Richard Osman’s debut novel “The Thursday Murder Club,” was published in late 2020 and is a mix of dark humor, captivating imagery and a devastatingly beautiful portrayal of what it means to grow old. The novel follows Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron – senior citizens living in the luxury retirement home, Coopers Chase.
Old age doesn’t dim the light in these folks’ eyes, if anything, it does the opposite. The quad meet every Thursday to put their various (mysterious) skill sets to the test while they attempt to solve previously unsolved murder cases. Everything changes when the group are presented with the opportunity to solve a live case when a local property developer is killed just minutes away from their home.
Osman does a wonderful job of bringing the audience into Coopers Chase to feel like they are part of the story. Each chapter is four pages at most and this model allows the reader into the mind of every character – even the ones who don’t seem important at the time (they will be later, trust me). The chapters that aren’t third person are composed of Joyce’s diary and are witty, entertaining and heartwarming, much like Joyce herself.
The novel is a classic page-turner. It has everything – multiple murders, mystery and pain and love that stretch decades. Most importantly, Osman’s clever writing has you tearing up one second and giggling the next.
“The Thursday Murder Club” was an instant success and quickly became a New York Times bestseller. Osman released its sequel, “The Man Who Died Twice” in 2021 and the third novel of the series, “The Bullet That Missed” was released in late 2022. I personally cannot wait to read them both.