Book review: The Cambridge Plot by Suzette A. Hill
PUBLISHED: 13:13 08 August 2018 | UPDATED: 13:13 08 August 2018
Allison & Busby Ltd
The 1950s-set mystery, published by Allison & Busby Ltd, is the East Sussex-born author’s follow-up to her bestselling novel, Shot in Southwold.
Protagonist Rosy Gilchrist returns to Newnham College to attend a reunion. Coincidentally, her previous ‘partners in crime’ Felix Smythe and Professor Cedric Dillworthy are also visiting Cambridge as the latter is one of the benefactors for a planned statue of one of his old tutors, Sir Percival Biggs-Brookby.
The three main characters are looking forward to a pleasant break but events take over and they are reluctantly drawn into the unusual and intricate plot which revolves around the preparations for the statue.
The Plot and Monument Committee gather to discuss this serious issue and, although this may sound mundane, the author cleverly writes a very English story which is witty and eccentric.
There are rather a lot of characters but they all weave well together and it is they who are the stars of the show. It is a crime novel with refreshingly no explicit violence or unnecessary bad language.
Plans for the stature become complicated with first one and then another of the proposed sculptors meeting a sticky end. Others are also found dead so the plot is by no means straightforward.
It is a fun, light-hearted read, set in the 1950s and hence a little old fashioned – but all the better for it. This is a standalone book but, once read, you may be inclined to read Rosy’s previous escapades.
Suzette A. Hill worked as a teacher before retiring and now lives in Ledbury, Herefordshire. She took up writing at the age of 64 and has since published more than 10 novels. She is the author of the Francis Oughterard series.