Delighted to be taking part today in the Blog Tour for The Amber Maze by Christopher Bowden.
THE AMBER MAZE
While staying in a Dorset cottage, Hugh Mullion finds a mysterious key down the side of an antique chair. No one can say how long the key has been there or what it opens.
Hugh’s search for answers will unlock the secrets of the troubled life of a talented artist, destined to be hailed a neglected genius fifty years too late. And no secret is darker than that of The Amber Maze, from whose malign influence he never escaped.
The trail takes Hugh from Edwardian Oxfordshire to 1960s Camden Town, where the ghosts of the past are finally laid to rest.
The story starts with our main character Hugh spending a few days at a cottage in Dorset before the arrival of his wife and children. Startled by the ringing of his mobile phone he jumps up only to lose some coins from his pocket down the side of the cushion in the armchair he was relaxing in. On trying to retrieve his money, he pulls out a key! Tied to the key is part of a note, it looks old and only part of the message can be seen. Now if you’ve read Christopher’s earlier books you will know that a mystery object such as this needs investigating, and Hugh cannot resist.
He tries various keyholes around the cottage without luck then thinks well who ever owned the chair may have also owned the key. Hugh’s desire to find out the story behind this lone key starts a string of clues for Hugh and the reader to follow, opening a story of hidden secrets and past lives.
The opening setting is lovely. Picturesque cottage, warm summer’s evening and a mystery armchair! Hugh’s eagerness for mystery solving is contagious and I couldn’t stop reading on to find out what was to happen next. The story lines and characters that we later read about are well thought out and fully formed, with the story moving back and forth in time as we learn more about the mystery behind the key. I particularly liked the character of Hester and her ‘zest for life’ introduction at the beginning and of course Lionel.
It’s a short book and one that I raced through. The chapters from Lionel’s past, Dorset and the maze coupled with Hugh in London gave the book a cosy crime feel with a modern twist. I will now definitely be checking out Christopher’s other ‘colourful’ novels.
Thank you to Anne Cater of Random Things Through my Letterbox for the invite to this blog tour and please do check out the other reviews. The Amber Maze is published by Langton & Wood and is available to buy now on Amazon.
Christopher Bowden Biography
Christopher Bowden lives in south London. He is the author of six novels, each with a colour theme. The Amber Maze, published in September 2018, is the latest. His previous books have been praised variously by Andrew Marr, Julian Fellowes, Sir Derek Jacobi, and Shena Mackay. Of his third novel, The Red House, Sir Derek said, “Very entertaining, cleverly constructed and expertly paced. I thoroughly enjoyed it.”