An average mystery set during the Edwardian era, this book left me cold. The writing was clean but primitive, and the characters only sketched out. Nobody is alive in the novel, and I didn’t care for anyone there.
What the author does show is a huge class divide. It is gaping wide open, and the police is only free to do their jobs if the lower classes are involved. Murder is committed at a house party of a marquis, but nobody from the upper class could have done it. Aristocracy don’t commit crimes, do they? No investigation is required, and a pressure is brought to bear on the police officer in charge to pronounce the death accidental. Or else. And he does what he is told.
Even after out protagonists stir trouble, and a second body is discovered drowned in a moat, the author went out of her way to make the conclusion acceptable to the aristocracy, as if she wrote it in 1903 instead of 2003, the year of publication. No criminal is brought to justice, but all the loose ends are firmly tucked in.
A faintly boring tale.