Whose Body? (a Lord Peter Wimsey Mystery), by Dorothy Sayers (review)

April 5, 2013 Uncategorized 4

Categories: Mystery; Classics
Series: Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries #1
Publisher:  Open Road Media
Book source: Publisher review copy received through NetGalley
Whose Body? is the first of Dorothy Sayers’ classic mystery novels starring the inimitable Lord Peter Wimsey, and to borrow the slang of the day, it’s a corker.  The body of a middle-aged gentleman has turned up in the bathtub of a timid and respectable architect, stark naked except for a pince-nez. Who is he, and how and why did he come to be in Mr. Thipps’ bathroom?  Lord Peter takes on the case for fun, but soon realizes he is up against a devilishly clever – and ruthless – murderer.
In Whose Body? we get our first glimpse of Lord Peter’s silly-ass-about-town façade and the formidable intelligence and detective ability it masks.  We also meet a number of the series’ recurring characters, including Bunter, Wimsey’s loyal valet and former sergeant; Wimsey’s mother, the Dowager Duchess of Denver; Freddie Arbuthnot; and Charles Parker of Scotland Yard.   
Sayers’ writing is witty and compelling, and the crime itself is every bit as intricate, unusual, and carefully plotted as you would expect from this grande dame of Golden Age mystery.  If you haven’t yet made Lord Peter’s acquaintance, Whose Body? is the perfect place to start.
I should add that the Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries are among my favorite mystery series of all time!  I’m grateful to Open Road Media for the opportunity to re-read and review this one.  (And no, my review is in no way influenced by receiving a review e-copy.)
UPDATE: Whose Body is currently on sale for $0.99.  Go to Open Road’s page for Whose Body? and click the link for “Buy the Ebook.”  You’ll find links to all the major ebook retailers: Amazon, Apple, B&N, Kobo, and Sony.  

4 Responses to “Whose Body? (a Lord Peter Wimsey Mystery), by Dorothy Sayers (review)”

  1. Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard

    Oh, what fun — you get to read them for the first time! Among my favorite titles are the four which feature Harriet Vane (in order: Strong Poison, Have His Carcase, Gaudy Night, and Busman’s Honeymoon), along with Murder Must Advertise. But they’re all pretty good.

    • Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard

      They are a lot of fun — and extremely well-written! Lord Peter can appear affected and superficial at first; he becomes more relatable as the series goes on and you see more and more beneath the mask. But even in this book, you see the man behind the facade.