No one would ever have guessed that Paulina Paine was deaf, and that her ability to lip-read was astonishing. So the two men who met one day during the showing of a new art exhibition did not realise until too late that the middle-aged tweedy figure sitting out of earshot could understand every word they said. And it had been no ordinary conversation.
In fact, Paulina was so shaken by its implications that she went to see Miss Silver straight away. As the violence escalates, Miss Silver finds herself at a very tense house party where all the guests are linked in some way to Paulina. And one of them is a killer…
©1957 Patricia Wentworth (P)2011 Isis Publishing Ltd
If you like the great British classic queens of mystery (Christie, Marsh, Sayers), you'll like Wentworth. Her books are as much novels of manners as they are mysteries. Although some are written as late as the 1960's, her mind set is in the post-war, post-Victorian Britain. This is a clever, intricate plot involving spies and fraud. Wentworth's domestic mysteries have a more authentic ring, but I find this and her other spy/big crime stories all the more refreshing because of the essentially innocent mind-set producing them. The bitterness, irony, and ambivalence of John Le Carre are nowhere to be found in Wentworth. Wentworth is an excellent wordsmith; witty, observant, utterly satisfying to listen to. The narrator is perfect. Thank you, Audible for making these great classic mysteries available in audio!
This book is a good old fashioned mystery. Some might think it's simple (no CSI or forensics), but its a nice alternative when you don't want to think too hard about the "investigation". Just enjoy a house full of people who all want to kill the victim.
Patricia Wentworth has a knack of making her books eminently readable and listenable and entertaining to the end. Whilst her main character through the books, Miss Maud Silver, plays an integral role in the books, she does not dominate them. Patricia uses her main character as the catalist from which the other characters find their way to the truth. This makes all the books very individual as all the "main" characters for each is different.
Patricia has the skill of being able to sway the reader or listener to like or dislike the character under surveillance as the guilt or innocence evolves and the true distinctive qualities are gradually revealed. Makes the books hard to put down.
I would recommend this series to everyone who enjoys a good mystery, particularly those based in the past.
I look forward to Audible to obtaining the rest of the series so that I can listen to more ...!
Love having someone read me a story. Fires in the hearth, rain on the roof, sunny days and surf. Good friends, good food and J S Bach.
Diana Bishop is OK as reader. Not 'Good' but passable.
Having downloaded a couple of the Miss S series, I find them actually much more enjoyable than a well known contempory. Christie's Miss M. True.
One of the great things about these older mysteries is the lack of blood soaked graphics. Murder is murder after all. So a diamond heist, a bus fatality and country house parties with the odd inspired painter and a femme fatale and her lovers is just the setting for some serious skulduggery. Add a little of the lighter side of 'heart cockle warming' and you have a good few hours of engaging listening.
I record audiobooks for Librivox.
This book is like most Patricia Wentworth books. Calming and cozy without a startling ending. This ending was pretty easy to figure out but nevertheless I Iiked it. There was an interesting subplot about one of the characters nude photos which I imagine was terribly shocking for the 50's. Of course it is dealt with in a very careful way because Patricia Wentworth is even more old fashioned than Christie.
I'd like to try another book by Patricia Wentworth. This one was a bit slow and I found myself thinking about other things as I listened to the story.
She could have put more emphasis on character development.
No, the narration was slower
This is a well plotted mystery. However, this book seemed to drag a bit in comparison to some of the contemporary writers I enjoy.
Narrator Diana Bishop has excellent diction. However, there was a quality to her voice that irritated me slightly.
The characters didn't "come to life" for me. They were described well by the author, but they never seemed very real to me.
Perhaps it was just this particular book that didn't work for me. I may try an earlier book in the series to see if that appeals to me.
"sparkling Miss Silver"
On the face of it, Patricia Wentworth's Miss Silver has much in common with better known Miss Marple - but what is it taht makes her so much more satisfying ? Both unassuming little old ladies whose cosy chat and bags of knitting hide a razor sharp mind. Perhaps because Miss Silver makes her living as a detective, she's more professional, she demands our respect more than vague Miss Marple - and certainly she has the respect and an admirable working relationship with Scotland Yard. Perhaps also because Miss Silver lives in a more diverse world - yes there's the millionnaire with priceless diamonds, but also the landlady of a boarding house, the security guard at an art gallery, the victim's aunt who comes on the bus to comfort her nephew's (supposed) grieving girlfriend. Plus there's a charming old fashioned love story to add warmth to the brilliant twists and turns of the fast paced plot.
"Miss Silver solves another"
As entertaining as usual Miss Silver stories, but this one is slightly more unpredictable than some of the others as to who actually done it. An excellent book to get if you enjoy Miss Silver mysteries.
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