Cover Image: Front Page Murder

Front Page Murder

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Member Reviews

A very good mystery! It is enjoyable, fun to read and entertaining. It kept me guessing til the end there was never a moment of bore.
Very recommended.
Thanks to John Hunt Publishing Ltd and Netgalley
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Christmas, 1963, but it’s not a Merry Christmas for Archie Flowerdew. He is sentenced to be hanged for the murder of rival artist Percy Despart, an artist with a less refined output – namely seaside postcards. But Despart had a habit of painting real people into his innuendo-strewn postcards and when an embarrassing picture of Flowerdew’s sister caused her death, Flowerdew vowed revenge on Despart, and he was soon arrested, charged and convicted. But he wasn’t the only person who had been affected by Despart’s shenanigans…

Inspired by Flowerdew’s niece, Colin Crampton, reporter for the Evening Chronicle, begins to investigate, and soon finds a possible criminal conspiracy to eliminate Despart. But finding out who killed him – if indeed Flowerdew was innocent – isn’t the only problem facing Colin. With the clock ticking down to Flowerdew’s execution, it’s going to need some convincing evidence to re-open the case… And that’s without mentioning Colin’s job being on the line or his landlady’s love-life…

The third novel (not counting novellas and short stories) from the pen of Peter Bartram to feature Colin and it’s as fun as ever. Colin is an entertaining narrator with a good line in wit, and the investigation bounces from suspect to suspect with some entertaining revelations along the way. Bartram takes some risks with the structure as well, unmasking the murderer well before the end, but keeping some revelations back for the reader as the identity of the murderer is far from the end of the story.

As I mentioned, there is a good line in humour running throughout the narrative, while still maintaining the serious tone concerning the fate of Flowerdew. The idea of a vengeful seaside postcard artist is a clever one and Bartram makes full use of it in setting up the motives. Like the others in the series, a lot of fun, even if the experienced reader may well spot the killer, with a lot going on that almost guarantees you won’t spot all the twists and turns coming. Recommended.
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The Crampton of the Chronicle books by Peter Barton are such fun - even the corny  puns and jokes.  Front Page Murder,  with some of the characters familiar to readers of the earlier works, is a light entertaining read that is hard to put down.
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Brighton 1963 and Archie Flowerdue will hang on Christmas Eve for the murder of Percy Despart. He claims he is innocent but refuses to name his alibi. Flowerdue's niece Tammy believes in his innocence and so Crompton decides to investigate.
An enjoyable mystery with some good rounded characters and a story that can be read as a stand-alone novel.
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Very much a good, old-fashioned detective story! This was my first of this series, and I'm looking forward to recommending this book in the future!
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I really do enjoy most of Peter Bartram books, especially these investigative journalist stories - they remind me so much of the era of pulp fiction. The characters are just so great,  and the stories really have you at the edge of your seat following the twists and turns of the mystery.  Love Tammy and her colloquialism, and as for Henrietta and the Clipping Cousins, they just make me laugh.
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