Book Review: “Murder at the Manor” Edited by Martin Edwards

July 1, 2016 at 12:40 am | Posted in Books | Leave a comment
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Martin Edwards in his new book, “Murder at the Manor book coverMurder at the Manor” A Book in the British Library Crime Classic series published by Poisoned Pen Press gives us another collection of stories regarding murder at the English Country House.

From the back cover:   The English country house is an iconic setting for some of the greatest British crime fiction. This new collection gathers together stories written over a span of about 65 years, during which British society, and life in country houses, was transformed out of all recognition. It includes fascinating and unfamiliar twists on the classic closed circle plot, in which the assorted guests at a country house party become suspects when a crime is committed. In the more sinister tales featured here, a gloomy mansion set in lonely grounds offers an eerie backdrop for dark deeds.

Many distinguished writers are represented in this collection, including such great names of the genre as Anthony Berkeley, Nicholas Blake and G.K. Chesterton. Martin Edwards has also unearthed hidden gems and forgotten masterpieces: among them are a fine send-up of the country house murder; a suspenseful tale by the unaccountably neglected Ethel Lina White; and a story by the little-known Scottish writer J.J. Bell.

Martin Edwards has edited together this anthology of 16 neatly crafted, traditional whodunit cozy mysteries. I think the great stories from the mystery writers are those that have the Country House. There is a limited amount of time, usually the story takes place over a weekend. There is nowhere to go, all the suspects are guests at this Country House where the murder has been committed so the pool of suspects is limited to those that have been introduced and sometimes even includes the detective. Mr. Edwards, in his introduction, starts off with a short history of the use of country houses in murder stories. He also, at the beginning of each story, includes a brief background on each of the authors. I have to admit it is so much fun reading these stories, each of them hum along at a fast pace as we work to figure out just what is going on. “Murder At The Manor” is loaded with twists and turns and red herrings that will leave you guessing all the while you are flipping pages to find out what happens next. I recommend this book highly, you will not be disappointed.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Poisoned Pen Press.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

#MurderattheManor #MartinEdwards #BritishLibraryCrimeClassic

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