In this, the fifth Gervase Fen novel, Crispin has set a plot rife with intrigue and entertainment in a style which is inimitably his. Taut and clever, 'Love Lies Bleeding' revolves around events which begin at the Castrevenford Schools, separate boys and girls institutions where small disturbances have surprising ramifications.
Gervase Fen, the Oxford Professor of Language and Literature, who has been called in to speak for the schools' Speech Day by the Headmaster, an old university acquaintance, is soon in the thick of a mystery which grows deadlier as it becomes more inexplicable. Was young Brenda Boyce assaulted, and, if so, by whom? Who has broken into the chemistry laboratory, and what have they stolen? And what, if anything, is worth the risk of committing murder?
As Fen pursues the increasingly convoluted path toward the truth, he discovers that the motive behind these events may be one that is very old indeed, and a motive which he, in his professional capacity as a scholar, may understand better than anyone else involved.
The Gervase Fen detective novels are certainly among the best undiscovered treasures that many devotees of mystery fiction could hope to unearth. A perfect combination of suspense, humour, and intelligent dialogue, these tales are not to be missed.