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Death Notes by Sarah Rayne

Introducing professional researcher Phineas Fox in the first of a brand-new series of chilling mysteries.

Phineas Fox has mixed feelings when he s asked to research the infamous 19th-century violinist Roman Volf for a TV documentary. Hanged for his part in the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881, Volf was a notorious criminal and womaniser, whose glittering talent was undermined by his scandalous private life. However, on uncovering evidence which suggests that Volf could not have been involved in the Tsar s murder, Phin s investigations lead him to the west coast of Ireland and a series of intriguing, interlocking mysteries reaching from 1881 to the present day.

Was Roman Volf executed for something he didn t do? And what is his connection with the reclusive Maxim Volf now living in County Galway? Phin s enquiries will unearth a number of dark secrets which lurk below the surface of the quiet Irish village of Kilcarne."

 
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Did I take for granted that this would be a paranormal mystery because it's a book by Sarah Rayne? Yes, I did! However, it turned out to be quite a good book, despite the absence of paranormal activity. 
 
Death Notes is the first book in a new series that stars Phineas Fox a professional researcher who in this book is researching the 19th-century violinist Roman Volf who was hanged for participating in the murder of Tsar Alexander II in 1881. However, it seems that he may have been innocent and Phin's investigations take him to Galway where a reclusive Maxim Volf lives Could this Maxim Volf have any connection to Roman Volf? And what really happened two years ago when a car crashed and killed Beatrice Drury's husband and daughter? 
 
I did spend a lot of time reading this book waiting for something paranormal to happen, some ghostly appearance. But, I was mistaken in believing that. Despite that did I come to like the book very much thanks to the interesting and tragic story. There were some predictable moments in the book, but they never really bothered me since I was enjoying the story. 
 
There are several POV's in this book. This series may be about Phineas Fox, but other characters, young Jessica Cullen, Beatrice Drury who lost her family, the mysterious Maxim Volf and of course Mortimer Quince who is the reason for Phin to travel to Galway. They all share the limelight in this book. At first was it a bit puzzling to figure out what all the different storylines had in common, but as the story progressed did it all start to make sense, and there came a point when the different POV's started to blend together. It's quite a sad story, several of the characters in the book has been through hell, but I found myself loving the ending. It was such a hopeful ending, a perfect ending!
 
I look forward to reading the next book in the Phineas Fox series when it's released! 
 

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!