Comments: 13
BrokenTune 2 months ago
LOL. That is a fun typo - quite annoying, tho, especially if it is not the only one.

What do you mean by you got the personalities of Christie and Sayers back-to-front?
Hah. Which she probably wouldn't have been caught dead saying (and I doubt she'd have seen any real humor in the typo, either). That's truly annoying about the editing; in and of itself but even more so as we're talking about an award-winning book -- one would think that, if not ordinary care in proofreading, would have caused the text to be given an extra close inspection ...

So how has your perception of Christie and Sayers changed?
Murder by Death 2 months ago
@BT and @TA: In part, I guess, because of her enduring popularity and commercial success, and Christie's penchant for adventuring, and her knowledge of poisons, I always imagined her as the one with the forceful personality; if not commanding, at least very strong-willed. Her tendency to go around obstacles, or avoid them, even though it seems she did it with flair, surprised me. She's meeker than I imagined. Sly and apparently able to manipulate when necessary (Woollsey's wife, for example), but by nature inclined to be introverted.

Sayers, on the other hand, I always imagined to be softer, kinder, quieter, more introverted. Partly because of her focus on theology and divinity for the last part of her career, but also in part, I think, because of Whimsey's character. She showed an affection for him that she has, thus far in this book, not displayed for anyone in real life. She's much more extroverted, opinionated, and much less emotionally expressive in real life than I'd have guessed.

So, I had them back-to-front - I'd mentally given each the other's personality. Which just goes to show you can't judge an author by their books. :D (at least not all time)
I think there's a good deal of Sayers herself in Harriet Vane -- she never expressly admitted to writing herself into the Wimsey canon that way, but to a large extent she probably did.

OTOH, it takes a certain amount of deviousness to come up with Christie's plots, so that does seem to fit well with her character. It's probably no coincidence the "11 missing days" are associated witih her of all the members of the Detection Club. (I wouldn't exactly have had her down as "meek", however; at least that's not how she comes across in her autobiography ...)
BrokenTune 2 months ago
You know, it took me quite by surprise to learn of Christie's various exploits and her openness to travel and new experiences because I had always pegged her as much more reserved than she was. It wasn't until I read her autobiography that I got a bit of a shock to learn that at some point in her life she really was one of the daring bright young things. There are some hints of it in her her books, but it is really hard to tell because there are equal number of hints that contradict this in her books (and of course one must separate the author from the story/characters somewhat). She did change throughout her life, tho, and went through phases (like most other people) adapting to what was required of her.

Sayers I had always pegged as more forthright, I guess, because there is quite a bit of social criticism in the Wimsey novels. I am still looking to read her biography (the one I have is by David Coomes) to find out more about her.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
I have her (Christie's) autobiography in the pile and as I read this, I become more anxious to read it.

Meek probably isn't the best word; she *appears* meek on the surface; but Edwards makes it pretty clear that she just went around any obstacles (like Sayers) rather than confronting them.

I have my own secret theory about her 11 days, a complicated mix of misery, escapism, and revenge/punishment via guilt and social scandal that was more successful (or not, depending on viewpoint) than she anticipated. Too bad she never discussed it.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
After reading the first 2 sections of Edwards book, I can definitely see Sayers in Harriet Vane - and I probably should have revised my opinion of her after reading Strong Poison, but the Whimsey of Whose Body had already left a strong image in my head of the author, which was reinforced when I'd read about her leaving mystery writing behind completely to focus on theology.

It was just one of those weird first impressions that just stuck; especially with Sayers. I guess if you'd have asked me, I'd have said an author was more apt to write themselves into a main character rather than a secondary one. (Obviously, literary criticism is not AT ALL my forte.)
I wouldn't be surprised if our theories about the "11 missing days" were fairly similar. -- Did you ever watch the 1980s (?) movie starring Vanessa Redgrave -- I think -- and Dustin Hoffman entitled "Agatha"? It's a fictionalized version of those 11 days and posits that during that time she has a romantic fling with a young admirer (who IIRC also happens to be a reporter; anyway, at some point he clues into who she is and he's in a heck of a crisis of conscience as a result).
Murder by Death 2 months ago
No, I've never even heard of it. Was it good? Or was it typical 80's melodrama?
Peregrinations 2 months ago
Now you have me wondering if an audio version reading from this text would correct the errors or just read what they see. I've just read the Audible reviews. All the Brits loved the book and all the Yanks complained about the narrator and having all of the footnotes read at the end of each chapter. Not sure I want to listen for 16 hours just to find out if he says "poop" or "pop."
There's tons of extra material in the book -- photographs, diagrams, etc. ... I wouldn't go for the audio version for that reason alone; especially not an Audible download which doesn't even have a case that could contain a brochure featuring the extra material. You'd seriously be missing out.
Murder by Death 2 months ago
I'd hate the footnotes all being at the end of the chapters. That would drive me nuts - how am I supposed to remember what they were referring to??

TA has a good point too - there's a lot of very cool illustrations and photos in the book that are worth having the print edition for.
Peregrinations 2 months ago
Even more good points for me to consider before I spend a credit on the book. For now, I will add it to my wishlist.