Wednesday, the 27th of May–time for Shelf Control once again! Shelf Control is a weekly feature hosted by Lisa at Bookshelf Fantasies, and celebrates the books waiting to be read on your TBR piles/mountains. To participate, all you do is pick a book from your TBR pile, and write a post about it–what its about, why you want to read it, and such. If you participate, link back to Lisa’s page, and do also leave your links in the comments below as I’d love to check out your picks!
This week, I’ve once again picked something from one of my favourite genres, murder mysteries, and a Golden Age one at that–The Case of the Late Pig by Margery Allingham. The book, first published in 1937, is the eighth in the Albert Campion series by the author. Albert Campion is a gentleman detective, born into a prominent British aristocratic family, and educated at Rugby and Cambridge. He first appeared in 1929, in the Crime at Black Dudley, and went on to appear in a total of nineteen books by Allingham. There are additional books completed or written by other authors (initially by her husband, Philip Youngman Carter, who completed her final work and wrote a couple of further mysteries on his own).
In the Case of the Late Pig, Campion is summoned to the village of Kepesake, where a rather nasty death has taken place. He finds that the body is that of Rowland ‘Pig’ Peters, his nemesis from school. But Campion had attended Peters’ funeral already–five months ago! Peters’ body goes missing and other corpses are found. Thus begins Campion’s search for the killer–which involves among other things a grisly scarecrow, a bit of romance, and Campion’s own ‘unglamorous past’. This is the only Campion mystery written in first person.
The author: Born in 1904, British author Margery Allingham is best remembered for her gentleman sleuth, Albert Campion, who was initially thought to be a parody of Lord Peter Wimsey, but soon emerged into an adventurer and detective in his own right. Allingham’s parents were both writers and her childhood was immersed in literature. She wrote her first novel at nineteen, and also contributed short stories articles for magazines including The Strand Magazine, and contributed Sexton Blake stories as well.
Albert Campion is a Golden Age detective, I’ve heard about often but not read so far so I was looking forward to trying the books out. This one, with its elements of past and present seemed like it would be an interesting introduction to the author and the detective. This is also a relatively short book.
Have you read any of the Campion stories before? Which ones and how did you find them?Looking forward to your thoughts and recommendations!