As usual, the style--rather than the plot--is the primary pleasure in this infectious new outing for Flaxborough's Inspector Purbright. . . who finds suspicious doings when he attends the funeral of ""Rich Dick"" Loughbury, lord of the Manor House at Mumblesby. To start with, Loughbury's brassy common-law widow has been locked in her bedroom, and someone has set a fire nearby. Furthermore, the Manor House seems to be teeming with art treasures--most of which were previously owned by Loughbury's neighbors. And Inspector P., with the customary assist from naughty, worldly Miss Lucilla Teatime, begins to suspect the late Mr. L. of blackmail--with connections to the somewhat bygone ""suicide"" of the widely promiscuous Mrs. Bernadette Croll. No great shakes as a mystery, then, but the comic characterizations--from the coarsely merry widow to a raunchy old pub-lecher--are grand; the wry narration is hilariously florid but never too arch; and this is vintage Watson drollery overall, required reading for devotees of fey/ribald, English-village doings.