AUTHOR: Francis Iles
PUBLISHER: Dover Publications (2018)
PUB. YEAR: 1931 (original pub date)
Setting: Wyvern Cross England
Rating - 4.5/5
Dr. Edmund Brickleigh had long been troubled by an inferiority complex. A short man and the son of a shopkeeper, when he meets and marries Julia, a woman 8 years older and of a higher social class, his insecurities live on. The couple has been married for 10 years and neither appears happy in the relationship. Julia is unattractive and very domineering.
As the story begins we learn that the doctor has been a bit of a run around throughout the marriage. Tired of being bossed around, it is at a tennis party that he decides he must kill his wife since every woman he has met seems better than Julia. However, it is Madeleine, who makes he heart skip a beat. Just thinking about Madeleine makes him realize that doing away with his wife is the only chance he has to win her heart and make her his next wife. However, even a well-planned murder doesn't always work out as planned.
This was touted a one of the "Eight Perfect Murders" in Peter Swanson's latest novel. Written originally in 1931, the story started out slow, but quickly picked up pace and hooked me. The mystery is well-plotted, had me smiling at times and, the story had such a surprise ending as well, one that I could have never anticipated. Well worth reading if you like good old-fashioned murder mysteries. Such a nice change of pace.