Well, I'm all in favour of the limelight being on senior citizens and this book sounded like a ripping yarn, so how could I not read it? Set in a luxury retirement complex that boasts woodlands, lakes with ducks, a jigsaw room and a jacuzzi for arthritis purposes, it was certainly an unusual setting. The author's first novel, his day job being a producer of and appearing in, television game shows, the die was cast for the type of read before me.
The story centres around four rather stereotypical older folk who gather every Thursday to discuss old unsolved murder cases. The beautiful setting of their community comes under threat as a shifty developer wants to build flats on the land. Fortunately for them, the businessman is found murdered by a blunt instrument. So a real life murder investigation begins.
The story is lighthearted and a gentle tale in the style of a British caper, with the idiosyncrasies of well-off retired folk in pursuit of truth. Despite their upbringing they show how modern they are, for example, by referring to a female police officer as a PC, following a discussion saying why she is not a WPC. Other twenty-first century observations include gay characters and ethnic diversity. There is definitely nothing offensive in this book.
Very easy to read although at times the confusing head hopping of the characters really slows the pace. Written in first and third person perspectives, the diary chapters add nothing to the story other than to pad it out. Despite this, the book is full of English charm, a cosy mystery with an enjoyable broad appeal and at times, quite touching. Lots of red herrings and I can't remember who the murderer was, but it doesn't really matter. I expect to see a film very soon. Yay for senior citizens!
Published by Penguin 3 September 2020. Paperback version on 31 May 2021.