Whose Body?

Cover image for


Published: 1923
Language: English
Wordcount: 58,745 / 168 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 78.2
LoC Category: PR
Downloads: 23,338
Added to site: 2007.02.22
mnybks.net#: 16116

Lord Peter Wimsey investigates the sudden appearance of a naked body in the bath of an architect at the same time a noted financier goes missing under strange circumstances. As the case progresses it becomes clear that the two events are linked in some way.

Show Excerpt

wer to the description of any they'd had."

"Nor to the description of any of the patients, I hope," suggested Lord Peter casually.

At this grisly hint Mr. Thipps turned pale.

"I didn't hear Inspector Sugg enquire," he said, with some agitation. "What a very horrid thing that would be--God bless my soul, my lord, I never thought of it."

"Well, if they had missed a patient they'd probably have discovered it by now," said Lord Peter. "Let's have a look at this one."

He screwed his monocle into his eye, adding: "I see you're troubled here with the soot blowing in. Beastly nuisance, ain't it? I get it, too--spoils all my books, you know. Here, don't you trouble, if you don't care about lookin' at it."

He took from Mr. Thipps's hesitating hand the sheet which had been flung over the bath, and turned it back.

The body which lay in the bath was that of a tall, stout man of about fifty. The hair, which was thick and black and naturally curly, had been cut and parted by


Average Rating of 4 from 8 reviews: ****
Rob Reader

Lord Peter Wimsey is first introduced in this book as are several supporting characters who reappear in Sayers later novels. I will not review the story except that the "wrong body" theme reappears later in Sayers books. Wimsey introduces his peculiar form of speech which again is repeated throughout the series. Perhaps it was in vogue amongst British noble families circa 1920.

I first read this book over 30 years ago and am experiencing it in audiobook form this time. My belief in the inferiority, insufficiency and unsatisfactory nature of the audiobook is once again confirmed.

This book made Dorothy Sayers career and it is certainly not a bad first novel. For those who have not read her subsequent work it does improve and by the publication of The Five Red Herrings in the early 1930's she is close to being a master of the genre. Overall an excellent introduction and much above average first book. Three stars


Very entertaining mystery, although parts will test your sense of credibility.


A classic mystery. Well worth reading.

Waldo Gemio

It's great to see this title come on the Manybooks site. Having just read the the first of the second series - 'Thrones, Dominations', started by Sayers and finished by Jill Paton Walsh, set in the prelude to WWII - it's interesting to see the younger, funnier Wimsey, still suffering traumas from his WWI experiences in this first book, which introduces us to his future brother-in-law Inspector Parker, Wimsey's manservant/sidekick Bunter, wholly indispensable as always, and Wimsey's redoubtable mother, the Duchess. My only complaint, apart from the obviousness of the killer, is the unlikely execution of the crime itself. Still, every page is a delight. These books are still being published and selling well, so it's a real bonus that the first two are now available for free to new generations.

I. E. Zawilski

If you like old fashioned mysteries, it doesn't get much better than Sayers. I can't wait for more!

J Fallows

An enormously entertaining mystery, by turns witty, amusing, gruesome and profound. As the Dorothy L Sayers books come out of copyright, readers at Manybooks are in for a real treat.

Joanne Connor

I quite enjoyed this lighthearted read although Im definitely more a Sherlock Holmes fan.


Dorothy L. Sayers was and remains one of the best examples of the mystery writing genre. Though on the surface, her Lord Peter Whimsey mysteries seem like frivolous "parlor whodunnits", there is a deeper undercurrent of social context in her work, hidden under a lighthearted charade in the same way that Lord Peter hides the darker side of himself behind his foppish demeanor. Readers will fall in love with Lord Peter's wit and his vulnerability.

This is the first of the Lord Peter mysteries, and one of the better ones (in my opinion), though it's also one of the more easily solved. Even so, I highly, highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good mystery!

I would love to see the other Lord Peter books here, as well!

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