The Middle of Things

- Joseph Smith Fletcher
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If you're in the mood for a cracking good classic murder mystery, _The Middle of Things_ by JS Fletcher will certainly come up to expectations! Richard Viner is your average man on the street who stumbles upon a dead body in a dimly lit alley while taking his usual nightly stroll. When the police arrive, they conclude that this is a case of a robbery gone wrong, as the dead man's valuables are missing. However, as the case progresses, Viner discovers to his consternation, that the prime accused in the case is an old school-mate who is caught pawning items of jewelry belonging to the dead man. What makes it worse is that the school-mate is down and out these days and certainly needs the money. Viner decides to investigate and discover the truth. Written in 1922, _The Middle of Things_ is one of the more than 100 whodunits penned by the prolific writer Joseph Smith Fletcher, a British journalist. His body of work consists of more than two hundred novels in many different genres including historical fiction, poetry and non-fiction. Writing in what is now termed the Golden Age of Detective Fiction, popular in the 1920s and 30s, it included Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, John Dickson Carr, Ellery Queen, Dashiell Hammett Dorothy L Sayers, Raymond Chandler and many others. In 1929, Ronald Knox a popular mystery writer, codified the Ten Commandments of Detective Fiction and many of the Golden Age writers' works conform to these rules. The stories were essentially puzzles and not meant to be realistic portrayals of crime and criminals. _The Middle of Things_ has a host of interesting characters, including the delightful Miss Bethia Penkridge, Viner's elderly maiden aunt whose brilliant powers of deduction hide beneath a fluffy exterior. A quick, entertaining read for young and old alike!

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