Berkley, April 2003, 5.99, 208 pp.
His peers admire him; his subordinates emulate him; His superiors think that he is the perfect policeman in Scotland Yard. Very few people have any inkling that his servants, who adore him, use their connections and their wits to help Inspector Witherspoon solve his homicide cases. The housekeeper, Mrs. Jeffries uses guile and flattery to subtly direct the investigation. Aside from helping their employer, his servants like working behind the scenes to see justice done and know they had a part in making it happen.
Mr. Westover's death was originally ruled a suicide but Inspector Witherspoon's superior wants him to take another look at the case because the victim's landlady knows he was not the suicidal type. When the inspector begins his own investigation, he discovers that the victim was in a locked room with the key outside the door. He also learns that he was very angry just before he was shot and it was had something to do with work. Using information subtly given to him by Mrs. Jefferies he begins to get an inkling as to who committed the murder.
MRS. JEFFRIES PLEADS HER CASE is a charming, upbeat British police procedural cozy. Readers might guess early on why Westover was killed but they won't be able to deduce who the perpetrator is because many of the suspects had means and opportunity to perform the deed. Emily Brightwell, the author of this long running series, has written another fine work that fans Of British cosies will just love.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner