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The Adventures of Margery Allingham Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Length: 464 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4842 KB
  • Print Length: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Golden Duck (UK) Ltd; 1 edition (30 Jan. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00B8YKN7W
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #223,626 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
M'lud, members of the jury - it is with a sense of deep mortification that I must confess to a hitherto shameful ignorance of the life and work of Miss Margery Allingham (late of this parish) and must therefore throw myself on the mercy of the court. In mitigation, I can only ask the court to take into account my recent diligent study of Miss Julia Jones' absolutely first rate account of the life of this eminent exponent of the fine art of detective fiction.

Seriously, though, this is an excellent biography that explores Margery Allingham's life as both a woman and a writer.

One of the main themes of the book is the tension between writing as art and writing as necessity. Jones draws out those aspects of Allingham's background and personality that drove her to write as an act of creativity, coming to regard her books as her children. At the same time, she was a professional who wrote in order to earn a living, taking her from the world of the penny dreadful and the first women's magazines to international fame as a queen of crime and guest appearances on Woman's Hour.

As a woman, Margery Allingham lived a complicated and often chaotic life split between the London of commercial publishing and the large house in rural Essex, which she and her husband, Pip, could never quite afford. In addition to visitors, the country house was also home for a variety of friends, family, inherited servants and miscellaneous dogs and horses.

As a newcomer to Allingham, I watched the BBC's dramatisation of Campion alongside reading "The Adventures of Margery Allingham" and was able to appreciate the way in which she had woven material from her life and experiences into her fiction.

A fascinating insight into the life of a fascinating, talented and slightly eccentric lady.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The great thing about e-books is that you can update them very easily when new information becomes available. Julia Jones biography of MA was first published in 1991 by William Heinemann and has just been republished under her own imprint `Golden Duck' with new photographs and updated information - I've just read it and am delighted that it's now also released as an e-book.

The title is a little misleading, since Allingham's adventures are `mental and moral', and mainly on paper, channeled through her hero Albert Campion in the groundbreaking thrillers she wrote through four decades. I read her books when I was in my twenties and liked them more than Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers - there was always an element of humour, clowning, with an undertow of morality. They reminded me a little of the old Mystery plays - a mix of buffoonery and serious discussion of Right and Wrong, the one highlighting the other. Albert Campion - the mysterious, aristocratic figure at the centre of the plot, is both the buffoon and the moral compass of the novel.

I was always interested to know more about the author who wrote the novels, but somehow missed the publication of Julia's book first time out (where was I?) Fortunately I've now managed to rectify that omission. Reading this biography of Margery Allingham has illuminated the novels for me in just the way I would have hoped.

I'd already read about Margery's disfunctional, workaholic, journalistic family in Julia's new book `
...Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
This is a detailed and sympathetic biography, but not blind to the difficulties of the subject. It is clear that the author was regarded as a trusted friend of the subject's family, but that has not made her deferential or caused her to skirt problems. The book presents a fascinating glimpse of a chaotic and variously driven household, from which the emergence of a notable series of distinguished crime novels seems miraculous. Both Allingham and the army of supporting and incidental characters are depicted with grace and conviction, and there is plenty of unobtrusive academic apparatus to assist future students. Sound, readable, and persuasive.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an incredibly detailed and thorough biography - one feels its subject would have approved of the amount of hard work and painstaking research that has clearly gone into it, workaholic as Allingham was. Jones has told the whole story of the writer's life, with warmth and yet with detachment, her enthusiasm for Allingham's work balanced by her hard look at the contradictions in this woman's life and the lives of those around her. Poor 'Marge' was indoctrinated with the work ethic as a writer, by a family of writers, and kept it going throughout her life, plagued by ill health and a dead weight of hangers on. Julia Jones is much fairer to Marge's husband Pip than I would be - I'd like to kick him in the nuts quite frankly. Allingham was trapped at a time when women were beginning to have financial success as genre writers, and she always felt obliged to work and support her family, yet she exhausted herself further trying to be the 'woman' to her oxygen thief of a husband who did nothing but live on her earnings, shag around, and ignore her sufferings. This was a significant time for women, after WW1 and then through WW2, and it's also fascinating from a class point of view, as the upper/upper middle classes learn to do with fewer or even no servants and actually meet people from other class backgrounds. Her massive sense of responsibility was as heavy as the extra weight she carried, something she struggled to manage - let down by typical male doctors of the time, who gave her ECT (hideous cruelty) when she clearly had thyroid problems. Oddly even after this had been diagnosed and treated it was sort of forgotten again. Interestingly, Sayers used hypothyroidism as the subject for a Lord Peter Wimsey short story, so the symptoms were known about.Read more ›
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