callmemadam (callmemadam) wrote,
callmemadam
callmemadam

Richardson’s First Case, Basil Thomson



Today, Dean Street Press are reissuing all eight Richardson books and they kindly sent me the first one to read. The author was himself Assistant Commissioner at Scotland Yard for a while, so well placed to write police procedural novels. He’s dead set against the ‘instinct and drugs’ (i.e. Holmes) method of deduction. In his books detectives rely more on perspiration than on inspiration and luck. His character Richardson is interesting because we first meet him as a humble bobby on the beat and he ends up an Inspector.

Richardson’s First Case is a double murder mystery in which everything hangs on not just who killed the victims but which died first. This makes for an absorbing mystery set in a seedy London in which ‘The Yard’ is all powerful. It’s good to see the ambitious Richardson going stoutly and steadily about his work but my chief criticism of the book is that his character is not developed at all. We know absolutely nothing about his background, where he lives, whether or not he has a private life. Modern crime writers tend to make their detectives divorced/ alcoholic/ pursued by private demons and generally full of angst. This can get tedious but I find I want my hero to have some character, which Richardson lacks.
Tags: basil thomson, crime fiction
Subscribe

  • TV watch next week …

    I don’t want anyone to miss this! On 23rd February at 8.30 Lucy Worsley investigates what the Blitz Spirit means, by looking at the lives of…

  • TV watch: Call My Agent (Dix Pour Cent) new season

    I was thrilled to find that season four of Call my Agent would start this week. I’ve watched two episodes and am pleased to report that it’s as good…

  • TV watch: The Crown

    At last, I’ve finished watching season four of The Crown and what a dreary disappointment it was. Here are some impressions you may get from…

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 0 comments