The Middle Temple Murders – J S Fletcher

This detective novel was originally published in 1919 and recently republished.  I quite like period whodunnits as a bit of light relief after a busy day so I thought I’d give it a go.

The Middle Temple Murders

The essentials of the plot, without giving too much away, are that newspaper man Frank Spargo is on his way home late at night when someone comes out of Middle Temple shouting that a murder has been committed.  Spargo then works with Detective Sergeant Rathbury to investigate what has happened and to solve several puzzles relating to the murder; who the victim was, who his son is, who the crooked financier is and who the murderer is.

I enjoyed the period feel of the book.  It was of its period but didn’t feel too dated and the characters felt believable.  I kept reading because I wanted to know the answers to the puzzles.

Unfortunately, the ending didn’t live up to the rest of the book.  It felt abrupt, as though the author had run out of energy, ideas or time to maintain the same pace as the rest of the story.  This was a real disappointment and I felt let down.  On this basis I wouldn’t recommend the book.  I’m also reluctant to try any of the other period murder mysteries published by The Resurrected Press which is a shame.

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