Courtesy my co-blogger Rekha of Book Decoder fame that I was introduced to the genre of cozy murder mysteries. Being an avid hard core murder mystery fan I wondered what exactly was so cozy about suspense thrillers till I bumped into Ruby Roy (not literally). Based on my own perception, though it may be flawed, I presume cozy mysteries are those where there is a set of mysterious events, including murder, which neither borrow heavily on blood curdling gore and hair raising violence nor induce a surge of adrenaline rush. But these are interesting reads which pull the readers through till the end without being excessively nail biting or edge of the seat, yet, the sleuthing takes its own placid course, nonetheless keeping the readers hooked. I do not know whether the definition is lucid enough – just to give an example, the genre is very much like reading a Famous Five or a Nancy Drew.

Dr. Ruby Roy is well into reading and research. She is a professor on tenure in Baron University, happily married, clumsy in her ways, plus sized with an unusual sense of fashion bordering on nerdy. Except for landing into unintended embarrassing situations, here and there, her life should be as monotonous and routined as any other till she discovers her Chair’s dead body in his room accidentally and gets knocked off by an unknown assailant, most probably, the murderer, who is still present at the site of the crime when she has arrived which kind of threatens her own life. While trying in vain not to swoon over the police officer (who resembles one of her silver screen crushes) investigating the crime, she realizes that she herself can be one of the suspects.

Understandably, the atmosphere in the University, becomes tense as everyone doubts every other colleague as the could-be-killer. To lighten the gloomy environ, the next-in-seniority proposes a hallow-een gathering on Zoom. But things take a macabre turn when the proposer of the gathering herself gets murdered while the meeting is on on Zoom while the other attendees look on helpless and horrified.

It is at this juncture Ruby Roy, herself a murder mystery addict, decides to take matters in hand and get into the shoes of Ms. Marple to find out who the murderer is. Thereon, it is just a game play of activated grey cells aided by an able Watson-ian husband that Ruby Roy ultimately nabs the culprit.

Ruby Roy And The Murder In The Falls being the first of the Series of Ruby Roy mysteries, authoress, Rimi Ray, has taken full liberty and space to develop the persona of her namesake (replace Rimi by Ruby and you have got her). She says her protagonist is sketched in her own mould and her aid, Cloe (hubby), is based on her husband’s. The best thing about Ruby is she is one of us- not a super sleuth, not a super woman – but very much a kind hearted, self effacing soul who goes by her intuitive feelings but also employs her sharp and astute brain when it comes to smart deduction. She is of flesh and blood with her own flaws and frailties which makes her more human than a sheroe.

To summarize, reading Ruby Roy is enjoyable. A few editing lapses taken care of and we have a cozy experience at hand. A more terse narrative can also enhance the read, especially, when humour takes over the suspense quotient. But as Ms. Ray says that her prime aim is to give joy and pleasure of reading to her followers, I think we can happily overlook these minor fallibility.

Here’s to Ruby Roy.

Cheerio!

A big thanks to Rekha for introducing me to Ruby 🙂

!!!

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About gc1963

A working woman with interests in reading, writing, music, poetry and fine arts.

6 responses »

  1. Rekha says:

    I am so happy you liked this book. 😊 Ruby is a laughter riot, isn’t she. I loved lottery part the most – she wins the lottery, invites hollywood stars for bollywood dance nights, plans to keep animals at home… 😁

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jaya says:

    Sounds good. I hadn’t heard of this author, thanks for the recommendation.
    I’m currently re reading Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple books and thoroughly enjoying them.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. craig lock says:

    Reblogged this on The Writing Life and commented:
    Hi
    Thanks for the/another follow(s) and/or the ‘likes’

    IF you want to go on a journey (destination unknown), you can follow me. Thanks and enjoy the trip.

    happy travelling
    “early bird (very) Sleepy-head” craig (here in “Sleepy Hollow”)
    “I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.”
    – Robert Louis Stevenson

    http://www.craigsquotes.wordpress.com + my third book ‘Here, There and Everywhere’

    “Do not go where the path may lead. Go where there is no path and leave a trail”
    -Emerson
    of CHAOS?? (at least in the “real world” and hopefully NOT cyberspace too)

    “Mr going nowhere (fast) man”

    PPS

    Don’t worry about the world ending today…its already tomorrow in scenic and tranquil ‘little’ New Zealand

    Like

  4. So glad to read this review of a novel by an authoress who has presented her counter-ego as the sleuth in the story and thus given a chance to her readers to know herself too. I feel that your perception of a cozy mystery is well in place. And I also like such mysteries sans unnecessary gore, chases and adrenalin rush (that is, pure mysteries giving the reader an opportunity to solve the riddle on his / her own before the author puts the solution before him / her). I had read ‘Hour is Come’ by Victoria Tait (gifted to me by yourself only) and liked it. Isn’t that also a cozy (murder) mystery. But yes, that’s not just a mystery. I found many aspects of life (portrayed through the life of the widow protagonist) encompassed in the story and I liked it more because of them.

    Liked by 1 person

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