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The Horse You Came in on [Hardcover]

Martha Grimes
2.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

15 July 1993
A tale of contemporary crime.


Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Headline Book Publishing; 1st ed. edition (15 July 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747208484
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747208488
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 16.3 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,008,917 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Martha Grimes is the author of twenty novels, eighteen of them Richard Jury mysteries. She lives in Washington DC and Santa Fe. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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The blind man smelled something new in Cider alley, a new scent mixed with the old ones of urine and sweat, beer and whisky, coming from some doorway (he imagined) where a little cluster of men liked to gather. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars boring... 14 Jun 2014
Format:Paperback
I normally enjoy Martha Grimes books but this one is sooo boring. It is a very slight story; the edition I read was 502 pages long, but any decent editor would have reduced this by at least 50%, by removing lots of the 'quotes' from books written by characters (these served only to lengthen the story rather than adding anything to the plot) & by getting rid of the lecture on primogeniture as it applies to, among others, the British royal family - this was wrong, anyway, as Prince Andrew actually has two daughters, rather than sons.
Please read other Martha Grimes books - preferably in chronological order, as there are always references to previous books - but definitely give this one a miss!!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Tedious.... 10 Jun 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have enjoyed all the previous Martha Grimes novels, but this one is just tedious. Most of the characters seem to be novelists and we are treated to huge chunks of boring 'novels within novels' - obviously to make a very slight story appear longer (the edition I read was 500 pages long, which judicious editing could have greatly reduced). I love Richard Jury, but would recommend any earlier story, rather than this one.
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2.0 out of 5 stars The horse you came in on 18 Mar 2013
By Clare O'Beara TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
I have enjoyed some of Grimes' books, mainly The Anodyne Necklace. This wasn't one of her better ones.
Each mystery is partly set in a pub and the name of the pub gives her the quaint titles of the books. Grimes is American but has a fascination with titled English people, all of whom she makes extremely wealthy and boring. As in they do nothing all day but gossip. Her police detective is called Richard Jury and he meets a collection of the most boring people in England at the start of this tale, then he goes to Baltimore on holiday to look into a matter, and meets the most boring people in Baltimore. There is also an irritating cabbie and while there is the prospect of interest in a few tramps, we see very little of their lives.
As always the American author makes a major mistake about England. I don't know why her editors don't pick it up if she can't. Normally she tells us there are grey foxes in England - this is an American animal. In this book she tells us -
"Only if Charles, his son William and his other son Harry, die or abdicate, only then does Andrew come into the picture. And after Andrew, then his two sons, in order of age." I'm am sure Prince Andrew's daughters Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice would be surprised to hear this news.
Part of the story looks at a possibly forged new EA Poe manuscript. Even if you liked Poe, which I don't, this would be a very boring read.
Try a few of Grimes's by all means but an American who has done rather better at writing about England is Elizabeth George, with the Inspector Lynley series.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Go with the Flow 21 Aug 2012
Format:Paperback
You really have to go with the flow to enjoy this book. Half the cast seem to be titled and the other half seem to be writing books. If you can get on with these characters, the book is occasionally very amusing.
There are a couple of policemen but they do not intrude upon the plot (such as it is) very much.
Three of the characters fly to Baltimore for purposes of the plot, and there is quite a lot of local colour, which is well done.
The main plot is quite slender, and just about hangs together.
A good book for holiday reading.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 2.4 out of 5 stars  30 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the mysterious delight of story telling 22 Feb 2008
By Penelope Schmitt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Martha Grimes' mysteries, all of them, stand in an ordered rank on my bedroom shelves. She's a writer whose stories are worth reading and then re-reading. The puzzle is nearly always interesting and satisfactorily worked out. But that's not the real delight of the novels, only the entertaining excuse for two other more compelling reasons to read her. First, there's her Pickwickian cast of characters. They're a collection of perpetually and ruefully unattached men and women of indeterminate early middle age, who meet in a variety of colorfully named pubs and solve murders with more or less tragicomic flair, while they repeatedly fail to resolve the mysteries of their own inner lives. Second, there's the speculative and philosophical line of thought that often crops up as a secondary theme. Grimes gives this metaphysical aspect full play as a depth and dimension of counterpoint to her vivid characters and solid plot lines. The Horse You Came In On plots an intriguing mystery, but it is about writing, and specifically about plot invention in writing. Let me count the ways--a purported diary from Italy; a minimalist novel; the plagiarized version of the minimalist novel; a holograph manuscript that may or may not have been penned by Edgar Allen Poe; a Russian romance tale made up on the spot to amuse a child; a fabricated family history; a book of poetry; a work in progress (whose writer, to maintain focus, chains herself to her Johns Hopkins University desk--and thereby hangs the crisis of the plot); a hobbyist's attempt at a Dashiell Hammett-style mystery. All these literary productions are embedded in Grimes' own marvelous inventions, carrying us from the Tate Gallery in London to Baltimore, to Philadelphia, to the village of Long Piddleton in Northhamptonshire--just to name the more important locations. It's not often that one encounters a writer who can present thoroughly serious thinking in the form of comedy and at the same time stay competently in the mystery genre. Her novels are pleasing at every level. Her first mystery in this series is called The Man with a Load of Mischief. Start there and enjoy the wandering, speculative, humane, whimsical series of stories. You won't be disappointed.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Great Disappointment 6 May 2002
By Gary F. Taylor - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Martha Grimes usually writes complex, thoughtful mysteries notable for their memorable characters and atmosphere; consequently, THE HORSE YOU CAME IN ON--which finds Jury and his friend Melrose Plant visiting Baltimore, Maryland to investigate a double homocide--will be a great disappointment her many fans.
The story is at once very slight and very, very convoluted, involving both an "art" novelist who is struggling to finish her latest work and a student who may or may not have forged a manuscript attributed to Edgar Allen Poe. After a certain point, Grimes also relies upon genealogy for a plot twist--and while I grant that she certainly knows a great deal about writing novels and is at least credible on the subject of Poe, her commentary on genealogy will not pass muster with even the mildest amateur genealogist. In the process we are also treated to chunks of the book the novelist is writing and chunks of the Poe story that may or may not be an elaborate hoax, and by the time the novel winds to its rather tedious conclusion we feel we have read everything except a novel by Martha Grimes. Which is a great pity indeed.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Grimes travels well. 3 Jan 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I was surprised to find that Grimes was willing to take her ensemble cast on the road and try her hand at mystery in America. Although Grimes is not always good at clearing up the loose ends that she begins, she is true to her characters. Her descriptions are vivid and accurate and her gang of do-gooders are delightfully consistent. Frankly I would be disappointed if some young lady didn't win the heart of confirmed bachelor Melrose Plant in each novel. Grimes entertains if only because her characters have a self-depracating sense of humour and a rollicking good time. I was thrilled on a trip to Baltimore, MD when I stumbled across the tavern "The Horse You Came In On." It was a piece of my world crossing Richard Jury's path.
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars KEEP JURY IN ENGLAND 4 May 2005
By MARGARET& PETER - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I COULD NOT FINISH THIS BOOK. I HAVE GREATLY ENJOYED THE OTHER INSPECTOR JURY MYSTERIES AND WAS REALLY DISAPPOINTED.. MY THEORY IS THAT THE FAULT LAY IN TRYING TO SET AN ENGLISH MYSTERY IN THE US. THE INTERIORITY AND SENSE OF PLACE THAT SO CHARACTERIZES ENGLISH MYSTERY DOES NOT WORK IN A SETTING LIKE THE US. FROM THAT

STEM ALL THE OTHER DIFFICULTIES WITH THIS BOOK-- FLOUNDERING AND LOST - BECAUSE THE CHARACTERS ARE NOT AT "HOME". AGATHA CHRISTIE COULD PULL IT OFF BUT WHEN POIROT WAS IN EGYPT, FOR INSTANCE, HE WAS SURROUNDED BY ENGLISHMEN WHO HAD IN EFFECT "BROUGHT' THEIR PORTABLE WC'S ( LIKE THE ENGLISH DID IN AFRICA) ON THEIR "SAFARIS". (sorry about the capitals - just noticed it)
17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Absolute Rubbish 5 May 2001
By T. Sunderland - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I've read most of her books, but this one in a word is 'crap.'
On the back cover of my paperback, the Chicago Sun-Times calls this book 'a juicy stew of a plot.' The New York Times is even worse, calling it 'clever.' Excuse me? Who's paying these guys to say this? You would think after 100 or so years of reviewing, they could at least be honest.
I stopped at about page 169 after a complete mish-mash of bad character development: Plant engaging in fairy tales with pre-teen booksellers, some other forgettable character droning on about someone called 'Sweetie,' and the thing with Poe (??) - forget this one, it's even worse than 'Rainbow's End,' which was pretty sad in its own right (at least the Jury/Sante Fe side of the book) and move on to 'The Lamorna Wink' - now that's 'entrancing' (The Orlando Sentinel).
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