Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Once along a village road
Comments on Over My Dead Body by Claire Lorrimer ISBN: 0727859854, New York: Severn House, c2003. This is a charming little English Country village mystery, replete with eccentric characters, lovely Kentish countryside, a whole gallery of sleuths (who give due homage to Ms. Marple), a dire curse with attendant ghosts and, even a kitten, who plays a crucial role in the resolution. Someone is killing members of the Road Committee (something I’ve never encountered, but which is eminently sensible in the circumstances), and it is up to the residents of the people who live along this private road to find out who, and why. These characters include a young married couple (with babies), 2 very eccentric elderly sisters, one of whom exceeds the norm in eccentricity, a retired rector, a famous author, and a crippled Battle of Britain pilot. All have spouses (except for the sisters), and all have reasons to be concerned about the plans for the road proposed by the richest neighbor. One of them, apparently, is so concerned that he or she is taking matters very much, and very permanently, in hand. The plot is very clever, the characters are delightful, and the writing is very good. Aside from the fact that the CID detective who is trying to figure out what is going on is a bit more willing to discuss the investigation than I find credible, this book works, and it is the perfect accompaniment to a rainy afternoon, a plate of snacks (savory or sweet) and, if not a cuppa, then perhaps some rich hot chocolate or excellent coffee.