Something Nasty in the Woodshed - the third Charlie Mortdecai novel 'Splendidly enjoyable. The jokes are excellent, but the most horrible things keep happening' Sunday Telegraph 'Spring was infesting the air in no uncertain fashion and I awoke, for once, with a feeling of well-being and an urge to go for long country walks.' Charlie Mortdecai - minor aristocrat and art-dealer banished from London for crimes against, well, art - has decamped to the tiny island of Jersey with his wife Johanna and manservant Jock. There, amidst tax dodgers and inbred natives, he had hoped to lie low, and sink lower. But when a friend's wife is attacked, Charlie is forced to turn sleuth to discover the perpetrator. As further attacks occur, of an increasingly Satanic nature, Charlie finds he is desperate to solve the crimes before things turn truly Hellish . . . 'You couldn't snuggle under the duvet with anything more disreputable and delightful' Stephen Fry 'A comic masterpiece . . . the Bonfiglioli revival will surly gather apace, for he is by far the best thing to have happened again in years' Spectator Kyril Bonfiglioli was born on the south coast of England in 1928 of an English mother and Italo-Slovene father. After studying at Oxford and five years in the army, he took up a career as an art dealer, like his eccentric creation Charlie Mortdecai. He lived in Oxford, Lancashire, Ireland and Jersey, where he died in 1985. He wrote four Charlie Mortdecai novels, and a fifth historical Mortdecai novel (about a distinguished ancestor).
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Kyril Bonfiglioli was born on the south coast of England of an English mother and Italo-Slovene father. After studying at Oxford and five years in the army, he took up a career as an art dealer. He wrote three Mortdecai novels (of which this is the third), a historical novel involving an ancestor of Mortdecai, and left a fifth novel unfinished at his death in 1985. Since he died, the Mortdecai novels have achieved cult status.From Publishers Weekly:
This third installment of the scintillating British mystery series originally published in the U.K. in the 1970s finds shady art dealer Charlie Mortdecai, randy wife Johanna and butler Jock, a "one-eyed, one-fanged" ex-convict, sojourning on the isle of Jersey. The setting provides many targets—drunken peasants, rich tourists, quaint French customs, unintelligible patois—for Charlie's jaundiced drolleries. His omnidirectional disdain is intruded upon by a string of brutal rapes, with Satanic ritual overtones, that victimize his neighbors and embroil him in a farcical investigation featuring fruitless stakeouts and a Black Mass. Through it all, Charlie keeps his priorities straight: avoiding personal danger and inconvenience and ensuring that the flow of food and alcohol is never interrupted. Bonfiglioli's comic invention and lacerating, politically incorrect humor are in brilliant form, but they take on a somewhat rancid edge in this outing. Unlike the innocuous art thievery that figured in Don't Point That Thing at Me, Bonfiglioli's first volume, serial rape is the wrong background for the facetiousness and light misogyny that characterizes Charlie's satirical voice. Weighed down by this dissonance, the laughs finally falter and the story ends on a dark note of trauma and suicide. Fans of Charlie's dissolute charm and outrageous wit will find it, but some readers may decide that certain crimes just aren't funny. (July 5)
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