Golden Age Detective Fiction: Dorothy Sayers’s “The Five Red Herrings”

“IF ONE LIVES IN Galloway, one either fishes or paints. ‘Either’ is perhaps misleading, for most of the painters are fishers also in their spare time. To be neither of these things is considered odd and almost eccentric.”
The Five Red Herrings by Dorothy Sayers

If you are a fan of Golden Age Detective Fiction, you are familiar with Dorothy Sayers’s  Lord Peter Wimsey series.  If you are like me, you have read her books over and over.  And there’s something singular about The Five Red Herrings.  This crime classic delineates Lord Peter Wimsey’s investigation of a murder in an artists’ community,  involving troublesome train time tables, stolen bicycles, and faking another artist’s style.

I settled into a rereading of this cozy novel with great pleasure because Sayers outdoes herself in her description of Galloway, a community of artists and fishermen in scenic Scotland.  The amateur sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey is not an artist, but he loves puttering around Galloway on vacation   He is popular with fishermen and artists alike because “he could make a reasonable cast, and he did not pretend to paint.”

You can read the rest of this post at my blog, Thornfield Hall.