The Chesterfield Clue
by Gwyn Parry
Genre: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Print Length: 290 pages
Reviewed by Akram Herrak
An Austen-esque family drama and love triangle morphs into a classic whodunit in The Chesterfield Clue.
The Chesterfield Clue is a quick and highly entertaining read where the intricacies and amusing quirks of high-society meet murder. Settle in for a quiet evening with its fair share of thrills.
The story revolves around a family with six members: our main protagonist, his father The Captain, his wife Carrie, her mother Barbara, her father Shemp, and the housekeeper Juanita. Special attention is given to the details of their luxurious life: the mansion and estate are described and painted in full, beautiful detail, as are the days they spend together hosting parties and tasting wines.
But then again, something is off. Family feuds sour this beautiful life until it culminates in a murder that shakes the family to its very core. When the murder mystery rears its head, doubts rise, investigations ensue, and a haunted cat with a ghost from the past complicates the affair.
Kudos to author Gwyn Parry for what I consider a great success in suspense. This success is largely due to the impressive feat that is keeping the reader on their toes even when not much is going on. It takes a while for the story to get rolling: I didn’t like that too much at the beginning as I was unfamiliar with the characters and yet showered with details about their interactions, but I stuck with the book and was rewarded greatly for my patience. The picture gets clearer and clearer. Mild confusion gives way to genuine interest and fascination with the ordeal at the Chesterfield Mansion.
The Chesterfield Clue is written beautifully: a classical tone modernized for the contemporary reader, quoting Shakespeare in one sentence then swearing madly in the next. This mix proves to be most effective for a story set in a world that still hangs to the values of an old, long-gone gilded age. This clash of classical “seriousness” and more “goofy” elements finds itself in more aspects of the novel, and it’s always entertaining to witness and experience; like a dead mother in a cat’s body who loses none of her character and charm, and haunts the living with her wisdom and her own plans as well.
You like murder mysteries and have a quiet evening to spare? I can think of no better match than Gwyn Parry’s The Chesterfield Clue, a fun and short read with plenty of personality and excitement.
Thank you for reading Akram Herrak’s book review of The Chesterfield Clue by Gwyn Parry! If you liked what you read, please spend some more time with us at the links below.