Caroline Graham wrote mysteries featuring Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby, upon which the A&E Midsomer Murders television series is based. She also wrote a couple of stand-alones, the later one Murder at Madingley Grange was first published in 1991 and was reprinted by Felony & Mayhem in 2006. It is a wonderfully witty description of just how badly a 1930s Murder Mystery Weekend can go awry.
Not content to simply house-sit his aunt’s country mansion, Simon Hannaford persuades his sister Laurie to use the opportunity to raise money by hosting a mystery weekend. The staff hired without checking their references is larcenous and only marginally competent. The chief advantage of the ill-assorted guests is their money. The elderly mother of one insists on seeing ghosts in the manor and reading tea leaves for the other visitors. Another thinks he is a latter day Sherlock Holmes and is determined to find hidden rooms and secret passages. When one of the guests actually turns up dead, things go from bad to worse.
Beautifully and amusingly written, lots of descriptions of 1930s clothing and elaborate meals. This is the kind of book that might have resulted from collaboration between Agatha Christie and Noel Coward. A good beach read.
- Hardcover: 295 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow & Co; 1st edition (January 1991)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 068809984X
- ISBN-13: 978-0688099848
Aubrey Hamilton © 2017
Aubrey Hamilton is a former librarian who works on Federal IT projects by day and reads mysteries at night.