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KILLER DATE
by Hope McIntyre
Piatkus, January 2009
345 pages
6.99 GBP
ISBN: 074993901X


Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

The latest novel by Hope McIntyre (also known as Caroline Upcher) takes her ghostwriter heroine, Lee Bartholomew, to Devon, a far cry from her exploits in the Hamptons on Long Island in her previous novel. Bartholomew's cousin, Gussie, is working in a restaurant when a customer dies and she ends up being fired. The dead woman was on a blind date, but her companion never turned up. Lee decides to investigate and discovers that the man who calls himself Mr. Wright may not be what he seems.

KILLER DATE was originally published in hardback as HOW TO COOK FOR A GHOST and I cannot say that I think the change of title is a particularly good idea.. It is, perhaps, more representative of the overall action in the novel, but McIntyre's previous books in this series were called HOW TO SEDUCE A GHOST and HOW TO MARRY A GHOST. It is always good to keep a series going, but I imagine that the publishers must have decided that the title did not work well enough.

As always, McIntyre has succeeded in writing a pleasant and enjoyable mystery novel. Some parts of the story are beginning to grate somewhat – for example, I now feel that I could do without hearing any more about Bartholomew’s on-off relationship with her ex-fiancé, Tommy – but, at the same time, it does add an extra splash of colour to the story. It is also interesting to be introduced to some more of Bartholomew’s family, with her somewhat ditzy cousin playing a central role in the story.

McIntyre creates an interesting picture of a rural Devon village. Rather than opting for the traditional bucolic scenes that one might imagine in such areas, we have murders, extramarital affairs and much more. Her insight into village life is sharp and her portrayal of the characters works well, even if some, such as the chef André, feel somewhat overdone.

Overall, a pleasant and fun read with some gripping scenes.

Reviewed by Luke Croll, March 2009

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)


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