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A presumption of death
Jill Paton Walsh
Adult Fiction PATON W

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From Publishers' Weekly:

In her second Lord Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane whodunit, Booker Prize finalist Walsh (Knowledge of Angels) does a far better job of honoring Sayers than she did in their first posthumous collaboration, Thrones, Dominations (1998). Walsh's starting point here is "The Wimsey Papers," a series of letters on home front conditions, ostensibly written by various members of the Wimsey family, which ran in the Spectator at the outset of WWII. Lord Peter himself is offstage for most of the novel, involved in some covert mission in Europe, leaving his wife to take care of their household. When a young Land Girl is found murdered during an air raid, the local superintendent enlists Harriet's aid. Harriet's traditional line of inquiry into possible spurned suitors is diverted when an eccentric and seemingly paranoid dentist discloses that the quiet, ordinary village of Paggleham is actually a nest of German spies. Despite Peter's diminished role, he remains a vital presence throughout, thanks to his place at the center of Harriet's thoughts. Should Walsh have no further original Sayers material to draw on, she seems perfectly suited to continue the series entirely on her own. (Mar. 27) Forecast: Though praised by the likes of Ruth Rendell and Joyce Carol Oates, Thrones, Dominations received mixed notices from Sayers purists. The favorable buzz on this one from the U.K.'s Dorothy L. Sayers Society augurs well for strong sales. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

This successor to Thrones, Dominations, the novel Walsh completed from a manuscript left behind by fabled mystery writer Sayers, features Harriet Vane (now Lady Wimsey). After the village of Paggleham stages its first air-raid drill, in 1940, villagers discover the dead body of a "land-girl." The local police superintendent, citing staff shortages due to the war-and cognizant of Lord Peter Wimsey's absence abroad-asks for Harriet's assistance. Despite being short-staffed herself and caring for five children, Harriet begins investigating, interrogating village characters, gossips, and suspects with equal success. A charmingly traditional British cozy, filled with rustic domesticity and equable prose, this is strongly recommended, especially for Sayers fans. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Lord Peter Death Bredon Wimsey
Age: 50
Debonair; Harriet's husband.

Harriet Deborah Vane
Peter's wife; mystery writer.

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