callmemadam (callmemadam) wrote,
callmemadam
callmemadam

A treat for August: more E R Punshon



Good news from the nice people at Dean Street Press: ten more books by E R Punshon are being reissued this month. They kindly sent me There’s a Reason for Everything to read. This is the 21st Bobby Owen book and he is now a Deputy Chief Constable. Bobby is not the type to sit behind a desk issuing orders and when there’s a local murder, he takes an active role in the investigation. The book was first published in 1945 and has a wartime background, so Bobby is contending with the problems caused by a lack of manpower and petrol. Even the Deputy Chief Constable has to ride a bike.

The story begins when two psychical researchers are investigating a vast, deserted mansion called Nonpareil, which is supposedly haunted. It was also the repository of a vast collection of artworks, mostly worthless. But there’s a possibility that the house once contained a previously unknown painting by Vermeer. If it exists, can it be genuine? This is a treasure people are prepared to kill for, and they do. Bobby has his hands full chasing up everyone with a connection to Nonpareil and following red herrings. But are they? He doesn’t like coincidences and sure enough, all the mysterious events in the area turn out to be connected. In his introduction Curtis Brown suggests Punshon may have got the idea about forged art from the true story of the Dutch forger Han van Meegeren. The Bobby Owen books are well worth reprinting; they have tricky plots and plenty of interesting characters. I enjoyed this one very much.
Tags: crime fiction, e r punshon
Subscribe

Posts from This Journal “crime fiction” Tag

  • The Thursday Murder Club, Richard Osman

    There’s a huge number of books being published in one go just at the moment, because of the Covid backlog, so the fight for readers (and buyers)…

  • Beneath the Streets, Adam Macqueen

    I saw this book advertised in Private Eye, promoted as ‘by a Private Eye hack’ and immediately wanted to read it. It’s a cracking read (if you…

  • What I read in April

    Rather surprisingly, I’ve been reading less than usual lately and I’m not sure why that is. I’ve done some re-reading, starting with Sue Limb’s…

  • 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.
  • 3 comments