Sidney Chambers and The Problem of Evil
Grantchester Mysteries 3
'There is no denying the winning charm of these artfully fashioned mysteries' - Barry Forshaw, Independent
'Gentle, often funny and undeniably charming' - Readers Digest
'We should welcome him to the ranks of classic detectives' - Daily Mail
It is the 1960s and Canon Sidney Chambers is enjoying his first year of married life with his German bride Hildegard. But life in Grantchester rarely stays quiet for long.
Our favourite clerical detective soon attempts to stop a serial killer who has a grievance against the clergy; investigates the disappearance of a famous painting after a distracting display of nudity by a French girl in an art gallery; uncovers the fact that an 'accidental' drowning on a film shoot may not have been so accidental after all; and discovers the reasons behind the theft of a baby from a hospital in the run-up to Christmas, 1963.
In the meantime, Sidney wrestles with the problem of evil, attempts to fulfil the demands of Dickens, his faithful Labrador, and contemplates, as always, the nature of love.
The third in 'The Grantchester Mysteries' series – six detective novels spanning thirty years of British history – these four longer stories are guaranteed to delight the many fans of Canon Sidney Chambers.
Character is the strong suit of the four cases, all set in the early 1960s, that fill Runcie's third collection featuring Canon Sidney Chambers (after 2013's Sidney Chambers and the Perils of the Night). In the title story, the reader learns that the Anglican minister has recently gotten married to a German woman, in the process becoming "a living embodiment of post-war reconciliation." Meanwhile, someone is targeting Sidney's colleagues in Grantchester, leaving knife wounds meant to simulate the mark of the beast. A daring art theft is the subject of "Female, Nude," but the high point is "Death by Water," in which Sidney is hired to play Reverend Venables in a film adaptation of Dorothy Sayers's The Nine Tailors. Despite his awkwardness on the set, Sidney manages to solve an apparently accidental drowning. Runcie may be no G.K. Chesterton when it comes to plotting, but cozy fans will be pleased.