Rumpole isn't particularly fond of Christmas; he finds it has a horrible habit of dragging on as he and She Who Must Be Obeyed go through the usual rituals in Froxbury Mansions.
After the exchange of presents (lavender water for her, a tie for him) they settle down to a supermarket turkey with all the trimmings, followed by a glass of port. The only excitement comes in deciding whether to stand for the national anthem after the Queen's Speech.
But at least the criminal fraternity rarely takes a holiday, so over the years Rumpole has found his festive celebrations disturbed in the most welcome ways. Whether it's a Father Christmas who behaves suspiciously at Equity Court's Christmas party, or a high-profile murder trial that comes up at the Bailey just before the holiday season, or a body discovered at the health spa where Rumpole is gloomily trying to survive a not-so-festive Christmas diet of yak's milk and spinach, there's always something wonderfully unlawful to liven up the dull holiday plans.
When Sir John Mortimer died in early 2009, it was widely agreed that Horace Rumpole was his greatest fictional creation. In these seven delightful stories, read by Bill Wallis and collected together for the first time, the great barrister lives on.