Richard Hull ‘ s brilliant debut ( first published in 1934 ) is considered a masterpiece in the inverted detective fiction sub genre and features Edward Powell , a narcissistic , conniving young man with whom the elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top . Edward lives with his Aunt Mildred in the Welsh town of Llwll . But Edward and Aunt M . are at opposite poles for almost everything that it is no wonder that Edward is seething underneath the effeminate exterior . His aunt ‘ s latest trick is the last straw and E . has finally decided to bump off the old lady . As he is well aware of the repercussions that might come with the suspicious death of his aunt ( who happens to be his only relative on whom he is also financially dependent ) , he decides to take his time to pull off the perfect murder . . .
This had me chuckling too often with it ‘ s highly entertaining narrative with liberal doses of snark despite the dark undertone . With Edward being unparalleled in his dim – witted attempts to do away with the rather astute old lady ( at least for me , I had never come across a murderous protagonist who is too dense as Edward that he shouldn ‘ t have even dreamt of doing away with someone in the first place . Of course , we come across some bungling idiots once in a while in crime fiction who leave a mile – long trail of clues or sometimes leave the job unfinished , but IMHO none can match Edward in terms of his characteristic delusional and unimaginably stupid thought process ) , the middle was somewhat of a drag . But the ending was gold . This might be perfect for a suspense fiction reader if you want to pick up something that would keep you entertained while not being too cozy .
Rating : 4 / 5
If you have already read The Murder of my Aunt , let me know in the comments section about your thoughts on the book . If you have any interesting recommendations , please do share them . Until the next review then . . .
P . S
Speaking of blundering murderers like Edward , one can ‘ t help contrasting them with some of their ingenious counterparts who manage to commit the perfect crime . Check out P D James ‘ The Part – Time Job in which the protagonist goes to great lengths to exact his revenge on his school bully – the ‘ Queen of Crime ‘ has packed a brilliant twist at the end that will explain the title . It is to be noted that several of P D James ‘ short stories have the old sins casting long shadows theme and frankly , some are a tad disconcerting . If you are game enough for some ‘ perfect murders ‘ with sinister undertones , you can check out James ‘ Sleep No More . . .
Check out my review here – https://sherlockedsharon.com/2020/12/24/review-sleep-no-more-by-p-d-james/