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Corpse In A Gilded Cage
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Corpse In A Gilded Cage

3.71 of 5 stars 3.71  ·  rating details  ·  131 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Perce Spender, a working-class Londoner, is unexpectedly transformed into the twelfth Earl of Ellesmere when a distant relative dies. But he would rather be warming a bar stool in his local pub, and he's taken up residence at Chetton Hall only until arrangements can be made to sell it. Getting rid of the family estate displeases at least one of Perce's greedy offspring, ho ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published April 1st 1996 by Penguin Books (first published 1984)
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I wonder what my reaction to inheriting a grand estate would be. Would I prefer my own cozy home. That is how the unexpected 12th Earl of Ellesmere and his wife felt. Percy Spender was willing to spend a brief time in the cold drafty yet elegant almost palace, then they wanted to sell it and get on with life. Who wants to eat cold food for the rest of their lives?

All of Percy's family have gathered at Chetton Hall to spend time together and to celebrate Percy's sixtieth birthday. Many of the fa
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This is a nice, solid British mystery, set in a Stately Home but with an unusual cast of characters for one of those (odd things happen when distant relatives inherit). It's full of the kind of dry wit that's perhaps not to everyone's taste (but definitely to mine), and also of the kind of sometimes-bitter class conflict that you don't really get in American mysteries (because Americans don't believe that class exists).

I was sorry to learn, upon looking up the author, that he passed away just la
Unusually for me, this is a comic crime novel. Percy Spender an East End council tenant becomes the 12th Earl of Ellesmere by a twist of fate. He and Elsie his wife, go to live in Chetton Hall but can't wait to sell off everything and return home. Their mixed bunch of offspring come to visit for Perce's 60th birthday and once they see the house and interior, have other plans for what look likes a huge fortune. A light, enjoyable read.
I just love Robert Barnard. I don't care that it's not great literature - it gets 5 stars from me because it is fast moving, a tricky mystery, has characters you really feel you get to know, sparkly dialog and snappy wit. I was delighted to find this one that I had not read yet.
Lana Kamennof-sine
Brilliantly done send up of the murder in the manor Brit mystery but done in such a way that the author's skill is constantly, subtly, showcased.
Barnard blends mystery and satire, making it great fun for the reader as he tries to figure out whodunit.
Kinda like reading a plot penned by Agatha Christie and written by PG Wodehouse.
David Knickmeyer
A very fun murder mystery. Some unique characters in this story.
Mark Macatee
Absolutely wonderful. Love it.
Another great read!
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Aka Bernard Bastable.

Robert Barnard (born 23 November 1936) is an English crime writer, critic and lecturer.

Born in Essex, Barnard was educated at the Royal Grammar School in Colchester and at Balliol College in Oxford. His first crime novel, A Little Local Murder, was published in 1976. The novel was written while he was a lecturer at University of Tromsø in Norway. He has gone on to write more t
More about Robert Barnard...
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