CONUNDRUM by Susan Cory


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The death of a Harvard student under questionable circumstances sets the theme for Cory’s first foray into the murder mystery genre.

Iris Reid is graduating from the Harvard School of Design when she witnesses her classmate, Carey, fall to his death from the balcony of a party she has just left. Though the death is ruled a suicide, Iris isn’t so sure. Fast forward 20 years and Iris is a successful architect busy putting the finishing touches on a home she’s designed for a former classmate, Norman Meeker. Norman plans to host a reunion party for his old Harvard classmates to showcase his posh new digs. The attendees of that party 20 years ago and the present-day reunion are one and the same. Cory deftly uses the element of time to describe her characters; in detailing their past actions to create expectation in the present, Cory develops the real mystery of this tale. Unfortunately the expectation and what follows become too predictable at times. After Iris gets a call from Will Reynolds, a former flame of hers from the Harvard days, she reluctantly agrees to meet him, though Will and Iris did not part amicably those many years ago. On the day of the reunion party, Iris plans to finish up at Norman’s house and meet Will there for lunch. But Will never shows up. After waiting for hours, Iris finally heads home to ready herself for the soirée. The party goes off without a glitch, until the police arrive with disturbing news—Will has been found dead. The guests are now suspects in Will’s murder. In Iris’s mind, the death of her friend 20 years ago and Will’s sudden demise are no coincidence. What she never counted on, however, was being a suspect herself. What follows is an exciting, engrossing tale of greed, deceit and murder that suffers only from instances of predictability.

While not perfect, Cory’s murder mystery is worth the read.


Pub Date: Jan. 7th, 2012
Page count: 244pp
Publisher: Manuscript
Program: Kirkus Indie
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