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Death on the Cherwell by Mavis Doriel Hay

Death on the Cherwell - Mavis Doriel Hay

This is a catch up review - I failed to write one up immediately after finishing the book a few weeks ago. I read it for Chapter 11, Education, Education, Education, which focuses on mysteries set in boarding school/university. This one was set in the fictional Persephone College at Oxford University.


I liked this better than my fellow Detection Club reader Themis-Athena, as I found the Nancy Drew-esque exploits of the troupe of undergrad women doing their own shadow investigation charming. It is a lightweight book and is a very quick read. The interactions between the Scotland Yard Detective and the four undergraduates are fun. The young women are resourceful, brave and sometimes clumsy, as would be expected. Veronica Mars they are not. 


I agree, however, that Gaudy Night by Sayers is far superior to this one - I'm inclined to reread the 3 Harriet Vane mysteries as part of this project, as I've only read it once.


I also must say that it is a travesty that Edwards didn't include Cat Among the Pigeons in this chapter, as that book occurs primarily within the confines of Meadowbank, a girl's boarding school. Miss Bulstrode, the headmistress, is one of Christie's finest creations, sensible, spirited and entrepreneurial. Even though it isn't specifically mentioned for that chapter, I still recommend it!