Whose Body? (Review)

192893Title: Whose Body?
Author:  Dorothy L. Sayers
Genre:  Mystery

Publisher: HarperTorch
Release Date: July, 1995 (Originally released 1923)
Format:  E-book
Acquired:  Amazon purchase
Pages: 212

Date Finished: November 28, 2014
3 Stars

Goodreads Description

The stark naked body was lying in the tub. Not unusual for a proper bath, but highly irregular for murder — especially with a pair of gold pince-nez deliberately perched before the sightless eyes. What’s more, the face appeared to have been shaved after death. The police assumed that the victim was a prominent financier, but Lord Peter Wimsey, who dabbled in mystery detection as a hobby, knew better. In this, his first murder case, Lord Peter untangles the ghastly mystery of the corpse in the bath.

My Review

My first introduction to Dorothy Sayers was in college.  I took a really cool English course which revolved solely around mysteries.  The book we read was The Nine Taylors and it blew me away.  I read the whole book trying to pin the murder on one person and then another.  Lord Peter Wimsey was funny and not your typical investigator.  I absolutely loved it.

After college I really never thought much about Dorothy Sayers again, but one day Amazon was running a special on her books so I snagged a couple.  Whose Body? was actually the first Lord Peter Wimsey mystery, so that is where I started.

I wasn’t impressed.  I could tell it was Sayers’ freshman novel.  It was all over the place and very difficult to follow.  I also struggled with Wimsey’s upper-class British jargon.  The actually mystery was quite clever, but I couldn’t really enjoy it.  I don’t remember having these problems with The Nine Taylors, the eleventh in the Wimsey series, so I can only assume Sayers’ writing and pacing improved drastically by the time it was released.  Thank goodness!

As I said, the mystery was clever, but the book, as a whole, was not.  If Sayers is not one of your favorites and you started with this one, I could easily see why.  I urge you to give Sayers another try, but maybe start later in the series.

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