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Wolf to the slaughter Unknown Binding – 1967


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  • Unknown Binding
  • ASIN: B0017H4VO6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

More About the Author

Ruth Rendell has won many awards, including the Crime Writers' Association Gold Dagger for 1976's best crime novel with A Demon in My View; a second Edgar in 1984 from the Mystery Writers of America for the best short story, 'The New Girl Friend'; and a Gold Dagger award for Live Flesh in 1986. She was also the winner of the 1990 Sunday Times Literary award, as well as the Crime Writers' Association Cartier Diamond Dagger. In 1996 she was awarded the CBE and in 1997 became a Life Peer.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By RachelWalker TOP 500 REVIEWER on 14 Dec 2003
Format: Paperback
Anita Margolis, young, beautiful, carefree, has vanished into thin air. She left her home to attend a party one wet evening, but has not been seen since. She is reported missing soon after by her brother, whom she shared a flat with, the acclaimed but eccentric artist Rupert Margolis. Inspector Burden quickly forms an impression of a wanton young girl simply gone off somewhere with a boyfriend having neglected to let anyone know. After all, she was that sort of woman, in Burden's opinion. However, Wexford has his doubts, and those doubts will soon be confirmed, and they will soon find themselves enmeshed in a case that will throw every assumption they make into doubt.
This is an early Wexford book, and it is brilliant. A simple notion, but true. One of the best of the entire series, actually, the fact of its quality equally matches that of the novels she is still producing and marks her out clearly as possibly the most reliable and captivating novelist of her generation, such is her constant unfailing ability. She writes absolutely brilliantly, with an emotional detachedness that makes it so much more powerful when she decides that now is the time to probe in the darkness of a particular characters mind and motivations. And those characters are unendingly fascinating, completely human yet with a shadowy darkness to them, and flawlessly depicted.
But it is not just her characters that mark her books out as special. Setting and story meld in equally with character in the most successful books to create a compelling whole, and Rendell accomplishes this with ease. The fictional Kingsmarkham is almost as tangible and atmospheric as the London she uses as the setting for some of her other non-Wexford novels.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By annama on 10 Aug 2010
Format: Paperback
I had great expectations about this authoress, I love thrillers and such. So it's been a disappointment for me: I'm not saying that I only enjoy simple whodunnits with no psychological sides and turns, on the contrary, I appreciate that the characters may have some depth. But I could find no rhyme or reason here: I could't figure out who the leading character is and got muddled up beetween police inspectors and detectives and so on. The end is so very banal and the characters depth leads them to do unreadable things; their motives are not so clear. In the end you do not breath clean air, but feel very let down beacause when the mistery is unravelled you think, well, is that all it is to it?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brambleamble on 13 April 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
How is it possible to not like, or be critical of an author as successful as this.
Well I did not like it. There probably wasn't a crime. There was a maximum of one suspect. It was almost certainly not a murder and there was no mystery.
An entire CID division of a market town with nothing to do but chase up obscure leads that the visionary detective was sure would lead to a crime - but did it?
The plot reveals so much information about the eventually discovered victim that the death would surely be classified as self defence.
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By gary c atkins on 11 May 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've always liked Wexford on television and Ruth's stories always hold me in suspense. Fully deserved five stars and recommended to all Kindle readers.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This early Wexford novel is an excellent, surprisingly dark tale, The darkness is literal too in that the weather is poor and the season short - the sun only comes out towards the end of this tale and much of the action takes place at night. New detective Mark Drayton is not very likeable but very interesting and most of the other characters are well drawn and presented. Wexford himself starts to emerge from under Mike Burden's shadow as the 'main' detective and we get the first rumblings of his family life here (having briefly met his wife in the last novel, we now learn he has two daughters) and, of course, that family will become much more prominent in the the later novels. The plot twists are clever and unexpected and I think most new readers will be surprised at how things develop. Rendell leads us happily up the wrong path for quite a long time. This is one of her best early efforts.
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By J. Bailey on 14 Oct 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As usual Ruth Rendell has penned a masterpiece. It was full of suspense and surprise. I really enjoyed reading it
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By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 20 Sep 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Anita - sister of Rupert Margolis - has disappeared. His main concern seems to be that she has left him to do all the housework and he wonders if the police can point him in the direction of some domestic help. Once Wexford and his colleagues have disabused him of this idea they are still left with a niggling feeling that there just might be something in it of interest to them.

This is a well written mystery with lots of interweaving strands which may or may not be connected to the original mystery of what has happened to Anita. Wexford is puzzled by the case especially when it seems that a murder may have been committed because a couple were seen staggering from a house in which a great deal of blood was found. I find Wexford and interesting character and his relationships with his police colleagues are well done.

This is the third instalment of the Wexford series and it is a good example of this excellent series. The psychological aspects of the crime are well done and the motivations of the characters believable. I found I cared what happened to everyone involved.
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