Writer: Various ed. by Martin Edwards
Publishing House: British Library Crime Classics
Date of Publication: April 1st 2015
Rating: 5 stars
“All of us, or nearly all of us, have at one time or another had the desire and the impulse to commit murder.”
Everything can happen when we’re on holidays. We meet new people, we are free from our daily routine, we fall in love and we can possibly commit a murder or two. Think of a number of Christie’s most popular mysteries. You will find that holidays offer the ideal backdrop for a large cast of characters, passions that flourish and feelings that become disclosed, things that get stolen.
In the volume edited by Martin Edwards, we find fourteen stories, set in various places, with a number of twists and turns, memorable motives and a wonderful sense of setting.
“It was a country of rolling moors, lonely and dun-coloured, with an occasional church tower to mark the site of some old-world village. In every direction upon these moors there were traces of some vanished race which had passed utterly away, and left as its sole record strange monuments of stone, irregular mounds which contained the burned ashes of the dead, and curious earthworks which hinted at prehistoric strife.”
The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot by Arthur Conan Doyle. A fascinating incident of impossible deaths, Cornwall and Sherlock Holmes.
A Schoolmaster Abroad by E.W.Hornung.A surprising mystery set in Switzerland.
Murder! by Arnold Bennett. The story of a murder of passion, set in a seaside resort on the Channel coast.
The Murder on the Golf Links by M.McDonnell Bodkin. A confused young woman, a sad suitor, a strange father. Set in a luxurious golf hotel.
The Finger of Stone by G.K.Chesterton. Three young men try to decipher the murder of a very special man. Set in France.
The Vanishing of Mrs Fraser by Basil Thompson. The strange adventure of a young woman whose mother vanishes from a hotel in Paris. Strange motives, and a thoroughly unreliable narrator.
A Mystery of the Sand – Hills by R. Austin Freeman. A pile of clothes prompts the question: was the man drowned or was it a hideous murder? Set in a seaside resort in Britain.
The Hazel Ice by H.C.Bailey. A story of disappearances, cultural differences and marriage, set in the Austrian Alps.
Razor Edge by Anthony Berkeley. A body in a cove and a distorted wife.
Holiday Task by Leo Bruce. A strange murder set in Normandy.
A Posteriori by Helen Simpson. A provocative, uncomfortable story of an Englishwoman in Paris.
Where Is Mr Manetot? by Phyllis Bentley. A story of whispers, rainfall and a very alluring woman.
The House of Screams by Gerald Findler. A supernatural mystery of a miserable marriage and a brother’s duty, set in a dark manor in Cumberland.
Cousin Once Removed by Michael Gilbert. Let’s face it, cousins can be quite irritating, demanding and parasitic. A farm mystery set in Cumberland.