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The Sans Pareil Mystery Audiobook

The Sans Pareil Mystery: The Detective Lavender Mysteries, Book 2

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Publisher's Summary

On a cold February night in Regency London, a dark curtain falls on the Sans Pareil Theatre following the death of April Clare, a promising young actress, whose body is found in mysterious circumstances.

Detective Stephen Lavender and his dependable deputy, Constable Woods, quickly discover that nothing is quite as it seems. As successive mysteries unfold, they soon realise that it is not only the actors from the Sans Pareil who are playing a part.

With the Napoleonic War looming dangerously across the Channel, this is a time of suspicion and treachery. Following the clues from the seedy back streets of Covent Garden up through the echelons of society, Lavender and Woods begin to fear that the case is much bigger than they'd dared imagine - and worse, that they are at risk of becoming mere players in a master criminal's shadowy drama.

It will take all of Lavender's skill and wit, and help from the beautiful Magdalena, to bring the mystery of the Sans Pareil Theatre to a dramatic conclusion in the final act.

©2015 Karen Charlton (P)2015 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (12 )
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4.3 (12 )
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4.6 (12 )
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  •  
    Wrappedinharry, Vic, Australia 25/08/2016 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Very entertaining."

    I enjoyed this second audiobook of the Detective Lavender and Constable Woods series. The two main characters are very likeable and it is a delight to listen to their interactions.

    We meet Woods' redoubtable wife, Betsy in this story and after only hearing about her previously from the point of view of her hulking, but henpecked husband, one would not have expected quote such a delightful character. We also learn more of the beautiful but secretive Spanish widow whom Stephen Lavender has fallen in love with.

    Michael Page's narration is, as ever, brilliant. I fell in love with his voice with his narration of the Max Tudor series.

    The story holds one's interest, even if there was more than one instance of being able to quests a plot point.

    Being a great reader of many a book set during Regency times, I was surprised that the author had women attending a burial. It is my firm understanding that this did not happen during the Regency and indeed, up to and including the Victorian Era.

    But regardless, this was a very worthwhile audio experience. I give the overall, 4 1/2 stars.

    Lesley, from Victoria.



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • MidwestGeek
    Ann Arbor, MI, United States
    29/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good mystery with excellent narrator."

    This is my first Detective Lavender mystery. The prose is excellent, although the plot is more or less transparent. I have to take on faith what English society was like in the early 1800's, but the author apparently has immersed herself in the period. Lavender is persistent and thoughtful but sometimes unbelievably blind-eyed. The narrator added a lot to the reading, differentiating characters by tone and accent. He had more difficulty with female voices, but even so, did a good job. I prefer 20th century period pieces to the 19th century, so I'm not sure how soon I'll take up another Lavender mystery.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Wildrose Rhedd
    Spearfish, SD United States
    12/11/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent narrator! mediocre material"

    The book dwindled from a passable mystery to a drawn out bodice ripper. The narration is superior.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • sslarigo
    Austin, TX
    25/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great new series!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Sans Pareil Mystery to be better than the print version?

    The second book in this series does not disappoint! Interesting characters and twisted plot. A nice cosy mystery -- well written and enjoyable. Buying book 3 now.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Kaejae
    1/02/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great Plot!"

    A very enjoyable story - with good characters. I enjoyed the main characters in the first novel and it was good to follow the progress of their relationships.
    Good mystery plot and never dragged.
    Also enjoyed learning about medical field of the time!
    Highly recommended!

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Bunty
    Burnaby, BC, Canada
    29/11/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "VERY GOOD DETECTIVE WORK. WELL WRITTEN AND WELL NARRATED."

    Very good. I like the plot and how Detective Stephen Lavender and his deputy, Constabke Woods work so well together. The romance on Lavender and Magdalena is very interesting too.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Judith A. Weller
    LaVale, MD United States
    31/01/18
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Michael Page saves this book."

    I am very fond of mysteries set in the Victorian era or Post WW I. However, one of the fhings I do NOT like is a love interest in a book. I think the presences of Magdalena ruined this book. I do not like her and I find her appearance jarring. The only series I like which has a love interest in it is the C.S. Harris, Sebastian St. Cyr mysteries. Hero was so well integrated into the stories and her presence did not seem out of place. Magdalena for me is out of place and ruins the story.

    The mystery itself is quite good, but the author strains to make Magdalena have too big a role in the story. Whole chapters are devoted to Magdalena and her maid - I found myself fast forwarding past those chapters as they added nothing to the story. Because of this I am hesitant to buy the next book in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • S. Moreton
    Brisbane, Australia
    27/01/18
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "More romance than mystery "

    Too much of the story is about Detective Lavender’s love interest, Magdalena. If Ms Charlton wants to write romance novels, she should bill them as such, and let those of us who want to read mystery be free of the curse of reading/ hearing this drivel.
    The mystery component was quite good, I might try another one and see if she’s gotten it out of her system. I’m not optimistic.
    The narrator was pretty good, some of the secondary character voices were sloppy, forgot an accent for one for a while, but overall the narration is excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dorothy
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    23/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Love this series"

    I read a lot of mysteries and thrillers, so when I look for a new author or series I try to find something that stands out a bit from the rest. Maybe it's my English ancestry, but this one grabs me.
    So many modern detective series these days focus on forensic investigations or characters using high-tech gadgets or media to stalk or kill their victims. Detective Lavender has none of those tools at his disposal - 200 years ago, he had not even a telephone, only his wits. Think of Hercule Poirot, but more likeable and less 'quaint'.
    Add to that the research that Charlton has done into the time period and neighborhoods in which the novels take place, and you have a very intriguing story. Can't wait to dig into the next one (make sure to read in order; this is the second in the series).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Purple Librarian
    14/12/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful Story"

    Very entertaining story set in historical London. I love these Lavendar Mysteries. Money well spent!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • SSP
    12/12/17
    Overall
    "Just as good as the first."

    Interesting characters and mystery but the period details and characters are what really make this book a pleasure.
    A great read for fans of period fiction.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Rogayah
    Reading, United Kingdom
    13/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "London 1810"

    Interesting story of an early detective in Bow Street, Coventry Garden, a very different place than the touristy place it is today. The story evokes something of the dirt, poverty and harshness of life in England during the wars with Napoleon's forces.

    Lavender and Wood make a good detective duo and it will be interesting to see how these characters are developed in future stories.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • murder mystery fan
    UK
    7/01/18
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A favourite Narrator performing a excellent book"
    Where does The Sans Pareil Mystery rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I would rank this in my top ten. I enjoy murder mystery books with some relational depth to and between the characters, the combination of Karen Charlton's writing and imagination with Michael Page's excellent narration is a great find. I have a job that has more than enough tension and real life concerns, so it is therapeutic to get lost in a good book.


    What other book might you compare The Sans Pareil Mystery to, and why?

    There is a warmth and depth to the book, just enough edge and murder mystery, but warmth in the unfolding of the key characters. I would compare it to the Max Tudor series, different century, but the characters have a steady reflective no nonsense approach, but with a nod to their romantic and family lives.


    What does Michael Page bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Michael Page is an excellent narrator and performer. He gives depth to the characters, I've enjoyed his narration of all the Max Tudor series, and Elizabeth Edmonson's final three books. It has been a pleasure to find him narrating the Inspector Lavender series


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Gentle tension at times, and occasional laughter.


    Any additional comments?

    Karen Charlton is an excellent writer, it is a great pleasure to find her books being read by some one as skillful as Michael Page.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Rachel Downton
    16/11/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good and fast paced "

    An enjoyable story with interesting characters based at the time of Bonaparte's rampage across Europe, the book gives a bit of insight of what it was like to live at that time. If you like mystery and history, you will probably enjoy this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • lorna
    25/10/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent"

    Just fallen in love with the main characters this is the 2 nd in series and I read both books in 4 days seriously good fun brilliant plots

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • CharmayneFB
    Rochester, United Kingdom
    14/05/17
    Overall
    "A brilliant start to this series"

    For an audio book of just over 10 hours, not a single minute was dragged out or spent filling out the plot. Each character was given the right amount of detail and the story was great in the attention to historic detail.

    I loved the use of period slang peppering the tex. The narrator's different character voices meant I could easily tell who was 'speaking'.

    I'm looking forward to more in the series, especially as I've realised Stephen Lavender was a real Principal Officer with the Bow Street Magistrates Court.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jennifer Chennell
    16/01/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "not bad"

    this series isn"t the greatest detective novels in the world but they are gentle good stories perfect for a cold rainy Sunday afternoon

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Charlotte
    10/09/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just as enjoyable as the first book!"

    The author and narrator make a second great outing for Lavender.
    Murder, suspense and romance in a novel of this period are rare to find.

    Thoroughly enjoyable and worth every penny! I am off to immediately buy the next book in the series and sincerely hope, that it doesn't prove to be the last outing for the brilliant duo Lavender and Woods or the brilliant duo Charlton and Page!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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