What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

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UNSOLVED: One specific book > Noir-ish Whodunnit Parody: stock characters (hardboiled detective, socialites) gathered at a stately home (?) to solve a mystery with a bunch of clock changing to establish alibis. Everyone drinks constantly and excessively, to a disturbing degree.

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message 1: by KCT (new)

KCT | 1 comments Vague spoilers, but not really.

I read this thing around 1996 (but it was a library borrow in Jakarta, so who knows when it was published). I have a vague feeling the title had something to do with time of day, given that clocks were important to the plot -- something about establishing alibis based on witnesses hearing clocks chiming at the wrong time. Cover was blue if that (ha ha) helps -- I know, I know, I used to work in a bookstore.

The main characters were, I think, the hard boiled detective and the hard drinking hostess (hostess?) who was probably blonde and probably a bombshell. It was always cocktail hour, and the characters proceed to get sloshed and stay sloshed, but they don't quite carry off the "it's ok, we're fine, everything is dandy" mantra of the genre; there's a sort of desperate melancholy peeping through, but they just drink over it.

Thank you, all!


message 2: by Samantha (new)

Samantha E (samasaurus_rex) | 11 comments is it The Clocks by Agatha Christie ?


message 3: by Cycad (new)

Cycad | 114 comments Can't be The Clocks; they're really not that important in the story.


message 4: by Aspiring (last edited May 12, 2018 07:07AM) (new)

Aspiring Scribbler | 67 comments Agree... Among other reasons, it's not The Clocks which is set in a suburban area, not a country house, and as stated above, the actual clocks have very little to do with the story.

The plot you're looking for sounds more like A Man Lay Dead by Ngaio Marsh


message 5: by Michele (new)

Michele | 2425 comments You say it's a parody -- can you say any more about what specifically made it a parody, as opposed to just an example of the genre?


message 6: by Lobstergirl, au gratin (new)

Lobstergirl | 40644 comments Mod
KCT, are you still looking for this or did you find it?


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