A Bone and a Hank of Hair

Luce Bruce, Author, Leo Bruce, Author Academy Chicago Publishers $5.95 (190p) ISBN 978-0-89733-175-3
Mild-mannered, middle-aged widower Carolus Deene sometimes manages to do a bit of sleuthing while engaged in his principal labors as senior history master at Queen's School, Newminster. In this mystery, Deene is advised by the formidable Mrs. Chalk that her heiress cousin has vanished and that the lady's idle, fortune-hunting husband Rathbone has surely murdered her and buried the corpse in the back garden. Deene's pursuit of the truth leads him from London to Hastings, from a remote cottage in the Kent countryside to a Cornwall colony swarming with artists and writers. Along the way he encounters some familiar types: the bluff, hearty, old-school-tie landlord, the tippling charlady; the reformed prostitute; assorted village snoops and gossips; the loathsome Rathbone (whose experience in theatricals has made him adept at disguise); and the inevitable bumbling local constabulary. The tale moves vigorously enough, and the suspense, though bearable, sustains interest in this pleasant confection. Foreign rights: Writers House. December
Reviewed on: 11/01/1985
Release date: 11/01/1985
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