I enjoyed Coffin, Scarcely Used quite a bit. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. And Flaxborough seems like a charming enough English town — it's just the type I would like to visit — if murder didn't just take place, of course. As befits the period and tradition there is no mention of his life outside the investigation as his role is to propel the plot forward. Yet now fear seems to have overtaken them and Purbright needs to uncover the secrets in what seems a respectable group of — well, if not exactly friends, acquaintances… This is a gentle, amusing mystery, with a good cast of characters.
Now his next door neighbor, Marcus Gwill, publisher of the Flaxborough Citizen is dead, found electrocuted at the foot of a power pole. Classic mystery lovers will enjoy this series! He also sees what others do not and allow the evidence to unfold in front of him as it comes along. What he uncovers is the meat of the novel. Recommends This Book I would like to thank Netgalley and Farrago for an advance copy of Coffin Scarcely Used, the first of the Flaxborough series of police procedurals, originally published in 1958. We're rather badly off for crime round here.
Only six months after the death of Councillor Carobleat, his next-door neighbor, Marcus Gwill, was found electrocuted, his mouth filled with marshmallows. Rich at , who is sponsoring the challenge, reviewed this book in more detail. I imagine the modern editor would put a red pen through much of the first chapter -- but stick with it because it gets much, much better. The characters are well done, and the tale has a bit of whimsy to it as well as interesting detective work. Some of my favorite offerings from just a couple of pages: - He found the inspector examining the plaster statuette of a yellow-haired Venus, petrified into Art while apparently picking a corn.
What's better is having clever humorous remarks here and there to lighten the heaviness of reading death and murders. No other compensation was received, and no one tried to influence my opinion of the book. The plot was interesting, the characters engaging, and I am looking forward to reading more from Colin Watson. His heart failed, his physician, Dr. Colin Watson wrote 12 novels in a series set in the fictional town of Flaxborough.
I knew Colin Watson by repute. The Basics: Six months previous, a well-known resident of Flaxborough died. Colin Watson is new to me and likely to many other mystery lovers. This is an old-style British police procedural with good, solid detective work that takes place in the respectable seaside town of Flaxborough in 1957 or 1958. He worked as a journalist in and the characters in his books are said to be highly recognisable caricatures of people he encountered in his work.
He was married, with three children, and lived in Lincolnshire. At the , his book and Watson's fictional town are described. I believe there are twelve installments in this series and I sincerely hope all of them will be formatted to digital. Recommends This Book Originally published in 1958 these are being re-released. The four were Hopjoy Was Here, Lonelyheart 4122, The Flaxborough Crab and Coffin Scarcely Used.
Recommends This Book This is a charmingly amusing British mystery which takes place in the 20th century. Yes, its a bit of a niche thing. The third death is clearly murder. Sex and greed serve as the primary motivators in a mixture of scandalous criminal activity, base revenge, all oddly livened with Watson's usual absurd antics. Finally, one admits to being present on the fatal night. The love of books is what got me through college, kept me sane during medical school and residency, and ultimately led me to become a novelist.
Frankly, the title is the biggest clue. Enjoyable whodunnit set in a small English town in the 1950's. Of course, one could argue that the Marple oeuvre was in itself a tad subversive. Simple, slightly musty words piled in attractive and pleasing patterns. And savour the whole series. Set in the fictional English town of Flaxborough, the story revolves around the murder of next door neighbors, several months apart. I loved it, and am on my way to read Bump in the Night, the second book in the series, right now.
Colin Watson was for many years a reporter in East Anglia and knew well the workings of small town elites. But I've known from my own reading that stretches back to Enid Blyton's Secret Seven in the 1960s, this wasn't actually true. The book may have minor markings which are not specifically mentioned. Colin Watson produced the ninth Flaxborough novel, One Man's Meat, to coincide with the series. I look forward to reading the next in the series.
Purbright's decency is at the heart of Watson's thesis: that civilised life depends on basic tolerance, decency and the honesty of its guardians. It's all very gentle and well bred so clever as well. How were the dead men connected, both to each other and to a small but select band of other town worthies? Especially among the constabulary, peopled with deeply ordinary and stoutly determined men only one woman on that side of the fence, quite a minor character but a pleasure to meet indeed. I'm grateful to Farrago Books for making available and introducing me to a third series of excellent but nearly forgotten books which are very well written and entertaining, the others being Miss Seeton and the Bandy series by Donald Jack. In his entertaining and idiosyncratic study of English crime fiction, Snobbery with Violence, Colin Watson wrote that the English village and small town so popular during the Golden Age of detective fiction was really a mythical creation. But what appeared at first to be suicide by electrocution, now is believed to be murder, and another of the group requests police protection, believing he'll be next.