Murders that couldn't possibly have happened inside locked rooms, crimes that could never have taken place - but did, these were the specialty of John Dickson Carr, the acknowledged master of the impossible crime story. On the Classic Mysteries podcast this week, you'll find a review of "The Case of the Constant Suicides," a 1941 masterpiece by Carr, set in the Scottish highlands. You can listen to the podcast review here.
Who - or what - is forcing members of the Campbell clan to fall - or perhaps be pushed - out of the window of a locked and bolted bedroom at the top of a high tower? Carr will provide clues - if you can spot them, for many are buried in the general mayhem provided in a book which is not only a fine mystery but also a very funny slapstick comedy. "The Case of the Constant Suicides" is generally regarded as one of Carr's best - and that means it is very good indeed. Carr's books are finally coming back into print, which is cause for rejoicing among fans of the traditional, fair-play mystery. To Carr, the game of wits between author and reader was the grandest game in the world - and few authors played it as well or as fairly as he did.