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Death in a White Tie Audiobook

Death in a White Tie

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Publisher's Summary

A body in the back of a taxi begins an elegantly constructed mystery, perhaps the finest of Marsh’s 1930s novels.

The season had begun. Débutantes and chaperones were planning their luncheons, teas, dinners, balls. And the blackmailer was planning his strategies, stalking his next victim.

But Chief Detective Inspector Roderick Alleyn knew that something was up. He had already planted his friend, Lord Robert Gospell, at the scene. But someone else got there first....

©1938 Original Text of 1938 by Ngaio Marsh (P)2015 Hachette Audio

What the Critics Say

"The brilliant Ngaio Marsh ranks with Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers." (Times Literary Supplement)

"Ngaio Marsh’s Death in a White Tie is the best detective story I have ever read..." (Dashiell Hammett)

"[This audiobook has] a distinction that puts the author in the front rank of crime story writers." (Times Literary Supplement)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (82 )
5 star
 (48)
4 star
 (26)
3 star
 (5)
2 star
 (3)
1 star
 (0)
Overall
4.6 (77 )
5 star
 (47)
4 star
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3 star
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2 star
 (1)
1 star
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Story
4.1 (78 )
5 star
 (40)
4 star
 (19)
3 star
 (11)
2 star
 (6)
1 star
 (2)
Performance
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  •  
    David Adams 03-23-16
    David Adams 03-23-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    RATINGS
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    51
    3
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    Story
    "Terrible sound quality ruins the experience"

    Ngaio Marsh and Inspector Alleyn are as reliable as ever in this mystery, and I don't feel much need to review the story itself. If you enjoy Ngaio Marsh novels, include this in your reading, it's a no brainer. Unfortunately this narrator is not so great, and the sound quality of the recording is atrocious, which makes this overall a mixed review.

    First of all, the narrator James Saxon does a good enough job of speaking clearly and getting pauses, inflections, and pronunciations correct. And he does possess the capacity for a wide range of character voices. But he's not disciplined enough in their use to make it a great rading. As noted by others, he is hit and miss about giving the characters distinctive voices consistently, and the accent of one character often bleeds into surrounding prose or even other characters' lines. So, when you have a choice among narrators for a Ngaio Marsh title, I would definitely recommend Nadia May over James Saxon, and Philip Franks did a frankly masterful job on the title he narrated.

    Finally, the recording quality here is downright atrocious. It's not just a matter of some general noisiness common to 90s-era and earlier audiobooks that were recorded or archived on tape. That's annoying, but one gets past it relatively quickly.

    In the case of this book however, chapter by chapter there are variations in volume levels, background hiss, and recording quality. Some chapters sound like a 70s-era cassette recording of a 30s era radio broadcast. Even then, if the quality were consistently bad, it would be one thing, but it jumps around and every time it gets worse, you get more annoyed. This is just plain bad product, and that makes it all the more enraging that Audible is charging a premium price.

    I expect an $18 audiobook to be a new recording, or a really excellent older recording. But this is just terrible, and Audible shouldn't be charging more than five bucks for it.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Ericksen 07-06-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    73
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    218
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    "Glad this has been recorded"

    Great to hear the famous writers writing in that old fashioned "who dunnit" style. Can't be read as a series straight though but periodically between other stories.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katherine 02-29-16
    Katherine 02-29-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
    17
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    268
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    "Very Poor Recording Quality"

    The book was good but the recordings itself was so poor it was hard to enjoy. I had to listen to the entire recording at three-quarter speed in order to distinguish the words. Disappointing.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marie 02-25-16
    Marie 02-25-16 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    933
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    179
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    "One of my favorites; terrible sound in place"

    For me, Ngaio Marsh's early books, where Roderick Alleyn and later Agatha Troy are more involved in the story, not just the investigation, are the best. Alleyn investigates the murder of a close friend and during the case meets Troy again. Their romance is a subdued but satisfying part of the story.

    Normally I enjoy James Saxon's reading but at times his transition between characters was not clear. This made it hard at times to tell who was speaking, especially in scenes between Alleyn and Troy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah BLOOMINGTON, IN, United States 11-23-15
    Sarah BLOOMINGTON, IN, United States 11-23-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
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    168
    11
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    4
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    "Horrible audio quality - totally disappointed"

    I love Ngaio Marsh and couldn't wait to listen to this. However, the narrator sounds like he recorded the audio through a door or something. Scratchy, distant, and muffled. I hope the others aren't like this. The previous books with the same narrator have been great.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DJDecca 11-05-15
    DJDecca 11-05-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
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    50
    43
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    2
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    Story
    "A Waltz With a Side of Murder"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    It's a typically good Ngaio Marsh with plenty of red herrings and an "interlude for romance" between Alleyn and his beloved Troy.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I loved the character of Lord Robert and determination with which Alleyn pursued the murderer.


    What didn’t you like about James Saxon’s performance?

    There wasn't much differentiation between characters and it was sometimes difficult to tell who was speaking. This was hampered by an overall problem with volume levels. From chapter to chapter, and occasionally within chapters, the sound varied to the point where I had to turn the volume up or down at least 4 levels.


    Could you see Death in a White Tie being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    It has already been beautiful done by the BBC as part of the Mystery series. I highly recommend it, especially the wonderful Harold Innocent as Lord Robert.


    Any additional comments?

    A good story but the sound quality made it hard to enjoy. I'd recommend the abridged version featuring Benedict Cumberbatch. You miss some of the characters and plot, but the performance is outstanding.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Leslie Cameron 06-06-17 Member Since 2013
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    11
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent performance and story but poor sound quality"

    John Saxon did a great job of reading this excellent mystery but the quality of sound was disappointing. His voice would be low and then high, and too quick. I actually switched the speed to 0.75 to make it sound more natural. I tried it on both my IPad, IPhone, and through the Bluetooth in my vehicle. The problem was constant. The excellence of his reading and the story kept me listening despite the poor sound.
    For lovers of classic mystery fiction the Inspector Alleyn series are a must-listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert 05-08-17
    Robert 05-08-17 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    33
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    479
    51
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    "Horrid sound, good mystery"

    Wow, the production on the recording is so amateurish. Sound quality jumps from just bad to "talking through cans on a string" bad. I'm returning this one because the sound quality is so bad. I hope it gets cleaned up and if it does I will re-purchase it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sweet D 03-20-17
    Sweet D 03-20-17
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    7
    1
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    Story
    "Audio quality lacking"
    If you could sum up Death in a White Tie in three words, what would they be?

    Classic Ngaio Marsh


    Any additional comments?

    The quality of the recording was not very good. It felt like a conversion from tape to cd to digital. Like it was mono rather than stereo most of the time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Riadasti 11-18-16
    Riadasti 11-18-16
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Different readers, or poor sound quality?"
    Any additional comments?

    It sounded as though there were two different readers for this audiobook, but perhaps the audio was simply poor quality? It was confusing to hear seemingly two different male readers (one with a lower voice, one with a higher voice) portraying the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Arthur
    12/15/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Terrible recording"

    It appeared to be a splicing together of several recordings. The EQ was terrible. I'm places inaudible.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • My Spence
    Surrey, England
    8/8/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent story & performance; poor recording quality"

    This is, to me, one of Ngaio Marsh's best books, and it's read very well. The downside is the very poor quality of the recording, which switches sound levels here and there, to the extent that I find myself wondering if the Bluetooth connection has broken and the sound is suddenly only coming through my iPod speaker. Disappointing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ms. S. Holland
    Wiltshire, England
    3/31/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enjoyable, however..."

    Excellent story from a brilliant writer, only slightly marred by the bad and variable audio quality

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Joanne F.
    4/21/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Dreadful quality recording"

    A great novel for Ngaio Marsh fans. James Saxon reads very well . Very poor quality recording - some parts sound as though they were recorded at the bottom of a well !

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • L. Serck
    Berkshire, England
    2/20/16
    Overall
    Performance
    "Mono quality audio"

    Trying to get refund as this audio is terrible quality. It sounds very tinny and mono.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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