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Wednesday, 21 May 2014

‘The Case of the Poisoned Partridge’ by Diane Janes

 Published by The History Press,
November 2013.
ISBN: 978-0-7524-7946-0

This is a work of non fiction which investigates an unsolved murder case of 1931. The victim was Lieutenant Hugh Chevis who was, as the title suggests, poisoned when he, apparently ate a partridge containing strychnine. The case is complex and inexplicable. The wife of the lieutenant also suffers poisoning symptoms but probably ate less of the meat and therefore recovers.

A mysterious telegram to the family from Ireland causes a lot of investigation; the origins of the partridge also require a great deal of inquiry as do various relatives of the family. Certainly the wife, Frances, has an interesting background which contributes to the puzzle.
The ability of pathologists comes under considerable scrutiny and the medical habits of the privileged provide another rich seam of interest. In fact the lifestyle of various protagonists are clearly from another era. Frances remarries and finds that to the newspapers she will always be known as a participant in the Case of the Poisoned a Partridge.

This is a thorough investigation of what is very much a period drama.
Reviewer: Jennifer S Palmer

Diane Janes  was born and educated in Birmingham, but lived in various parts of the north of England for most of her adult life, until recently moving to Devon. Having worked in everything from mortgages to engineering, she is now a full time author of fiction and investigative non-fiction, specialising in crime. When still an unpublished writer, she was short listed twice for the Crime Writers' Association Debut Dagger and in 2010 was among the quartet of finalists in contention for the John Creasey Dagger. She is published in both the U.K. and the U.S.A. and some of her work has been translated into German and Japanese.

Jennifer Palmer Throughout my reading life crime fiction has been a constant interest; I really enjoyed my 15 years as an expatriate in the Far East, the Netherlands & the USA but occasionally the solace of closing my door to the outside world and sitting reading was highly therapeutic. I now lecture to adults on historical topics including Famous Historical Mysteries.

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