Dressed for Death by Julianna Deering - Ideal for Fans of ITV's Marple or Grantchester

Friday, May 20, 2016

Dressed for Death

About the Book:
Author: Julianna Deering
Publisher: Bethany House
Source: Publisher Provided
Publication Date: 2016
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Series: A Drew Farthering Mystery, book 4
Genre: Fiction; Historical, Mystery
Rating: 5 out of 5 

When Julianna Deering released Murder at the Mikado, I was certain we’d see the last of proper English gentleman Drew Farthering. Sad as it was, I was resigned (in a good place) to this because the story ended in a wonderful kind of way. Much happiness was mine (and likely many other readers) when the author announced there’d be not only one additional novel, but two. That was a happy day indeed. The first of those two novels released a couple of months back, and this story is the result of that winning announcement.  

Married life is good for Drew Farthering and his American bride, Madeline. For their sixth-month anniversary, Madeline ropes Drew into attending a regency house party hosted by the parents of Drew’s school chum. Needless to say, the idea of dressing in frills and 100-year-old costumes doesn’t appeal to Drew, but for Madeline he’s willing to do anything. With his best friend, Nick at his side, Drew’s knack for mystery again flairs up when the fiancée of his friend, Talbot Cummins, dies under mysterious circumstances.

Was it an accident or murder? Further complicating things is the arrest of Tal’s father, Mr. Cummins, a man Drew once respected now accused of dabbling in the drug trade, which leads Drew into a mystery that tangles deeper than he’d ever imagined.

As always, revisiting the world of the dashing Drew Farthering is a rare delight. No secret has been made of my crush on Drew, and concealing that now isn't something I'm prepared to begin. (I don’t mind saying the #WeHeartDrew hashtag should be a trending thing.) Set in the 1930s England, these novels are about as period authentic as I’d ever be able to imagine this era being. From the crisp, elegant language (including Drew calling Madeline “darling” *insert all the heart eye emojis*) to the settings, and afternoon tea, everything is spot-on lovely. 

If you enjoy visits to yesteryear, no one does historical escapism quite like Julianna Deering. If you were worried that a fourth book would get caught in a rut (because of the same setting/characters), you’ve nothing to fear. Everything is shaken up because of the trip into Regency era playacting. Plus, there are lots of Jane Austen references, which is always a bonus, right? In short, this novel is a delight from beginning to end. It does take its time in setting up the mystery (meaning there's a lot of purposeful and conversational sleuthing for clues rather than "action"), but it's never a boring journey.
If you like Marple, Grantchester or any cozy British mystery series, this one is dripping with snazzy British charm. From the accents (which you can totally "hear" because this is that well written) to the art deco cover design that is perfection, you're sure to enjoy Drew's latest adventure. It's one not to be missed.  
BOOK REVIEW | Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering

Synopsis: Drew and Madeline Farthering celebrate their six-month anniversary by attending a fancy Regency era costume party. Drew is glad to see Talbot Cummins, an Oxford classmate, and his fiancée, Alice Henley, though many present seem worried about the couple. Everyone's concerns are realized when, at the concluding grand ball, Alice dies of an overdose of cocaine. Tal refuses to believe she took the stuff intentionally, and Drew is determined to find out if her death was an accident or murder.

Drew is shocked and disillusioned when the police arrest Tal's father and reveal that the man has been smuggling drugs into the country for the past twenty years. Reeling from the death of his fiancée and the revelation about his father, Tal begs Drew to find out what's going on. Drew, now questioning his own ability to see people as they really are, does so reluctantly, not ready for the secrets he's about to uncover--or the danger he'll bring down on everyone he holds dear. – Goodreads 

Coming Next from Julianna Deering:  Drew and Madeline go up to Yorkshire to investigate mysterious happenings at Bloodworth Park Lodge. - Goodreads, 2017 

Sincere thanks to the publisher for providing a complimentary copy of this book for reviewing purposes. My apologies to the author, and the publisher (sorry, Amy!) for the delay in publishing this review.


  1. I'm so glad you liked the book. Isn't Drew fabulous in Regency kit?

    Just FYI, there will be at least two more Drew books, not just one. I'm excited! :D

    Thank you for the wonderful review.

    1. OhMyGosh! How did I not know there'd be TWO more books in this series! Color me excited, DeAnna. :) Thank you for visiting.

  2. I'm sure I would enjoy this series, but haven't got started on it yet. I do have the first book, so I need to get started.

    1. Yay! Happy reading, Kay. I do hope you enjoy them. :)


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