The murder is in America, but the call goes out to Scotland Yard superintendent Richard Jury. Accompanied by his aristocratic friend Melrose Plant and by Sergeant Wiggins, Jury arrives in Baltimore, Maryland, home of zealous Orioles fans, mouth-watering crabs, and Edgar Allen Poe. In his efforts to solve the case, Jury rubs elbows with a delicious and suspicious cast of characters, embarking on a trail that leads to a unique tavern called The Horse You Came in On.
©2014 Martha Grimes (P)2014 Simon & Schuster
I read Martha Grimes' Richard Jury books in the past, and I think I was less discerning then. I've been listening my way through the series on and off and getting some pleasure from them. The books are quite light, the characters are fun, if stereotypical English people. This book, however, finished me off. I had noticed that Ms. Grimes doesn't seem to care for women or Americans very much. It's mostly been subtle; there are some beautiful and elusive Englishwomen who she is more or less kind to. Steve West is challenged in portraying women's voices and his American accent is pretty terrible. This book takes place partly in the U.S. and he has a southern American woman character who he does so very, very badly, it is like nails on chalkboard for me. He can't do southern, his women screech and his American accents have that extra flatness that British readers with a tin ear use. I literally could not finish listening (I have it on kindle). And I'm finally tired of Grimes' attitude toward Americans as well. I don't know Ms. Grimes' personal history, but these books definitely feel dated, both in class elitism and in attitude in general. They are not particularly clever or challenging as murder mysteries either, so I guess they would be classified as a cozy read, but not for me anymore. So, no I won't read anymore Martha Grimes and I will avoid Steve West as a reader forever.
Worse for me, because I'm fed up with her attitude, but the books are pretty consistent, so if you like one, you will probably like her others. (Do beware this one, don't say I didn't warn you about the screechy flat southern American woman's accent.
Could not listen.
No, not interesting enough. Her books are more about atmosphere than plot.
I do not understand how this terrible narration got by the producers. Publishers need to understand that the quality of the narration is crucial and take it much more seriously than some seem to.
Yes. Usually they are both excellent.
I enjoyed seeing Americans through British eyes.
this book was like a firecracker that sparkled but never went off.
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