This second Amelia Peabody book is even funnier than the first. Peters deftly makes her heroine an intrusive narrator with much less self-awareness than she arrogates to herself. There are laughs on nearly every page.
I’m beginning to think that the mystery element in these novels is “self-spoiling”–largely as a consequence of the integrity of Peabody’s character. She wants to impress the reader with her acumen as an intuitive sleuth, and so she retrospectively emphasizes her first distaste of the actual culprit. In a conventional mystery, such strong early suspicions would nearly disqualify a character from being the chief evildoer, but in these stories, they have been a reliable indicator. [via]