Bedford Square Review
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Thereís nothing elementary about Bedford Square. Even Superintendent Thomas Pitt, the detective in charge of the case, is baffled. Why would a man who looked like a common thief be found in the middle of the night, murdered and lying on a well-known generalís doorstep?

As Pitt begins to investigate the case, heís given another one to solve -- the assistant commissioner has received a blackmail letter. It wrongfully accuses him of dishonorable action -- which, if made public, could ruin his reputation -- but asks for nothing. Itís just a threat and nothing more, but the commissioner is devastated.

Pitt soon discovers that the two cases are closely connected -- Assistant Commissioner Cornwallis and General Balantyne were both victims of the same blackmailer. And as he gets deeper into the case, Pitt discovers that theyíre not the only two. The blackmailer has been sending mysterious letters to several prominent men in London. But why? He hasnít asked for money. He hasnít made any demands. But all of the men are mortified by the thought of what will happen if these false charges are brought against them.

Bedford Square is a laid-back mystery. Itís not quick-page-turning, sitting-on-the-edge-of-your-seat exciting story, but itís fascinating enough to keep you coming back for more. And Pitt is a real character. Heís not an all-knowing calm-and-collected crime-solving genius. Instead, he often goes down the same dead-ends that the reader does -- and he even recruits the help of his strong-minded wife, Charlotte, and their maid, Gracie, to sort through ideas.

The only thing thatís especially fast-paced about the story is its conclusion. Everything comes to a totally unexpected conclusion within the last ten pages or so -- and suddenly itís over. I still canít decide if thatís a good thing of if I would have preferred a little more warning -- and a little more summary. But, even without the extra summary pages, Bedford Square is well worth the read -- and it may just compel you to pick up more of Perryís numerous Thomas and Charlotte Pitt mysteries.

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