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review 2014-07-28 03:58
The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman

Good story, great characters, interesting mystery, great atmosphere--but sorely in need of editing. This big boy rocks in at well over 600 pages but would have made a nice, tight thriller at 400. 

I liked the characters and the style enough to want to continue the series to see if it gets better.

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review 2013-11-04 08:37
the wine of angels.
The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman

I love Phil Rickman's Merrily series - she's a vicar, but very cool and exorcies ghosts. I put this series up there with the Ellie Griffiths mysteries set in the east of England, and with the Shaman Mystery series by Nina Milton, set in the west country of England

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review 2013-10-14 15:56
The Wine of Angels (Merrily Watkins #1)
The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman

bookshelves: mystery-thriller, britain-wales, aga-saga, one-penny-wonder

Read in December, 2008


This reads like The Vicar of Dibley does Miss Marple does Dennis Wheatley. I need the next one in the series...

Nick Drake http://youtu.be/8kZMVG6N7DE

1948-1974 Singer songwriter Tanworth-in-Arden churchyard, Warwickshire, England. Epitaph: 'Now we rise and we are everywhere'. (Suicide?)
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review 2013-08-02 00:00
"The Wine of Angels" by Phil Rickman: An Audiobook Review
The Wine of Angels (Merrily Watkins, #1) - Phil Rickman

Why did I read (listen to) it?


I had this on my iTunes in audio format for ages, so I can't actually remember why I chose it, but I'm glad I did.


What's it about? Merrily Watkins arrives in a Hereford Village with her teenage daughter, Jane. Merrily is the priest-in-charge and soon finds herself courting controversy, while struggling to make sense of her dreams. Jane, too, finds herself in a sticky situation. When they finally move into the vicarage, events seem like they will overtake them.


What did I like? The dramatic opening during a wassailing was interesting, but then the book started again with the mundane matters of moving from the pub to the vicarage, and providing an introduction to the characters introduced in the first scene. Bit of a jolt, but then matters build, and build to the point I had to listen to the last three hours without interruption - I wanted to get to the climax.


I liked, too, the somewhat supernatural element interwoven into a mystery. I am a fan of crime fiction and this added a new, and interesting element. The story was well told: dramatic opening, a quick come down, and then an enthralling ride to the finish. The characters seemed stereotypical village types - at first - but as the story continued, it became clear that there was much going on underneath; some of which is never fully explored, much as happens in real life wherein you know there is more, but you're also very aware you will never fully understand. The author really shows the incongruous nature of the modern village - old traditions meets chattering classes incomers.The audio edition I listened to from Audible was clear, and without fault.


What didn't I like? I have to admit, as much as the narration was good, and clear, the character voicing was such that I was not always sure which character was speaking. There was attempt at accents, but I was not convinced. 


Once or twice there were jumps in the time line of the story that I felt left too big a gap, and for this reason I have removed a star.


Would I recommend it? Actually I would, but I'm not entirely sure to whom. That said, I will be reading the next book in the series to see how this unique, crime fiction develops.

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review 2013-06-02 00:00
The Wine of Angels - Phil Rickman Probably my least favorite read in 2013. I did not connect with any of the characters.
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