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A collection of the three final Peter Wimsey tales...
on 3 May 2002
A collection of the three final Peter Wimsey tales, 'Striding Folly' contains the title story, a work which revolves around a curious death during a game of chess, seemingly foretold in a dream, and 'The Haunted Policeman', which takes place on the eve of the birth of Peter and Harriet's first child, and revolves around a policeman accused of drunkeness by his Sergeant, despite the fact that he was completely sober. The final tale, 'Talboys', is a lightly amusing and whimsical account of a mysterious theft of peaches belonging to Mr Puffett (whom we have previously seen clearing a chimney, and in other capacities, in 'Busman's Honeymoon'), in which we have a brief meeting with the Wimseys en famille, now with three sons, Bredon, Roger, and Paul. Bunter and a snake called Cuthbert also appear to round out this delightful tale, the last of the Wimsey canon (bar 'Thrones, Dominations', should you wish to count it). Personally, I find 'Talboys' to be one of the most deft pieces of humour that I have ever had the pleasure to read, although it may not appeal to those who are devoted to stories of pure detection.
Prefaced by an essay by Janet Hitchman, 'Lord Peter Wimsey and His Creator', this volume may not be the ideal introduction to Wimsey - for that, it would be best to begin at the proverbial beginning, with 'Whose Body?'. However, for the initiated, it is indispensible, and wins five stars on the individual strengths of each story alone.