Date with Death
by Julia Chapman
Date with Death, and in fact the whole Dales Detective Series, was recommended to me by a Twitter friend. And then when I got the book and posted about it on Twitter, the author was lovely and responded. All of which made me want to read through the book quickly, but not too quickly. As it happened, life kind of got in the way and my reading time was interrupted so I had plenty of time to read and consider the book.
First off, let me say I know very little about English geography. For example, I’m pretty sure Manchester is on the coast near Liverpool, unless it’s really over where the maps say Newcastle is. And I was sure that Leeds was a quick drive from London, 90 minutes tops. So the book was a challenge for me from the beginning, at least in figuring out where places really are. Thank heaven for the atlas!
And while I’m here, let me mention the very nitpicky thing I noticed about the book. I couldn’t decide whether Tolpuddle was a Greyhound or a Weimaraner. He was referred to as both, which was difficult because they are not really similar looking dogs to me; their faces and heads are quite different. The illustration on the cover of my edition features a Weimaraner, so I think that’s what he is, but I’m still not really sure (illustrations are not always accurate). As I said, it’s nitpicky, but it is one of those things that bothered me reading the book.
Anyway, to the book. I instantly liked Delilah and I think I like Samson, but I’m not sure. Much of that will depend on what might or might not be revealed in later books in the series. I’m hesitant to really like him because I don’t want him to turn out to be a first-class jerk when the backstory is finally explained. So for now, Samson is nice enough to talk to in the Fleece, but I’m not going to be anywhere alone with him just yet.
The mystery itself was interesting. I was on the right track through the book, but I was not quite right in the end and that’s the best kind of mystery for me to read...the ones where I’m almost correct in my guess, but still not exactly right. It was a fun read, a bit more harrowing than most of the cozy mysteries I read, but certainly nothing that would give me nightmares or keep me awake if I stayed up too late to finish it.
The gang in Bruncliffe is a friendly bunch of characters, even though I might need to deck one or two of them if I met them in person. But most seem really nice and would be fun to have over for a game night. I am looking forward to the other books in the series. I hope they are just as good as this one.
One Bear’s Opinion: Five Cups of Strong Tea, and a big slice of only slightly squashed cake
Happy Reading Everyone,