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After the Armistice Ball (Dandy Gilver Murder Mystery 1) Paperback – 24 Aug 2006


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Frequently Bought Together

After the Armistice Ball (Dandy Gilver Murder Mystery 1) + The Burry Man's Day (Dandy Gilver Murder Mystery 2) + Bury Her Deep (Dandy Gilver Mystery)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 303 pages
  • Publisher: Robinson, London; 1st Paperback Printing edition (24 Aug 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184529341X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845293413
  • Product Dimensions: 13.3 x 1.9 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 129,895 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Catriona McPherson was born in the village of Queensferry in south-east Scotland in 1965 and educated at Edinburgh University. She left with a PhD in Linguistics and spent a few years as a university lecturer before beginning to write fiction. The first Dandy Gilver novel was short-listed for the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger 2005 and the second was long-listed for the Theakston's Crime Novel of the Year Award 2007. Catriona writes full-time and divides her time between southern Scotland and northern California.

Product Description

Review

Shortlisted for the Crime Writers (Association Ellis Peters Award, a 1920s upper-class whodunit featuring a captivating amateur sleuth. stylishly intriguing.' The Bookseller)

A most enjoyable murder-mystery, with a new and appealing heroine. (Publishing News)

McPherson's refreshing debut introduces the captivating Dandy Gilver... memorable supporting characters plus vivid descriptions enhance a compelling mystery (Publishers Weekly,)

Perhaps the time has come for contemporary Scottish crime fiction to lighten up. Tartan noir has reigned unopposed for too long. Tartan tweed might give it a run for its dirty money. (Scottish Daily Mail)

Book Description

Dandy Gilver, her husband back from the War, and her children off at school is bored to a whimper in the spring of 1923 and a little light snooping seems like harmless fun. Before long, though, the puzzle of what really happened to the Duffy diamonds after the Armistice Ball has been swept aside by an unexpected death.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Oct 2005
Format: Hardcover
This book is a pleasure to read. It's well-plotted; you can see some twists coming (so you feel clever) but there are surprises as well. The main character is an engaging personality; likeable, intelligent, and with enough depth that you feel you'll find out more about her as the series develops (lets hope there'll be sequels). And the writing is elegant and funny. Recommended.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. M. G. Powling on 4 Dec 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Catriona McPherson has created, in Dandy (short for Dandelion) Gilver, an endearing character. Dandy - married to boring old Hugh who is more keen on his huntin', shootin' and fishin' than paying his wife the attention she so obiously seeks - is bored to tears. This leads her into a new life as an amateur sleuth which starts as a mild diversion (her household runs on wheels well-oiled by butler, cook and maids a'plenty) but which becomes increasinlgly more important to her as the story unfolds.

Although there are some minor flaws, one being a definite loose end left untied, the possibilities for a series are there. The author has managed to capture the essence of the 1920s - she even knows that the term "weekend" wasn't use in high places; one was always invited to stay from "Friday to Monday."

I would have liked at least one sub-plot and a little more background colour - dinner parties, conversations between butler/cook. Perhaps this is a draw-back of the first person narrative: the narrator-only viewpoint. Overall, a good first novel.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jill Besterman on 18 Feb 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I took a gamble and bought this book by (to me) an unknown author after an Amazon recommendation and it paid off! I thoroughly enjoyed it and am delighted to find that I have several more books about Dandy to look forward to. Dandelion (yes really) married somewhat reluctantly and equally reluctantly became a mother! She starts sleuthing to help out a friend in an attempt to brighten life with her huntin', shootin', fishin' husband and finds a good friend in a younger man who is involved somewhat in the mystery. There is humour and some rather dark touches to the story which is beautifully set in the county set in Scotland between the Wars. My personal enjoyment was increased by my familiarity with the area where part of the story is set but that would not be essential to one's pleasure in the story.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By L. Mumbray-Williams on 6 Feb 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is a delight and I look forward to reading others by Catriona McPherson. My tastes in crime fiction are eclectic, the only essential is fine writing and this prose is precise, and flows across the page and into my consciousness. The period detail seems to have been impeccably researched without ever seeming to intrude on the crystalline story-telling, oh, and the plot's good too!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 3 Jan 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Dandy Gilver is asked to look into Lena Duffy's claims that her diamonds were stolen at an Armistice Ball. The diamonds were insured through a company owned by Silas - the husband of Dandy's friend Daisy but the premiums had lapsed. Lena is trying to blackmail Daisy and Silas into paying up for the diamonds.

What follows is a well plotted and complex mystery in which Dandy frequently finds herself out of her depth and floundering. She has the assistance of Alex Osbourne who is engaged to Cara, one of Lena's daughters and they make a very good pair of sleuths.

I liked Dandy as a character and it makes a change to find a married female sleuth whose husband plays very little part in the story. He is useful to invite make guests to stay where Dandy herself cannot invite them because of etiquette but he plays no part in the investigation apart from this. This is the first book in the series.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. B. Salter-Murison on 25 Feb 2008
Format: Paperback
I wish I'd written this book. I kept having to remind myself that this novel was written recently by a modern woman rather than its 1920s narrator. As someone who hugely enjoys Margery Allingham and Michael Innes, I felt the excitement of coming across, in a pile of crumbling green Penguins, a classic crime author previously unknown to me. It would have been easy to convince me this story was written 80 years ago. It breathes of its own world, its own time. There's nothing that jars and, although neither the plot or characters resemble either Allingham or Innes, those names spring to mind because of Catriona McPherson's equally haunting and distinctive sense of time and place.

Having read this book I came to Amazon to buy anything else Catriona McPherson had to offer. I read hugely, but most of my books are recycled - either back to the library or the charity shop. There only a few books I keep, and this is always because I know I'll re-read them many times. This author is completely new to me, but I'm charmed already and have just ordered both her other novels.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A. Lucas TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 7 April 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book because I saw a picture of a book cover that I liked the look of, it happened to be the 3rd one of this series of books, and I thought I should read the others before reading the 3rd!

It actually took quite a bit of getting into, but once I was into it, I was hooked....and now can't wait to read the next two. Very good story, great characters, and a wonderful sense of being in the period it's written about.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Heather on 1 Oct 2007
Format: Paperback
As a Scotland lover I really enjoyed the beginning of this book, with its mentions of Highland country life, and was intrigued as the scene was set. However, this rapidly led to frustration: first at having to wade through the author's pet technique of using elaborate similies to describe any event, however trivial, and then at the plodding 'plot'. Although Dandy is a quirky character, I wanted more than pages and pages of her thoughts (and those of her sidekick) processing and repeating facts and ideas about the crime. After her first visit to Galloway any action seemed to cease completely, to be replaced by musings about murder and even more about those blessed missing diamonds. If you care about precious stones as much as some of the book's characters, then you might want to read on further, but be warned, you'll have to put up with a wildly far-fetched ending too. What a disappointment. Nice jacket cover though.
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