Review for The Spring Cleaning Murders, by Dorothy Cannell

Ellie Haskell tackles spring cleaning at Merlin's Court, her home, as well as solving the murders of several charwomen in her village.

I really enjoyed this book. The characters were vivid and entertaining, and the list of suspects was lively and full of secrets. The absence of slapstick and the nice interweaving of plotlines made for an excellent read.

The plot, at first, seemed straightforward, but there was plenty of obfuscation, and by the end, I was pleasantly confused. Mrs. Malloy's subplot was a great addition to the book.

I really enjoyed the characters. Ellie tells it like it is to the killer at the end, which struck me as something not seen often--we're somehow supposed to infer the character flaws for ourselves most of the time. However, there's something deeply and viscerally satisfying in seeing a spade called a spade.

The twins were especially darling as a counterpoint to the adult situations going on over their heads, as I have a son that age right now.

I had expected a lighter level of writing when the book claimed it was a comedy. It turned out better than I expected, and I really enjoyed the book.

5 of 5 stars!

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