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Books Editorial

magpiemurders.jpg Magpie Murders

Anthony Horowitz, Orion

Anthony Horowitz is the creator of Midsomer Murders, and has previously pastiched Arthur Conan Doyle and Ian Fleming to winning effect, and for his latest novel – out now in paperback – he’s giving us a buy one get one free crime story. It begins with book editor Susan Ryland setting down to read the latest in the run of (fictional) Atticus Pünd mysteries. Pünd is a German detective, working in England after the Second World War, with his latest case drawing him to a sleepy, Agatha Christie-esque village in the mid 1950s. Foul play is suspected when the housekeeper of a mansion is found dead at the bottom of a flight of stairs. Horowitz gives us the full Pünd novel – which is in the Poirot mode and very entertaining – before we return to Susan Ryland’s world where another mystery presents itself, life very much imitating art. It’s a neat device, which, nevertheless, would fall apart if both stories weren’t up to snuff, but this is huge fun and a real love letter to the whole genre.