Sunday, September 23, 2018

The Aladdin Trial by Abi Silver

The was an enjoyable book, complex and with great characters, and an excellently constructed plot.  The first half of the book grabbed my interest, and then for the last half I could not put it down until I had finished the story.  As murder mysteries go, this was a great one, really top notch.

Barbara Hennesey is in the hospital for a routine operation when she is found dead, apparently having been thrown from the twelfth floor of the hospital.  A Syrian refugee, working at the hospital as a custodian, is suspected and eventually arrested for the crime.  Constance Lamb is appointed as her lawyer and embarks on his defense, trying to determine exactly who murdered Ms. Hennesey.  In the process many characters are interviewed and and presented as possible culprits: Joe Hennesey, her son, the sleazy car salesman; Janice Hennesey, the somewhat inattentive daughter who inherits a million pounds from the estate of her mother; Barrister Brian, Ms. Hennesey's lawyer, who seems to have a private agenda; and Dr. Wolf, who performed her operation and seems to have something to hide.

I was reminded of Agatha Christie when reading such was the interwoven complexity of the plot and characters.  The author has a deft touch with characterization of the main characters, making them more than interesting, and the hard-hitting plot kept me guessing until the very last pages.  After taking half the book to set up the crime and the characters, the story turns into a courtroom drama, so there is that tension to add to the solving of the crime.

I found this book utterly gripping and a top-notch mystery.  One of my top ten books of the year.  Highly recommended.  5/5 stars.  Read this and other reviews of upcoming books at

Publication date: September 20, 2018

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