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Publisher's Summary

After a routine delivery, midwife Sarah Brandt visits her patient in a rooming house and finds that another boarder, a young girl, has been killed. At the request of sergeant Frank Malloy, she searches the girl's room and discovers that the victim is from one of the most prominent families in New York - and the sister of an old friend. The powerful family, fearful of scandal, refuses to permit an investigation. But with Malloy's help, Sarah begins a dangerous quest to bring the killer to justice before death claims another victim.

©1999 Victoria Thompson (P)2015 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"Thompson vividly re-creates the gas-lit world of old New York, concluding her mystery with revelations that will shock even 20th-century readers." ( Publishers Weekly)

What listeners say about Murder on Astor Place

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Elaine M. Gustainis
  • Elaine M. Gustainis
  • 24-11-2015

Buy the book. The reader is TERRIBLE!

Would you listen to Murder on Astor Place again? Why?

No. The reader made a period piece seem like a modern book. There is no distinction in her voices - no giving the things that MAKE it a period piece - the hero sounds like the heroine, who sounds like the bad guys. The only time there's a obvious distinction, there's a note in the file saying the person talked in an obvious way. Even the CHILDREN sounded like the adults.

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

I actually had to separate the reader from the written word, but I realized the writing was very good.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Totally sapped the book of it's strength.

Any additional comments?

I think I would like the book. It's embroidery season now and I don't have time until after the holidays to read. I'll probably try the 2nd book in the series then. AWFUL READER!

18 people found this helpful

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  • Christy
  • 25-04-2019

Worst Narrator EVER!

Really enjoyed the story and the characters, but the narrator is completely awful. I had a hard time distinguishing who was saying what and her monotone delivery was really horrid, no expression WHATSOEVER. I think I would have enjoyed this book more in the written form thanks to the lousy voice work done here.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Simone
  • 28-03-2016

I want to like this series!

I like the early 20th century New York City setting and the titles of the books alone are intriguing to me; I really want to give the Gaslight Mystery Series a fair shot.

It was a bad start - the basic premise was quite improbable and there were frustrating holes in the set-up that were hard to overcome. A cop “hijacks” a midwife into helping him investigate a murder scene? Why? The pretext of “you’re a woman, you might know something” was ludicrous. Throughout the story they maintain a somewhat acrimonious relationship… which I don’t really understand because he asked for her help up front!

Eventually we learn why they are a little frosty with one another and it all has to do with their own personal baggage which just felt planted for the purpose of having something to unravel later on.

I finally had to tell myself to just suspend disbelief and go with it!

Overall it wasn’t too bad. I’ll give Book 2 a try before I decide if I’ll drop the series or keep pushing; the series is already up to 19 instalments so I’ll have plenty to read in the future if I like them!

5 people found this helpful

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  • I♥2Read
  • 11-05-2018

Miss Marple meets Call The Midwife

1890s New York City, widowed midwife becomes amateur sleuth.
I had heard raves about this series from many friends. So glad I finally got to it , and wishing I had done so sooner! Great writing AND narration! Starting the next one today!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Henry G Hamby
  • 03-09-2017

Great first of Series

great first book in series not too much scene and character setting Victoria leaves room for future character development as the series unfolds

1 person found this helpful

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  • MCoffey
  • 29-06-2017

good read

very good read. It was funny at times and interesting at others. Great narator. thumbs up

1 person found this helpful

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  • rose duggan
  • 12-06-2021

Fun, but not phenomenal.

The mystery itself is interesting enough. I honestly didn't guess the entire plot until pretty near the end.

The historical inaccuracies really took me out of the story, though. It felt researched via Google. Even if you read other genre literature, you'd have a better sense of period dialogue and slang.

The narrator isn't the best. More mispronounciations than most audible voice actors.

The characters are well developed. Enough is revealed to give us a strong sense of who they are, and yet there's plenty to keep us curious about as well. I want to know more about their backgrounds.

I think this author has great pacing. She knows when to lay on the detail vs. when to move things along or jump to the next scene. I think she's able to create fascinating characters and cleverly weave them into interesting situations. I think this setting may not be her Forte. I'm hoping that as the series goes on, she'll continue to learn more about the era via research.

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  • Warren Lederer
  • 20-05-2021

could be better

I am surprised the woman who read this book was ever hired. she is terrible. I tolerated it because the story was really good.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Florence
  • 17-02-2021

Great story but...

Narrator was very monotone and I couldn't distinguish between each character's dialogue. Great story though!

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  • Allison Sanders
  • 26-10-2020

Loved it

Not my favorite narrator, but unlike others, it wasn’t bad enough to stop listening. It didn’t distract me from what was otherwise a surprisingly great books

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  • Laura Shelmerdine
  • 25-06-2019

Don’t waste a credit. Read the book instead.

Story line ok. No best seller but pleasant and interesting enough to follow.

Narration is terrible!!! I thought at one point it was being read by a computer.

Read the book instead.

1 person found this helpful

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