Nicely done for a first novel
I enjoy a good whodunit and the first PD James book I read was An Unsuitable Job for a Woman though I must admit that I judged that book not by its cover but by its title :)
I liked Cover Her Face very much - the pace was just right for me, not too slow, neither too "racy". The setting is lovely too. All the characters are somewhat flawed and unlikable and some are openly sexist and misogynist - but this book was written a long time ago so that is expected. A great read overall.
I've been reading a few authors whose first books in well-loved mysteries series were written in the 50s and 60s. I don't seem to like any of the characters, including the main recurring investigators. Here Dalgliesh seems like someone I would not want to know. Certainly not my feeling with the later P.D. James mysteries.
The suspects and victim are equally unlikable most of the way through the book. A murder is announced on the first page, but takes a long time to happen. Dalgliesh, in his first appearance, is not the full-blown detective we'll come to know as the series develops. But the beginnings of his character are here, including some glimpses of his private life. A cut above the usual country house mystery.
This is the first novel in the Adam Dalgliesh series. The violence is mild and no sexual content.
English country house murder.
The first of the Dalgliesh mysteries.
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