• Publication date: 31/05/2018
  • Paperback ISBN: 9781788420921
  • eBook ISBN: 9781788420235
A Flaxborough Mystery 8

The Naked Nuns

Colin Watson

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Flaxborough has its share of fat-cat businessmen—‘wheels’ (in US gangster parlance)…

Like the brash Councillor Henry Crispin and snobbish Arnold Hatch, proprietor of the Floradora Country Club. Their bitter rivalry is well known, so when Crispin’s luxury river cruiser, the Lively Lady, is ruthlessly sunk, shortly after Hatch’s night-time shenanigans had been lit up for the world to see, no one expects the feud to die away peacefully.

But there is a death, a far from peaceful one, and DI Purbright and Sergeant Love have information that it might be linked with the arrival in town of a certain Sicilian-American gentleman.

Witty and a little wicked, Colin Watson’s tales offer a mordantly entertaining cast of characters and laugh-out-loud wordplay.

What people are saying about the Flaxborough series:

“Colin Watson wrote the best English detective stories ever. They work beautifully as whodunnits but it’s really the world he creates and populates … and the quality of the writing which makes these stories utterly superior.”

“The Flaxborough Chronicles are satires on the underbelly of English provincial life, very well observed, very funny and witty, written with an apt turn of phrase … A complete delight.”

If you have never read Colin Watson – start now. And savour the whole series.”

“Light-hearted, well written, wickedly observed and very funny – the Flaxborough books are a joy. Highly recommended.”

How English can you get? Watson’s wry humour, dotty characters, baddies who are never too bad, plots that make a sort of sense. Should I end up on a desert island Colin Watson’s books are the ones I’d want with me.”

A classic of English fiction… Yes, it is a crime novel, but it is so much more. Wonderful use of language, wry yet sharp humour and a delight from beginning to end.”


“Colin Watson writes in such an understated, humorous way that I follow Inspector Purbright’s investigation with a smile on my face from start to finish.”

“If you enjoy classic mysteries with no graphic violence and marvellously well drawn characters then give the Flaxborough series a try – you will not be disappointed.”

Editorial reviews:

“Watson has an unforgivably sharp eye for the ridiculous.” New York Times

“Flaxborough is Colin Watson’s quiet English town whose outward respectability masks a seething pottage of greed, crime and vice … Mr Watson wields a delightfully witty pen dripped in acid.” Daily Telegraph

Arguably the best of comic crime writers, delicately treading the line between wit and farce … Funny, stylish and good mysteries to boot.” Time Out

“A great lark, full of preposterous situations and pokerfaced wit.” Cecil Day-Lewis

One of the best. As always with Watson, the writing is sharp and stylish and wickedly funny!” Literary Review

The rarest of comic crime writers, one with the gift of originality.” Julian Symons

“Flaxborough, that olde-worlde town with Dada trimmings.” Sunday Times

Other books in the series