First Line: "Oh, damn!" said Lord Peter Wimsey at Picadilly Circus.
I irritate myself sometimes. Although I've tried a few times to read Golden Age mysteries, they just don't seem to be for me. However, time will pass and once again I'll begin to feel that I'm missing out on something. This is why I picked up Dorothy L. Sayers' very first Lord Peter Wimsey mystery, Whose Body? I've always had the feeling that-- if I liked any Golden Age mystery writer-- I would like her.
In this book, Lord Peter's mother the Dowager Duchess of Denver has called to tell him that the architect she's hired to do some work on her local church has stumbled across a body in his bath wearing nothing put a pair of pince-nez. London's Inspector Sugg is convinced that Thipps the architect is guilty.
While Lord Peter begins his investigation for Thipps, he learns that his friend Inspector Parker is looking into the disappearance of Sir Reuben Levy, a famous financier. Lord Peter must find out what's happened to Sir Reuben as well as identify that body in Thipps' bath to get the mild-mannered architect out of hot water.
After reading the first few chapters of this book, I almost gave up in disgust. The pages were filled with dialogue that was supposed to be sparkling and witty but only sounded like dated, superficial piffle. (See? I may not have read Sayers before, but I've evidently been able to mine a nugget or two from various sources.)
Fortunately the book settled down and steered clear of conversational piffle throughout the rest of the story, and I actually enjoyed watching Wimsey figure out identities, timelines, and what actually happened. In fact I enjoyed it enough to start looking for the second book in the series. All you Golden Age mystery lovers-- there may be hope for me yet!
Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers
Open Road Media © 2013
eBook, 208 pages
Private Investigator, #1 Lord Peter Wimsey mystery
Source: Purchased from Amazon