Unnatural Death (Lord Peter Wimsey Mystery Book 3) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy Used
Condition: :
Comment: Eligible for Amazon's FREE Super Saver/Prime Shipping, 24/7 Customer Service, and package tracking. 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Unnatural Death (Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries) Mass Market Paperback – July 11, 1995

Book 3 of 14 in the Lord Peter Wimsey Series

See all 69 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
Mass Market Paperback
"Please retry"
$2.58 $0.01
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"

"The Cake House" by Latifah Salom
Called a "mystery wrapped in a cloak of family dysfunction with subtle Shakespearean trim". This dazzling coming-of-age tale will resonate long after you reach the end. See more

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries
  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTorch (July 11, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061043583
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061043581
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (108 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #458,601 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"One of the greatest mystery story writers of this century." -- --Los Angeles Times

"Suspense, wonderful plotting, first-rate detection." -- --Cincinnati Enquirer

About the Author

Dorothy L. Sayers was born in 1893. She was one of the first women to be awarded a degree by Oxford University, and later she became a copywriter at an ad agency. In 1923 she published her first novel featuring the aristocratic detective Lord Peter Wimsey, who became one of the world's most popular fictional heroes. She died in 1957.

Customer Reviews

This tale goes in unexpected directions with a great twist at the end.
Dorothy Sayers's Lord Peter Wimsey novels are an excellent example of Golden-Age-Detective fiction.
Collin Garbarino
The characters, the plot, the tension, the humor and the pace are all fabulous.
Jason Metzker

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 22, 1998
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I found this book to be probably the best of all of Dorothy Sayer's Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries. The plotting is tight and all the threads are pulled together for the reader. A nice touch is that neither Lord Peter nor Parker are superhuman detectives who miraculously discern the truth at every step. Instead, they are allowed to make mistakes and even be a bit slow sometimes in getting to the truth, which makes them completely believeable. But the best part of the book was the great atmosphere - Ms Sayers brings 1920's England vividly to life so much so you feel you are actually there. I liked the way the story shifts back and forth between London and the countryside. Also, what fun to be introduced to Mr. Murbles and Miss Climpson - surely some of the most entertaining characters ever created in detective fiction! I read all the mysteries written subsequently and was a little disappointed that their characters are not more fully developed in later books - both appear in other novels but not to the extent I would have wished. All in all, it's an unputdownable mystery - try it and you will be hooked!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
36 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 1, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Originally published in 1927, UNNATURAL DEATH is the third of Dorothy L. Sayer's "Lord Peter Wimsey" mystery novels--and a novel in which Sayers manages to strike the same balance of literary style and humor that she previously created in the 1926 CLOUDS OF WITNESS. But also like CLOUDS OF WITNESS, UNNATURAL DEATH is not a murder mystery per se--a fact that may annoy readers in search of a classic "whodunit" novel. In this instance, the criminal is a foregone conclusion; it is catching her that poses the problem.

That problem proves remarkably convoluted. Miss Agatha Dawson, an elderly lady of considerable wealth, has died after a long battle with cancer--a reasonable death. Even so, the doctor in charge of the case feels uneasy; not only did the death benefit Miss Dawson's great-niece considerably, it seemed to him a little premature. And when Lord Peter Wimsey becomes intrigued, it seems that any individual who could give evidence against the niece suddenly dies! This poses an unexpected moral issue for Wimsey. Should he continue to pursue the case--even though his persistence seems to force the killer to kill again or again?

While somewhat marred by her occasional tendency toward a patronizing sort of racism, UNNATURAL DEATH is far from the worst of the worst of Sayer's work--it is not, mercifully, as painfully overworked as the slightly later THE FIVE RED HERRINGS or HAVE HIS CARCASS. And although it falls a bit short of her masterpieces of the mid-1930s (MURDER MUST ADVERTISE, THE NINE TAILORS, GAUDY NIGHT, and BUSMAN'S HONEYMOON, titles that continue to dazzle readers and inspire writers to this day), it not only indicates the style of those works but it holds up very well as a tightly written, fast-paced, and intriguing read. Recommended.

GFT, Amazon Reviewer
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Marc Ruby™ HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on March 3, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When Dr. Edward Carr overhears Lord Peter Wimsey and Detective Charles Parker discussing crime and the responsibility of the medical profession, he is drawn to share a perplexing problem of his own. When a patient of his who was slowly dying of cancer suddenly took much worse and died, he was unable to sign the death certificate with confidence and insisted on a post mortem, greatly discomfiting the survivor, one Mary Whittaker. When nothing suspicious is found, Dr. Carr found himself losing patients, and eventually had to sell his practice.
Wimsey is intrigued, and, despite the misgivings of both the doctor and Detective Parker, dispatches the elderly Miss Alexandra Climpson to gather information in the town of Leahampton while he pursues other leads in London. He finds many suspicions, but no facts, even when one death and then another are reported. In each case there are no indications of foul play, and Wimsey becomes convinced that he has grabbed the tail of the perfect crime. His opinion is not shared by Parker, however, and it is only reluctantly that the latter consents to investigate.
Gradually circumstance builds, and even Parker must admit that there are many questions to be answers. Yet all are baffled. Even knowing who the perpetrator must be, the investigators are unable to formulate a case that will stand in court. Wimsey is up against one of those sociopathic minds that pays careful attention to detail and apparently has the means to murder as if by magic. Dorothy Sayers has created a truly baffling case.
The greatest delight of this novel is the first appearance of Miss Alexandra Climpson. A delightfully sharp woman who is a persistent and dedicated investigator in the service of Lord Peter.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Michael McLinden on September 21, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dorothy Sayers once described Peter Wimsey as a cross between Fred Astaire and Bertie Wooster, and I think that captures the character perfectly -- just the right mix of dashing, erudite and silly. Like all Dorothy Sayers's mystery work, "Unnatural Death" is charming, funny and highly readable. However, the actual mystery here is a little convoluted and the smoking gun a little less evident, which sometimes makes the plot feel like it's wandering. Still, if you're a devoted fan, you'll find all the things you love in these books. The dialogue is always witty and the characters engaging. On the other hand, if this is your first Peter Wimsey experience, I would recommend starting with one of the two earlier books that have more concrete "sleuthin'," as Lord Wimsey would say, to get a feel for the Wimsey style and the little ensemble that make up his circle.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

Dorothy L. Sayers (1893-1957) was a playwright, scholar, and acclaimed author of mysteries, best known for her books starring the gentleman sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey.

Born in Oxford, England, Sayers, whose father was a reverend, grew up in the Bluntisham rectory and won a scholarship to Oxford University where she studied modern languages and worked at the publishing house Blackwell's, which published her first book of poetry in 1916.

Years later, working as an advertising copywriter, Sayers began work on Whose Body?, a mystery novel featuring dapper detective Lord Peter Wimsey. Over the next two decades, Sayers published ten more Wimsey novels and several short stories, crafting a character whose complexity was unusual for the mystery novels of the time.

In 1936, Sayers brought Lord Peter Wimsey to the stage in a production of Busman's Honeymoon, a story which she would publish as a novel the following year. The play was so successful that she gave up mystery writing to focus on the stage, producing a series of religious works culminating in The Man Born to Be King (1941) a radio drama about the life of Jesus.

She also wrote theological essays and criticism during and after World War II, and in 1949 published the first volume of a translation of Dante's Divine Comedy (which she considered to be her best work).

Dorothy Sayers died of a heart attack in 1957.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?