18006728Whose Body?

by Dorothy L. Sayers
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In the debut mystery in Dorothy L. Sayers acclaimed Lord Peter Wimsey series, the case of a dead bather draws Lord Peter into the first of many puzzling mysteries
Lord Peter Wimsey spends his days tracking down rare books, and his nights hunting killers. Though the Great War has left his nerves frayed with shellshock, Wimsey continues to be London’s greatest sleuth—and he’s about to encounter his oddest case yet. A strange corpse has appeared in a suburban architect’s bathroom, stark naked save for an incongruous pince-nez. When Wimsey arrives on the scene, he is confronted with a once-in-a-lifetime puzzle. The police suspect that the bathtub’s owner is the murderer, but Wimsey’s investigation quickly reveals that the case is much stranger than anyone could have predicted.


First published in 1923, the Lord Peter Wimsey series is the archetype of the “British Gentleman” sleuth series. A true dilettante, Lord Whmsey is an expert on matters of food (especially wine) and male fashion, as well as classical music. Of course, being a true lover of all things classic cars, his collection catches my attention, especially his 12-cylinder (“double-six”) 1927 Daimler four seater.

It is a fun series, and even more fun when you look for differences in how criminal procedure is handled in this day and age as compared to the 1920’s. Enjoy!

Whose Body? is the first of the series, which includes:

Whose Body? (1923)
Clouds of Witness (1926)
Unnatural Death (1927)
The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (1928)
Strong Poison (1931)
Five Red Herrings (1931)
Have His Carcase (1932)
Murder Must Advertise (1933)
The Nine Tailors (1934)
Gaudy Night (1935)
Busman’s Honeymoon (1937)
Thrones, Dominations (1998; unfinished manuscript completed by Jill Paton Walsh)
A Presumption of Death (2002; by Jill Paton Walsh)
The Attenbury Emeralds (2010; by Jill Paton Walsh)
The Late Scholar (2014; by Jill Paton Walsh)

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