Published: September 28, 2021
Publisher Pamela Dorman Books
Series: Thursday Murder Club #2
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
My Rating: 5.0/5.0
It’s the following Thursday.
Elizabeth has received a letter from an old colleague, a man with whom she has a long history. He’s made a big mistake, and he needs her help. His story involves stolen diamonds, a violent mobster, and a very real threat to his life.
As bodies start piling up, Elizabeth enlists Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron in the hunt for a ruthless murderer. And if they find the diamonds too? Well, wouldn’t that be a bonus?
But this time they are up against an enemy who wouldn’t bat an eyelid at knocking off four septuagenarians. Can The Thursday Murder Club find the killer (and the diamonds) before the killer finds them?
I find myself pleasantly surprised that The Man Who Died Twice (despite the ominous name) was just as delightful as The Thursday Murder Club (also somewhat ominous, or at least eyebrow raising). Who would have thought that a book series about an eclectic group of elderly folks solving murders would be such an absolute hit! Our elderly folks don’t get much of a break either, seeing as how this picks up not terribly long after the events of the first book.
It starts off with Elizabeth receiving a mysterious note and then meeting up with her ex-husband Douglas who is still a spy. A good ol’ James Bond type, still a flirt in his twilight years, and still up to his same old tricks. He’s got a bit of a situation because he stole several million pounds worth of diamonds from a fellow who’s essentially a criminal broker of sorts and now the same fellow is definitely going to kill Douglas. On top of all this, Ibrahim was mugged by a couple young guys on a trip to town and he’s ended up in the hospital. Elizabeth certainly has quite a few things to take care of, so it’s a good thing she has such a tight group of pals in the Thursday Murder Club, plus Bogdan, plus DCIs Chris and Donna. It will take the whole gang to deal with the complicated tangle of a situation that has arisen because it’s not just Douglas hiding out from a criminal – the young guys who mugged Ibrahim are part of a larger crime ring that Chris and Donna are looking into as well.
The story was quite intense, though the characters themselves move at a slower pace than I’m accustomed to – no fancy sword work, no parkour, none of the craziness that abounds in the books I usually read. What they lack in physical talent, they more than make up for with their scheming. And it’s not just Elizabeth with a talent for handling interesting situations! Joyce, Ron, and Ibrahim are all clever in their own right and that’s part of what keeps the story so interesting. You’re never quite sure who’s up to something!
The Man Who Died Twice was a brilliant read and quite frankly, I never saw the ending coming! The culminating chapters were gripping and I really didn’t want to be interrupted (listening to audiobook) because I didn’t want to accidentally miss something. Richard Osman certainly knows how to write a compelling mystery that will keep you guessing and mentally pointing fingers at like, all the characters right until the very end. This was a really fun book and can’t wait for the next one!