Georgette Heyer is considered one of the earliest modern romance writers. While I've read some of her romances, I tend to like her country house mysteries. They are cozy, which is not my normal mystery-sub-genre love, but it works.
I have no idea why PBS doesn't make a whole masterpiece mystery about them. I guess licensing won't allow it. Or perhaps there's some other reason I'm missing.
Title: The Unfinished Clue
Author: Georgette Heyer
Page Number: 379 pages (paperback)
Genre: mystery, cozy mystery, fiction, romance, historical fiction
Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc
A houseful of people he loathes is not Sir Arthur's worst problem...
It should have been a lovely English country-house weekend. But the unfortunate guest list is enough to exasperate a saint, and the host, Sir Arthur Billingham-Smith, is an abusive wretch hated by everyone from his disinherited son to his wife's stoic would-be lover. When Sir Arthur is found stabbed to death, no one is particularly grieved--and no one has an alibi. The unhappy guests find themselves under the scrutiny of Scotland Yard's cool-headed Inspector Harding, who has solved tough cases before. But this time, the talented young inspector discovers much more than he's bargained for.
At this point intime, there are several different cover options, but I gravitate towards the gold banded with the art deco decor. I do like all my books to look the same on the shelf and I do love a beautiful over.
The setting for this takes place in a manor house in the English countryside. I assume the house is large enough for the several guests and their staff. The house belongs to Sir Arthur Billingham-Smith. Sir Arthur is curmudgeonly and mean. His family consists of his wife and his son.
Scotland Yard sends Inspector Harding. A calm collected detective that soon realizes that no one in the house has an alibi (and in fact might want Sir Arthur dead). Not a single one of the guests are upset about Sir Arthur's death. It does take a few chapters before Scotland Yard is even called. During that time, we get more character studies of all the guests. This is good as the first few chapters of any Georgette Heyer mystery is chockablock full of characters.
I won't spoil the mystery by any stretch here. The inspector does find romance with one of the guests (after he clears her from any possibility of murder). She helps him investigate as she can be there all day and move amongst the guests easier than he. The romance between the two is muted compared to the character studies and mystery of the book. I have it as a 3.5 to 4 star on goodreads. It's quite a nice little book.
** Apparently all the film rights, save for two, are owned by a British production company who doesn't seem to be doing anything with them. The two not owned by them are owned by an American company who also not doing anything. Maybe they'll rethink it after the success of Bridgerton (or hey...Downton Abby). I cannot handle more superhero movies.