Fifteen short stories by one of the Queens of Crime – enough to pass an entertaining couple of hours.
There are three notable stories. “The Hornets’ Nest” is a tight, clever poisoning at a wedding breakfast. The reader, Brand tells him, should know whodunnit the page after the murder. “After the Event” is a theatrical murder: blackmailing Desdemona strangled. I remembered the false solution (father and son play each other’s roles) more than the real one (blackening Othello’s name). At one time, I thought “Murder Game” (aka “The Gemminy Crickets Case”) brilliant; it isn’t. It’s a workmanlike story, rather long and overly speculative. I also thought it involved a crane (I was thinking of an Inspector Morse), and the narrator killed the old man at the end.
The rest are Ilesian suspense stories, with a sardonic twist at the end. Insert your own enthusiasm.