Murder in Disguise (A Preston Barclay Mystery)


Title:  Murder in Disguise (A Preston Barclay Mystery)

Author:  Donn Taylor

Pages:  312

Year:  2017

Publisher:  Lamplighter Mysteries

My rating 5 out of 5 stars.

The first book in the series to read is Rhapsody in Red.  Book two in the series is titled, Murder, Mezzo Forte.  The series is about a quirky kind of professor of history who ends up involved in solving murders.  Preston has a sidekick who is also a professor although in a different area of study named Mara.  Both Preston and Mara have personal histories that affect a possible romance or future together.

The one thing Preston keeps doing in this installment that I laughed at was always having a ham sandwich and coffee when at home; this character evidently can’t cook.  A good friend of Preston’s committed suicide.  At least that is the ruling and what he is told when he comes to the university to teach a summer course.  However, that never set well with Preston and while teaching, he meets with the widow and she asks him to look in to her husband’s death.

Readers will enjoy how what looks like a simple plot quickly spins into a much wider social menace in the community and at the university where Preston is teaching.  There are other murders happening and the police keep looking at Preston and wondering if it is because he is “investigating” his friends suicide.  The themes the story deals with show, at least in my opinion, what is happening at schools in the way students are taught, or not taught, and how that directly influences society.

The story shows how some Christian professors stand up to “progressive” nonsense type teaching as well as the teaching being anti-Christian.  I love how the author had Preston, Mara and some students stand up to the push of the left and stand by their Christian beliefs.  I loved how Preston and Mara handle their relationship in the professional and personal realms.

The ending was a stroke of genius as I never saw the climax coming so dramatically and gripping!  There is no mention of another novel forthcoming, but I certainly hope that another one will come out at some point.  These books are not just entertaining, funny, and faith filled; they are also great at making some observations about what is happening in society in our day.

Grab the books, sit with a hot chocolate and enjoy the tales!

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