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Customer Review

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lord Peter has finer moments, 14 April 2007
This review is from: Strong Poison (Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries) (Paperback)
Lord Peter Wimsey, the aristocratic detective, and his mother are attending the trial of Harriet Vane for the murder of her lover. Wimsey falls in love with Vane at first sight, and determines to prove her innocence. With much assistance from the admirable Miss Climpson, he uncovers a nasty little plot. Whether he gets the girl or not remains to be seen.

Though generally I am a fan of Dorothy L Sayers, I have to make the blasphemous statement that I find the relationship between Harriet Vane and Lord Peter Wimsey terminally annoying. From Peter's instant proposal of marriage to the events at the end of Gaudy Night, the whole business is less like a relationship (whether amorous or purely platonic) than like an intellectual virgin's imagining of what a relationship might be like.

Unsurprisingly, then, I found parts of this book annoying beyond telling. Fortunately Ms Vane is in custody for much of the time, and so I am left to enjoy what does turn out to be rather a good chase. I adore Miss Climpson; like an urban guerilla version of Miss Marple, she's a complete charicature of what an unmarried woman of her class would have been, but done so sympathetically, she's glorious. And also the light relief and the saving grace for this book.

Essential in the Wimsey canon for being the first meeting with Harriet, this is nonetheless not the book to start with.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Apr 2010 11:05:38 BDT
Ben Koerner says:
What ARE the books we should start with?

In reply to an earlier post on 13 May 2010 10:13:34 BDT
S. Bailey says:
Whose Body? is the first LPW book, so I'd start there. Or with Murder Must Advertise, which is IMO the best one.
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