Murder and Mayhem, O My! If you’ve been following my reviews for a while, you’ll know Murder at the Flamingo by Rachel McMillan is a little out of my reading comfort zone (as far as the time period and it being a murder mystery). So I am pleasantly surprised by how much I did enjoy this book!
The story is a great one that focuses a lot on the characters and not a whole lot on the actual murder, blood and grime, etc. Our main characters, Reggie and Hamish, are both looking for adventure and really trying to find themselves, each in their own way. Hamish is not the usual hero, but one I think many readers will love. Hamish deals with panic attacks and anxiety (mental health is addressed in such a loving way through Hamish’s character). Hamish is very relatable, sweet, bookish and a real gentleman. I really like Hamish’s love of The Hunchback of Notre Dame and the way he uses passages from the book to help calm his anxiety. I enjoyed Reggie’s character as well. She is very adventurous and independent. I didn’t like how Reggie has a boyfriend (who is back in her home town), but at the same time she is sort of developing a romance with another man.
Mystery and suspense readers will find much to love in the story of Luca (Hamish’s cousin) and his nightclub, where the mysterious murder takes place. I enjoyed the literary references in Murder at the Flamingo and reading about the pop culture of the time. This is published by a Christian publisher, but there isn’t any overt faith content (except characters visit a church and mention it as a safe haven for all religions) but it is still very clean and has Christian themes, such as sacrificial love.
Overall, this is a great read! I listened to part of it through an audiobook which I highly recommend, due to the narrator who does all of the different accents. Murder at the Flamingo presents wonderful themes of family loyalty (characters struggle with how far one should go in being loyal as compared to choosing one’s conscience), being the hero of one’s own story and learning to live in the moment.
Content: This is a clean read. I would rate it PG for some minor content. This is a murder mystery that takes place in nightclubs during the 1930s, so keep that in mind. Some examples of the content are: the main character deals with panic attacks and anxiety; references to alcohol; a man makes unwanted physical advances on a woman but is unsuccessful; a mention of the devil and hell; a mention of cursing, but the words aren’t actually written; a woman is a man’s mistress; violence and talk about the mob; a murder takes place; a lot of drinking and smoking in the nightclubs.
Rating: I give this book 3.5 stars.
Genre: Mystery; Historical Fiction; Romance
I want to thank The Fiction Guild, Rachel McMillan and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.
About the Author:
There is nothing better than exploring the world --near and far: whether with a notebook and passport at the ready or in the pages of a book.
I currently explore 1930s Boston in my noirish mysteries starring Hamish DeLuca and Reggie Van Buren set in the city's historic North End. My Sherlockian-inspired series featuring lady detectives Jem Watts and Merinda Herringford took readers around Edwardian-era Toronto.
My passion for all things Europe infuses my contemporary romances, including the Vienna-set Love in Three Quarter Time.
Stay awhile and explore. I'll always have new book recommendations as well as tips and tricks on how to find the world far away--or in your own backyard.
I live in Toronto, my favourite film is Master and Commander, I am obsessed with Hallmark Christmas movies, Broadway musicals and Starbucks.
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