Vegetables can be hazardous to your health!
Old Agatha Treadway baked her own bread, canned her own vegetables - and died of botulism in her very own kitchen. Accident, says Dr. Druffitt. Murder, says neighbor Janet Wadman. And says it again when she finds the doctor dead, too. Detective Inspector Madoc Rhys, of the royal Canadian Mounted Police, agrees. But who's the killer...? The town miser, who wants the one thing only Mrs. Treadway could have given him? The miser's son who's panting for the doctor's daughter? Widow Druffitt, who's holding secret meetings with unlikely people? The hired girl who listens at keyholes? The hired man who hides in haylofts? It's an awful mess...and when Rhys gets it sorted out, he faces an even tougher problem of his own.
This is number one in Madoc & Janet Rhys Series.
©1980 Charlotte McLeod (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
trying to see the world with my ears
* very cozy formula: village murder with RCMP inspector teamed with local amateur sleuth on both an investigation and blossoming romance. You can guess easily who the killer is, but that's not the point of the listen! --more of a traditional village cozy than whodunit
* captures the rural anglophone New Brunswick setting well -- although an outsider, I lived there around that period (1980s) and I "recognized' the characters and voice
*good, gentle humour; decent writing, especially the dialogue
* Dufris hits the right notes with all the characters - no over-the-top Canucks, but there is some regional inflection respectfully attempted
*another gift from the publishing world of e- and audiobooks - I hadn't come across MacLeod/Craig before. I look forward to more of her audiobooks. This first of a series has me hooked.
This is a great cozy mystery written in Charlotte MacLeod's gently humerous way. She wrote around three dozen intelligent, funny, carefully crafted mystery novels in her lifetime, in more than one series, and some stand-alones. I have been hoping for years that Audible would get some of them, and they finally have one. I enjoyed it immensely, and I really hope that the rest of this series (Madoc & Janet Rhys series) will be recorded & be made available on Audible, too. William Dufris did a great job as reader!
And please, Audible, try to acquire Charlotte MacLeod's "Sarah Kelling & Max Bittersohn" series. It was recorded by Books On Tape, and read by Mary Peiffer. (I requested them a few years ago, but no luck so far.)
If a book is to be performed rather than read, it's essential to choose a narrator whose voice sounds something like that of the main character. In most cases, the narrator should be the same gender as the protagonist. Mr. Dufris is unable to make Janet sound anything like an sweet young woman. He does better with the male characters.
I have read this book before, so I knew what to expect: a good story, a cozy atmosphere, reasonably gore-free murders, good characters. It's not remotely suspenseful, it's essentially good macaroni and cheese for those days when you yearn for just that. Charlotte MacLeod is always gently funny; this series is set in Canada, in a small community that seems real but not realistic. Other series are different. Her "Grub and Stakers" series is practically slapstick, sometimes silly; her Sarah Kelling series starts darker and gets progressively lighter; the Balaclava series is kind of a mixture of all. This series, with Janet and Madoc, is like those Balaclava ones.
The reader is okay; I would have preferred a woman's voice, given a female protagonist, but he's pretty good, and his pronunciation is fine.
...occasionally broadens her horizons, but generally just wants to be entertained...
To be honest, the first enjoyable point was the Canadian aspect. And the story was quite amusing. Very small town, lots of gossip and distinct characters with distinct personalities. And of course the mountie - who doesn't like mounties??
It was interesting and kept me guessing until the end. A bit distracting was the constant postulating "oh, person x had this motive because of this reason, but this other person could also have done it for that reason" and so on... That distracted a bit, but everything else was fun.
That would be a spoiler, but it has to do with it being a small town and how quickly information travels.
This is a silly question, sorry Audible! I'd rather write about the narration which was quite good and very suitable to the setting, the characters and the story. In no way was I ever consciously aware I was being "narrated at".
guitarplaying photograhic computer geek who has to listen to books
I was looking for something light and diverting and this fit the bill perfectly. It has a kind of whispy innocence to it.
No great surprises in it, but just enough twist so you don't feel cheated.
Have re-discovered "quality time." Evenings listening to good books have replaced mindless tv watching. What a difference!
Maybe. If I'm looking for something extra-lite to listen to.
Possibly a woman. This narrator left me wincing a little with female voices.
Well, depends on what you're looking for. It was not written to be deep (or I assume/hope not.) If you just want something uncomplicated, light, that requires little effort to listen to, this would be it.
Clever series introducing a Royal Canadian Mountie as the detective. The people were the sort of two-dimensional characters that tend to inhabit cozy mysteries. Well-developed, as far as they go, but you always pretty well know the good guys from the baddies :-) I have nothing really negative to say about this. A fairly predictable, lightly humorous mystery, that you could listen to easily while doing other things.
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