Why did I love this book?
The Three Coffins is legendary among traditional mystery fans for its “locked room” lecture in Chapter Seventeen, in which the detective, Dr. Gideon Fell announces, “We're in a detective story, and we don't fool the reader by pretending we're not. Let's not invent elaborate excuses to drag in a discussion of detective stories. Let's candidly glory in the noblest pursuits possible to characters in a book." He then goes on to enumerate and classify the possible solutions to an impossible crime. What I love about this chapter is that Carr unapologetically defends escapist stories that depend upon style, wit, and an intelligent puzzle, rather than grimly realistic depictions of everyday life.