Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Busman's Holiday

Busman's Honeymoon. Dorothy L. Sayers. 1937. HarperCollins. 403 pages.

My dear Honoria, 
So Peter is really married: I have ordered willow-wreaths for half my acquaintance...

There were parts of this mystery novel that I just LOVED. I mean there were scenes that made me giddy, absolutely giddy. (So many Harriet and Peter scenes!!!) And scenes that had me smiling! (I love Peter and Bunter, and we were introduced to a lovely Chief Superintendent, Mr. Kirk, his scenes with Peter were quite fun!) So I would definitely recommend this one to anyone who loves Lord Peter Wimsey, to those excited to read about his marriage to Harriet. The writing, as always, was great. And their is something almost magical about the way Sayers does dialogue...

Anyway, this novel is about their busy honeymoon. They've only been married a brief time--maybe two days?--when they discover a body in the basement of their new home, the home they've chosen to honeymoon in. And the case isn't an easy one to solve....

I really can't begin to express how much I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Peter Wimsey. And how much this whole series has meant to me. These books are so good, so wonderful, so worth reading!!!

Whatever fantastic pictures she had from time to time conjured up of married life with Peter, none of them had ever included attendance at village concerts. But of course they would go. She understood now why it was that with all his masking attitudes, all his cosmopolitan self-adaptations, all his odd spiritual reticences and escapes, he yet carried about with him that permanent atmosphere of security. He belonged to an ordered society, and this was sit. More than any of the friends in her own world, he spoke the familiar language of her childhood. In London, anybody, at any moment, might do or become anything. But in a village--no matter what village--they were all immutably themselves; parson, organist, sweep, duke's son, and doctor's daughter, moving like chessmen upon their allotted squares. She was curiously excited. She thought, "I have married England." (98)  

Lord Peter:

"When I'm investigating a murder, I hate to have too much sympathy with the corpse. Personal feelings cramp the style." (130)

Lord Peter:

"Murders go to my head like drink. I simply can't keep them off." (130)

Lord Peter, Harriet, and Mr. Kirk:

"Enter the obvious suspect," said Peter, lightly.
"The obvious suspect is always innocent," said Harriet in the same tone.
"In books, my lady," said Mr. Kirk, with a little indulgent bow towards her, as who should say, 'The ladies. God bless them!'" (143)

Mr. Kirk:
"Reckon there's several kinds of truth, my lord. There's truth as far as you know it; and there's truth as far as you're asked for it. But they don't represent the whole truth--not necessarily. (170)

Lord Peter:
"I don't know what to think. The fact is, we've got dashed little material for thinking with. It's probably too early for thinking." (231)
Lord Peter:
"I am always trying to say something too silly to be believed; but I never manage it." (256)

Lord Peter and Harriet:

"How can I find words? Poets have taken them all, and left me with nothing to say or do--"
"Except to teach me for the first time what they meant."
He found it hard to believe.
"Have I done that?"
"Oh Peter--" Somehow she must make him believe it, because it mattered so much that he should. "All my life I have been wandering in the dark--but now I have found your heart--and am satisfied."
"And what do all the great words come to in the end, but that?--I love you--I am at rest with you--I have come home." (293) 

This is the eleventh novel featuring Lord Peter Wimsey.

Others in the series:

© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Beckie B. 6:52 AM  

My book club had trouble with this one. The pages of of a letter written in French really slipped us up! But this was the first we read of Sayre's, probably not a good introduction to Whimsy.

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