** Note – this is NOT a Christmas Holiday book! This is a “Father Christmas” book because the protagonist is named Tom Christmas and he is a priest with the Anglican church. The month is May or something – springtime. It took me probably 1/3 of the book before I realized that stockings were not going to be hung.
That said, it’s not bad – the reason for the low rating is that I was irritated to find it was not the cozy holiday book I wanted. Okay – maybe I’ll try the next in the series later in the year although I doubt it. I might rather get caught up on Louise Penny. I did finish though, saving David Baldacci’s The Christmas Train for next year.
Twelve Drummers Drumming
by C.C. Benison
read by Steve West & Jean Gilprin 14h 5m
rating: C / cozy crime
Father Tom Christmas, a widower with a 10-year old daughter, has moved to the Thornford Regis, a small town in rural England, to take charge of the parish there. Alas, within a few months a dead body turns up in one of the ornamental drums at the fair. The victim was a rather mysterious young woman possibly involved with drugs and the black arts but … everyone in town seems to have secrets. And then another member of the community disappears.
One interesting structural aspect of the book is the alternating points of view between third person focused on Tom Christmas and the 1st person letters of his housekeeper.
Although the writing adequate and the plot pretty good in its own way, I’m not recommending it to mystery fans because it’s slower than usual for a good cozy and the reader slows it down even more. There seems to be almost no tension.
There were 12 planned Father Christmas novels but publishers have cut way down on publishing cozy mysteries so Benison’s series may be stuck at 3.