Planet 228

Helle Michelsen reviews
The Chicken Soup Murder
by Maria Donovan and
by Rhys Iorwerth

The Chicken Soup Murder

Seren, £9.99

Told in the first person, Maria Donovan’s debut novel The Chicken Soup Murder is about the impact of love and loss on two twelve-year-old boys. Younger and slighter, Michael, the narrator, is being bullied by George whose policeman father has moved in with Irma, next-door neighbour to Michael and his Nan. Soon afterwards Irma drops dead while making chicken soup for Michael who is home alone. The authorities do not consider the death suspicious; but while waiting impatiently for his soup, Michael has observed movement and flashes of blue and white in Irma’s kitchen. He loves Irma and is convinced that George’s father murdered her. In spite of his Nan’s remonstrations, he decides to do what he can to attract attention to the policeman’s guilt. Many twists and turns ensue, including life-threatening floods and a kidnap, but in the end the mystery of Irma’s sudden death is solved.

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