Of the Georgette Heyer mysteries that I've read so far, No Wind of Blame is one of my favorites. It has a more balanced set of characters--with a few that are even tolerable people--and a strong mystery.
With the first third of the book reserved for character development before the murder, this book shows the strength of the Heyer mystery. A pieced-together family lives in their English countryside home, Palings. We have Ermyntrude Carter, a widow on her second marriage with an adult daughter, Vicky, from the first. Her husband of the last two years is Wally Carter who brought along with him his cousin and adult ward, Mary Cliffe. They are an unconventional set that have their good days and bad. Ermyntrude was on the stage in her youth and Vicky spends her days on her own mental stage and gets through her days by acting in different personae. In the adjoining Dower House is Wally's distant relative, the generally-disliked Harold White, who tends to bring out the worst in Wally. Ermyntrude has a retinue of admirers in the picture as well and when Wally is murdered one afternoon, there is no shortage of suspects.
I really enjoyed this book and it is one that I would definitely recommend to someone new to Georgette Heyer's mysteries. There were a few twists and turns and the requisite Heyer romance. It also features a new detective from Scotland Yard, Inspector Hemingway, who has a great sense of humor to match his strong wits. I hope that the next mystery I read is as strong as this one.
An unexpected murder can ruin any pleasant afternoon,
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