'A New Lease Of Death' was published in 1967, the second of Rendell's Wexford novels. Whilst I always enjoy the nostalgic elements of these early novels, I do feel that this one suffers more than most from the passage of time. The motivations of some of its characters are rooted firmly in the times to the point where its quite difficult to even understand them, reading today! As a result of this perhaps, the principal character of Henry Archery starts out insufferable and ends up rather pathetic. There are very few likeable characters in this novel - Archery's son, his daughter-in-law-to-be (who should be sympathetic) and her rigidly respectable mother are all irritating. The denouement is ultimately unsatisfying and, really, the only things to save this book from a two star (in my opinion) are the Crilling duo, mother and daughter who are also unlikeable but are, at least, interesting. All Rendell's novels are worth a read but this, IMO, is not one of her best.