The Clock Strikes Twelve

Happy New Year!

Mom has been recommending Patricia Wentworth for a while now, so before leaving I randomly picked up The Clock Strikes Twelve. It turned out to be a timely choice!

When important blueprints go missing, patriarch James Paradine chooses New Year’s Eve dinner to announce a crime–and invite their owner, Elliot Wray, the estranged husband of his siter Grace’s adopted daughter Phyllida (interesting name).  However, at the stroke of midnight he is pushed from the terrace to his death.

As the story progresses it turns out that almost all the characters had either opportunity or motive for the murder:  his secretary/ distant relative Albert, his nephews Mark and Dicky, his surly step-daughter Brenda, his step-son Frank, Frank’s wife Irene, and Lydia, Irene’s blunt and trendy sister. How does it connect to earlier crime, and more impertantly, who is the guilty party? Lydia convinces Mark to bring in Miss Silver, whose astute observations and questions provide the keys to a puzzle that gets even more tangled before it is finally explained.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, especially the characters, and have to admit that some of the detours threw me for a loop. I look forward to mixing her mysteries in with my other regular fallbacks. For some reason this reminded me of something else but I can’t quite place it. Perhaps Miss Marple, or Mignon Eberhart, or Georgette Heyer?

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Published in: on January 1, 2009 at 10:10 pm  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. This is one of my favourite Miss Silver books, and it’s nice to know someone else enjoyed it! I’d also recommend The Chinese Shawl, Poison in the Pen and The Watersplash, but I like most of her books. Grey Mask was the first to feature Miss Silver, and she doesn’t appear much, so I like it least of the ones I’ve read.

  2. […] of the first books I blogged about was a Miss Silver mystery by Patricia Wentworth, and I planned on adding her to my regular list of mystery reads. How easily […]


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