Book Review: The Art of Murder by Fiona Walker

I’m pleased to be welcoming Fiona Walker to Novel Kicks and the blog tour for her latest novel, The Art of Murder.

Welcome to the beautiful English village of Inkbury. Tucked deep in the North Wessex Downs, its only claim to fame is the picturesque riverside that once appeared in a Richard Curtis movie. That is, until the murder…

Former stand-up comic Juno Mulligan has been suffering a serious sense-of-humour failure. Not only has she lost the love of her life, but she’s having to relocate to the (admittedly idyllic) village of Inkbury to watch out for her elderly mother, who she’s genuinely worried might be marrying a wife-killer.

She hopes that her old friend, disgraced-journalist-turned-novelist Phoebe Fredericks can help her crack the case of whether her mother’s perma-tanned, iceberg-smiled, three-times-a-widower fiancé is hiding a murderous past.

But before they have a chance, the local art dealer washes up distinctly dead in the village’s famous river. His lover is in the frame, but Juno and Phoebe suspect that there is a deeper secret… One that relates to Phoebe’s own past and Juno’s present.

Will the unofficial Village Detective Agency solve the mystery before the killer strikes again? In sleepy Inkbury, as they soon discover, living one’s best midlife can be murder.


Phoebe wants to be left alone, away from all the people who cancelled her and the need to keep up conversation. She finds the characters of the novels she writes far better company.

However, when old acquaintance and ex comedian Juno moves back to the area, she gives Phoebe no choice but to re-engage with the world, especially when they have a murder to solve.

Although Fiona Walker has mentioned on Novel Kicks before, for reasons I can’t understand, this is the first of her books I have read. I know, the shame. I loved the idea of her latest novel, The Art of Murder and was honoured to be invited into the blog tour.

Being the first book in a brand new series, there’s a little bit of setting up and introducing characters but it doesn’t get in the way of the story.

The two main characters are brilliant. I totally relate to Phoebe and her lack of desire to go outside. Haha. The relationship she has with her husband is interesting. From first impressions, you’d think it an unhappy marriage but the dynamic shifted when Felix arrived on the scene.

It’s how Juno gets Phoebe to come out of her cocoon that I loved the most though. Gradual… slow but she succeeds.
Juno is a force of nature. Like Phoebe, she doesn’t have more than one duck in a row but her personality is infectious. I loved her. I want to be able to feel that fear and do it anyway like she does. She and Phoebe are total opposites but they work.

Mil is a wonderful addition and adds such humour to proceedings. He’s a great team mate to Phoebe and Juno. The other supporting characters are also great.

The plot skilfully unfolds with plenty a twist and turn. I’m not sure if I can listen to Harry Potter in quite the same way though. Haha. There’s not a lot more I can say about it without potentially giving too much away.

What I will say is that The Art of Murder is a fantastic beginning of what promises to be a brilliant new mystery series featuring two, strong women both of which I can’t wait to catch up with soon.



About Fiona Walker: 

Fiona Walker is the million copy bestselling author of joyously funny romantic comedies. Most recently published by Head of Zeus, she will be turning to cozy crime for Boldwood. The first in her new Village Detectives series, The Art of Murder, will be published in May 2024.

Say hello to Fiona via Facebook, X (Twitter), Instagram and Bookbub. Click here to sign up to her newsletter. 

The Art of Murder is book one in The Village Detectives series and was released by Boldwood Books on 20th May 2024. Click to buy on Amazon, Apple and Barnes and Noble. Click to buy on Waterstones. 


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I’m Laura. I started Novel Kicks in 2009. I wanted a place to post my writing as well as give other writers like me the opportunity to do the same. There is also a monthly book club, a writing room which features writing prompts, book reviews, competitions, author interviews and guest posts.

I grew up by the sea (my favourite place in the world) and I currently live in Hampshire. I am married to Chris, have a cat named Buddy and I would love to be a writer. I’m trying to write the novel I’ve talked so much about writing if only I could stop pressing delete. I’ve loved writing since creative writing classes in primary school. I have always wanted to see my teacher Miss Sayers again and thank her for the encouragement. When not trying to write the novel or writing snippets of stories on anything I can get my hands on, I love reading, dancing like a loon and singing to myself very badly. My current obsession is Once Upon a Time and I would be happy to live with magic in the enchanted forest surrounded by all those wonderful stories provided that world also included Harry Potter. I love reading chick lit. contemporary fiction and novels with mystery.

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