Friday, July 20, 2018

Book Review, Giveaway: The Girl in the Gallery - The London Murder Mysteries #2 by Alice Castle

The Girl in the Gallery

by Alice Castle

Amazon US / UK B&N

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to Dulwich…

It’s a perfect summer’s morning in the plush south London suburb, and thirty-something Beth Haldane has sneaked off to visit one of her favorite places, the world-famous Picture Gallery.
She’s enjoying a few moments’ respite from juggling her job at prestigious private school Wyatt’s and her role as single mum to little boy Ben, when she stumbles across a shocking new exhibit on display. Before she knows it, she’s in the thick of a fresh, and deeply chilling, investigation.

Who is The Girl in the Gallery? Join Beth in adventure #2 of the London Murder Mystery series as she tries to discover the truth about a secret eating away at the very heart of Dulwich.

My Rating:

Favorite Quotes:

Katie wrinkled her brow. She and Beth were among the few that could pull off this feat in Dulwich, since Botox had become a hobby of the mummying classes.

Zoe was a dream babysitter, one of those swotty girls who’d been liberated from terminal uncoolness by J. K. Rowling’s wondrous invention, Hermione Grainger, patron saint of over-achieving girlhood everywhere.

She tiptoed further down the corridor, thanking the Lord for her soft soles. Angie Douglas might well turn her nose up at such comforts, and she was never going to argue that these lumpen shoes represented the most stylish choice out there for a woman of her build, but there was a lot to be said for rubber. She felt like the hippo in Fantasia creeping up on a load of half-starved gazelles.

Though much prettier –and a lot less wrinkly –the women were like the velociraptors in the Jurassic Park films: hyper-vigilant; alert to every threat; and presumably, every bit as deadly if anyone dared threaten their young.

Beth felt as though she was getting shorter by the second as he stood up. By the time he was upright, she was like Alice in Wonderland after drinking the shrinking potion.


My Review:

I enjoyed the premise and various storylines which picked up shortly after the first book left off, although I struggled more than a bit with the pacing with this installment and was waffling on the overall rating until I sorted through my favorite quotes and was thus compelled to give it a four-star rating due to the author’s wickedly clever wit alone.  While I adore her skills, I didn’t feel as fully engaged with this narrative as I had been with the first book as there was a multitude of loose and rambling story threads to throw me off-track.  Yet I reveled in the vibrant character depictions and deviously humorous observations, inner musings, and foibles of this quirky ensemble.  My main annoyance was while the storyline of the floundering investigation advanced at an excruciatingly slow rate; in the final pages, it was resolved so quickly it felt anti-climatic.   However, I remain eager to read the next installment and am well pleased to announce two new additions to my Brit Vocabulary List with "argy-bargy," which the Urban Dictionary told me was “a heated discussion, perhaps one that has become bad-tempered enough to amount to a spat or minor quarrel,” and is actually of Scottish origin; and OAP, which Mr. Google told me was an Old Age Pensioner and what is now my official designation… I wear it with pride!

Empress DJ

Author Bio – Alice Castle

Before turning to crime, Alice Castle was a UK newspaper journalist for The Daily Express, The Times and The Daily Telegraph. Her first book, Hot Chocolate, set in Brussels and London, was a European hit and sold out in two weeks.

Death in Dulwich was published in September 2017 and has been a number one best-seller in the UK, US, Canada, France, Spain and Germany. A sequel, The Girl in the Gallery was published in December 2017 to critical acclaim. Calamity in Camberwell, the third book in the London Murder Mystery series, will be published this summer, with Homicide in Herne Hill due to follow in early 2019. Alice is currently working on the fifth London Murder Mystery adventure. Once again, it will feature Beth Haldane and DI Harry York.

Alice is also a mummy blogger and book reviewer via her website:




Win signed copies of Death in Dulwich 

and The Girl in the Gallery 

(UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organizer and used only for the fulfillment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for dispatch or delivery of the prize.

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