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The Affair of the Mutilated Mink
A Burford Family Mystery - Book II

by James Anderson


If you have read The Affair of the Bloodstained Egg Cosy (Amazon US || UK) then you were probably hoping that the late Mr. Anderson had written another book in this series, Actually he wrote two more, and this is one of them. Back at Alderley, the Earl of Burford has just discovered talkies, and has become a keen film buff.  When the earl hears that Cyrus S. Haggermeir wants to not only shoot his next film at his stately pile but also bring his favorite star Rex Ransom with him, he eagerly agrees. But house parties at Alderley have a habit of involving murders, and this one is no different. In short, this is another case for Inspector Wilkins, even if he is not sanguine about it.

If you like classic era mysteries complete with a dash of humor, then this is your cup of Earl Grey. The satirically drawn characters include the delightfully vague Earl, gloomy but sharp inspector, conceited Scotland Yard detective and strange Aussie relations, all of whom could have sprung from the pages of this type of Golden Age mystery. Maybe this makes it sound as though this is a novel played for laughs but the humor is the seasoning and used with the right, light hand; the rest of the book is a rattling good murder mystery with a whole fishmonger’s worth of red herrings. It is not easy to craft this type of thing convincingly and I have read rather too many books that tried and failed; this one more than succeeds.  The plot is convoluted to say the least, the characters memorable and engaging and the humor actually made me laugh. What a shame this author only wrote three of these excellent novels.

The Book

Allison and Busby
March 2009
0749079533 / 9780749079536
Historical Mystery / 1930s South western England
More at US || UK
NOTE: US edition is different

The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2009
© 2009