Never let it be said that I’m an old fart (unless you are one of my children and actually know me)! Or that I have my head firmly rooted in the more violent, harder extremes of the crime fiction genre. I’m a sensitive guy who likes nothing more than a stroll through leafy woodland, sprinkled with bluebells whilst reciting poetry out loud, before returning home to bake some delicious muffins for the family.
A couple of recent additions to the library, before the shutters came down on book buying were two legal mysteries by Sarah Caudwell. Despite over 20 years reading in the genre, this was a lady unknown to me, until a couple of mentions on some of the regular blogs I visit, piqued my interest.
I don’t read enough female authors and I haven’t read many books with a legal bent, other than the occasional Grisham book, (does that count?) so an opportunity arose to kill two birds with the one stone.
Sarah Caudwell died prematurely from cancer at the age of 60 in 2000. She had penned 4 books in total in the Hilary Tamar series; the last of which was published posthumously in the UK, a couple of years after her death.
Martin Edwards, former solicitor turned full-time novelist has an interesting piece on Caudwell on his website. The link is here.
Back to the books and the first two in the series and on the shelf are as follows;
Thus Was Adonis Murdered
How could poor young barrister Julia Larwood have guessed that her hard-won night of passion would end in murder? This humorous murder mystery features the worldly, yet principled, young set of legal experts created by Sarah Caudwell - Cantrip, Ragwort, Julia and Serena.
The Shortest Way To Hades
It seemed the perfect way to avoid three million in taxes on a five-million-pound estate: change the trust arrangement. Everyone in the family agreed to support the heiress, ravishing raven-haired Camilla Galloway, in her court petition - except dreary Cousin Deirdre, who suddenly demanded a small fortune for her signature. Then Deirdre had a terrible accident. That was when the young London barristers handling the trust - Cantrip, Selena, Timothy, Ragwort, and Julia - summoned their Oxford friend Professor Hilary Tamar to Lincoln's Inn. Julia thinks it's murder. Hilary demurs. Why didn't the heiress die? But when the accidents escalate and they learn of the naked lunch at Uncle Rupert's, Hilary the Scholar embarks on the most perilous quest of all: the truth....
A full list of her Hilary Tamar books, courtesy of Fantastic Fiction are as follows:
1. Thus Was Adonis Murdered (1981)
2. The Shortest Way To Hades (1984)
3. The Sirens Sang Of Murder (1989)4. The Sibyl In Her Grave (2000)
I'm not too sure when I will push my crime fiction boundaries and get to these, maybe next year.