Death in the Old Country by Eric Wright © date 1985, Charles Scribner 1985 hardcover – mystery – 3rd Inspector Charlie Salter. (later paperback cover shown)
After reading a review of this one, I decided I had to read it so I picked up a copy one afternoon at the library, and finished it that night. Now, it usually takes me two or three days to read even a moderately sized book – I’m not a fast reader – so for me to get through a 175 page book in an afternoon and evening is unusual, and an indication that (1) it’s an easy, entertaining book, and (2) I liked it quite a lot. I like that there a straight-forward plot, told in third person without any alternate points of view, flashbacks or anything else to detract from the story. Wright does a nice job with character, place, plot.
Death in the Old Country is about a Canadian homicide Inspector, Charlie Salter, who, with his wife Annie, is on holiday in England.
At a B&B that has excellent food and the weather socked in, they decide to stay an extra day or two to let the downpour subside before moving on to the Lake District. On their third day a murder occurs, and naturally Salter is pulled in, somewhat reluctantly, by the local coppers.
The plot contains some twists, and I saw the somebody-masquerading-as-somebody-else plot point coming from a distance, but that took none of the enjoyment out of the reading. I’m now looking to get the first in the series, The Night the Gods Smiled and read that one. I like Salter and want to read more of his adventures.
Update: I did read The Night the Gods Smiled and liked it a lot too.
Here’s the whole Charlie Salter Mysteries series:
The Night the Gods Smiled (1984)
Smoke Detector (1984)
Death in the Old Country (1985)
The Man Who Changed His Name, also published as A Single Death (1986)
A Body Surrounded by Water (1987)
A Question of Murder (1988)
A Sensitive Case (1990)
Final Cut (1991)
A Fine Italian Hand (1991)
Death by Degrees (1993)
The Last Hand (2001)