Mystery, Uncategorized

The Case of the Constant Suicides (Dr. Gideon Fell #13) by John Dickson Carr

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I have read and reviewed two other books by this author recently (looks like I am on a bit of a binge!)

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Although our library’s online catalogue is not as vast as I would want it to be when it comes to old authors (they are pretty up to date on current trends), I have found a few to interest me. The whole Peter Whimsey series is available, and I am working my way through them in order (despite that not being a necessary condition). This was the only Carr available, so I picked it up.

After the previous two books that I read by the author, this was a surprisingly more comfortable read. There was a thread of humour through most of the narration. The side story of the warring Campbells was quite an efficient distraction while not being unwelcome from the main storyline. Gideon Fell does not make an appearance until we are well and truly settled into the plot and I am guessing it might have helped. When I was looking at the book on Goodreads, I noticed an edition with a cover page which effectively reveals the entire plot! I will not mention which one it was, but it left me puzzled as to why any publisher would do that, however long ago it was!

Alan Campbell has been summoned to Scotland on a tenuous family connection that nevertheless deemed his presence essential in a house mourning a loss. On the way, he picks up a companion or two, the introduction of each is equally humorous. Then we meet the members of the family, also chaotic. The chaos was not off-putting but gave the actual mystery some time to simmer. The head Campbell was found outside, at the foot of his tower, dead. There is an extra clause on his life insurance, and this has everyone trying to figure out the solution. I was misled to focus too much on a red herring, and this might help me the next time I read one of Carr’s books. Once again, I saw the same type of conclusion as the previous two I have read. The criminal(s) are not precisely brought to justice in the truest sense, although this was more satisfying than the last two cases. I am going to wait a bit before I start another of his books just so that if this happens again, I will be a little less bothered.

I am really enjoying reading books written by authors in this period. I am hoping to discover more favourites for the rest of the year!

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