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George Cragge: In the Red & Other Mysteries

Length: 11 hrs and 32 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (160 ratings)

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Summary

A collection of four blackly humorous crime mysteries featuring the fictional BBC Radio crime correspondent George Cragge. 

Adapted from the novel by Mark Tavener, In the Red sees the anarchic George Cragge investigate a spree of bizarre murders in the world of City finance, a small political party contesting a by-election, and a plan to overthrow the Director-General of the BBC.

The sequel, In the Balance, features George Cragge kicking off a murder trail during the FIFA World Cup at Wembley Stadium. And with Europe becoming a hot potato, can the Prime Minister hold on to his job? 

In the Chair follows the maverick hack as he looks into a series of murders of dentists linked to New Labour policy.

The final drama, In the End, sees George Cragge investigating a series of murders of journalists.

©2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2018 BBC Worldwide Ltd

What listeners say about George Cragge: In the Red & Other Mysteries

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Prequel to BBC Radio 4's ‘Absolute Power’

Michael Williams (late-husband of Judi Dench) is fantastic, he makes the series’ shine with his portrayal of BBC reporter George Cragge.

Stars many a famous name: Hugh Laurie, Kenneth Cranham, Rebecca Front, Richard Griffiths, Stephen Fry, John Bird, Peter Serafinowicz, Anton Rodgers

- In the Red (1995) 7 episodes
- In the Balance (1997) 6 episodes
- In the Chair (1998) 6 episodes
- In the End (1999) 6 episodes

These stories include Charles Prentiss and Martin McCabe, played by Stephen Fry and John Bird, which in 2000 (-2006) starred in their own spin-off series ‘Absolute Power’ which is also written by Mark Tavener.

** Would suggest not to binge listen in one go as the stories do get rather similar/ formulaic **

11 people found this helpful

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Quite brilliant!

This is excellently written and performed by a great cast. It would be spiffing if audible could obtain both series of Higher Table Lower Orders also by Mark Tavener and equally brilliant! Please audible crack on!

5 people found this helpful

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Not my type of thing

This is probably more of a personal taste thing but I didn't enjoy it. I only managed part way through the second episode before removing from my device. I thought something from the BBC and with such a stellar cast would have been a winner but sadly not. I like murder mystry drama and this is more comedy with a who dunit story with the unfortunate side effect of not caring who did it, why or even if the main character finds them. High score for the cast, I can't fault the performace, the story and characters themselves...sub par.

3 people found this helpful

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Satire with a twist!

Michael Williams is excellent in his role as the modern crusading journalist in the shallow worlds of politics, high finance and media. Much of what is being satirised is relevant today as it was when this series was first broadcasted. The plots and characterisations are strong, helped by an extraordinary supporting cast which not only reads as a Who's Who of British satire of the past 50 years with the likes of John Bird, Rebecca Front, Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry but also stellar actors such as Barry Foster, Tracey-Ann Oberman, Peter Woodthorpe, Jim Carter, Suzie Brand, Stephen Thorne, Benjamin Whitrow and Jeremy Clyde. The series is excellent due to the superb efforts of production teams which include the likes of Scott Cherry and Paul Schlesinger. This is BBC radio at its best, long may it continue!

3 people found this helpful

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Great character comedy

I have listened to these stories many times but the wit and humour coupled with the excellent acting of the many quirky characters make them well worth revisiting. They’re dated now but still stand up and reflect elements of English character which are slowly disappearing. It’s nice to treat everything with gentle irony rather than online righteous indignation. A perfect holiday listen.

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A bit Drab

Long winded and not overly funny. Politicians might find it amusing but it just dragged on.

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A Rather Unlikeable Hero

These were very strong performances in increasingly weaker stories. George Cragge was thoroughly unlikeable though. I sympathised with his editor and with his friend Frank because anyone who told me that they could do my job better than me in that tone of voice would get short shrift. The Labour Party story, while funny, was unnecessary in the final tale. Great to see Charles and Martin from Absolute Power though.

2 people found this helpful

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George Cragge & other mysteries

I found this wonderful to listen too. the characters were spoton the comedy wonderfully British. i have listened to these comedy thrillers several times and find something different to laugh at every time. I sincerely hope more are on the way. the characters soon capture your hearts . i was so disappointed when i finished but found the third or fourth listen still very funny.

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loved this series!

Great characters and well cast. if you're old enough to have been through the new Labour years will be a treat!

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Well written

I love Mark Tavener. His ability to write clever, intelligent relatable prose makes his scripts ageless. I also have Absolute Power, all episodes & High Table, lower orders. I can highly recommend them all.

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  • Gracie Lou Freebush
  • 27-05-19

Totally marvelous!

I picked up this book on a whim; what fun! The actors are great, the premise of a detective journalist is unusual and fun, and the sneaky plays on news commentary are hilarious. Would that there were more dramatized serials such as this, I would buy them in an instant.

1 person found this helpful

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  • TARA
  • 05-12-19

Save your money or credits

The only positive thing I can say about this audiobook is that the performers did well. The four mysteries written by Mark Tavener on the other hand were abdominal. The plot was EXACTLY THE SAME for all four stories.... drunken journalist, who doesn't obey or respect his superiors at work; bumbling cops; serial killers who leave notes behind at all of their killings. Sprinkle in random political and radio broadcasting issues also. The ONLY difference between the four was WHO was killed. The first story was bankers, the second was MPs, an arch bishop and a soccer player, the third were doctors/dentists, the fourth was journalists.... Save your money.... save your 1 credit. Use it on another audiobook. I wish I had...

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  • Jessie
  • 04-10-18

Lovely series!

I felt myself tear up when I realised [SPOILER AHEAD!!!] that George Cragge had died IN THE END. Wish he could have gone on solving crimes forever!