Saturday, December 1, 2018

A Classic British Mystery...

"Publicity was Miss Cordell's bugbear. Respectable publicity was bad enough.... but shameful publicity! A death mystery! This was terrible!

Four Freshman at Persephone College--Sally Watson, Daphne Loveridge, Gwyneth Pane and Nina Harson--are intent upon forming their own secret society when they spot a canoe floating past them on the Cherwell with a dead body lying inside. It's their college bursar, Myra Denning. Now Sally and her friends are intent on protecting their college and figuring out how and why Myra Denning died. Of course, the local police and Scotland Yard have their own ideas.
"Undergraduates, especially those in their first year, are not, of course, quite sane or quite adult."
A British Library Crime Classic, Death on the Cherwell by Mavis Doriel Hay was first published in 1935 and recently reprinted in 2016. And I'm glad it was because it's an entertaining mystery. The four amateur sleuths reminded me a little of Nancy Drew and her friends. And I liked the 1930s references and the college setting a lot. And it's funny, too. The actual police, though, do the bulk of the mystery solving ... with a little help from the four girls.

While Death on the Cherwell isn't quite as good as an Agatha Christie, this lighthearted mystery is a lot of fun. I, for one, would love to read Hay's other two detective novels, especially if they're as enjoyable as this one.

Happy Reading!

32 comments:

  1. I loved Agatha Christie so I think this would be entertaining. It does sound like a little Nancy Drew-ish, too, like you said. :)

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    1. I love the combination of Agatha Christie and Nancy Drew! :)

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  2. I've read Murder Underground, another reprint in the series - with a gorgeous cover of course! It was a fun read.

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  3. There is something charming about mysteries from the 1930's--more sleuthing, less violence. Love the cover!

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    1. Charming describes this book perfectly. :)

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  4. I haven't read this one, but it sounds fun. I have a copy of one of Hay's other books, The Santa Klaus Murder, which I'm hoping to have time to read before Christmas.

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    1. Oh, that sounds like fun! I wish my library had a copy of that one. :)

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  5. I think I've heard good things about this one from somewhere... the plot sounds familiar. This sounds like a fun read and I love reading mysteries from that era...it is like time travel!

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    1. I love reading mysteries from that era, too. I'm really glad so many of them have been reprinted recently. :)

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  6. Oh, a Golden Age writer I haven't tried yet! Sounds good; I'll definitely keep an eye out for this one.

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  7. That is such a pretty cover and I like the sound of this one. I've read a couple of books from this imprint and it's fun to read some vintage crime stories.

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    1. I'm fast becoming a fan of these vintage crime novels, too. :)

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  8. I like these reprints of Golden Age mysteries and this one sounds good. The covers are all attractive which brings in readers.

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    1. I'm so glad they're reprinting these, too. :)

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  9. This sounds great, and I love those British Crime Classic covers- they're so evocative and colorful. I've considered getting some of them just for the covers!

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    1. They are great covers! I wouldn't mind owning a set of them myself. :)

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  10. This sounds like so much fun! I love mysteries set in this time period!

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    1. I do, too. There's something about them that's just fun.

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  11. I would read it for the cover alone! Premise good too—I like school stories, and school mystery stories, so this fits the bill for a nice relaxing read.

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  12. Hi Lark, this sounds good. I am a fan of mysteries, books involving female colkege friends and the 1930's so putting this one on my list.

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    1. I always enjoy that college aspect in books. :)

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  13. This does sound good! I love the Agatha Christie comparisonšŸ˜

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    1. It's got that feel to it that a lot of Christie's books have.

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  14. It sounds like it might be a good choice for a younger reader?? My 13 yr old likes a good mystery. Found your blog via Ruthiella Reads.

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    1. I'm not sure if a younger teen reader would like that time period or that 1930s feel. She might find it a little slow going. But it's not super long, and the girls in it are fun. Thanks for commenting! :)

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  15. 1930s, academia, mystery, ticks all my boxes! Thanks for letting us know about this one.

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  16. This does sound like a fun read. I do enjoy the British Library Crime Classics - I enjoyed J Jefferson Farjeon's 'Seven Dead' early this year. So pleased Poisoned Pen are re-releasing these old gems, from a simpler time in many ways. I think because of that there's now a lovely sense of escapism in reading them, and they are higher on entertainment factor than many modern crime novels.

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    1. I'm really glad they're reprinting these classic mysteries, too! I find them thoroughly enjoyable. (And I like that they're not dark, or gruesome, or violent...you know?) Thanks for commenting! :)

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