Sleep No More: Six Murderous Tales (Hardback)P. D. James (author)
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The acknowledged Queen of Crime, P. D. James, was a past master of the short story, weaving together motifs of the Golden Age of crime-writing with deep psychological insight to create gripping, suspenseful tales.
The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories contained four of these perfectly formed stories, and this companion volume contains a further six, published here together for the first time.
As the six murderous tales unfold, the dark motive of revenge is revealed at the heart of each. Bullying schoolmasters receive their comeuppance, unhappy marriages and childhoods are avenged, a murder in the small hours of Christmas Day puts an end to the vicious new lord of the manor, and, from the safety of his nursing home, an octogenarian exerts exquisite retribution.
The punishments inflicted on the guilty are fittingly severe, but here they are meted out by the unseen forces of natural justice rather than the institutions of the law.
Once again, P. D. James shows her expert control of the short-story form, conjuring motives and scenarios with complete conviction, and each with a satisfying twist in the tail.
A literary polymath, P.D. James is undoubtedly known primarily as a writer of crime fiction, having begun her career with her ever-popular seasoned detective Adam Dalgliesh in Cover her Face (a series she continued for a further 13 novels, finally finishing with The Private Patient). Her novels were always much more than the sum of their parts with James frequently using fiction to challenge national institutions including the criminal justice system and the systemic failures of government. She developed a new audience when her dystopian novel The Children of Men was adapted for film and even turned her hand at a Regency classic, blending Jane Austen’s characters into the novel Death Comes to Pemberley.
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Number of pages: 192
Weight: 304 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 13 mm
"She understands that murder is nasty and brutal, that it is fuelled by the most malevolent of motives, and she’s not afraid to face that darkness head on. Her understanding of what she often called ‘wickedness’ is creepily accurate. There’s nothing cosy about the murders in these stories, however much the settings mimic their forerunners." – Val McDermid
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