It's no ordinary morning at the Poplars - the master is found dead in his bed, and it seems his high blood pressure was not the cause. When an autopsy reveals a sinister poison, it's up to the quietly resourceful Inspector Hannasyde to catch the murderer in time to spare the next victim. But every single member of the quarrelsome Matthews family has a motive and none, of course, has an alibi.
©1936 Copyright © Georgette Rougier (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing
"The wittiest of detective writers." (The Daily Mail)
"Reading Georgette Heyer is the next best thing to reading Jane Austen." (Publishers Weekly)
"Georgette Heyer is second to none in her ability to make detective stories entertaining." (The Sunday Times)
I have heard all Miss Heyer's mysteries in the past, usually read by Clifford Norgate who does a wonderful job in drawing out the humour in her stories, so it was with some trepidation that I downloaded this version from Bolinda, read by Ulli Birve. However after a slightly slow start she got well into the part and my enjoyment of this old favourite was untarnished.
All Georgette Heyer detective Novels are an excellent easy read in an old world setting - amusingly written and highly enjoyable. The reader has an excellent voice but at times speaks so slowly you are almost listening to it a word at a time - like someone reading out slowly and clearly an unfamiliar statement with no intonation at all and then alternating with somewhat strange characterisation and pronunciation. I continued as I like the stories so much - but it is sometimes distracting and spoils the story a bit. I will possibly continue with the rest of the stories - so I guess not terrible - but could definitely be read with a lot more emphasis on character and expression and a bit of enthusiasm.
Not at the top, but not the worst. Lower half, but still worth it and an improvement on Book 1 in this series, I think.
I didn't have a favourite character, to be honest I haven't found any of the characters particularly likeable in this series, by Hannayside seems a decent chap! And I can imagine that Randal in the flesh would have what Agatha Christie called 'It' and 'SA'!!
Having not really enjoyed the first of this series (Death in the Stocks), chiefly because of the narration, I'm not really sure why I bought this book, but was pleasantly surprised. There are not so many long pauses between characters speaking and 'she said', or 'he said', which nearly drove me mad in the first book, and the general flow is much better. In fact, it didn't detract from the enjoyment of the book, which is not a showstopper, but I found it satisfying. I guessed the murderer pretty early (which is a shame!) and it seems that these books follow a pattern - a houseful of objectionable upper-middle class people who can't stand each other or anyone else, a failed engagement only to be followed by a marriage between family members, but at least a murder revealed. I have already bought the next book in the series.
I honestly cannot remember reading a quite simple, but quite complicated whodunnit since Agatha Christie. But less sober and more 'characters'! I stayed up waaaay beyond my bedtime time to find out the guilty party! I was astounded! Not bowled over, just bemused at how 'easy' it was to achieve, but almost impossible to detect! 10/10!
"Great Heyer mystery unfortunately ruined by reader"
The good news is Georgette Heyer mysteries have been updated. The bad news is they are all read by the same reader & she isn't very good -- she reads so slowly I lost interest in the story.
Enjoyed the story, great twist at the end.
Enjoyed Georgette Heyer's The Grand Sophie & wished the reader had been used for Heyer's mysteries also.
"Between Heyer's Deft Characterizations"
And Ulli Berve's skillful narration this is an outstanding example of a genre that flourished in the heyday/golden age of the English murder mystery. Although Agatha Christie was the better known and best selling practitioner of this type of book I find ther is more depth and nuance in characterization in Heyer's works whereas Christie manipulates card board cut outs through her admittedly ingenious plots? Highly recommended for what is, an adept version of a type of mystery so frequently written in the day it virtually qualified as a cottage industry. The narrator is the icing on the cakes at the cream teas.
"Hard row to hoe"
As much as I generally enjoy Georgette Heyer, this book was extremely difficult to listen to without throwing it through a window. The only one of the characters in the least likable was the inspector. Never have I wanted an entire cast to be guilty.......until now.
"What a twist"
While I am enjoying this series of mysteries, I wasn't sure about this one from a previous review by a fellow Audible listener. Apparently they weren't all that trilled with the cast of characters. My first thought was, well that's just typical British mystery casting. Now I'm sure, and glad I did. The twisted sister plot was well worth it.
I disliked every character in the book
Not written it
Performer did a good job. She just did not have a decent story to work with.
Will never waste my time or money on another book from this author.
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