Fete Fatale by Robert Barnard was one of the books that I bought when I splurged at Half Price Books during their sale. The cover is deceiving, because it seemed like a 1930s setting, but is set much later. In fact, I'm still not sure of the time period. It appeared to be set in the 1960s judging by some of the references to Mary Quant and other well known personalities popular during that time, but occasionally a reference would be thrown in of the 1980s. The book was originally copyrighted in 1965 and published in Britain as Disposal of the Living and was later published in the U.S. in 1994 which might bring some light as to the later references perhaps peppered in by an editor.
I wasn't surprised to read that Robert Barnard was a fan of Agatha Christie as his book has the delightful typical traits of a cozy mystery. I'll be looking out for more of his mysteries.
From the cover:
When Father Battersby, the Bishop's appointee to the newly vacant post of vicar in Hexton-on-Weir, turns out to be professionally celibate, the town's female population unites to force him out. As the local veterinarian's wife, Helen Kitteredge observes, "It's the women who rule Hexton." A vicar without a wife is unthinkable, and certainly unacceptable.
While the women choose sides as to whether to boycott the new vicar, at a village fete an alarming murder occurs.