Join BookBrowse today and get access to free books, our twice monthly digital magazine, and more.

Reviews of The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel

The Strings of Murder

by Oscar de Muriel

The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel X
The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    May 2016, 412 pages

    Paperback:
    May 2017, 416 pages

    Genres

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Kate Braithwaite
Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

The brutal slaying of a violinist in his home in 1888 sparks a locked room murder mystery investigated by two diametrically opposed Edinburgh detectives.

1888: a violinist is brutally murdered in his Edinburgh home. Fearing a national panic over a copycat Jack the Ripper, Scotland Yard send Inspector Ian Frey. Frey reports to Detective "Nine-Nails" McGray, local legend and exact opposite of the foppish English Inspector. McGray's tragic past has driven him to superstition, but even Frey must admit that this case seems beyond belief...

There was no way in or out of the locked music studio. And there are black magic symbols on the floor. The dead man's maid swears there were three musicians playing before the murder. And the suspects all talk of a cursed violin once played by the Devil himself.

Inspector Frey has always been a man of reason?but the longer this investigation goes on, the more his grasp on reason seems to be slipping...

Excerpt
The Strings of Murder

London on a November morning smelled of cesspools and stale alcohol from the pubs. I wrinkled my nose at the odours as I walked hastily towards Scotland Yard, dodging the half-frozen horse dung that peppered the streets.

Stench and turds were not the only foul thoughts in my head. While having breakfast I'd received a note from Wiggins, my assistant, urging me to go to headquarters. James Monro, the new commissioner, had demanded my immediate presence. I instantly knew that my career in the London police was over.

I made haste and found the hearing room gloomy as a grave. The place had wide windows but was dimly lit by a half-hidden sun so that, despite the hour, it seemed as though it was late in the evening.

I sat down and interlaced my fingers on the long table, waiting, but Monro kept his nose on the disarray of documents in front of him. I spoke only after the lapse of time that courtesy demanded: 'Excuse me, sir. You implied ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

The relationship between the two detectives and Oscar de Muriel's sparkling dialogue really elevate this murder mystery. Great wit and humor are on display as the cops gradually learn to appreciate each other's skills and intelligence, all the while sparring with great gusto. With such a colorful background, intriguing characters and a satisfyingly twisting plot, The Strings of Murder is a pleasure to read...continued

Full Review (555 words)

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access, become a member today.

(Reviewed by Kate Braithwaite).

Media Reviews

The New York Times Book Review
Hugely Entertaining.

Lovereading.co.uk
A great Victorian gothic romp. This should build into a lovely series.

Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. De Muriel matches the intricate mystery with a clever solution.

Booklist
Detailed historical context, spine-tingling occult overtones, and witty characterization create a gripping story. Fans of Alec Grecian's and Will Thomas' gritty Victorian tales will want to see more of Frey.

Kirkus Reviews
De Muriel's debut offers nonviolinists ghostly, ghastly apparitions, unappealing accounts of unspeakable pub meals, and a steady drip of Had-I-But-Known foreshadowing and backshadowing. A series seems inevitable.

Reader Reviews

Michael Haughton

The Strings of Murder by Oscar de Muriel
To the main character Mr. Frey he had received a note from Wiggins, his assistant, urging me to go to headquarters. James Monro, the new commissioner, had demanded my immediate presence. I deliberately started with this line cause it suited the ...   Read More

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book

The Old and New Towns of Edinburgh

In The Strings of Murder, Oscar de Muriel's historical crime novel set in Victorian times, detectives, Frey and McGray crisscross a city that has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1995. As someone who knows Edinburgh well - I was born and grew up there - I thoroughly enjoyed the novel. Abbeyhill, opposite the famous Palace of Holyrood, was the street where I lived until I was six years old. In the book, Frey and McGray lodge in the Georgian neoclassical splendor of the Edinburgh New Town, but their suspects and crime scenes carry them up and down the High Street of the Old Town that link the famous sites of Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace and Abbey.

Edinburgh Castle Edinburgh has been the capital city of Scotland since the ...

This "beyond the book" feature is available to non-members for a limited time. Join today for full access.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Read-Alikes

Read-Alikes Full readalike results are for members only

If you liked The Strings of Murder, try these:

  • See What I Have Done jacket

    See What I Have Done

    by Sarah Schmidt

    Published 2018

    About this book

    In this riveting debut novel, See What I Have Done, Sarah Schmidt recasts one of the most fascinating murder cases of all time into an intimate story of a volatile household and a family devoid of love.

  • The Convictions of John Delahunt jacket

    The Convictions of John Delahunt

    by Andrew Hughes

    Published 2016

    About this book

    Based on true events that convulsed Victorian Ireland, The Convictions of John Delahunt is the tragic tale of a man who betrays his family, his friends, his society and, ultimately, himself.

We have 6 read-alikes for The Strings of Murder, but non-members are limited to two results. To see the complete list of this book's read-alikes, you need to be a member.
More books by Oscar de Muriel
Search read-alikes
How we choose read-alikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" articles
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $45 for 12 months or $15 for 3 months.
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Join our inner reading circle, go ad-free and get way more!

Find out more


Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: The Demon of Unrest
    The Demon of Unrest
    by Erik Larson
    In the aftermath of the 1860 presidential election, the divided United States began to collapse as ...
  • Book Jacket: Daughters of Shandong
    Daughters of Shandong
    by Eve J. Chung
    Daughters of Shandong is the debut novel of Eve J. Chung, a human rights lawyer living in New York. ...
  • Book Jacket: Anita de Monte Laughs Last
    Anita de Monte Laughs Last
    by Xochitl Gonzalez
    Brooklyn-based novelist Xochitl Gonzalez is an inspiring writer to follow. At forty, she decided to ...
  • Book Jacket: Icarus
    Icarus
    by K. Ancrum
    The titular protagonist of K. Ancrum's young adult novel Icarus lives a double life that mixes the ...

BookBrowse Book Club

Book Jacket
Romantic Comedy
by Curtis Sittenfeld
A comedy writer's stance on love shifts when a pop star challenges her assumptions in this witty and touching novel.

Members Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    This Strange Eventful History
    by Claire Messud

    An immersive, masterful story of a family born on the wrong side of history.

  • Book Jacket

    The Stolen Child
    by Ann Hood

    An unlikely duo ventures through France and Italy to solve the mystery of a child’s fate.

Win This Book
Win Only the Brave

Only the Brave by Danielle Steel

A powerful, sweeping historical novel about a courageous woman in World War II Germany.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

F T a T

and be entered to win..

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.