Thursday, June 10, 2010

Whose Body

My novel for the Classics Circuit tour - found here - - is Whose Body by Dorothy L Sayers.

Short, slightly vague review follows:

Whose Body by Dorothy L Sayers

It's always interesting reading the first book of a series – seeing the author's thought-processes and the way they start working out their characters.

Whose Body is the first novel in the series by Sayer featuring Lord Peter Whimsy.

Lord Peter is a man of many interests, one of which is crime, in which he dabbles here and there.

He's called on to do a little bit more than dabbling when a body is found in the bathtub of a respectable family.

I was very curious to read Whose Body – I've been a longtime fan of Agatha Christie, and I enjoy finding crime authors from the same era.

Whose Body is a short novel and – for me – didn't really pack a big punch, although it was readable, and I enjoyed the characters.

As I understand it, Sayers' novels improve greatly and because it is a time-period I love reading about, I spent a very pleasant few hours with Whose Body.

For me; it was enjoyable and diverting rather than outstanding, but I am looking forward to reading more of Sayers' novels – I liked her writing style very much. :)

7/10 Someone else cooks dinner – yay!


Aarti said...

I had the same reaction to this book. I was pretty underwhelmed by it and by Wimsey, but I do feel better knowing the series gets better (if I ever make an attempt to continue reading it).

Teresa said...

I enjoyed this book, but only because I read it after I was hooked on Lord Peter as a character. I'd say it's second- or third-tier Sayers. Strong Poison is always the one I recommend to start with.

chrisa511 said...

I LOVED this book! This was also pretty much the first mystery I've ever read :p I can't wait to read more Sayers!! Glad you at least enjoyed it though :)

Anonymous said...

I can live with enjoyable and diverting. I've read several books from later on in the Lord Peter series, and I enjoyed them all very much. (I don't usually read series out of order, but I'm not particularly worried about doing so with mysteries because they're usually self-contained. The Lord Peter ones I read formed their own series within a series, so that was okay). I mean to go back to the beginning one of these days.

Maree said...

aarti: I liked it enough to read more, but yeah - didn't love it :)
Teresa: It's my first Sayers, so I'm keeping an open mind - lol
Chris: Ah ... see, I was raised on Agatha Christie, so she's the standard by which I compare all other mysteries. I enjoyed it enough to read more Sayers, though
xicant: Sometimes that's nice. I'm glad I started with the first one - when/if I get back to them - I'll be curious to see the development of the characters

Nicole (Linus's Blanket) said...

It is interesting to see sometimes how a writer started out writing and where they progressed to. I am glad that this was for the most part an interesting and entertaining experience for you. I haven't read any Dorothy Sayers but it is interesting to see that she attained popularity as a mystery writer as well.

Thanks for participating in The Classics Circuit.

Teresa said...

I am a Sayers' LOVER- I've read the whole collection of Lord Peter stories several times. While not necessary, I do recommend reading them in order, so that you can follow the Harriet Vane romance as it progresses.

I like the series for a lot of reasons. Lord Peter is a character who will grow on you, a lot. The interesting thing for me is how Sayers involves the romance with Harriet and how well she writes the strong emotions of the characters. Busman's Honeymoon is one of the most romantic ( in all the best senses of the word) books I've ever read.

I also found that Sayers is terrific at presenting the psychological environment of England between the wars, and the war's effects on the men who came home. Only in the recent Maisie Dobbs books, by Jacqueline Winspear, have I found a similar use of the emotional after-effects of WWI on the people of England between the wars.

Sayers grows tremendously as a writer as the series progresses. Her characters become so rich and well-rounded that they truly become people you can know and understand, and relate to.

Hope you find the time and inclination to follow up with more Lord Peter books.