Monday, August 10, 2015

20. The Skull beneath the Skin by P.D. James

(written Dec 24, 2015 catching up)

All I knew of P.D. James was my mom saying that she could be "quite nasty", that and her ubiquity made me not interested in checking her books out.  However, this edition, found somewhere free, did pique my interest.  It gave me the sense that she was one of those British authors from the second half of the twentieth century that I enjoy.  The story takes place on an island with an ancient castle, recently purchased by a wealthy fan of the theatre, who wants to restage a play in the theatre on the island.  The protagonist is a female private detective, who had an older ex-cop partner who has since died (this could be in past books, I never researched it yet).  The star actress whose star has faded but has been invited to lead the play on the island had been receiving death threats.  It's a classic closed-door murder mystery (the murder itself is quite nasty) all taking place on the island.  There are many characters, all richly drawn and I totally got into it. The ending was a bit contrived feeling, but the ride was worth it.  I will keep an eye open for future P.D. James.

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