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.
"Barnard...is a delight as he dissects the British class system...This is one of his best" --Washington Post
Who's likely to like this: Fans of Peter Lovesey and Martha Grimes