In the dead of the night, a man is found murdered, locked in the stocks on the village green. Unfortunately for Superintendent Hannasyde, the deceased is Andrew Vereker, a man hated by nearly everyone, especially his odd and unhelpful family members. The Verekers are as eccentric as they are corrupt, and it will take all Hannasyde's skill at detection to determine who's telling the truth, and who is pointing him in the wrong direction.
The question is: who in this family is clever enough to get away with murder?
©1935 Georgette Rougier (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd
"Death in the Stocks is that rare and refreshing thing – a clever problem stated, developed and finally solved in terms of character." (The Times)
"Miss Heyer's characters act and speak with an ease and conviction that is refreshing as it is rare in the ordinary mystery novel." (The Times Literary Supplement)
"Rarely have we seen humour and mystery so perfectly blended." (The New York Times)
I thought Heyer wrote historical romance but this was a sort of agatha-chritiesque who dunnit. Very dry eccentric British aristocrats, the Inspector wasn't a very exciting character but that didn't matter. The narrator was excellent.
"Hated it, loved it"
I would recommend this to anyone who knows the British culture
I don't know of a comparison.
The performances by Ulli Birve were all exceptional! Every character was done extremely well!!!
I started off hating all but one of the characters so I thought I would hate the book but the performance was so well done it kept me interested. Before too long I was hooked.
It helps that I lived in England for several years or the characters would never have become endearing. I think people that don't know the Brits may not easily see the subtle traits that slowly allows the reader to get past the initial obnoxious appearance of the characters.
"The Wrong Narrator"
I've heard THE UNFINISHED CLUE with a different reader, and it was literally laugh-out-loud funny.
Yes, with a different reader.
Georgette Heyer is known for lightness and wit---the reader, Ulli Birve, spoke far too slowly and without a sense of humor.
"Good Book, Poor Narration"
Heyer's detective fiction, like her romances, are long on humor and character. If you're looking for complex plotting and procedural details, look elsewhere, but if you're in the mood for some fun, this book will fit the bill.
Unfortunately, the narration just ruined the book for me. Way too slow (I ended up speeding it up to 1.25, which helped), and I think that the narrator really did not understand who the characters were, and how to properly interpret and perform the lines. The accents also seemed off.
The characters were mostly unsympathetic but sadly it was the narration that I found excruciating. It seemed as if she was sometimes working so hard on a particular voice that she was struggling with the pronunciation.
I should have "returned" the book but was traveling and just needed something to listen to at night.
"One of the better readers"
I've had the pleasure of listening to. Seeing that Ms. Breve is the reader, particularly of fiction, would be a significant factor favor of purchasing said book. Her interpretation of Roger was so distinctive, amusing though exasperating it made me smile whenever he appeared.
This is my favorite of the G. Heyer mysteries.
I really enjoy the reader although she mispronounces some words. Her voice characterizations are distinctive and her impression of the female lead is memorable.
The story is a good one but the best parts are the gatherings where several characters trade comments. In a film this might have been done with several people speaking at once but for a book, which is necessarily linear, the author gives a good impression of an active conversation.
As with most of her mysteries, G. Heyer's culprit is not difficult to spot for mystery fans. However, her writing and sense of scene make all of these books worth listening to and worth reading.
"Annoying Characters, Beautifully Performed"
I suppose the flamboyant oddness of the characters is meant to be amusing, but after a while I begin to tire of snarky Brits. Birve's interpretation of the story is masterful, but in the end, I just couldn't get past how much the personalities bothered me, so I struggled to finish this one.
great story, narrators was perfect, will be buying more of this authors books for sure
"Narrator needs a little work"
I have read and enjoyed Georgette Heyer's detective stories for years. When I saw this one, it was easy for me to purchase it. To get maximum enjoyment one has to remember the error in which it was written. That said I have a complaint about the narrator. She would do an excellent job with voice interpretation. There would be a pause for a few seconds followed by he/she said. It became a big detraction to another wise excellent narration. I found it becoming distracting as the story continued. It was a distraction because when he/she said was spoken, I found myself waiting to hear what was said. Then I would realize that it was already spoken.
"Georgette Heyer Mystery"
Georgette Heyer's stories are all wonderful. The mysteries are fun and entertaining. They can be read and listened to often!
This is my favourite Heyer. Its fun and fast, a great read BUT the narration is just not up to the job.
What I find amusing is the running theme of the hated half brother and give us the dosh! it is handled very well and most amusing.
in this book I found Ulli trying too hard to be too upper class. For me it did not work a, after a while all the voices seemed to be the same. This is the third Heyer mystery from this narrator and I have enjoyed the other two but this one did not gel for me.
Most very definitely
Would have liked to hear this by Sian Phillips who, for me, always made the regency romances such fun. That is what is lacking I think. The sense of mischief and fun that runs through the book despite the deaths.
"More for Christie fans than Heyer"
Death in the Stocks: Inspector Hannasyde Series, Book 1 by Georgette Heyer. 2/5 story. Narrator Ulli Birvé 5/5. It's a detective novel and the plot's fine, in fact if you like Poirot, this maybe a good one for you. However, apart from the detectives (who aren't actually in this one very much) and the hero, who is OK, I didn't really like anyone very much. Some of this is due to differing social ideas between when the book was written and now but all the wit, humor and that great sense of timing which most fans love about Heyers' writing, has been left out. Ulli Birves' performance is brilliant for all the reasons I raved about in my review of the 4th book in this series. I haven't read it yet but book 3 in this series has had good reviews while I've read book 4 and it's a gem. For most Heyer fans, there's nothing you really need here. Skip ahead, unless you are a Christie fan,or prefer detective stories to Heyers' more popular regency romances, in which case I'd actually recommend you give it a try.
"Didn't enjoy the narration!!"
A different narrator.
The story itself seemed to be quite good..
I found the narration completely distracted from the actual story. The tones used made the characters utterly unenjoyable. Since purchasing this audiobook I've tried another Georgette Heyer book by the same narrator called Envious Casca. This was even worse, practically cringeworthy, but I returned it so can't leave a review. I might try the actual paper books as the stories don't seem too bad. This is just my opinion, someone else might really enjoy it.
"Great story - poor narration"
Only someone for whom English is not their first language would be able to put up with the stilted narration, they might benefit from hearing every word carefully annunciated, but I don't like it at all.
I love the main character and the bohemian lifestyle she and her brother live - beautifully confident and carefree and lavish with champagne!!
There is no character in the performance, none of the light-hearted approach required for Georgette Heyer's detective books comes across - very disappointing. It is as if the narrator is reading to someone very hard of hearing.
No-one, I think they are all interesting
I bought this audiobook against my better judgement (I'd been disappointed with Ulli Berve's performance before), but I like the book so much I try to persevere with it as having it for company while I'm cooking dinner is just fractionally better than silence.
"Smart, Funny, Clever and Entertaining!"
Sharp & intelligent writing, easily making the
Upper Classes accessible to listeners in a situation that fairly levels all classes. I cannot give a précis of the plot without inadvertently giving the whole thing away, such are the twists & turns in it that make it baffling & interesting and fun!
Listen to it and enjoy the escapism. If you're a fan of such mysteries in the Agatha Christie vein then, meet the queen!
"Georgette Heyer - an excellent mystery"
Yes, Georgette Heyer writes intellegent and amusing mystery novels usually of the 'English Country House' type. Her books are well worth reading and to have an unabridged spoken word version, despite the limitations of the reader, is a bonus. This is one of the best of her murder mysteries.
No. I always listen over a period of days in 2-3 hour sessions.
It is great to have this as an abridged reading and so well worth having. However its Australian source does cause problems for some0ne from England. Ulli Birve copes reasonably well with the middle/upper class accents, but gets into trouble with the lower classes who have an assortment of Australian accents. She also has problems with mis-pronouncing some words which obviously she is not familiar with. Having said, it does not spoil my enjoyment too much and I do prefer the female voice for readings as they are better at charactorisation
Yes. Georgette Heyer always manages to portray characters with plenty of character. There are lots of these in this story, with plenty of laugh out loud moments. I have had this book for years, so it's nice to have it as an audiobook
Giles Carrington ;-) who better than the lead hero who helps the police crack the mystery?
Slow. Weirdly Australian.
Not sure why the narrator seems to give all 'regional' characters an Australian accent.... weird.
"Not the Best"
I have read this book and enjoyed it very much but this audio version .........the reader paused in odd places and gave emphasise to words that changed and jarred the flow of the story.
"Very slow delivery"
The narrator had a beautiful voice but the delivery is so slow it becomes tedious, it made me wonder if direction to spin the time out had been given.
"Strange accent but I got used to it"
At first I thought the narrator was Australian, but now I think she was using an upper class English accent of the 1930s, with a pronunciation of anything beginning with an A sounding like an E. For example "Enger" for anger.
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