The Thursday Murder Club: (The Thursday Murder Club 1)

· The Thursday Murder Club Book 1 · Penguin UK
324 reviews

About this ebook

'Smart, compassionate, warm, moving and so VERY funny' Marian Keyes
'So smart and funny. Deplorably good'
Ian Rankin
'Thrilling, moving, laugh-out-loud funny' Mark Billingham
'A gripping read' Sunday Times



In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet up once a week to investigate unsolved murders.

But when a brutal killing takes place on their very doorstep, the Thursday Murder Club find themselves in the middle of their first live case.

Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron might be pushing eighty but they still have a few tricks up their sleeves.

Can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer before it's too late?

The Times Crime Book of the Month
Guardian Best Crime and Thrillers


'A great read, I really enjoyed it' Graham Norton, Home Stretch

'As the bodies pile up, and more is revealed of the lives and loves of Joyce, Ibrahim, Ron and Elizabeth, you can't help cheering them on - and hoping to meet them again soon'
The Times, Crime Book of the Month

'Mystery fans are going to be enthralled'
Harlan Coban, Win

'Pure escapism'
Guardian, Best Crime and Thrillers

'One of the most enjoyable books of the year' Daily Express

'A beacon of pleasure'
Kate Atkinson, Behind The Scenes At The Museum

'As gripping as it is funny' Evening Standard

'Funny, clever and achingly British'
Adam Kay, This Is Going to Hurt

'An exciting new talent in crime fiction'
Daily Mail

'A warm, wise and witty warning never to underestimate the elderly'
Val McDermid, 1979

'Delight after delight from first page to last'
Red Magazine

'I completely fell in love with it' Shari Lapena, Not a Happy Family

'This is properly brilliant. The pages fly and I can't stop smiling'
Steve Cavanagh, The Devil's Advocate

'Charming, clever debut'

'I laughed my arse off'
Belinda Bauer, Exit

'A witty and poignant tale'
Daily Telegraph

'Clever, clever plot'
Fiona Barton, Local Gone Missing

'An absolutely delightful read' Prima Magazine

'Utterly charming'
Sarah Pinborough, Insomnia

'Funny and original'

'Properly funny and totally charming... steeped in Agatha Christie joy'
Araminta Hall, Hidden Depths

'This is one of the most delightful novels of the year'
Daily Mirror

'A bundle of joy'
Jane Fallon, Worst Idea Ever
324 reviews
Marianne Vincent
September 4, 2021
The Thursday Murder Club is the first book in the series of the same title by British TV presenter, producer, director, and novelist, Richard Osman. When builder, property developer and drug dealer, Tony Curran is bludgeoned to death in his kitchen, the members of the Thursday Murder Club are inordinately delighted. They are accustomed to discussing cold cases from police files; a real live case is much more exciting! The Thursday Murder Club meets weekly in the Jigsaw Room at Coopers Chase retirement village, of which they are all residents. Their leader, Elizabeth, is circumspect about her former life but it possibly involved espionage; Ibrahim Arif is a former psychiatrist; Joyce Meadowcroft, who strikes most people as quiet and sensible, was a nurse; Ron Ritchie, an infamous trade-union leader; and their now non-verbal, but never excluded member, Penny Gray was a Detective Inspector with Kent Police. PC Donna De Freitas, ex-London Met, has recently become an unofficial member. The members, two of whom saw the pair arguing, are fairly certain that the owner of Coopers Chase, Ian Ventham murdered Tony Curran: he had motive, means and opportunity. Donna would love to be involved with the Murder Squad, solving this crime, but is relegated to school visits and home security talks. Until, that is, Elizabeth wields her mysterious influence, and she becomes DCI Chris Hudson’s shadow. After all, the Thursday Murder Club needs a reliable information source. Elizabeth and Joyce manage to track down some interesting facts that point to motive. Before they progress very far with the case, however, there is another murder, during a blockade of the adjoining cemetery, and present are residents, neighbours, members of the TMC, and their two tame cops: a not-inconsiderable suspect pool. Meanwhile, a set of bones is located where they shouldn’t be, and one of the suspects dies, all keeping the police and the TMC busy investigating and second-guessing the conclusions they reach. Before they manage to solve two (or three?) murders, a trip to a Cypriot prison, a skating rink and a Folkestone florist are made, some evening spadework at a gravesite is done, a disused chapel confessional is brought into play, chess is played and much tea, alcohol and cake are consumed. The story is told through a narrative from multiple perspectives interspersed with Joy Meadowcroft’s chatty journal entries. With its hugely entertaining dialogue, this is a perfect mix of cosy crime fiction and British humour that should probably not be read in the Quiet Carriage of public transport as it is likely to have readers chuckling, snickering and laughing out loud. The follow-up, The Man Who Died Twice, is eagerly anticipated.
14 people found this review helpful
Alison Robinson
September 4, 2020
Picture the scene, an expensive retirement village in Kent (think pilates, Zumba, a gym, a swimming pool and cafe), called Cooper's Chase Retirement Village, built on the site of a former convent and four retirees meet every Thursday to try to solve old murder cases. Then the retirement village's shady owner Ian Ventham decides he wants to expand by digging up the nun's graveyard and cutting out his builder and minority partner Tony Curran, the retirees are up in arms and Tony Curran is found bludgeoned to death in his own home. Soon there is an embarrassment of murders, old and new, for the club to solve, working alongside local detective DCI Chris Hudson and PC Donna de Freitas. There are red herrings galore and it is all set in my corner of the world (I don't know why it gives me a thrill when characters are on a train that stops in my home town of Orpington, but it does). Think Miss Marple but with an iPad and brought right up to date with modern concerns. It had a plethora of engaging characters, all with interesting backstories. I had two niggles with this book. First, Richard Osman writes in the present tense a lot and it can be difficult to determine whether one of the characters is speaking/writing or whether the author is speaking directly to the reader, then he mixes his tenses, like this: Ron had come to her with the photograph that Karen Playfair had seen. Karen would have been young at the time, but she was sure. Elizabeth had tried to piece it all together in her head. It seemed impossible at first. But the more she thought about it, it began to seem horribly true. She worked out the steps, one by one. Ibrahim had come back an hour ago, with the final piece of the jigsaw, so now is the time. The case is solved and only justice remains. I could follow it but the changing tenses pulled me out of the story to be honest. My second niggle may merely be a formatting issue with my ARC, scenes changed and the character changed within the same paragraph with no warning. One minute Elizabeth and Ron were talking in the Jigsaw Room and the next sentence features Chris and Donna watching TV and can take a sentence or two before you realise the change. Now, as I say this could be formatting of my ARC, I seemed to lose the chapter numbers partway through the book so it could be that the final version doesn't have this issue. Overall, loved this quirky gang of octogenarian sleuths, able to find out what the police cannot (just like Miss Marple) and would love to read another one. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
140 people found this review helpful
Aileen Thompson
September 16, 2020
Loved everything about it. The characters and plot the humour and guessed wrong so many times. Can't wait for the next one.
45 people found this review helpful

About the author

Richard Osman is an author, producer and television presenter. His first two novels, The Thursday Murder Club and The Man Who Died Twice were multi-million-copy record-breaking bestsellers around the world. The Bullet that Missed is his third book. He lives in London with his partner and Liesl the cat.

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