A Most Efficient Murder by Anthony SlaytonA Most Efficient Murder by Anthony Slayton
Narrator: Rafe Beckley
Series: Mr. Quayle Mysteries #1
Published by BooksGoSocial Audio on September 15, 2022
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Historical Mystery
Length: 8 hrs 21 mins
Pages: 309
Format: Audiobook
Purchase at Bookshop.org or Audible
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When the reclusive Earl of Unsworth’s first party in over a decade is spoiled by murder, His Lordship’s loyal and efficient secretary, Mr. Quayle, must unravel a web of red-herrings and buried secrets before the murderer can strike again…

“I do not wish to disturb you, your grace, but there is a body in the garden…”

England, 1925. When a strange young woman is found murdered on the grounds of Unsworth Castle, the Duke and his family are astounded at first, but quickly become enraged when the police begin asking all sorts of impertinent questions.

And when suspicions dare to fall on one of their own, it is up to Mr. Quayle, Lord Unsworth’s exceedingly efficient secretary, to find the true culprit and save the House of Unsworth from scandal and ruin

The very private, bookish Earl of Unsworth hosts his first party in over a decade, but it goes awry when an unknown young woman is found murdered in the garden. When the police arrive, they quickly start asking questions of Lord Unsworth and his aristocratic family, which of course they don’t appreciate. Mr. Quayle, Lord Unsworth’s secretary, is asked to keep an eye on the investigation while also conducting an investigation of his own. Mr. Quayle’s primary goal is to keep any scandal away from the family. Secondly, he does want to discover who the murderer is, regardless of his or her social position. He also knows the lead detective on the case – they served together in the war – which helps a little.

I have to admit to a fondness for mysteries set on old English estates and a cast of interesting characters. The Unsworth family is an interesting set of characters. They are each well aware of their public face, but they all have their secrets that are slowly disclosed. The dead woman is not exactly a stranger after all. Their dialogue and interactions all felt real within the story.

A Most Efficient Murder is a solid mystery We’ve got a family with its fair share of issues, a riddle that supposedly leads to a small fortune in missing diamonds, and an estate without an heir. Mr. Quayle is a very competent sleuth and has a steady hand no matter who he’s questioning. I feel like we’re just discovering his personality though. I’m looking forward to the next in the series.

I listened to the audio version and the narrator did a good job. It was easy to differentiate between the characters and his tones and expressiveness let us hear their personalities.

About Anthony Slayton

Anthony Slayton is a self-confessed Anglophile, at least when it comes to murder and death. Author of the Mr. Quayle Mysteries, he is a life-long mystery aficionado—the more bodies, the better! In his spare time, he can probably be found walking in the park or binge-watching one mystery series or another (possibly just rewatching Poirot and Midsomer Murders for the umpteenth time).

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