You may not know this about me, but one of the things that I love other than lingerie is mystery novels. I have a near obsession with classic, Golden Age detective fiction and it’s the section I usually head towards when I enter a bookshop.
That’s why I was so excited to hear about a mystery novel that revolves around lingerie! . When the publisher of Wasp-Waisted by David Barrie reached out to me and asked if I wanted a copy for review, the answer was an immediate yes.
The plot centers around a series of murders– beginning with a model killed wearing a luxurious (but sadly fictional) French brand of lingerie. The detective, your classic tough but sensitive investigator whose appearance is rough around the edges but who managed to draw women to him like flies to honey, must therefore plunge himself into the world of high price lingerie including a magazine called “Wasp-Waisted.”
In the novel, “Wasp-Waisted” is a publication dedicated to showcasing beautiful women wearing spectacular lingerie making it therefore something that I very much wish existed! Alas, it is not to be. I very much enjoyed scenes in which the hard-bitten detective (injured from a dangerous episode in Corsica) must learn the difference between different bra styles and the difference between a corset and a guepiere– taught (of course) by a woman why removes her top to demonstrate (although no hanky panky ensued). I must admit, the use of the French terms for different lingerie styles throughout required a little bit of guesswork, but I figured it out in the end.
All in all, I really enjoyed this book! A work of great literature it is not, but it is well written and very entertaining, especially for someone interested in lingerie. And as far as I know, it is the only mystery novel in which lingerie is a crucial clue, which I really enjoyed. Apparently it is part of a series about the same detective, but I didn’t feel like I was missing anything having not read those books– and I might look into them for some further reading!
Are you planning on reading Wasp-Waisted? Are you as much of a mystery fiend as I am?