Nat and Jem move to New York when he is offered his dream job - sounds perfect, but is it? They become friends with a group of very rich people who spend their weekends in the exclusive, upmarket Hamptons where there is a mystery concerning Alice, one of the previous weekenders. Jem makes it her mission to find out what happened. This was a very easy to read story which flowed along nicely as the reader discovers the murky doings of the jet set. Although it was easy to see how it would all pan out, it didn't detract at all from the book. Loved the New York/Hamptons descriptions and the cover too. Exactly the type of book to accompany a holiday!
Just about every book written by John Dickson Carr is a locked room mystery, and all of them try to play fair (thus also trying to drive the reader nuts), but I always feel Carr tried too hard. His books are so convoluted that they become almost unreadable. I’m a bit reluctant to continue reading books wherein the intricacies become utterly unbelievable (why do some authors bother to impinge on our consciousness crap like this?) I’m better off reading Agatha Christie. This Carr was me being back to 'easy' reading after a hard week reading hard stuff. This one is among his middle-rankers. The method of murdering two persons close to a cliff with only his own footprints on wet sand was clever - maybe a bit too clever-clever - and the characters a touch clichéd - but then you do meet the same people over and over again in a Carr novel. The fun is in trying to out-guess him, and in the wonderful, spooky atmospheres he creates. Unlike Christie, the Carr’s leave a lot to be desired. In this case the solution just doesn't hang together. The characters and motivations are there but the explanation of the murder is just too weird. Carr once again didn’t play fair.