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Publisher's Summary

Campion's glorious summer in Pontisbright is blighted by death. Amidst the preparations for Minnie and Tonker Cassand's fabulous summer party a murder is discovered and it falls to Campion to unravel the intricate web of motive, suspicion, and deduction with all his imagination and skill.

©1983 Emily Joyce Allingham (P)2013 Audible Ltd

Critic Reviews

"Miss Allingham's strength lies in the power of her characterization" ( New York Times)
"Margery Allingham has worked her way up to a worthy place among the tiny hierarchy of front-rankers in the detective world" ( Tatler)
"Spending an evening with Campion is one of life's pure pleasures" ( Saturday Review)
"Margery Allingham deserves to be rediscovered" (P.D. James)

What listeners say about The Beckoning Lady

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  • Overall
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Truly enjoyed this one.

I am a fan of Ngaio Marsh, and have enjoyed many of the previous Albert Campion books. This one, however, is so very good. So in-depth and entertaining, I listened to it twice.

2 people found this helpful

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OK story with a terrible narrator

This is not Allingham's best - Albert Campion is lost in the middle of Amanda's tumultuous family and hangers-on. The story is convoluted and there are so many characters that are never fully formed. But it is entertaining and inventive. The solution comes a bit from left field, but the ride there is fun.

The narrator, however, does not get a single character correct. Everyone comes across as a dolt, an arrogant prick or so blase that you wonder they take the trouble to breath. This is one of the worst narrations I have listened to with regards to character voices. His pacing, clarity and volume are all fine - interesting since those tend to be bigger problems with other narrators. It was difficult to finish the book.

2 people found this helpful

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Find another narrator

I've read this book before and enjoy the story, but couldn't make it more than 15 minutes with this narrator. He makes Campion sound like a perpetual adolescent, complete with voice breaks and cracks every other sentence. The character must be at least 40 by the time of this story! What's more, the cracking voice was one of the only ways I could tell Campion from many of the female characters. Fun book for fans of Allingham, but find a print copy of another narrator.

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  • heatherlynnemargaretjones
  • 03-07-21

Good Story marred by narrator's characterisations

Diffident ex secret service sleuth Campion is portrayed almost as Bertie Wooster and panther like police hero Charlie Luke as a hapless East End barrow boy solving crimes by dumb luck. A shame because other characters are fine and it's only with these two main characters that the narrator has relied on overly stereotypical or 'stock' 1930s 'types' thus marring but not completely ruining what is essentially a good yarn. One or two non PC notes indicative of the times in which the author was writing also jar in todays world .

2 people found this helpful

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  • Miss
  • 04-11-15

Perfect - Wonderfully crime writer - beautifully read

Full of character and humour - one of Margery Allingham's best.
David Thorpe's characterisation is brilliant. Definitely recommend. The voice of Campion takes a little getting used to - but I think he actually has the voice and character perfect - and his ability to change characters and inflect personality into each one is excellent.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Miss Julie E. Ellis
  • 05-31-17

fantastic

loved it all campion series is so good .brilliantly penned. golden age authors are great

1 person found this helpful

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  • Ms C Higman
  • 04-23-16

Very disappointed

What disappointed you about The Beckoning Lady?

Performance grossly inappropriate to the characters. Highpitched male voices, females reduced to a gloomy drone.

Who was your favorite character and why?

The character of Charlie Luke has a wonderful richness and depth in the book - turned into a squeaky caricature in this performance

Would you be willing to try another one of David Thorpe’s performances?

no

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Beckoning Lady?

I wouldn't cut anything from the story; the book is a marvellous piece of work and one of my all-time favourites. I would cut the narrator.

Any additional comments?

Margery Allingham must be spinning in her grave

1 person found this helpful

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  • Michelle
  • 06-23-13

Midsummer madness in Suffolk

The Beckoning Lady is a beautiful old house in Pontisbright, where Minnie (a painter) and Tonka (an ideas man) are about to host a Midsummer's Night party for everyone they've ever met. In spite of the recent death of Uncle William (an old buffer) and the more disturbing discovery of a week-old corpse in nearby fields. Legend has it the house is always owned by a woman, and men will do anything to possess it. Mr Albert Campion is disturbed and must solve several mysteries before enjoying a party.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Bundoodragon
  • 04-02-21

Very disappointing

I gather this is Allingham's 15th Campion book; she should have given up at 14. This is a mish-mash of confusion, too many characters that add nothing to the plot, back stories unrelated to plot, ridiculous characters and even sillier names. The result is a tedious tangle that left me bored. I struggled to the end but mainly because I fell asleep mid listen losing a couple of hours, thankfully. If you suffer from insomnia this would be a great cure.

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  • A. Moore
  • 03-19-21

Classic crime from a great

Great story in a classic setting. Satisfying plot, interesting characters, beautifully written. Well read. A delight

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  • Tricky Vicky
  • 10-07-20

A relaxing listen

My favourite of all the Campion books. No violence, much dry humour and an abundance of somewhat dotty characters all make for a pleasurable time. Recommended for those who enjoy Christie, Allingham and their ilk. Enjoy!

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  • L
  • 04-06-15

Not one of her best

Definitely worth a listen if you are an Allingham fan but this is not a good example of her work.