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Classic Mystery

I must admit, my preferred type of crime story is reasonably hard-edged. I’ve been reading George Pelecanos recently, and loving it.

However, for a bit of lighter entertainment, you can’t beat a classic whodunnit, and there is a perfect one of these on TV right now, Magpie Murders, by Anthony Horowitz. Horowitz is a superb storyteller. I loved Foyle’s War, and the earlier Midsomer Murders that he wrote. His characters are very real and relatable. His stories have great pace. They are clever. Above all, he sticks to the rules. There is always a clear clue to every murder (or other strange event) in the story. It is usually well-hidden, in the middle of some other action, but it is there – starkly clear after the denouement. Of course!

R and I have leapt to the end, via streaming, but the show is still running, so I won’t give anything away, other than to reiterate the above. There are no ludicrous sudden surprises (poor whodunits shoehorn in mysterious wills or previously unseen ex-lovers right at the end, the equivalent of the old Greek deus ex machina. Horowitz never does this.) OK, one hint: online anagram programmes don’t always give all the correct answers!


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