SCHOOL FOR MURDER by Robert Barnard
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Somewhere in England there may still be good, small boarding-schools for boys. The Burleigh School in Cullbridge is not one of them. Run on a shoestring by pompous Headmaster-owner Crumwallis (and his gaunt, ugly wife), the school uses outdated books and equipment; it's dependent on the country's high rate of teacher unemployment for its largely inept staff--and on parental snobbery for its students. Then: the death-by-poisoning of seductive, malicious, manipulative Hilary Frome--a fair, handsome, 15-year-old student who was the Headmaster's favorite (if no one else's). The suspects? Slovenly gamesmaster Bill Muggeridge, whose promiscuous wife bad her eye on Hilary. Glenda Grower, taunted by Hilary about charges of lesbianism at her previous post. Plus several others who were tortured by Hilary--including likable young Malcolm Pickerage, who eventually provides Superintendent Pumfrey with an unsurprising solution to the puzzle (and a promising new start for Burleigh). Slighter and less polished than previous Barnard mystery-satires--but neat entertainment nonetheless, often scalpel-sharp.

Pub Date: March 14th, 1984
ISBN: 0881503207
Publisher: Scribners