For the podcast this week, I'm turning to one of the modern masters of the classic form: Robert Barnard. In "Death and the Chaste Apprentice," Barnard puts his considerable talent to work on a story of murder at an English arts festival. In the course of doing so, he manages to give us excerpts from quite a passable parody of obscure Restoration drama, not to mention an imaginary opera by Donizetti.
As the murder victim is suitably nasty and richly deserving of his fate, much of our time is spent cheering for the assorted people who could have been motivated to do him in. The whole thing is done with Barnard's usual wit and good humor. And - as with any good classic mystery - the clues are abundant and fairly planted. You can hear the full review here.