- Mangaka : Yukito Ayatsuji and Hiro Kiyohara
- Publisher : Kodansha
- Genre : Drama, Horror, Thriller
- Published : August 2021
The key to a good murder mystery is the set up. If the author fails to create an interesting and challenging set up, then the entire story will flop. It also has to be not too easy to crack while not abandoning logic. After all, the readers want to try their hand solving the case using the clues they’ve gathered. Obviously, that is not an easy task. This is also why we like these kinds of series very much. Even though it may not be true, we always feel smarter after finishing a case. Not to mention, it’s always amusing learning the twists and tricks the culprit holds.
The Decagon House Murders follows a group of college students as they stay on an uninhabited island for a week. This island is quite isolated and doesn’t have cellphone reception. Since a tragic incident has also occurred quite recently, the house they will be staying at also doesn’t have any electricity. As fellow detective novel enthusiasts, this doesn't really faze them much. Things, however, take a drastic turn when a few wooden tags appear on the table the next morning. The tags indicate five victims, a murderer, and a detective.
1. Interesting Premise
The Decagon House Murders’ premise looks very promising. From the title alone, we already get the idea that blood will obviously be shed. The set up is also quite great as the group of college students are pretty much trapped in the island for the weak. This gives them time to figure out who the murderer is, but it also gives the murderer time to enact his plan. While motive and a suspect has already been revealed, we are still in the dark as to what might happen next.
2. Two Sets of Problem Solvers
What we find intriguing is that there are two groups trying to crack this case. The first one is obviously the ones on the island. After all, they have to figure out or at least try to pinpoint the murderer if they don’t want any more victims. The other is the group that consists of other members of the club who didn’t join the trip, as well as other individuals with connection to the case. Even though both groups are yet to unveil their hands and capabilities, we are very much interested to see how they will try to solve this case.
1. Still Laying Down the Foundation
The first volume only lays down the groundwork for the series. Even though it does a good job establishing the premise, introducing the characters, and cementing the set up, the exciting part is yet to come. Disappointingly but not surprisingly, the first volume also ends just when the first murder is committed. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it is understandable that some may opt to wait a bit longer for the latter volumes to come out. After all, nobody really likes getting a cliffhanger just when things are just getting exciting.
It is too early to judge The Decagon House Murders as a series, but we definitely are already hooked to it. The premise, the setting, and the characters are laid out pretty well, and we are quite curious as to how the story will progress. Hopefully, it will be able to string the events seamlessly and won’t become a confusing mess in future volumes. Unfortunately, we can only wait and see.