The Tango School Mystery by Peter Bartram

Brighton, 1964, and all Colin Crampton, crime reporter at the Evening Chronicle, wanted was to have a nice dinner out with his girlfriend Shirley. But despite her steak being served rare, there seems to be some extra blood on her plate. Mainly because it’s dripping through the ceiling…

Racing upstairs, Colin finds a dead body (obviously) with its throat slit with a double-bladed knife. Soon, he finds himself mixed up in the middle of a plot to… well, that would be telling. But it’s a plot that involves a tango teacher who can’t dance and a wax effigy of Yuri Gargarin. All in a day’s work…

This is the fourth novel in the Crampton of the Chronicle series – there are some short stories and novellas as well – and they are rather charming cozy mysteries.

Peter Bartram has channelled his experience as a reporter into these stories – although I seriously doubt he ever investigated anything like this – but these aren’t dry news stories. Colin, the narrator of the tales, has a nice line in wit and the plot dances around the bizarre while remaining within the bounds of plausibility.

Admittedly, this is more of a what-is-going-on mystery than a who-done-it, but it should be said that a) you won’t guess what is going and b) it’s fairly clued. Moreover, you’ll have a good laugh when reading it.

Apologies for the brevity of the review – I’m a little pushed for computer time at the moment – but this is well worth your time. Definitely Recommended.


  1. I have not read this, but I have read his short stories and I found them quite enjoyable with a vein of humour running throughout and properly clued.

    Liked by 1 person

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