Corpse in a Gilded Cage
A man’s home is his castle, but for Percy Spender (“call me Perce”) that motto has been taken just a bit too literally. After the sudden death of first one distant relative and then another, the amiable Perce has become the 12th Earl of Ellesmere. And his home, no longer a cozy council flat, is now the drafty, imposing Chetton Hall, complete with more bedrooms than Perce can count and an army of servants. Frankly, all these fancy-pants trappings make Perce itch. He’d just as soon sell up, buy a comfy cottage, and put a bundle on the ponies. However, some of his mates and family members have other ideas. And the sad fact is that an Unfortunate Accident can happen to anyone, even a lord of the realm.
Robert Barnard has written both extremely funny mysteries and serious ones, and Corpse in a Gilded Cage combines the best of all of them. The story, about a Cockney family that inherits an earldom (and the drafty manor house that goes with it) is as deliciously funny as one could possibly desire, but the characterizations – even when they are perfectly embodying “stuffy” or “crass” or “vulgar as a dirty joke in church” – are stunning.
Who's Likely to Like This
Fans of Peter Lovesey and Martha Grimes
“Barnard...is a delight as he dissects the British class system...This is one of his best”—Washington Post