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Aristotle and Poetic Justice

An Aristotle Detective Novel

Murder and mayhem may seem like unreasonable company for Aristotle, one of the founding minds of Western philosophy. But in the skilled hands of Margaret Doody, the pairing could not be more logical. With her Aristotle Detective novels, Margaret Doody brings a Holmesian hero to the bloodied streets of ancient Greece, trading the pipe and deerstalker of Sherlock for the woolen chiton and sandals of Aristotle. Replete with suspense, historical detail, and humor, and complemented by an ever-growing cast of characters and vivid descriptions of the ancient world, Doody’s mysteries are as much lively takes on the figures and forms of the classics as they are classic whodunits in their own right.

Stephanos and his teacher return in Aristotle and Poetic Justice, when a party given by wealthy Athenian silver miners leads to kidnapping, a ghost, a road trip to Delphi, and, of course, murder. More historical fiction than a detective novel, this sequel runs the gamut of Athenian social customs, myth, politics, and economics—from the trials of virgin love to the dangers of silver lust.


344 pages | 1 map | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 | © 2003



“Idyllic . . . violent . . . Doody’s detective is human, more an avuncular don than a towering genius. But then he is elderly and, as an unfriendly character points out, he is not Plato. . . . [Aristotle and Poetic Justice] offers satisfactory detection, a well-proportioned story, nostalgia for lovers of Greece, and special fun for classicists. It is a bonus that it is so well written.”

Barbara Levick | Times Literary Supplement

“Witty, elegant whodunits.”

Roderick Beaton | Times Literary Supplement

“Eminently enjoyable.”

Colin Dexter | author of the Inspector Morse mysteries

“Why did no one think of this before?”

Times (UK)

“Those mystery readers with an interest in ancient history and philosophy would find this story particularly enjoyable, but the general reader should find it more than satisfying. . . . The tale and the setting evoke a feeling of cleverness and learning. . . . Fun and puzzling while also educating the reader on Aristotle and ancient Athens . . . a good addition to any fiction collection.”

Natalie Kelley-Wilson | Metapsychology Online Reviews

Table of Contents

List of Characters
I           Silver Men and an Heiress
II         The Flower Festival and the Night of the Ghosts
III        Goblins and Disappearances
IV        The Ill-Tempered Man
V         Man in a Landscape
VI        Rural Interludes
VII      Into the Hills
VIII     The Slave’s Tale
IX        Fire and Water
X         Delphi
XI        The Silver Singer
XII      The Brothel at Kirrha
XIII     The Beautiful Girl
XIV     The Hanged Girl
XV      The Elektra of the Cave
XVI     The Oracle of Apollo
XVII   The Murderer
XVIII  Justice and an Abductor
XIX     Silver, Gold and Virtue
XX      Aristotle’s Poetics

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