A Rather Dastardly Death by Anthony SlaytonA Rather Dastardly Death by Anthony Slayton
Narrator: Rafe Beckley
Series: Mr. Quayle Mysteries #2
Published by Ink and Dagger Press on August 10, 2023
Source: Purchased
Genres: Historical Mystery
Length: 9 hrs 50 mins
Pages: 356
Format: Audiobook
Purchase at Bookshop.org or Audible
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four-stars

“One murder was quite enough for this family!” Lady Constance declared. “Two starts to look like carelessness! And what happens when it’s three? Or four?”

France 1926. In the wake of murder and tragedy, Lord Unsworth and his family flee to the French Riviera in a desperate attempt to escape the ensuing scandal and find a few months of peace and solitude. But their hopes are soon dashed when Fanny joins a community of writers, artists, and anarchists, and Arthur unwittingly becomes entangled in a plot to catch an elusive international jewel thief.

And when Lord Unsworth’s old flame, Lady Rosaline Barrett De Marchi, is found dead in suspicious circumstances, the efficient Mr. Quayle finds himself once again called upon to save the family from ruin…

A Rather Dastardly Death is the second of the Mr. Quayle Mysteries and the Lord Unsworth and his family are on vacation in the French Riviera, trying to get some distance from the events of A Quite Deadly Affair. Of course, it’s not long until someone is murdered, a woman Lord Unsworth knew decades earlier, and the family gets caught up in another investigation. Mr. Quayle, at Lord Unsworth’s request, agrees to assist in solving the mystery and protecting the family’s reputation if possible.

This is a fun old-fashioned murder mystery with plenty of suspects and possible motives. The dead woman, Lady Rosaline Barrett De Marchi, Widow of Treville-Sur-Mer, was surrounded by “admirers” and hangers-on, any of whom could have killed her. We also have a side plot regarding a jewel thief who may be in the Riviera and a statuette from Lady Rosaline’s collection is missing.

All of the characters are notable, but Quayle is what makes this series work so well. He’s quiet and unassuming in the midst of the others eccentricities and chaos. He’s a reluctant investigator, but good at observing and asking questions. The solution was a little convoluted but did make use of the vast number of characters. And the book a very good denouement scene.

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).

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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