Review: Murder by Candlelight by Faith Martin

Murder by CandlelightMurder by Candlelight by Faith Martin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

**3.5-stars rounded up**

Murder by Candlelight is a Historical Cozy Mystery set in the village of Maybury-in-the-Marsh, in the Cotswolds, in 1924.

Arbie Swift is an author, who has found new found success after the publication of his book, The Gentleman’s Guide to Ghost-Hunting. He’s the kind of famous now, where since he’s an expert in all things ghost,has individuals seeking him out, asking for assistance with their own hauntings.

For example, he gets asked to the Old Forge, where the lady of the house, Amy Phelps, believes she is being haunted by a spectre. Arbie should know what to do, right?

Hesitant at first, both with his new-found fame, and with the idea that he can actually help Amy with her problem, Arbie finally agrees to go stay at the Old Forge. After all, it could provide good content for his next book.

Unfortunately, while Arbie is there, Amy is murdered. Now Arbie finds himself in the unlikely position of detective, along with his dear friend, Val.

As the two dig into Amy’s life and family, they discover all sorts of potential suspects and motives. It’s a race against the clock as they try to discover the identity of the killer, supernatural or not, before anyone else falls victim…

I have been in such a mood for Cozy Mysteries lately. I’m not sure what it is, the changing of the seasons, or the amount of stress that I have been under at work and in my life, but either way, I am eating them up.

I picked this one up on a whim and devoured it in a day. I loved the quaint setting and Arbie as a main character. I think this story set-up a perfect jumping off point for a potentially long-running series.

As with many other Mystery series, I feel like this is the kind of story where you would just get more and more attached to the characters as the installments add up. It also had a distinct Christie vibe, which really worked for me.

I loved that Arbie was an author of a ghost-hunting book, and whether or not he truly believes in all that, is something you’ll have to discover for yourself upon reading. However, whether he does or not, it certainly sets him up to meet a lot of interesting people.

I also really enjoyed the relationship between Arbie and Val, which definitely deserves some more attention. I’m not sure if there are plans for this to be a series, or not, but I certainly hope so. I would be genuinely excited to continue on.

I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys Cozy Mysteries, particularly if you enjoy Historical Cozy Mysteries, Mysteries set in a small town/village, or even if you are just a fan of Agatha Christie’s work.

I feel like Martin did a great job plotting this story, and keeping the Reader engaged, while also creating likable, believable characters.

Thank you to the publisher, HQ Digital, for providing me with a copy to read and review. I truly hope this isn’t the last I see of Arbie and Val!!

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