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Summary

In the dead of the night, a man is found murdered, locked in the stocks on the village green. Unfortunately for Superintendent Hannasyde, the deceased is Andrew Vereker, a man hated by nearly everyone, especially his odd and unhelpful family members. The Verekers are as eccentric as they are corrupt, and it will take all Hannasyde's skill at detection to determine who's telling the truth, and who is pointing him in the wrong direction.

The question is: who in this family is clever enough to get away with murder?

©1935 Georgette Rougier (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

Critic reviews

"Death in the Stocks is that rare and refreshing thing – a clever problem stated, developed and finally solved in terms of character." ( The Times)
"Miss Heyer's characters act and speak with an ease and conviction that is refreshing as it is rare in the ordinary mystery novel." ( The Times Literary Supplement)
"Rarely have we seen humour and mystery so perfectly blended." ( The New York Times)

What listeners say about Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Disapointing

What did you like best about Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1? What did you like least?

This is my favourite Heyer. Its fun and fast, a great read BUT the narration is just not up to the job.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1?

What I find amusing is the running theme of the hated half brother and give us the dosh! it is handled very well and most amusing.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

in this book I found Ulli trying too hard to be too upper class. For me it did not work a, after a while all the voices seemed to be the same. This is the third Heyer mystery from this narrator and I have enjoyed the other two but this one did not gel for me.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Most very definitely

Any additional comments?

Would have liked to hear this by Sian Phillips who, for me, always made the regency romances such fun. That is what is lacking I think. The sense of mischief and fun that runs through the book despite the deaths.

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

More for Christie fans than Heyer

Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1 by Georgette Heyer. 2/5 story. Narrator Ulli Birvé 5/5. It's a detective novel and the plot's fine, in fact if you like Poirot, this maybe a good one for you. However, apart from the detectives (who aren't actually in this one very much) and the hero, who is OK, I didn't really like anyone very much. Some of this is due to differing social ideas between when the book was written and now but all the wit, humor and that great sense of timing which most fans love about Heyers' writing, has been left out. Ulli Birves' performance is brilliant for all the reasons I raved about in my review of the 4th book in this series. I haven't read it yet but book 3 in this series has had good reviews while I've read book 4 and it's a gem. For most Heyer fans, there's nothing you really need here. Skip ahead, unless you are a Christie fan,or prefer detective stories to Heyers' more popular regency romances, in which case I'd actually recommend you give it a try.

7 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Didn't enjoy the narration!!

What would have made Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1 better?

A different narrator.

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The story itself seemed to be quite good..

Any additional comments?

I found the narration completely distracted from the actual story. The tones used made the characters utterly unenjoyable. Since purchasing this audiobook I've tried another Georgette Heyer book by the same narrator called Envious Casca. This was even worse, practically cringeworthy, but I returned it so can't leave a review. I might try the actual paper books as the stories don't seem too bad. This is just my opinion, someone else might really enjoy it.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great story - poor narration

If this book wasn’t for you, who do you think might enjoy it more?

Only someone for whom English is not their first language would be able to put up with the stilted narration, they might benefit from hearing every word carefully annunciated, but I don't like it at all.

What did you like best about this story?

I love the main character and the bohemian lifestyle she and her brother live - beautifully confident and carefree and lavish with champagne!!

How could the performance have been better?

There is no character in the performance, none of the light-hearted approach required for Georgette Heyer's detective books comes across - very disappointing. It is as if the narrator is reading to someone very hard of hearing.

What character would you cut from Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1?

No-one, I think they are all interesting

Any additional comments?

I bought this audiobook against my better judgement (I'd been disappointed with Ulli Berve's performance before), but I like the book so much I try to persevere with it as having it for company while I'm cooking dinner is just fractionally better than silence.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Georgette Heyer - an excellent mystery

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, Georgette Heyer writes intellegent and amusing mystery novels usually of the 'English Country House' type. Her books are well worth reading and to have an unabridged spoken word version, despite the limitations of the reader, is a bonus. This is one of the best of her murder mysteries.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No. I always listen over a period of days in 2-3 hour sessions.

Any additional comments?

It is great to have this as an abridged reading and so well worth having. However its Australian source does cause problems for some0ne from England. Ulli Birve copes reasonably well with the middle/upper class accents, but gets into trouble with the lower classes who have an assortment of Australian accents. She also has problems with mis-pronouncing some words which obviously she is not familiar with. Having said, it does not spoil my enjoyment too much and I do prefer the female voice for readings as they are better at charactorisation

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Great story!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. Georgette Heyer always manages to portray characters with plenty of character. There are lots of these in this story, with plenty of laugh out loud moments. I have had this book for years, so it's nice to have it as an audiobook

Who was your favorite character and why?

Giles Carrington ;-) who better than the lead hero who helps the police crack the mystery?

What three words best describe Ulli Birvé’s performance?

Slow. Weirdly Australian.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes

Any additional comments?

Not sure why the narrator seems to give all 'regional' characters an Australian accent.... weird.

2 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Dreadful!

Worst narrated book I have ever heard. I had read the reviews but often find I disagree with them,so thought it was worth a shot. This book could be witty and charming instead it is so ponderously read that any and all lightness of narrative and plot is beaten out of it, nearly every vowel is strangulated and the accent is just plain weird.It is painful and infuriating to listen to, a dreadful waste of money and beyond me how it ever got accepted by Audible let alone how the entire range of Georgette Heyer detective fiction is seemingly only available in this butchered form.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Shocking narration

I would have loved this book if it were not for the narrator. Her slow drawl was so tedious and boring. The story had legs so I listened to the end wishing I could fast forward but afraid to miss clues. Sadly I will not be purchasing more Georgette Heyer novels unless I can find them read by somebody else.

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Narration did not help this story for me

I have always enjoyed Georgette Heyer's mysteries in book form, but the stilted rendition, and monotone posh voices took away from the story

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Story

I enjoyed this and eventually got used to Ulli Birve’s narration. The story was a cracker and I didn’t guess until right near the end who the culprit was. Great vintage crime.

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Profile Image for Carl P. Beetz
  • Carl P. Beetz
  • 12-03-16

My Favorite

This is my favorite of the G. Heyer mysteries.

I really enjoy the reader although she mispronounces some words. Her voice characterizations are distinctive and her impression of the female lead is memorable.

The story is a good one but the best parts are the gatherings where several characters trade comments. In a film this might have been done with several people speaking at once but for a book, which is necessarily linear, the author gives a good impression of an active conversation.

As with most of her mysteries, G. Heyer's culprit is not difficult to spot for mystery fans. However, her writing and sense of scene make all of these books worth listening to and worth reading.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-12-14

The Wrong Narrator

Would you try another book from Georgette Heyer and/or Ulli Birvé?

I've heard THE UNFINISHED CLUE with a different reader, and it was literally laugh-out-loud funny.

Would you ever listen to anything by Georgette Heyer again?

Yes, with a different reader.

How could the performance have been better?

Georgette Heyer is known for lightness and wit---the reader, Ulli Birve, spoke far too slowly and without a sense of humor.

18 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Glenda
  • 06-01-15

Hated it, loved it

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would recommend this to anyone who knows the British culture

What other book might you compare Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1 to and why?

I don't know of a comparison.

Which character – as performed by Ulli Birvé – was your favorite?

The performances by Ulli Birve were all exceptional! Every character was done extremely well!!!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I started off hating all but one of the characters so I thought I would hate the book but the performance was so well done it kept me interested. Before too long I was hooked.

Any additional comments?

It helps that I lived in England for several years or the characters would never have become endearing. I think people that don't know the Brits may not easily see the subtle traits that slowly allows the reader to get past the initial obnoxious appearance of the characters.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Sharon sue
  • 09-10-18

Death in the stocks

I've read this book many times over several decades. One of my favorites so decided to get the audio book.
This is one of the worst I have ever listened to. The narrator was horrible! It changed the whole atmosphere of the book.
Dull, slow, no humor at all. I want to return it to oblivion! A waste of my credit. I'll not listen to it again.
If you love georgette heyer don't waste your time or money on this narration!

4 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • K. M. Wright
  • 23-06-15

Disappointing

The characters were mostly unsympathetic but sadly it was the narration that I found excruciating. It seemed as if she was sometimes working so hard on a particular voice that she was struggling with the pronunciation.

I should have "returned" the book but was traveling and just needed something to listen to at night.
Disappointed.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Catherine M.
  • 14-12-14

Good Book, Poor Narration

What did you like best about Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1? What did you like least?

Heyer's detective fiction, like her romances, are long on humor and character. If you're looking for complex plotting and procedural details, look elsewhere, but if you're in the mood for some fun, this book will fit the bill.

Unfortunately, the narration just ruined the book for me. Way too slow (I ended up speeding it up to 1.25, which helped), and I think that the narrator really did not understand who the characters were, and how to properly interpret and perform the lines. The accents also seemed off.

9 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • M. R. James
  • 20-04-17

Ulli Birve makes Georgette Heyer even better!

My grandmother gave me my first Georgette Heyer when I was 12 and I have never stopped reading and rereading them since. Tremendously amusing mysteries, when read on paper, but Ulli Birve's narrations have brought even more humor to light than I ever got from the pages!

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Steven L. Wilson
  • 31-03-15

One of the better readers

I've had the pleasure of listening to. Seeing that Ms. Breve is the reader, particularly of fiction, would be a significant factor favor of purchasing said book. Her interpretation of Roger was so distinctive, amusing though exasperating it made me smile whenever he appeared.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Drwo
  • 02-06-17

Great Classic Mystery

Turn up the narration speed or it's like slogging through molasses. It has dry English wit and compelling characters. M

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Denise Vilim
  • 11-01-21

Great story!

But I always wonder why Heyer mostly wrote romances when she was so gifted at writing mysteries.