitely keep reading. Could this be a new favorite series? It definitely seems like it.
What I liked the most
Maaaany things. For instance, I loved our main character, Flora. She was curious and brave and she would make a great detective (I hope she is in the future). The “love story” was sweet and felt completely natural, I liked how it developed slowly and in a realistic way. And well, the mystery was just amazing, full of twists and turns.
What I didn’t like that much
To be honest, the only thing I don’t like about Murder on the Minneapolis is the cover. In my opinion, that woman doesn’t seem as lovely as Flora. Anyway, you can see I don’t have many complaints about this one… What are you waiting for?
Murder on the Minneapolis is a lovely cozy novel that is both fun to read and intriguing, perfect for fans of classic mysteries and Agatha Christie.
Aria, 2016 – Purchased Copy