Poison is not Polite by Robin Stevens

poison-is-not-polite

Rating: ★★★★

Genre: Mystery, crime fiction, detective lit

Series: Wells and Wong Mysteries

Medium: Hardcover

Synopsis: After arriving to Daisy’s house for spring break, Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong, the two members of the Detective Society, are confronted with an uncomfortable situation.  It is Daisy’s birthday, and her parents are fighting, her kleptomaniac aunt and sly uncle arrive, and Mr. Curtis, a sneaky decor appraiser comes to visit. Along with a brother and his friend, a butler and a maid, two dogs, and a new governess, the Wells Estate is filled to the brim.  However, it isn’t until Mr. Curtis falls fatally ill at teatime that the Detective Society realizes that they have a new case on their hands.

Review: Whenever I go to libraries, I frequent the children and young adult books section–that’s how this baby came into my hands.  However, I didn’t realize that it was the second of eight or so books until the two characters mentioned the Deepdean mystery they solved the previous year at school.  But, the references to the prior mystery are so subtle that it didn’t affect my reading of the second book in the series.

What really made me begin to enjoy this book was the fact that Hazel is from Hong Kong–any book that features a person of color is a book that I love.  So, if you’re looking for this type of representation, I’d highly recommend this book.

This book kept me guessing who the murderer was, which tells me that this was a good mystery.  And, the fact that Daisy must deduce who the murderer is, when the chances are high that it’s someone from her own family, adds to the tension.  Daisy and Hazel must maintain the front that they are not doing any detective work to their families and friends, as well as sneaking around, discovering clues, and putting their friendship back together after a fight.

The tensions of this book are what kept this book rolling, and boy, the tensions were so thick you could cut them with a knife.  We have the hope that none of Daisy’s family was the murderer, the tension between the two Wells parents, a second murder attempt, uncovering secrets, and a fight to overcome, and Stevens manages all this exceptionally well.

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