Rebel Without a Claus is the 5th book in the Movie Club Mysteries by Zara Keane. We see Maggie and Lenny in Galway working their own cases now that Lenny is a full-time employee of Movie Reel Investigations but part of Maggie’s case sees her end up with a dead body in her bath tub in the apartment they are staying in Galway.
Rebel Without a Claus was different to the rest of the series because it introduces more of Maggie’s family along with the added circumstance of Maggie not being in Whispering Island and meaning that she is dealing with a more component police force, where she finds herself suspect number 1 instead of being more of an assistance for the case. This was an interesting perspective with the added depths added to characters with introduction of her sister Beth. Along with another sub-plot with Reynolds.
The standout character in Rebel Without a Claus was for me Beth, while the investigations were interesting with some interesting twists. It was the strained relationship between Maggie and Beth that made book for me. It saw Maggie dealing with some old emotions regarding her sister and allowing them to explore each other worlds, and how their parents treat them as kids. This was huge, although I have a feeling that Beth could easily move in out of the series whenever the story needs her.
Overall, I gave Rebel Without a Claus 4/5 because it was an easy read and enjoyable with the character development but at times the cases seemed to be in the background. This isn’t a negative so to speak because it’s good to see the characters out of a murder mystery but at the same time it sometimes made the mysteries hard to follow at times. It was also interesting to see Maggie kind of on the back foot not getting the support of the Police like we’ve expected since the arrival of Reynolds.