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The Hog's Back Mystery: A British Library Crime Classic    by Freeman Wills Crofts order for
Hog's Back Mystery
by Freeman Wills Crofts
Order:  USA  Can
Poisoned Pen, 2015 (1933)
Hardcover, Softcover
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

The Hog's Back Mystery is another of the British Library Crime Classics being republished by Poisoned Pen Press. Each one dates back to the Golden Age of Crime Writing! The thirties, between the two Great Wars. This one is set in Surrey, thirty miles from London which is referred to as the City by the diverse characters you will meet.

Inspector French is sent to the North Downs near Hog's Back in the Surrey countryside. Dr. James Earle has disappeared from his cottage. Assuming the disappearance is the result of a domestic dispute, the Inspector starts his investigation with this easy solution in mind. However, others start disappearing and muddy the waters of what he felt should be an easy case to solve.

To his chagrin, he realizes murder has been done. If so, why? And by whom? French is a meticulous man and spends great periods of time working out what could have happened and searching for clues to substantiate his ruminations.

I truly loved the descriptions of the area. I could easily visualize the hills and pastures as well as the flora and fauna native to that part of England. However I found the intricacy of French's thoughts - as he works to solve the crimes that he is sure have been carried out - a little too lengthy. I found my mind wandering as I read of French's exhaustive efforts.

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