The Killings at Badger's Drift by Caroline Graham
Badger's Drift is the ideal English village, complete with vicar, bumbling local doctor, and kindly spinster with a nice line in homemade cookies. But when the spinster dies suddenly, her best friend kicks up an unseemly fuss, loud enough to attract the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Tom Barnaby. And when Barnaby and his eager-beaver deputy start poking around, they uncover a swamp of ugly scandals and long-suppressed resentments seething below the picture-postcard prettiness. In the grand English tradition of the quietly intelligent copper, Barnaby has both an irresistibly dry sense of humor and a keen insight into what makes people tick. Badger's Drift marks Barnaby's debut.