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review 2019-06-04 20:47
Review: Behold, Here's Poison by Georgette Heyer
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer

Title: Behold, Here's Poison
Author: Georgette Heyer
Series: Hannasyde & Hemingway, 2
Format: ebook
Length: 598 pages (iPhone)
Rating: 3.5 stars

 

Synopsis:
It's no ordinary morning at the Poplars - the master is found dead in his bed and it turns out that his high blood pressure was not the cause of death. Heyer uses her attention to detail and brilliant characterizations to concoct a baffling crime for which every single member of the quarrelsome family has a motive, and none, of course, has an alibi. Heyer's sparkling dialogue is a master class in British wit, sarcasm and the intricacies of life above and below stairs.
Meet the Matthews - before the next one dies...
It's no ordinary morning at the Poplars - the master is found dead in his bed, and it seems his high blood pressure was not the cause. When an autopsy reveals a sinister poison, it's up to the quietly resourceful Inspector Hannasyde to catch the murderer in time to spare the next victim. But every single member of the quarrelsome Matthews family has a motive and none, of course, has an alibi.

 

Favourite character: Randall Matthews
Least favourite character: Zoë Matthews

 

Mini-review:
This isn't my favourite book of Georgette Heyer's that I've read. But I enjoyed it nonetheless. I didn't guess the culprit, which was a nice surprise. But I found it confusing at times, which might have been me because I don't normally read mysteries in ebook format.

I didn't really like the fact that after Stella and Randall get engaged, Stella's fiancé, Dr. Fielding, is never mentioned again? It felt, weird.

(spoiler show)

 

Fan Cast:

Superintendent Hannasyde - Toby Stephens
Sergeant Hemingway - Joe Armstrong
Giles Carrington - Matthew Goode
Stella Matthews - Saoirse Ronan
Guy Matthews - Anthony Boyle
Harriet Matthews - Janet McTeer
Gertrude Lupton - Emma Thompson
Zoë Matthews - Gillian Anderson
Henry Lupton - John Lynch
Janet Lupton - Sophie McShera
Randall Matthews - Tom Bateman
Dr. Deryk Fielding - Gwilym Lee
Edward Rumbold - Colin Firth
Dorothy Rumbold - Sarah Lancashire
Inspector Davis - Jason Merrells
Nigel Brooke - Jack Lowden
Agnes Crewe - Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Owen Crewe - Colin Morgan
Mary - Daisy Waterstone

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text 2019-06-02 05:02
Behold, Here's Poison by Georgette Heyer
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer

Superintendent Hannasyde - Toby Stephens

Sergeant Hemingway - Joe Armstrong

Giles Carrington - Matthew Goode

Stella Matthews - Saoirse Ronan

Guy Matthews - Anthony Boyle

Harriet Matthews - Janet McTeer

Gertrude Lupton - Emma Thompson

Zoë Matthews - Gillian Anderson

Henry Lupton - John Lynch

Janet Lupton - Sophie McShera

Randall Matthews - Tom Bateman

Dr. Deryk Fielding - Gwilym Lee

Edward Rumbold - Colin Firth

Dorothy Rumbold - Sarah Lancashire

Inspector Davis - Jason Merrells

Nigel Brooke - Jack Lowden

Agnes Crewe - Phoebe Waller-Bridge

Owen Crewe - Colin Morgan

Mary - Daisy Waterstone

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review 2019-02-04 13:45
Randall is terrible and his family aren't nice either
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer

Can we say "obstruction of justice", thought you could. Today this would have got dealt with in a different way (I'd kinda like Randall to meet Peter Grant for a few rounds of debate). Still this is from a different time and a different way of policing.

No-one really misses Dear Old Uncle Gregory when he dies and when it's discovered that it was murder a fractured family find more cracks. The over-confident of his own smarts Randall rubs everyone up the wrong way in order to sit back and watch sparks fly while Inspector Hannasyde tries to discover the truth. The obvious culprit is someone in the family, but who, and why, everyone has a reason but also an alibi.

Then another member dies...

It's an interesting read, a classic period detective story with some horrible people and a hero who could be truly horrible, along with a romance that seemed to come out of no-where. Still the family was well drawn and I found them believable.

 

ETA: The narration wasn't stand-out for me but it didn't detract for me from the story.

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review 2018-11-29 01:52
Behold, Here's Poison by Georgette Heyer
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer

I finished this a week ago so I'm going to have to dredge my memory for things to say about it.

 

Overall I found it an enjoyable mystery although I guessed some aspects of the solution to the murder. I didn't know that I was right, of course, and the motivations were a bit of a mystery, but it's always fun when you're not completely clueless about a mystery.

 

I wasn't a fan of the romance in this one because it seemed especially random, but it wasn't a huge part of the story.

 

That just might be it.

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review 2018-11-12 13:30
24 Festive Tasks: Doors 2 and 5 - Books for Guy Fawkes Night and Veterans' / Armistice Day
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer
Behold, Here's Poison - Georgette Heyer
The Riddle of the Third Mile - Colin Dexter,Samuel West
The Riddle of the Third Mile - Colin Dexter


Georgette Heyer: Behold, Here's Poison
(Narrator: Ulli Birvé)

The first Georgette Heyer mysteries I read were her Inspector Hemingway books, which in a way meant I was starting from the wrong end, as Hemingway progressed to the rank of inspector from having been the lead investigator's sergeant in the earlier Superintendent Hannasyde books.  That doesn't impede my enjoyment of Hannasyde's cases in the least, however, now that I'm getting around to these, even though I found the first one (Death in the Stocks) seriously underwhelming.  But Heyer redeems herself in a big way with Behold, Here's Poison: Though a fair share of her mysteries have a sizeable contingent of 1920s-30s stock-in-trade bright young things and generally "nice chaps" (which got on my nerves enough at one point to make me decide I'd had enough of Heyer), when she did set her mind to it, nobody, not even Agatha Christie, did maliciously bickering families like her.  And the family taking center stage here must be one of the meanest she's ever come up with, only (just) surpassed by the Penhallows.  I'm not overwhelmed with the story's romantic dénouement (there always is one in Heyer's books), and while I guessed the mystery's essential "who" and had a basic idea of the "why" at about the 3/4 - 4/5 mark (the actual "why" was a bit of a deus ex machina), by and large this has to count among my favorite Heyer mysteries so far ... though not quite reaching the level of my overall favorite, Envious Casca.

 

Ulli Birvé isn't and won't ever become my favorite narrator, and she seriously got on my nerves here, too.  Since all of the recent re-recordings of Heyer's mysteries are narrated by her, though, I've decided I won't hold her mannerisms against the author, and I've read enough print versions of Heyer books at this point to have a fairly good idea of what a given character would sound like in my head if I'd read instead of listened to the book in question.

 

 


Colin Dexter: The Riddle of the Third Mile
(Narrator: Samuel West)

For Veterans' / Armistice Day I'm claiming the very first book I revisited after the beginning of the 24 Festive Tasks game: Colin Dexter's The Riddle of the Third Mile had long been one of my favorite entries in the Inspector Morse series, but Samuel West's wonderful reading not only confirmed that status but actually moved it up yet another few notches.  (Samuel West is fast becoming one of my favorite audiobook narrators anyway.) The fact that due to the progress of medical research a key element of the mystery would have been much easier to solve these days does not impede my enjoyment in the least ... changing social mores aside, half the Golden Age crime literature, including many of the great classics by Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and even, on occasion, Arthur Conan Doyle would be deprived of substantial riddles if they were set today. -- The book qualifies for this particular "24 Festive Tasks" square, because some of the characters' and their siblings' encounter as British soldiers at the battle of El Alamein (1942) forms the prologue to the book and an important motive for their actions in the world of Oxford academia and Soho strip clubs, some 40 years later.

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