Thanks to an elderly spinster sleuth and her ingenious cat, Christopher Holmes has enjoyed a celebrated career as a bestselling mystery writer. Until now. Sales are down and his new editor is allergic to geriatric gumshoes.
On the advice of his agent, he reinvents his fortyish, frumpy, recently dumped self into the sleek, sexy image of a literary lion, and heads for a Northern California writers conference to try and resurrect his career. A career nearly as dead as the body he stumbles over in the woods.
In a weirdly déjà vu replay of one of his own novels, he finds himself stranded in an isolated lodge full of frightened women—and not a lawman in sight. Except for J.X. Moriarity, former cop and bestselling novelist. The man with whom he shared a one-night stand—okay, maybe three—long ago. The man who wants to arrest him for murder.
A ruthless, stalking killer, or a hot, handsome ex-lover. Which poses the greater danger? It’s elementary, my dear Holmes!
Christopher Holmes is a writer who writes mysteries a la Agatha Christie’s Ms Marple. Or he used to, apparently they’re not selling anymore. This is why he’s taking a break from his reclusion and going on a trip to a writers’ conference hoping to reinvent himself just enough to sell another book. Well, no. The reinvention is his editor’s idea, who along with everyone else in the hotel becomes a suspect the moment Christopher stumbles on a dead body. Also, there’s a storm.
It isn’t much of a mystery but Lanyon successfully kept me distracted with gossip and Christopher’s reheated love affair with another mystery writer J.X. Moriarity. Yes, you read that right and no, that’s not a typo. Lanyon isn’t paying homage just to Christie but to Conan Doyle as well.
Somebody Killed His Editor is written in Lanyon’s usual style, in first person voice, and is full of witty remarks and the kind of gaslighting an unreliable narrator causes. There is an attempt to sketch a few of the secondary characters in more detail but not quite enough for proper characterisation. The object of Christopher’s desires is left aloof and only mirrored in his reactions to J.X. I’m guessing the rest of the specifics are delivered in the sequel.
Other than that, there’s very little to say about the book. I enjoyed reading it but it wasn’t anything special. Still, I wouldn’t call it a meh-book either.