Thursday, February 4, 2010

BOOK: Why Shoot a Butler? by Georgette Heyer

Why Shoot a Butler? by Georgette Heyer, 329 pages

New Author Challenge; twenty-ten challenge: before you were born

Great classic mystery, set in the 1930s England, where ironically, the butler is killed first. Heyer, well known for her histories and romances, has a little series of mysteries she's written as well as well. Her mysteries have been rereleased with beautiful covers that really stand out on the murder book shelves with their pretty pastels.

Frank Amberley is the amateur sleuth who happens upon a murder. The reader isn't led in on much of Frank's thoughts or actions, but it is possible to make a few guesses. Red herrings, bumbling police, and a few more murders move the story along nicely, and the reader gets the classic wrap-up where Frank explains all the events to everyone involved. I really liked Frank and his dry wit as he observes and deals with everyone around him, whom he keeps in the dark. I would have liked another book with him, but this is a stand-alone mystery. Heyer has another series with another detective that I'll have to look into.

also reviewed by:
framed and booked
joanne at the book zombie
marg at readingadventures


  1. Have you read her romancey books too? I'm curious how they compare with her mysteries - my mum loves Georgette Heyer, and I've never been sure what book to start with (though I'm reading one of her books for the Classics Circuit in March, so that'll have to change pretty soon!).

  2. Well, now I am sold. I'll look for this and her other mysteries. I was just never interested in the romance sorts of books. Are they 'regency romances?' I don't like regency either. Ah, but the mysteries!

  3. Oooh, neat cover! Sounds like a good read, too, I might have to check them out. I've never read any Heyer.

  4. jenny - no, I haven't read the romances, and I can't see me trying either. This was my first Heyer, and I'd read more mysteries, fer sure.

    nan - I'm not into the romance books either, unless they have humor (Bridget Jones) or adventure (Outlander) in them as well. I think some are regency romances, but she also does a lot of historical fiction as well. She's prolific!

    tinyll - Isn't the cover pretty? Nice contrast to the usual black mystery books.

  5. I've never read anything by Georgette Heyer, but this one sounds so intriguing! Plus, I love mysteries.


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