“Oh relax,” Freddie groaned. “I need a minute. Besides, I don’t think you killed anyone. The police would have nabbed you by now. It doesn’t look like we made a run for it. Plus…I think you’d be bloodier.”
It’s New Year’s Eve, and Erica Bloom has decided it’s going to be a lovely evening, no matter what. She and her business partner/”BFF forever” Freddie are running security for a fabulous Great Gatsby themed gala at the positively posh Hemlock estate. So what if her ex, Grady, and his perky, perfect girlfriend will be attending? But when Freddie’s dog, Stanley, falls ill after lapping up the remnants of a dropped wine glass containing poison and Grady becomes the prime suspect, Erica and Freddie get sleuthing around the glitzy gathering to find the culprit, save Grady from going to jail, and get #justiceforstanley.
- Erica has a dry, subtly snarky wit and her solutions to the situations she often finds herself in are hilarious. And Freddie? I love him. He’s like that friend that’s slightly cynical and sometimes judgy, but always has your back and you can’t live without for fear your life would become a boring puddle of meh-filled mush.
The back cover copy of this novel states the story’s plot twist is “as bizarre as a game of Clue“. While Clue is and always will be my favorite game of all time, every game of it that I’ve ever played has been rather sedate in comparison to Ring In The Year With Murder. This novel’s energy is more on par with the game’s namesake movie, which was a beautifully madcap hour and a half of twists and reversals that was both exhausting and invigorating at the same time. The characters are quirky, especially Erica’s sly twin pseudoaunts. The scenery changes often, from the lavish Jazz-filled ballroom with women in luxurious flapper dresses and men (and pseudoaunts) in dashing tuxedos to dark, stately bedrooms to a snowy wooded wonderland lit with twinkly lights. The layout of the chapters is fun; some follow the events of New Year’s Eve as they unfold and some follow a very hungover Erica and Freddie the morning after the party on January 1st, as they wake up and try to piece together what happened before they passed out.
If you enjoy Clue (the movie or the game), if you love those screwball comedy films from the 30s and 40s, and if you are looking for a good mystery to read, Ring In The Year With Murder might be just the novel for you.