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30 March 2015

Michael Innes' Death at the President's Lodging

Death at the President's Lodging is the first John Appleby mystery and was published in 1936. I stumbled upon it 79 years later while searching for an "I" for my A to Z Author Challenge and I am so very glad that I did.

I love classic mysteries. Mysteries set before you could do a background search on someone just by going to Google. Before cell phones made calling for help instantaneous. Even better than a classic mystery without all of the technological gizmos and whatnots? One set in an academic setting. (I'm that much of a geek.)

The "President" in question here is (well, was before, you know, his death) the head of St. Anthony's College in England. You've heard of the "closed room mystery,"  right? Where the crime is committed under seemingly impossible circumstances -- like a closed room with no possible entry or exit? Well, this sort of goes along those lines except that the room is the college campus and entry/exit is limited after hours to a select handful of professors who have been given keys to the school gates. The good news is that this limits the suspect list down greatly. The bad news is that of course a mysterious extra key exists and is unaccounted for.

Now, I could go on and on about plots (complicated and puzzling and, at times, I think made my eyes cross) and characters (the eccentric professors, the bumbling locals, the overly-enthusiastic student sleuths). You know, I could write a review like a "good" reviewer would do.

I never claimed to write good reviews.

What I DO claim is simply this: I'm glad that there are 36 more Appleby titles in existence. If even a quarter of them tickle me as much as Death at the President's Lodging has, I'll be ecstatic.


  1. I have read all 36! They were variable but most of them were great.

    1. I'm still in shock that I only just learned of them! I can't wait to read more!