Serpents in Eden celebrates the rural British mystery by bringing together an eclectic mix of short crime stories written over, very roughly, half a century. Conan Doyle is represented, as are such major figures as G.K. Chesterton and Margery Allingham. Famous in their day were such authors as J.S. Fletcher, R. Austin Freeman, H.C. Bailey, and Anthony Berkeley. M. McDonnell Bodkin and Herbert Jenkins were rather less renowned. At different times, and in different ways, they all explored the possibilities of crime in the countryside in lively fashion, and sometimes with great ingenuity.