Tuesday 7 July 2009

Mysterious Castles

Castles feature rather more in children’s mystery stories than in adult crime novels, I think – The Castle of Adventure, by Enid Blyton, is a book I loved in the early years before I was introduced to Agatha Christie.

Visiting Lindisfarne Castle on Holy Island reminded me of what intriguing and eerie places castles can be. In recent weeks, I’ve wandered round Flint Castle, on the North Wales seafront, and Richmond Castle, in Yorkshire, which is certainly impressive. But for setting as well as style, Lindisfarne Castle is very hard to beat.

It was never a castle that saw serious combat, and Edward Lutyens transformed the interior for the pleasure of a rich Edwardian owner. The equally renowned Gertrude Jekyll created a lovely walled garden a short walk from the rocky outcrop on which the castle stands. Nowadays, the castle is in the very safe hands of the National Trust, and in the sunshine, it all looked gorgeous. Though it crossed my mind that the upturned boat sheds and the disused lime kilns (both pictured) would be excellent places to stash an inconvenient corpse or two.

Such reflections left me wondering just how many crime novels have been set in castles. None instantly spring to mind, but I’m sure I must have overlooked quite a few.


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I can't think of any mysteries set in castles, either. Surely there must be a couple, though.

Again, great pics. I love the one on the top best.

Mystery Writing is Murder

David Cranmer said...

Great pics. Castles never disappoint in person. I've been to a couple myself and I always think the same thing: they must have been as cold as heck to live in.

crimeficreader said...

"...would be excellent places to stash an inconvenient corpse or two."

Loved that line! Made me smile.

Martin Edwards said...

Thanks for these comments - glad you like the photos!

gryphondear said...

Elizabeth Peters placed Borrower of the Night, one of her Vicky Bliss series, in Schoss Drachenstein, which is a castle transformed into a hotel. I belive others in that series also take place in castles.


Shaylen Maxwell said...

Agreed, great pictures!! : )

Martin Edwards said...

Hi Shayleen. Thanks - and great to hear from you.