Saturday, June 28, 2014

THE OLD FOX DECEIV'D by Martha Grimes


Martha Grimes' The Old Fox Deceiv'd (1982) is a well-plotted book.

The victim could be someone pretending to be someone else. Then to complicate things more, she is wearing a borrowed costume on her way to a costume ball. Maybe the killer thought he or she was killing the person who owned the costume.

Scotland Yard's Detective Chief Inspector Richard Jury, his hypochondriac assistant Detective Sergeant Alfred Wiggins, and Jury's wealthy tag-along friend Melrose Plant investigate the murder.

The British seaside village of Rackmoor is a tourist town which seems to center on the family of Sir Titus Crael.

Crael's family has a strange history. His wife and youngest son died in an auto accident. Another household member committed suicide. And a third almost-adopted daughter ran away and then seemed to return.

Along the way, we meet interesting characters, especially an eccentric named Percy Blythe and an abandoned boy and his dog, Bertie and Arnold.

Melrose Plant adds humor. In the funniest scene in the book, Plant tries to interview Blythe.

The book opens in, and often returns to, a tavern named The Old Fox Deceiv'd.

The second obvious murder occurs on a fox hunt.

And the book ends with intense action and final explanations.

I bought this book on the Kindle bargain list. I treat that list in the way I used to treat the paperback rack in the bookstores years ago. Good books for less.

Martha Grimes' The Old Fox Deceiv'd was a good book, well worth reading.


Richard said...

As I recall, when I was reading these early-in-the-series books, I liked this one. Later, with time, both Melrose and especially his aunt got tiresome.

Joe Barone said...

I think I've only read a couple of these and not in any order. I liked this one better than the other one I read. This was on a Kindle deal, and I have always thought I should at least see what kind of stories Martha Grimes writes.

Kelly Robinson said...

I'm the same way with the Kindle deals. The bargain rack comparison is an apt one. I buy a lot of things I wouldn't have otherwise considered, but I really get excited when something I've been wanting ends up as a daily deal.

Thanks for the review. Grimes has always been on my mean-to list.

Joe Barone said...

Kelly, I suspect I'm like you are. I have way more books I want to read than I have time. I too become excited when I find one I've wanted on bargaub list.