A Miss Marple Mystery

Publication year: 1942
Publication year of the Finnish translation: 2011
Format: audio, 6 cds
Publisher of the Finnish translation: WSOY
Finnish translator: Ragne Rossi
Narrated by Lars Swedberg

Colonel and mrs Bantry get a horrible shock one morning: there’s a body of a young woman in their perfectly respectable library. She has been strangled and is sprawled in the library rug in a cocktail dress. Nobody knows who she is and mrs Bantry is at first thrilled to be part of an actual murder investigation. She calls her friend miss Marple to solve the case.

Meanwhile, two police officers take charge of the investigation: colonel Melchett and inspector Slack. Soon enough, they find out that the girl, Ruby, had been a dancer in Majestic hotel which is in the neighboring county. There, a rich and eccentric old man had taking a liking to her, but his relatives had not liked that.

To make matters even worse, soon rumors are flying around in the small village of St. Mary Mead that the poor old colonel has strangled his mistress in his library. This, of course, affects his standing in the village.

This story has a lot of suspects. The most eccentric of them is Conway Jefferson who was crippled in a plane crash but his adult children died. He has had difficult time with it; he doesn’t allow himself to stop and grieve but pushes his body and mind. He also keeps his daughter-in-law and son-in-law close to himself and they’ve both started to resent that. Then there’s Ruby’s dancing partner and her cousin who invited her into the hotel in the first place. I didn’t guess the culprit. The book has quite fun moments, too, because of the characters.

Most of the investigation is done by the police officers who are actually pretty bland compared to the other characters. Much like in the previous Christie book I read, miss Marple doesn’t appear much.

Excellent diversion.

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