Stevie Carroll's Reviews > Lessons in Chasing the Wild Goose

Lessons in Chasing the Wild Goose by Charlie Cochrane
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really liked it
bookshelves: reviewed-elsewhere

Previously reviewed on The Good, The Bad, and The Unread:

It’s been a while since I read a new Cambridge Fellows mystery, and I’ve managed to find myself behind by two novellas, a situation I’m now rectifying in the midst of all my other reading and reviewing. This book takes us to the autumn of 1922, and our heroes are enjoying the last few days of peace before their students return. As always, the year is reflected in both how the lads have matured since their earliest adventures and how the world around them has progressed. Inevitably Orlando is trying to resist the changes, while Jonty is enthusiastically embracing every new piece of technology he can get his hands on. Just as predictably, they are both of the opinion that what they need right now is a new puzzle to take their minds off the upcoming term. Fortunately, one is just about to be brought to their attention…As is often the case, the bearer of the mystery is a fellow from another college. Not the dreaded college next door this time, but the far more palatable Ascension College; and it’s someone they already know: Beattie, the historian who befriended Orlando when Jonty was missing, presumed dead, and for whom Orlando harboured feelings before his lover’s miraculous reappearance. This new puzzle has to do with the war too. One of Beattie’s former comrades has been killed in what appears to have been a tragic road accident. Beattie suspects foul play. However, he is unable to provide any clues as to who the man’s enemies might have been.

The lads begin their investigation, but are no more able to come up with a motive for the killing than was Beattie. Events in Cambridge soon make them more suspicious that a killer is on the prowl and that their client may well be the next target. Enlisting the help of family and friends, they manage to locate suspects, with no real motive for wanting Beattie and his friend out of the way but with plenty of secrets in their pasts that may account for their wanting revenge on someone.

As always, I loved the twists, turns, and red herrings in this case. Jonty’s sister makes a good replacement on the detecting front for their much-missed mother, and her husband turns out to be a useful source of information as well. It’s always good to be reminded of the story aspects that are more or less unique to Cambridge: the colleges, the ever-present bicycles, the rooms in college where fellows meet with students and others needing their advice, the interdepartmental rivalries (all of which can be found in Oxford as well, but there are subtle differences). And, of course, there are the porters, always on hand when needed, and eternally owed crates of beer for going above and beyond their official duties where our lads are concerned. Another excellent story with a fitting (proposed) resolution, which I would love to have seen played out in a longer version of the story.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
July 7, 2019 – Shelved
July 7, 2019 – Shelved as: reviewed-elsewhere
July 7, 2019 – Finished Reading

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