Sunday, May 28, 2017
Tattersby and the Silence of the Lumbs, by Neil Schofield
Yes, this is the third story I have chosen from this particular issue. Some weeks/issues are like that. It is also the third time I have featured a story by my friend Neil Schofield.
But, just for variety, I think it is the second story he has produced about Tattersby, a retired English cop who sounds a bit like a cross between Wodehouse's Wooster and Mortimer's Rumpole. Here he explains why he prefers curiosities to mysteries:
Because curiosity is a more interesting word. And it's more friendly. A curiosity tickles the mind. A mystery is obscure, menacing. Mind you, a curiosity can become a mystery when it grows up. I like curiosities. I like it when a curiosity comes out of the undergrowth and rubs itself against your legs. A mystery just runs up and bites you in the calf.
In this story there are several curiosities (or worse) that disturb Tattersby's peace. His friend Eggy, a former crook, needs some help with his aunt who thinks she is losing her mind. Tattersby solves that one but quickly learns that a young constable has disappeared, a corpse has been found in the canal, and a convict named Mental George has been seen in the vicinity. Not to mention the haunted house, or as a local kid calls it, "a ornted 'ouse."
Naturally all these pieces come together in interesting ways. More Tattersby, please.