The Readaholics and the Poirot Puzzle
by Laura DiSilverio
Review by Gayle Surrette
NAL Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780451470843
Date: 01 December 2015 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Amy-Faye Johnson's brother, Derek, is finally getting his dream come true. He's opening his own pub, Elysium Brewing, where he'll get free rein to develop his own craft beers. Derek got financial backing from Gordon Marsh, which is why Amy-Faye is helping out as a bartender on opening night, as well as handling the event planning. Gordon has driven off a number of the new employees and Amy-Faye wants her brother's opening night to be a success.
However, there are wishes and then there is reality. Opening night sees one disaster after another. WOSC (Women Outing Serial Cheaters) is picketing because Gordon Marsh is involved with the pub and his ex is one of the founding members. The toilets back up. The kitchen has a fire. And as a topper, Gordon's body is found in the trash skip behind the pub. Unfortunately, just before the opening, Gordon and Derek had an actual fist fight. Naturally, Derek is considered the likely suspect for the murder.
Amy-Faye knows her brother is innocent and she's going to find the real killer. She and her friends in her book club, the Readaholics, join forces to look at the clues and try to figure out how they can add to the information they have. Many of them were at the opening, so they pool their memories to make a time line. Now they just need a way to ask questions of the people on their list of suspects. It does help that the Readaholics mostly read mysteries and the current one is Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express.
Filled with interesting characters and enough false leads and potential suspects to keep any mystery reader actively trying to solve the crime along with Amy-Faye and her friends. Since the central set of characters are mystery readers in a book club, there are plenty of references to other books the club members have read, their opinions on them, and how they relate to their current efforts to solve Gordon Marsh's murder and clear Derek. All of which certainly keep the pages turning.