"No one can be lonely who has a book for company." ~ Nelle Reagan

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Twelve Drummers Drumming by C.C. Benison

As I have been home sick yesterday and today, I have found one plus to this situation - more reading time! Therefore I have been able to finish Twelve Drummers Drumming, much to my delight!  Read on for the review:

Twelve Drummers Drumming
Author:  C.C. Benison
Published:  October 2011
Publisher:  Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Publishing Group
Pages: 374
Genre:  Mystery
ISBN 9780385344456
Source:  I won an Advance Readers Copy from GoodReads.

"Introducing a series utterly perfect for cozy fans of Alan Bradley, Alexander McCall Smith, and Louise Penny. The Reverend Tom "Father" Christmas, the newest vicar of Thornford Regis, an idyllic rural town in England, turns detective when one of his parishioners turns up dead in a drum, and everyone in town seems to have something to confess. Tom Christmas came to picturesque Thornford Regis with his young daughter to escape the terrible experience of losing his wife in the city. Her murder sent him packing to the bucolic and charming town, where violent crime isn't supposed to happen and the greatest sin is supposed to be nothing a member of the clergy can't handle. Then, at the town fair, a woman is found murdered. Tom soon learns that everyone in Thornford Regis has a secret to hide--infidelity, theft, even past murders. Twelve Drummers Drumming showcases a lovely place to live and/or die, and marks the debut of a planned twelve-book mystery series featuring the brilliant Father Christmas." 

My Review:

Twelve Drummers Drumming is the first in a new mystery series written by C.C. Benison and also my first of this author's works I've read.  When Tom Christmas (Father Christmas) left the big city with his daughter Miranda, he had hopes for a peaceful country village home.  A place to heal following the unsolved murder of his wife.  However, within a week of his arrival, a parishioner is found dead, her body hidden in a large o-daiko drum.  The mystery begins even before his arrival, however, with the disappearance of the village's previous clergyman.  As Tom discreetly questions residents, his curiosity and desire for justice having taken him over, he soon discovers this is not a sleepy peaceful village but rather a home of many secrets and mysteries.  

Twelve Drummers Drumming is a cozy English mystery which is perfect for a quiet read with a lap quilt and a favourite hot drink on a cold winter's day (or when you are home ill, as the case may be).  The cast of characters, as introduced in a section at the beginning of the novel as "Inhabitants of Thornford Regis", hold promise for several future books in this new series.  They are complex with only a few of what is likely many secrets hinted at throughout Twelve Drummers Drumming, building the promise for more captivating reading in the years to come.  I've read there is a potential of twelve books in the series!  

I look forward to learning more of the "Inhabitants of Thornford Regis" through the eyes of Father Christmas and the writing talent of C.C. Benison.  I am a new fan and I am sure you will be too!

Rated 4.5/5 (warning for the sensitive reader:  some profanity)


  1. Im curious as to how much religion is in this book. It sounds great but Im Jewish so dont like to read too much religion in books.

  2. Becca, thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. Though the protagonist is a clergyman, and the odd mention of religion is included, it is not preachy and comes across more as a mystery than anything. The setting is in a rural English town with the townspeople being the cast.

    Here's a link to the publisher's site where you can read a sample from the book to get a better feel for it: http://www.randomhouse.ca/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9780385670135

    I don't think you'd find anything here objectionable but I'd recommend borrowing it from the library and giving it a try. If you do read it, please let me know what you think.


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