Josephine Bell "Death in Clairvoyance" first U.K. edition published by Longmans Green and Co 1949, p244.
Finished this book this morning and to be honest it was a bit of an anti climax to say the least. Recently I have lost my ability in identifying guilty parties, but in this case either everything fell in to place or it was ridiculously easy. All I was originally missing was a motive, but even that became glaringly obvious when first introduced. No quality characterisation, muddlesom rambling ons about psychic powers. The only times I found myself enjoying any parts of the book were when the heroes children got involved. Alright enough, maybe I've been spoilt recently with good choices and was due a downer, but someone else has also been disappointed with a Bell book, so maybe it's not just me. A disappointing 5 out of 10.
So, what's next? Well David Roberts has just released his 9th and penultimate book containing his protagonists Lord Edward Corinth and Verity Brown. Although the previous eight sit upstairs proudly on a makeshift book shelve, I have so far only read the first book.
David Roberts "Sweet Poison" first U.K. edition pub' by Constable 2001, p277, jacket by Ken Leeder.
David Roberts "Bones of the Buried" first U.K. edition pub' by Constable 2001, p342, jacket by Ken Leeder.
The forward to "Bones of the Buried"
Lord Edward Corinth returns to London after six months in New York to find his old sleuthing partner and friend, journalist Verity Browne, insisting he investigate a murder in Madrid. It is 1936 and Spain is about to erupt into civil war. Verity is now correspondent for a national newspaper and passionately committed to defending the Spanish Republic against the Fascist threat. Her lover, David Griffiths-Jones, a senior figure in the Communist Party, has been convicted of murder and Verity appeals to Edward to help save him from the the firing squad, even though she knows he sees him as his rival in love.
Against the odds, he succeeds, but is suddenly called back to England before he can tidy up all the loose ends, in London, Edward becomes embroiled in the investigation of a second murder, that of a banker who had been his contemporary at Eton. Edward uncovers a connection between his dead friend and the victim of the unsolved murder in Spain. Both had been to school with him and there is a third man - another Eton contemporary - whose earlier death in a shooting accident on safari in Kenya now arouses his suspicions.
Lord Edward Corinth and Verity Browne, attracted to each other but at odds politically, join in an awkward alliance to discover the truth. Political and personal danger surrounds them and there is no guarantee that justice will be done and murder avenged.