Graham and Joan Bendix apparently have a happy marriage, but when Graham is offered a box of chocolates at his club and passes them on to his wife, she ends up dead. Chief Inspector Moresby is perplexed by the murder and with no obvious suspects he turns to Roger Sheringham and a group of armchair detectives who agree to study the case.
Agatha Christie said of Anthony Berkeley that he was ‘the master of the final twist’, and I’d have to agree with her. Although much of the ‘action’ takes place in one room as the members of the Crimes Circle take turns solving the murder, each new version not only adds to the mystery but illuminates the characters involved, as well as shedding light on the various personalities of the Circle themselves. What’s also interesting is how the author pulls apart the classic crime-writer’s techniques, showing how novelists write in a particular way in order to reach the required conclusion – ie the identity of the killer.
A classic crime story that doesn’t follow the rules and will delight anyone who loves a good murder.
This particular edition also includes alternative endings by Christianna Brand and crime novelist Martin Edwards, which adds to the fun.
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Another brilliant review and recommendation, Colin.