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The Thursday Murder Club
Cover of The Thursday Murder Club
The Thursday Murder Club
A Novel: A Thursday Murder Club Mystery Series, Book 1
A New York Times bestseller | Soon to be a major motion picture from Steven Spielberg at Amblin Entertainment
“Witty, endearing and greatly entertaining.” —Wall Street Journal
 
“Don’t trust anyone, including the four septuagenarian sleuths in Osman’s own laugh-out-loud whodunit.” —Parade
Four septuagenarians with a few tricks up their sleeves
A female cop with her first big case
A brutal murder
Welcome to...
THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB
In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet weekly in the Jigsaw Room to discuss unsolved crimes; together they call themselves the Thursday Murder Club.
When a local developer is found dead with a mysterious photograph left next to the body, the Thursday Murder Club suddenly find themselves in the middle of their first live case.
As the bodies begin to pile up, can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer, before it's too late?
A New York Times bestseller | Soon to be a major motion picture from Steven Spielberg at Amblin Entertainment
“Witty, endearing and greatly entertaining.” —Wall Street Journal
 
“Don’t trust anyone, including the four septuagenarian sleuths in Osman’s own laugh-out-loud whodunit.” —Parade
Four septuagenarians with a few tricks up their sleeves
A female cop with her first big case
A brutal murder
Welcome to...
THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB
In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet weekly in the Jigsaw Room to discuss unsolved crimes; together they call themselves the Thursday Murder Club.
When a local developer is found dead with a mysterious photograph left next to the body, the Thursday Murder Club suddenly find themselves in the middle of their first live case.
As the bodies begin to pile up, can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer, before it's too late?
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  • From the book

    1.

    Joyce

    Well, let's start with Elizabeth, shall we? And see where that gets us?

    I knew who she was, of course; everybody here knows Elizabeth. She has one of the three-bedroom flats in Larkin Court. It's the one on the corner, with the decking? Also, I was once on a quiz team with Stephen, who, for a number of reasons, is Elizabeth's third husband.

    I was at lunch, this is two or three months ago, and it must have been a Monday, because we were having shepherd's pie. Elizabeth said she could see that I was eating, but she wanted to ask me a question about knife wounds, if it wasn't inconvenient?

    I said, "Not at all, of course, please," or words to that effect. I won't always remember everything exactly, I might as well tell you that now. So she opened a manila folder, and I saw some typed sheets and the edges of what looked like old photographs. Then she was straight into it.

    Elizabeth asked me to imagine that a girl had been stabbed with a knife. I asked what sort of knife she had been stabbed with, and Elizabeth said probably just a normal kitchen knife. John Lewis or somesuch. She didn't say that, but that was what I pictured. Then she asked me to imagine this girl had been stabbed three or four times, just under the breastbone. In and out, in and out, very nasty, but without severing an artery. She was fairly quiet about the whole thing, because people were eating, and she does have some boundaries.

    So there I was, imagining stab wounds, and Elizabeth asked me how long it would take the girl to bleed to death.

    By the way, I realize I should have mentioned that I was a nurse for many years; otherwise none of this will make sense to you. Elizabeth would have known that from somewhere, because Elizabeth knows everything. Anyway, that's why she was asking me. You must have wondered what I was on about. I will get the hang of writing this, I promise.

    I remember dabbing at my mouth before I answered, like you see on television sometimes. It makes you look clever, try it. I asked what the girl had weighed.

    Elizabeth found the information in her folder, followed her finger, and read out that the girl had been forty-six kilos. Which threw us both, because neither of us was sure what forty-six kilos was in real money. In my head I was thinking it must be about twenty-three stone? Two to one was my thinking. Even as I thought that, though, I suspected I was getting mixed up with inches and centimeters.

    Elizabeth let me know the girl definitely wasn't twenty-three stone, as she had a picture of her corpse in the folder. She tapped the folder at me, then turned her attention back to the room and said, "Will somebody ask Bernard what forty-six kilos is?"

    Bernard always sits by himself, at one of the smaller tables nearest the patio. Table 8. You don't need to know that, but I will tell you a bit about Bernard.

    Bernard Cottle was very kind to me when I first arrived at Coopers Chase. He bought me a clematis cutting and explained the recycling timetable. They have four different colored bins here. Four! Thanks to Bernard, I know that green is for glass and blue is cardboard and paper. As for red and black, though, your guess is still as good as mine. I've seen all sorts as I've wandered about. Someone once put a fax machine in one.

    Bernard had been a professor, something in science, and had worked all around the world, including going to Dubai before anyone had heard of it. True to form, he was wearing a suit and tie to lunch, but was nevertheless reading the Daily Express. Mary from Ruskin Court was at the next table; she got his attention and asked how much forty-six kilos was when it was at...

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from July 6, 2020
    British TV celebrity Osman mixes mirth and murder in his exceptional debut, a series launch featuring the four members of the Thursday Murder Club, residents of the Coopers Chase Retirement Village in Kent. Despite their different backgrounds, Elizabeth
    , Ibrahim, Joyce, and Ron share an interest in solving mysteries. When 26-year-old Donna De Freitas, a police constable who dreams of pursuing serial killers, visits the home to talk to the pensioners about “Practical Tips for Home Security,” the club members arrange for Donna to be assigned to a homicide case they have a connection to by manipulating her boss, so that they can get access to the investigation through a grateful Donna. That way they can take a crack at solving the bludgeoning murder of drug dealer Tony Curran, who operated a building business as a front, and whose killer left a photo of three men, one of whom is Ron’s son, near Curran’s corpse. They use their individual talents, including Joyce’s gift for gathering information unobtrusively, and Ibrahim’s medical knowledge, which enables him to narrow the timing of a second, related killing. Osman’s witty prose (labor activist Ron’s “picture was rarely in the papers without the caption ‘Talks between the two sides collapsed late last night’”) is a highlight. Fans of Lynne Truss’s Constable Twitten mysteries will be tickled. Agent: Juliet Mushens, Mushens Entertainment (U.K.).

  • Kirkus

    July 15, 2020
    Four residents of Coopers Chase, a British retirement village, compete with the police to solve a murder in this debut novel. The Thursday Murder Club started out with a group of septuagenarians working on old murder cases culled from the files of club founder Elizabeth's friend Penny Gray, a former police officer who's now comatose in the village's nursing home. Elizabeth used to have an unspecified job, possibly as a spy, that has left her with a large network of helpful sources. Joyce is a former nurse who chronicles their deeds. Psychiatrist Ibrahim Arif and well-known political firebrand Ron Ritchie complete the group. They charm Police Constable Donna De Freitas, who, visiting to give a talk on safety at Coopers Chase, finds the residents sharp as tacks. Built with drug money on the grounds of a convent, Coopers Chase is a high-end development conceived by loathsome Ian Ventham and maintained by dangerous crook Tony Curran, who's about to be fired and replaced with wary but willing Bogdan Jankowski. Ventham has big plans for the future--as soon as he's removed the nuns' bodies from the cemetery. When Curran is murdered, DCI Chris Hudson gets the case, but Elizabeth uses her influence to get the ambitious De Freitas included, giving the Thursday Club a police source. What follows is a fascinating primer in detection as British TV personality Osman allows the members to use their diverse skills to solve a series of interconnected crimes. A top-class cozy infused with dry wit and charming characters who draw you in and leave you wanting more, please.

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Library Journal

    Starred review from August 1, 2020

    Trivia maven and British quiz show host Osman's first mystery features crime-solving residents of a luxury retirement center in Kent, England. Located on the site of a former convent, Cooper's Chase Retirement Village offers clubs for every interest. The Thursday Murder Club members--Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim, and Ron--meet weekly to examine the cold case files of a former detective. When the contractor who built Cooper's Chase is murdered immediately after being fired by center owner Ian Ventham, Joyce and the others inform the police that they saw the two men arguing. The entire group, including the police, are present when Ventham is murdered. There were 70 seniors who could have killed him. Then the new contractor unearths an extra body in the convent cemetery. The Thursday Murder Club enjoys two active murder investigations and several cold cases while Elizabeth manipulates the police to keep the group in the loop. The character-driven mystery, featuring a group of sleuths all too aware of their own mortality, and a likable pair of cops, is suspenseful, funny, and poignant. VERDICT The delightful, spirited characters from this witty, sometimes bittersweet story deserve a return engagement.--Lesa Holstine, Evansville Vanderburgh P.L., IN

    Copyright 2020 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Booklist

    August 1, 2020
    A sidekick is the understated star of Osman's debut novel, which is set in the upscale English retirement village of Coopers Chase. Retired nurse Joyce takes a back seat to her friend Elizabeth, who revels in leading the Thursday Murder Club, which is devoted to dissecting old cases. They are handed new mysteries when the shady developer of Cooper Chase is found dead, and an extra body is found in the graveyard ordered destroyed by the developer, who planned to expand, hoping to attract more residents. A thicket of characters demands some concentration, but it's worth it to soak up Osman's wry character building and dialogue, which perfectly encapsulate everyone from the flashy developer, who quickly meets his end, to a young police officer who can't believe she's on a murder case. Numerous suspects prove to have done misguided things from love, with the solution resembling Churchill's riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma. Readers will want to hear more from Osman and his engaging cast, especially the bumbling, kind Joyce; in the meantime, recommend Christopher Fowler's Bryant & May series.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

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The Thursday Murder Club
A Novel: A Thursday Murder Club Mystery Series, Book 1
Richard Osman
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