It’s a smidgen odd that I haven’t had more Peter Lovesey Cocktail Talks here on the ol’ Spiked Punch, just as I read and re-read his books (especially his Peter Diamond mysteries) as much as nearly any written words. Though, on the flip side, he doesn’t dwell in the bars and boozes as much as some, so maybe not so strange? Anyway, before I ramble so far we end up lost in the English countryside, today we are having a Lovesey Cocktail Talk, with a quote from the story “Bullets,” which I recently re-read when I was re-reading his killer (hahaha) collection, Murder on the Short List, a collection full of mysteries and mysterious deaths, some featuring a couple of his classic characters and some not. While I may shade my favoritism towards the longer works, many like his stories best, and he is a master – all of which is to say, pick this book up if you see it. This particular short story starts with an inspector getting ready to talk to the relatives of man found dead in his study, supposedly (!) by suicide.
They were sitting at the kitchen table in 7, Albert Street, their small suburban house in Teddington. They had a bottle of brandy between them.
The inspector accepted a drink and knocked it back in one swig. When talking to the recently bereaved he needed all the lubrication he could get.
–Peter Lovesey, “Bullets”