• Death and the Burlesque Maiden

  • By: Imogen Church
  • Narrated by: Imogen Church
  • Length: 12 hrs and 47 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (86 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When one of Nora Bunstruggle’s friends is murdered in cold blood, it sends the Coochie Hole burlesque club on Megalopolis into shock.

It soon becomes clear that the police have zero interest in the death of a burlesque dancer. But what if the twisted killer strikes their troupe again? And who is going to exact justice for the victim’s now motherless child?

Nora and the gang from the Coochie Hole realise that if they want to get to catch their faceless murderous foe, they are going to have to roll their sleeves up and kick some backsides themselves.

They must use all their collective skills if they are going to catch the killer and avenge Sue’s death. But what they discover one night in a dark dank basement will shock them to the core....

©2021 Imogen Church (P)2021 Audible, Ltd

What listeners say about Death and the Burlesque Maiden

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  • MJ
  • 02-28-21

Great story and superb narration

What do you get when you combine suspense, wit, social injustice, and a little bit of gore? You get Death and the Burlesque Maiden. Though dark topics of murder and social-class prejudice, Church tells the tale with just the right amount of humor in just the right places. I laughed out loud at the clever euphemisms for body parts, sexual acts, and bodily functions. I’ve added many of these to my repertoire of go-to expressions and plan to use them frequently!

The characters are rich and endearing. Church accomplishes this through her writing and superb narration. She is one of the best narrators (if not THE BEST) I’ve listened to in my 13-year Audible membership. Church does more than read to you. She is a performer and brings each character to life by creating a voice and persona for each. (CAUTION: Once you listen to a book narrated by Imogen Church, all other narrators will pale. You will find yourself searching for books narrated by her and not by genre or author!)

Top all of this off with a surprise ending and you have an excellent audiobook, which will make you angry, concerned, and delighted. I look forward to more books written and performed by Imogen Church.

8 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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What a perfect book.

I became an instant fan of Imogen Church the moment I listened to a book she had narrated, many years ago. I don’t think there’s a story out there that I would want someone else to narrate, I wish she narrated every single one of them. I also love when a book is narrated (well) by the author, so I was super excited to read this. Even with all that enthusiasm, it exceeded my expectations and surprised me in the best way. She creates a whole world that is so unique and timeless, but also somehow very current. A perfect feminist story for 2021, and we deserve it. Go read it right now.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Dark, Thrilling, Hilarious and Sweet!

Every syllable of this work is perfect! The mind of Imogen Church is phenomenal! This is a compelling and ultra descriptive story of murder, mayhem, love and family. With every sexual euphemism ever imagined peppered throughout. This book gave me nightmares, brought a tear or two and made me blow my coffee through my nose! Hilariously awesome. You will 100% enjoy!!

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Delicious! Depraved! The best book of 2021

Ladies and gentlemen—and everyone of indeterminate feelings and genitalia—please put your grubby mitts together, for our very own delicate glass unicorn; the picture of literary perfection, hilarity, and grace; the eternally exquisite:

DEATH AND THE BURLESQUE MAIDEN!

I’ve spent the last week of my life falling madly in love with… laughing hysterically at… unable to get any work done thanks to… this phenomenal book. If I were to erect (pun enthusiastically intended) my own cabal of formidable Harpies, my BOO would include:

Clem, alias Miss Twinkle Buns. Skills: fighting; dancing; farting on demand; looking like she can’t and never would do two of those things; great with mechanicals. Clem is a fighter. A survivor. She's got the legs AND the jaw for the part.

Nora, alias Mutiny Belle. Poet-cum-revolutionary. Previous experience includes inciting a rebellion, masterminding a mass escape from an asylum followed by political pressure-pointing until said asylum was closed down, etc. Big, bold, beautiful. A reminder that public servants can sometimes have the most ferocious hearts beating beneath the tweed.

Lil, alias Slutty Nutcracker. Skills: Trumpet; accents; acting; conning people for ultimately good reasons; Academy-Award-worthy performances of Chastity Rockbottom, Bernice Bones, et al. A total badass who loves sex and won't apologize for it.

And last but CERTAINLY not least: Imogen, alias Not-That-Kind-of-Church Lady. Skills: 5-star audiobook narration; feminist genius; razor-sharp wit; unsung hero of macabre theme songs; looks great in sparkles; debut author of the never-before-seen hybrid of thriller, noir, mystery, comedy, and parody (they call it burlesque for a reason, folks). In sum: she wrote the best book of 2021.

Meanwhile, some narration.

DatBM has something for everyone. Fierce, feminist, queer female leads who have brains, beauty, AND crystal nipple tassels? Holy Eleanor Roosevelt, yes! A heart-pounding mystery with a sinister villain who is the evil, ulcer-oozing embodiment of the twisted patriarchy? Thank Wollstonecraft! Utterly hilarious burlesque routines punctuated by trumpeting farts that will make you laugh out loud when listening with earbuds at 1am, thereby awaking your poor innocent partner sleeping beside you? ABSO-VAGINA-TRUMPET-LUTELY.

And at its warm and gentle heart: a chosen family whose love is so strong, so powerful, it restored my hope in humanity. One moment I’d be laughing; the next, tears were welling up from some deep place inside me. This is a story about sisterhood; about how even when the whole world is pitted against you, if you join forces with your sisters you can fight evil, fight misogyny, fight racism, ableism, murderism. Add to all this a light sprinkling of gore (pinkie sized), some truly unforgettable side characters (if I die, please don’t ring Reginald Spam), and a naughtily cheeky unreliable narrator (I call her Nookie von Sweet Mics), and you'll begin to see the charm. Gather round, punters: the Coochie Hole doth provideth!

I am so grateful that this story, these characters, this spellbinding narrative exists. I felt kinder after reading it, more open, more in love with the world. What a tremendous gift. Imogen Church, who has lent her voice to so many of our favorite stories, has now done us one better: lent us her voice AND her endless imagination, dazzling mind, and wise and witty soul to spin the best yarn yet.

For the love of Amelia Earhart, head on over to 12 Rumpus Street and let your greedy ears slurp up this delicious, depraved, delectable book.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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A little too dramatic

I usually do like Imogen as a narrator, but she was too dramatic for me.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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More, thank you!

She is brilliant at narration and equally as good a writer! I want more please!

1 person found this helpful

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THIS IS DELICIOUS

This is delicious. I wish I could eat it. Witty, endearing and cool. Unexpected twists over and under a belly of what I thought was my feminism. (It goes far and beyond the Bechdel test) But it doesn’t rely on a choir of borrowed notions of woman. This book is freshly character born that it’s about humanity and the horrors that come along with it. I’ve never in my life hung out with burlesque dancers but I found myself wanting to snuggle up to them. Imogen is a brilliant narrator. The muscularity and talent of her voice create an atmosphere, that you want to sink your teeth into her world. The delicate nuances she brings to characters feel lived and heartfelt. I felt like I knew what characters wore and what they looked at when they spoke. Of course it’s the combination of Imogen’s writing as well. Which is smart and concise. Imogen writes just enough to make you think you are clever and then challenges you with an internal question. And when I thought I wasn’t safe she breaks the wall with adroit asides. Oh, and there's a butterfly dance number that rocked my world. It's written exquisitely. Imogen's writing and voice feel like a coming together of passion and rigor. I felt like I was in the hands of an artist.

1 person found this helpful

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Feel Good thriller

I loved this story. It’s a light, funny, mystery/thriller with great characters (I haven’t decided who is my favorite yet, I love them all!). I’m not sure if it’s “the times” or what, but this story just hit me the right way. I don’t want to spoil anything, and won’t, but I found it so genius what she did with the narrator (if you know, you know). Well worth a credit, hell, I’d happily pay full price!

It should go without saying that Imogen Church slayed the narration, as always. She is fantastic. Enthusiastic, energetic, different accents, tone, cadences for each character. Yes, all around!

1 person found this helpful

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Burlesque Masterpiece!

The critically acclaimed narrator Imogen Church tries her hand at authorship to a resounding success! Set in the world of burlesque, an atmosphere Ms. Church is intimately familiar with, Death and the Burlesque Maiden is a smart, humorous and well written mystery, filled with twists, turns and snarky comments from the brilliant narrator, Ms. Church herself! She leaves the door open for the next book and I’m here for it!!

1 person found this helpful

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One of the BEST books I’ve ever listened too.

The humor, the banter, the descriptions of damn near everything. I could just eat this up!! Absolutely magnificent piece of work from start to finish. Bonus: Imogen is the best narrator in the biz!!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mrs T A Herbert
  • 03-22-21

What a performance!

The reader (author too I gather) carried this - might not have read it off the page I suspect

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • AH
  • 02-23-21

a MUST listen

You'll laugh. You'll cry. You'll snort milk out of your nose when you least expect it. Even if you're not drinking milk at the time. This book is wonderfully weird like that.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jollyj68
  • 03-31-21

Delightfully bonkers and unusual

I came to this book via Katherine Ryan's podcast - and I am so glad I did. I love a good old fashioned whodunnit crime story. I also love me a dystopian future novel, and this book consummately ticks both boxes in a refreshing fashion. Better yet, though, it is delightfully left field and has multiple sub-themes, including feminism, societal class strata, selfish politicians and police, even Brexit is clearly present, although comtextually disguised. Narrated with panache by the author, it is very engaging and there is never a dull moment.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anon
  • 03-04-21

Genius!

Gripping plot. Masterful multi-character narration. And a laugh-out-loud, hilarious dissection of audiobook tropes; the 'narrator' character was a genius touch. Fresh, lively, brilliant.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Ellen Torfs
  • 02-22-21

Absolutely original!

Loved every minute of it. All the characters are well-rounded, and the plot made me laugh, cry and gasp. Best book I’ve read (listened too) in a long time.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-22-21

Absolutely wonderful!

Best book I've heard in ages! So good! Totally hilarious and deeply moving at the same time. The narration is outstanding...if only all books were read as well! Cannot praise this book enough!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Lydia Ashby-Pickford
  • 02-20-21

Who can resist mysteries of the Coochie?!

Like everyone else in the world it seems I am in love with the many voices of Imogen Church. I love a book like this where there a numerous characters all with their own easily distinguishable voices and personalities, even though they’ve come from the same mouth?! Beyond talented.
This is so much more than a book for women it’s a book for the times and I as a man myself recommend it wholeheartedly to all the genders!!
If you’re a fan of fabulous Scantily clad women, murder and the insides of Imogen’s brains then you won’t be disappointed. Most of all it’ll make you laugh... out loud... repeatedly!!

2 people found this helpful

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  • K. T. Kriescher
  • 02-21-21

Burlesque maidens madness

A thoroughly good book, an entertaining listen from start to finish. The narator veering off on Occasion was a little annoying. But overall very well read, acted and presented. Completely original murder mystery that will have you flummoxed till the end. Look forward to Imogen Church's next book

1 person found this helpful

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  • gill
  • 02-17-21

So different. loved it!

One of those books that stays with you making you wish it hadn't ended. Amazing.

1 person found this helpful

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  • MS HR COOPER
  • 06-18-22

Such fun!

A very exciting, funny and yet dark Murder mystery. wonderfully written and acted by imogen church.