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Murder and Magic: Lord Darcy, Book 1 | [Randall Garrett]

Murder and Magic: Lord Darcy, Book 1

Murder and Magic is a collection of short stories by Randall Garrett featuring his alternate history detective Lord Darcy. First published in 1979, it has been reprinted many times since. The four stories here ("The Eyes Have It", "A Case of Identity", "The Muddle of the Woad", and "A Stretch of the Imagination") are set in an alternate world whose history diverged from our own during the reign of King Richard the Lionheart.
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Publisher's Summary

Murder and Magic is a collection of short stories by Randall Garrett featuring his alternate history detective Lord Darcy. First published in 1979, it has been reprinted many times since. The four stories here ("The Eyes Have It", "A Case of Identity", "The Muddle of the Woad", and "A Stretch of the Imagination") are set in an alternate world whose history diverged from our own during the reign of King Richard the Lionheart.

In a world where a magic-based technology has been developed in place of our own science, Lord Darcy combines his occult skills and brilliant deductions to bring criminals to the King's Justice.

©1979 Randall Garrett (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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3.8 (12 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Robin 01-15-14
    Robin 01-15-14

    Robin

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    37
    3
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    Story
    "Wonderful book, not so wonderful narrator"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    Yes, I would recommend the book, but not the audio version. The narrator has a disconcerting habit of pausing in very inappropriate places in the middle of sentences, which for me completely breaks the flow of the story. It's very jarring and if the book itself were not so well written, I would probably abandon the audio version.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Victor Villar-Hauser’s performances?

    I plan to avoid this narrator at all costs in the future.


    Any additional comments?

    The Lord Darcy books are a great deal of fun, very well written and thoroughly enjoyable. Do yourself a favor and find a print copy to read,

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mary San Antonio, TX, United States 11-06-14
    mary San Antonio, TX, United States 11-06-14 Member Since 2011

    I was a 'readaholic' for most of my life. I started crochet and other hobbies. That took away from my reading time. I discovered audio books at the library. That set me off. now, that I am older my eyes make it too difficult to read. So I now am a very diligent audio book listener!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    315
    43
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Yuck"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    No one I can think of would have enjoyed it due to its type of narration.


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Told the narrator to stop whispering. Gotten him to stop hissing the 'sh', soft 'c' and 's' sounds. I would have had him listen to the parts of the story where he did this. I would have had him listen to the parts of the story where he did a good job and made the story enjoyable.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    I enjoy audible books. When I saw Lord Darcy in audible I saw it as a chance to revisit an old friend. Well I shouldn't have wasted the money. The narrator is awful. I wonder if he was trying to read the book softly. He whispered the entire story. His voice was soft and low. The 'sh', soft 'c', 's' and similiar sounds were hissed at you. Story narration with a need for lowered voice were difficult to understand. At times Victor Villar-Hauser would seem to forget about whispering. He would raise is voice and would become a real narrator. After doing this, he would suddenly remember (or was reminded) that whispering was the desired effect. This is not a story with a need for a lowered voice. It is not a story that indicates a soft voice. I do not know what results the editors were aiming for. Selling this type of audio book was not one of them.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Murder and Magic?

    Cutting scenes was not the problem. This book was written in a different time. I would have given the previous editor a bad reference. I would have used a narrator who could have spoken in a normal voice. Mr Victor Villar-Hauser would have been used on a different audiobooks to determine his job fate.


    Any additional comments?

    Don't waste your money. Listen to samples of audiobooks using Victor Villa-Hauser before purchase.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-2 of 2 results
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  • Zander Nyrond
    UK
    7/31/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I wish I could be more positive"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I love this series of books, and I would have liked to recommend them whole-heartedly, but on the strength of this first volume I would have to add a warning; the performance of the reader is not up to the standard of the writing.


    What other book might you compare Murder and Magic to, and why?

    It would be hard to find a comparison for this blend of alternate-world fantasy and Sherlock Holmes-style whodunnit. Written with wit and affection, the book creates a modern age in which the Plantagenets are still on the throne, a little less technologically sophisticated than we were in the equivalent decade but none the worse for that. I suppose the closest one might come would be some of the works of Diana Wynne Jones.


    What didn’t you like about Victor Villar-Hauser’s performance?

    Oh dear. Where to begin? He seems to have no idea how to pitch and stress a sentence. His pacing is eccentric. He has no idea how to pronounce Anglo-French names; when he rendered "de Lisle" as "de Lizly" I gave up. I don't know if his performance improves on subsequent volumes, but I sincerely hope so. Based on this recording, I could do a better job.


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

    I would have liked to, but in the end I could only take about ten minutes of it at a time.


    Any additional comments?

    I feel terrible about giving such a negative review, but I was so very disappointed at the quality of the reading. I can only hope that some day there will be another version of these books. In the meantime, if you can cope with the reader's idiosyncrasies, these are wonderful stories and the world the author creates is both sharply realised and warmly welcoming.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. Kevin R. Williamson
    Harrow UK
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "memories ....."

    Delighted to see that the series of books I first read over 30 years ago when I found them in Andromeda bookshop in Birmingham are now available on Audible. There are only three books in the series so only a few more to download. I have always remembered these as interesting take on a basic assumption of a changed reality where magic has replaced science. At the time I was interested in forensic science so it was great to read an alternative way of working, and I havent been disappointed when listening to them again now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-2 of 2 results

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