Friday, May 26, 2017
Book Notes: "Lord Peter: The Complete Lord Peter Wimsey Stories," by Dorothy L. Sayers
"Lord Peter: The Complete Lord Peter Wimsey Stories," by Dorothy L. Sayers, was the end of my read (and, in most cases, re-read) through the Wimsey books.
And this is the point where, instead of writing a proper post, I'm tempted just to sigh the sigh of a deeply-contented reader, and let that be enough.
But, I'll resist that temptation. Here are a few notes on what I noticed this time through the collection:
-In these short stories, I kept noticing echoes of her novels. It was as if some of the short stories had bits of DNA that eventually were cultured/adapted/incorporated into larger entities. For example, the beach-and-sand-and-footprints clues in The Unsolved Puzzle of the Man with No Face felt like a bit of a trial run for some of the "how'd he do it?" questions in the novel Have His Carcase.
-In some of the stories, Lord Peter didn't really feel like Lord Peter. It felt like Sayers had an idea for a nifty little puzzle, and she had Lord Peter solve it because he was the character to hand, not because it was a puzzle he'd be naturally drawn to solving. For example, in The Adventurous Exploit of the Cave of Ali Baba, Lord Peter goes incognito in order to infiltrate a mysterious society, but it felt like you could have substituted any other determined, well-financed, brilliant gumshoe into his place, and the story wouldn't have changed much.
-In some of the stories, Lord Peter is ABSOLUTELY Lord Peter, and couldn't be anyone else. I mean, the opening of The Haunted Policeman is not only my favorite opening of a short story ever, but no one but Lord Peter and Harriet could have ever had that conversation.
-Speaking of Lord Peter and Harriet: the domestic story of Talboys is just wonderful. I love it so much.
Should you read this? Yes, of course you should. Stop asking such silly questions.
Peace of Christ to you,
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