Monday, November 9, 2009

Short Story Monday/Mrs Craggs and the Late Prince Albert by H.R.F. Keating


This is the second story in the collection by H.R.F Keating called In Kensington Gardens once... . It comes from a 1985 publication called Mrs Craggs: Crimes Cleaned Up, which I really must find. In this story we meet Mrs Craggs whose job is a cleaner. She works in both the Royal Albert Hall, and at private homes. On her way from one to the other, she passes through Kensington Gardens and:

lingered at the Albert Memorial, climbing its many shallow steps and wandering round looking at all its myriad statues.

She begins to see the same three people there, having some sort of meeting.

From the start their talk looked as though it was meant to be secret. But there was seldom anyone else nearby at that hour and somehow the three of them, having seen Mrs Craggs every day, soon discounted her presence and spoke quite loudly.

This 'discounting' leads to the downfall of a murderer. How it happens makes for an interesting and very enjoyable little mystery, all told in only six pages. Mrs Craggs is an observant sleuth, both of physical details and human nature, and this quality allows her to know who the killer is.

The Albert Memorial

4 comments:

  1. I have given you an Award but only if you wish to accept it, of course. I know a lot of people are not happy about the requirements of Awards so I am happy to change the rules and say you are welcome to the award if you want it but the passing on ‘rule’ is optional. Whatever your decision thanks for keeping up such an enjoyable blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you for your kindness, John. I'll be over to check it out.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'm glad you've mentioned Mrs Craggs - a good amateur detective who deserves to be better known. The collection of stories is a good one.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks so much, Martin. I've begun my search for a copy. I liked the character a lot. Even in just a few pages, she made quite an impact. :<)

    ReplyDelete

Now that I am a grandmother, it seems that I am often late in replying to your most-appreciated comments. But I read them as soon as they come in, and I will write as soon as I can. Please do come back and check. I love these blogging conversations.
Also, you may comment on any post, no matter how old, and I will see it.