Dressed for Death, Julianna Deering’s fourth installment in the Farthering Mystery series may be the best one yet. Drew has spent the last year solving cases with his friend, Nick, and his fiancé, Madeline, but now he’s faced with his hardest case yet. It’s enough to make him doubt whether he’s cut out to be a detective at all.
Drew and Madeline Farthering have been invited to attend a week-long party with a Regency theme. They spend the week dressed in old-fashioned clothes, playing Regency era lawn and card games and performing outdated dances. Drew’s old friend, Tal, is the son of the hosts, and he’s proud to introduce his new fiancé, Alice, to his friends. But Alice has been acting strange all week, and reveals that she has a terrible secret she must tell Tal. But the secret is not to be told, when Alice suddenly dies at a party. The cause of her death is a cocaine overdose. The situation only gets worse when Tal’s father is arrested for distributing the illegal drug. Tal asks Drew to investigate the murder, and Drew reluctantly agrees. But as the bodies continue to pile up, Drew questions if he’s doing more harm than good, and a surprising twist may be the final straw for the whole group.
I have to say that I truly enjoyed reading this novel. I think that this case was the one that Drew needed to solve. As people close to him were killed by some unknown assailant, he lost his cocky, self-assured attitude, and began to wonder if he was doing more harm than good. There were a few surprises along the way, some that I expected and some that I didn’t. I have to say that I guessed who was the guilty party fairly quickly, but there were a few other twists that I didn’t see coming. I liked the other books in this series that I have read, but this one was my favorite. Once again I felt a little disappointment that the murderer wasn’t brought to justice, but killed themselves in the end. That seems to be a trademark of this author. I like the slightly new dynamic between Drew and Madeline now that they’re married, although I miss some of their past disagreements. It would seem from the ending that there will be more books to come in this series, and I’m really looking forward to reading them. I hope that the next book will bring Nick and Carrie together for good, too!
This mystery novel is a good “whodunit” that will leave the reader feeling satisfied and a little nostalgic. Overall, it’s a good read that I recommend to lovers of Christian mysteries.
I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my review. All opinions are my own, and a favorable review was not required.