This is the first in the mystery series about English literature teacher Kate Fansler.

One of Kate’s dearest friends is mixed up in murder and Kate is determined to solve it. Janet Harrison was stabbed in Dr. Emanuel Bauer’s office and right in his psychoanalyst’s couch. Emanuel is the prime suspect but Kate doesn’t believe that. The girl herself is a mystery: she has no family and no boyfriend; she was quiet and kept to herself. Kate can’t find any reason for the murder. Because Janet was beautiful, the police think that it was a crime of passion.

The book was written in the mid 60s and has some old-fashioned ideas about psychoanalysis and woman. The generic human is only talked about in the male gender. Still, the book has a lot of charm. It’s a short, old-fashioned cozy mystery.

Kate herself is an admirer of Lord Peter Wimsey and there are many references to literature. There’s also one scene which is probably dry humor about the USAian academic life and politics. Since I’m not from US nor am I an academician, I probably missed some or most of the humor there.

I’m afraid I’m also going to have to call the characters charming, too. Kate is quite the heroine who looks after her friends. She’s an only child and unmarried but she has otherwise a large family of aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews, and also old, trusted friends. It’s also quite refreshing to meet a heroine in her thirties who doesn’t have scores of suitors and whose life doesn’t revolve around a romantic interest(s).

The other characters are also quite likable

While Kate is the main point-of-view character, there is one other, young man, who is the POV character for a short while.

I’ll certainly continue with this series.