Asked by her new husband, the gentleman detective Lord Peter Wimsey, why she is having trouble writing her latest mystery novel, Harriet Vane explains, "When I needed the money, it justified itself. It was a job of work, and I did it as well as I could, and that was that. But now, you see, it has no necessity except itself. And, of course, it's hard; it's always been hard, and it's getting harder. So when I'm stuck I think, this isn't my livelihood, and it isn't great art, it's only detective stories. You read them and write them for fun." Is this a clue to the mystery of why Dorothy L. Sayers put aside her 13th full-length Lord Peter novel in 1938 and never finished it? She had made lots of money, and was much more interested in translating Dante and writing about religion. Or is it another excellent novelist, Jill Paton Walsh, speculating--in a perfect imitation of Sayers's voice--on what might have happened? Walsh was invited by the estate of Sayers' illegitimate son, Anthony Fleming, to finish Thrones, Dominations
. She has done a splendid job, certain to please Sayers loyalists on the "dorothyl" listserv as well as those new to the Wimsey canon. Lord Peter has been made much more human and interesting by marriage; Harriet is a wise and acerbic companion; and the story, about the murders of two beautiful young women involved with a theatrical producer, is full of twists and connivance. There's also a fascinating subplot involving the soon-to-abdicate King Edward VII and a country on the brink of the second world war. Earlier Wimseys in paperback include The Five Red Herrings
, Gaudy Night
, Murder Must Advertise
, and Unnatural Death
. Books in print by Walsh include a mystery called A Piece of Justice
and a novel, The Serpentine Cave
"A superb job of seamless collaboration..subltle and discursive in the classic sayers manner, Thrones, Domination is a pure pleasure." --"The Wall Street Journal"
"Extraordinary...it is impossible to tell where Dorothy L. Sayers ends and Jill Paton Waslsh begins." --Ruth Rendell, The" London Sunday Times"
"[Walsh] has done a splendid job--certain to please the legions of Sayers loyalists as well as readers new to the Wimsey canon." --"Chicago Tribune"