Some Deaths Before Dying
A Crime NovelIn this crime fiction masterwork from CWA Gold Dagger winner Peter Dickinson, a dying old woman determined to solve a family mystery before the end of her life finds herself reopening doors into a dark and very dangerous past
Once a talented photographer, Rachel Matson is now old, paralyzed, bedridden, and dying—yet her wits remain as sharp as a well-stropped straight razor. Watching television to keep her mind focused, she is shocked to see a woman on Antiques Roadshow asking to have an old pistol appraised—a firearm Rachel is certain once belonged to her late husband.
Though confined to her bedroom and barely able to communicate with the outside world, Rachel is determined to figure out how and why a treasured family heirloom wound up in a stranger’s possession. With the help of her old photographs, her devoted nurse, Dilys, and Jenny, the sweet young lady from the telly, Rachel sets out to unravel this last mystery before the end comes. But the answers she seeks are waiting for her in the darkest shadows of a past best left unexplored and in shocking family secrets that, by rights, should remain locked away forever.
P. D. James has called Peter Dickinson “a master” and “a true original.” Acclaimed worldwide for his stylistic flair, his unique storytelling genius, and his remarkable penchant for reconfiguring British crime fiction, Dickinson once again offers the mystery reader something fresh and surprising with his final novel, Some Deaths Before Dying.
- Pub Date
- Open Road Integrated Media
“An intricate mystery, beautifully told, as usual, by one of the genre’s leading spellbinders.” —Kirkus Reviews
“In Some Deaths Before Dying, that daredevil stylist Peter Dickinson sets himself the formidable task of solving an undisclosed crime whose principal players are dead, near-dead, or dotty. He executes this feat with extraordinary grace and skill.” —The New York Times
“An intricate mystery, beautifully told . . . by one of the genre’s leading spellbinders.” —The Philadelphia Inquirer
“Rich, fluent prose . . . enthralling.” —The Washington Post Book World
“Leisurely layered in the grand English tradition, there’s plenty of pleasure to be had in watching Dickinson put together the pieces of his well-crafted puzzle.” —Chicago Tribune
About the author
Peter Dickinson was born in Africa but raised and educated in England. From 1952 to 1969 he was on the editorial staff of Punch, and since then has earned his living writing fiction of various kinds for children and adults. His books have been published in several languages throughout the world.
The recipient of many awards, Dickinson has been shortlisted nine times for the prestigious Carnegie Medal for children's literature and was the first author to win it twice. The author of twenty-one crime and mystery novels for adults, Dickinson was also the first to win the Gold Dagger Award of the Crime Writers' Association for two books running: Skin Deep (1968) and A Pride of Heroes (1969).
A collection of Dickinson's poetry, The Weir, was published in 2007. His latest book, In the Palace of the Khans, was published in 2012 and was nominated for the Carnegie Medal.
Dickinson has served as chairman of the Society of Authors and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2009 for services to literature.