Theatre of Death: A Solution
"But what do you make of the problem?" asked Inspector West. "Well, you say the wife had sparkle, and that she was a bright thing," said Miss Marple, resuming her knitting, "But you know, that doesn't mean she was clever. I remember dear Jane Helier, such a pretty young woman but not clever, these theatrical people are often not, you know. Talented, but easily tricked. As this woman was by her husband, you know."
"We suspect the husband. But who is 'Sandra'? What about the diary? And why did he do it?"
"Well, no woman, even of the stage, would go out to a meeting without taking her handbag. We never leave them, do we? So you see, Inspector, it was not her handbag, but her husband's."
"The ventriloquist?" asked the Inspector, perplexed.
"No, the husband was a drag artist, under the name of 'Sandra'." replied Miss Marple, "That explains the handbag, and also his high-pitched squeaky voice. It was she who was the ventriloquist. That was what I meant about mushrooms and toadstools. You took things the wrong way round. I have not seen many women ventriloquists, so it must have been quite an unusual act - and there is her success story.”
“As for the husband, he was jealous and angry. She was taking his career away from him and, I suspect, about to leave him. Look at all their rows. And stage people are so flighty, I often think. That is the whole sad story. And you see, everything fits together nicely. No loose ends."
Miss Marple paused, and looked anxious, "Now just I moment, while I count this row. I fear I may have dropped a stitch."