Magpie Murders starts as a classical British mystery murder but ends up with a fantastic twist which questions the sources of inspiration of authors of the genre and other issues regarding authenticity.
My first impression after being past half of the book and offered a break from the story for being introduced to the reality of the murdery writer was a kind of shock. I was feeling like being pulled out from the classical slow pace of the mysteries of the crimes committed in the otherwise quiet Saxby-on-Avon that the detective Atticus Pünd was trying to solve decades later in the busy world of the London publishing industry.
As a reader, I was manipulated by the author, at the mercy of his decisions to give me more details about who commited the crimes in Saxby-on-Avon or solve the set-up suicide of the unpleasant author Alan Conway. In the end, there will be an answer to all questions, with an intense coming-and-going from the reality of the books to the intentions of the writer in creating it. I personally felt fascinated by the bold intention of the writer, a diversion from both the modern crime solvings and the classical mystery patterns.
I've found the solutions to both crimes satisfactory, but once in a while I was quite distracted by some details filled in which were maybe overcharging the story, such as the writings of Alan Conway's sister about their childhood.
I would love to read more by Anthony Horowitz, for the boldness and intelligence of the writing and the unique approach to writing mysteries although keeping up with the classical formulas.
Rating: 4 stars