This blog is a celebration of novel, novel characters!

I love reading novels, and as an artist I know a great exercise to stretch one's illustration skills is to portray characters from a description in a book. This blog is a challenge to myself to do just that so I'll be posting illustrations from whatever book I'm currently reading. Feel free to add comments and send me your fan art for these great titles too!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Drew Fathering from Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering

Since Halloween was this week, reviewing a mystery story seems appropriate.

The setting is England, and the murders are happening right on the grounds of Drew Fathering’s estate.  Drew starts out as a bored aristocrat, but if murder can’t shake a person up, who knows what can? 

Frustrated with the local law enforcement’s investigation, Drew and his best friend Nick start poking about.  There’s a house full of the usual suspects, but there’s some safety in knowing that the love interest, Madeline Parker (an American related to Drew’s stepfather) is with Drew during the first murder so there’s no fear of betrayal when it comes to her character.  And of course, as a certain Father Knox stipulates, “The detective must not himself commit the crime.”

Right off, I love the title: Rules of Murder.  Makes a person think, hmm… are there any rules to murder?  Father Knox seemed to think so.  He was a writer in late 1920s who laid out a set of rules for detective stories.  As Drew Fathering mucks about trying to solve this murder mystery, he and Nick have a running banter on Knox’s rules.  In her afterward, the author admits that her inspiration came from a desire to bend and break Knox’s rules, all in good fun, of course.  My favorite rule is this one:
“The stupid friend of the detective, the Watson, must not conceal any thoughts which pass through his mind; his intelligence must be slightly, but very slightly, below that of the average reader.”
Inspired by the party scene in the begining.
Sorry Nick, I guess that makes you the stupid friend!  Wait… does that make me the stupid reader?  You can read the rest of the rules here:  http://www.thrillingdetective.com/trivia/triv186.html

I haven’t read a lot of murder mysteries but I’ve always loved watching the BBC shows based off them like Sherlock Holmes, Poirot, Miss Marple, etc.  I like that Drew is young, handsome, and follows his instincts as he investigates.  By the end of the novel his character has grown a lot, but he’s still just a fledgling detective.  I’m excited to keep reading the series to see how he grows even more.  I didn’t mention Madeline much; she could use her own post because she’s a great female lead.  I love that she had a strong, unwavering faith.

You can read “Rules of Murder” now, the next in the series “Death by the Book” will be available in Spring of 2014!  http://juliannadeering.com/


I was provided a copy from the author for this review.  Thanks Julianna, if that is your real name... lol


  1. Awww, how wonderful of you to do a drawing of Drew and Madeline. And thanks so much for the wonderful review. I'm so glad you liked the book. Book Two is already done and in the publishing process. I'm working on Book Three edits right now. So far, it has my favorite cover (which you can check out here: http://juliannadeering.com/blog/?p=84 )

    Ummm . . . you didn't happen to make some sloser up sketches of Drew and /or Madeline you'd like to share, did you? :D

    Thanks again. You are THE best!

    1. Thanks DeAnna. Yes, actually I have a few more sketches that I didn't include, and since you mentioned it I sketched a few more lol. I'll put them in a post.

      I love all the covers by the way! I think the 3rd one is my favorite! They all have the classic mystery novel look and the layout & colors are so captivating! Makes me intimidated to do my little doodles.

  2. Ooops . . . dratted glasses! That was supposed to be CLOSER up. Ahem.

    Anyway . . . thank you. You're THE best!

  3. Loved your drawing. And now I'm off to check out Rules of Murder.

  4. I just finished this book on Wednesday! I loved it and as always I LOVE your drawing!

    1. Thanks Laura! I enjoy your blog! BTW, sorry I didn't acknowledge it before, but thanks for nominating my blog for a Liebster award! Now, I have to admit my ignorance and ask... what's a Liebster award? lol