Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Trailer Park Tuesday: The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz

Just after eleven o’clock on a bright spring morning, the sort of day when the sunshine is almost white and promises a warmth that it doesn’t quite deliver, Diana Cowper crossed the Fulham Road and went into a funeral parlor.

That’s the opening line of Anthony Horowitz’s forthcoming novel The Word is Murder. That sentence in itself is intriguing, especially in the way Horowitz counterbalances the bright sunshine with the emotional gloom of a funeral parlor. There’s something inherently chilly about the notion of death; here, even the sun withholds its warmth. But what ratchets up the intrigue of The Word is Murder is what Horowitz says next in the book trailer: Diana Cowper is there to arrange her own funeral. “She does everything,” Horowitz tells us, “the psalms, the music, even the casket. She then goes home and she’s murdered.” I mean, really, how could you possibly stop reading (or watching) after a setup like that? Horowitz goes on to tell us that the novel features “a classic detective” who is “damaged and difficult.” Okay, it sounds a little like Cormoran Strike in the mystery series written by Robert Galbraith (aka J. K. Rowling); I’m in. But, wait—there’s more, as they say in late-night TV commercials. The sleuth, Daniel Hawthorne, feels he needs an assistant to help him document the case: a Watson to his Sherlock. And that man Friday turns out to be....Anthony Horowitz. The fiction just got meta, lads and lassies. Horowitz’s previous novel, Magpie Murders, was already high on my must-read list. Now this new Word from the author just grabbed on to its coattails and shoved it upwards. The trailer isn’t all that flashy, but I like its simplicity and the way Horowitz explains his book with outstretched fingers—fingers that look like hooks ready to reach out and pull us to his book. The Word is Murder hits U.S. bookstores in June. Sharpen your knives and pencils.

Trailer Park Tuesday is a showcase of new book trailers and, in a few cases, previews of book-related movies.

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