If any seven words were to be designed to put me off reading a book, they could do little better than ‘The Richard and Judy Number One Bestseller.’ So why did I read this? Because my brother, who has an iconoclastic radar similar to my own, gave me Mr Briggs’ Hat for Christmas last year and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Recognising this as a narrative in a similar vein, I thought that, although popularised to death, it still might just be worth a whirl.
Question: How pleased am I that I saw through the hype?
Answer: Very. (Sorry to continue in the popular vein. It shall cease
The murder of the little boy, Saville Kent, at Road Hill
House was horrific and still, despite all the best intentions of Kate
Summerscale and Jonathan Whicher, remains, at least to me, inconclusive. But
the book is riveting. It is an easy read, yet still manages to convey the
frustrations of early crime detection. It details how a pre-DNA investigation
can be fraught with disaster. Witnesses could be dismissed or respected
depending upon their social standing. Siblings were suspected, cleared and then
As good as a crime novel gets.