Murder at Shots Hall
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Murder at Shots Hall (Inspector Lane Parry #1)

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  28 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Paperback, 191 pages
Published July 1st 2003 by Rue Morgue Press (first published 1945)
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Book description:

Flikka Ashley and her outspoken Aunt Bee Chattock live in the ruins of a formerly great manor house called Shots Hall, located near a Sussex village named after it. Two-thirds of Shots Hall was destroyed by German incendiary bombs, leaving only its grand old tower, a cavernous great hall, the kitchen and a small drawing room. However genteel, poverty is still poverty, and the two women have been forced to make ends meet by selling off the occasional bottle of vintage port or pr...more
Maureen Sarsfield is a mystery herself; no one has been able to find out who she was or where she lived. This book was published in the 40s and has the adroit literate style of my favorite old British mysteries. The characters have life and personalities.
Very British, very sharp little mystery written by Maureen Sarsfield who was a promising mystery writer who herself became a mystery when she disappeared from the literary scene and no one knows what ever happened to her.

Regardless, she wrote a charming tale in which a local divorcee becomes the chief suspect in a series of murders in small town England, post WWII. Very like an Agatha Christie novel with a cast of eccentric suspects that keep you guessing till the very end.

Very much recommended!
Jan 28, 2009 CLM rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of Ngaio Marsh & Patricia Wentworth
Shelves: mystery, uk
Not much in the way of plot (and the way the men in the book all sneer at the divorced heroine for once having had a man spend the night with her results in a) most of them appearing vile, and b) the book seeming more dated than others written in the same period) but I enjoyed the heroine and her aunt, the depiction of a small town, and the surprise ending.
A good cozy mystery. I love these older mysteries. I'm glad that I found Rue Morgue Press. They put out a great little catalog of mystery titles. I really look forward to it. I bought this book because I wanted to support Rue Morgue in their quest to bring great mysteries back into print. It was worth every penny.
Really charming murder mystery. British mysteries from this period have a sort of cozy quality; usually set in a village or some stately home, everyone knows each other, people are always popping down to the pub or over to the vicarage. "Shots Hall" has a weird Gothic quality, but it still feels cozy.
A classic English cozy, and a very satisfying mystery. Occasionally I was irritated by how often we were told of the beauty of the main suspect (all men are spellbound by her, instantly), but that's a small quibble.
This author only wrote three or four books, then disappeared completely. Too bad, because her detective is promising.
Bev Hankins
Another great ""oldie"" from Rue Morgue.
Fabulous. Wish she'd written more!
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