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The Body in the Library Audio CD – Abridged, Audiobook

4.6 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Macmillan Digital Audio; Main Market Ed. edition (15 Sept. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405089555
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405089555
  • Product Dimensions: 12.5 x 2.3 x 14 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,653,739 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

“The best opening I ever wrote”
Agatha Christie

“Genuine old-crusted Christie”
Time

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

Miss Marple's detective skills are called upon in the CD edition of this classic mystery

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
[This review is for the HarperCollins facsimile reprint edition, published in 2005]

First published in 1942, The Body in the Library is the second Miss Marple Mystery (after Murder at the Vicarage, 1930). It's very good - easy read, wry, witty, twisting plot, only takes a few hours to read - perfect for a holiday mystery, or a quick read when you want a good book, but not one that's too in-depth. I was guessing right up until the end in this Miss Marple and didn't manage to guess the right murderer at all, so hats off again to Agatha Christie.

A note on the edition: I love these HarperCollins facsimile reprint editions of the First Editions (the original Collins Crime Club editions). The dust jacket covers are so much more appealing and iconic than most of the paperback versions that came afterwards (1960s and 70s covers would often have a pool of blood, murder weapon, bottle of poison, or whatever else was relevant to the plot adorning the front cover). These covers are more suitable to the story - gentle Golden Age crime and mystery writing at its best - not gory, not graphic, just good old-fashioned honest detecting.
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Format: Paperback
The title `The Body in the Library' kind of gives away just what is coming in the opening pages. Yes that's right, the Bantry household awakes to find that there is indeed a body of an unknown platinum blonde in their library. No one in the household has seen the young girl before and it takes some time for the police to track her down. However it doesn't take that long for Miss Jane Marple to appear on the scene as Mrs Bantry, a close friend, sends a chauffeur round for her pronto phoning ahead before `the recognised time to make friendly calls to neighbours'.

The police having met Miss Marple and her amateur sleuthing naturally want her gone as soon as possible. She doesn't leave until she overhears that the victim was a dancer at the Hotel Majestic in Danemouth and before long Mrs Bantry and Miss Marple just so happen to take a small holiday there. So who was this girl, how did she end up in a strangers library in St Mary's Mead and who took her there and killed her? Well you will have to read this joyous romp to find out and revel in the village gossip and brilliant characters as you go. I didn't know Christie was so rye and witty.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In the foreward to this novel Agatha Christie talks of a" Variation on a well-known Theme ". In this case the body is not quite the type of person to be found in that type of library. Although the body is found in Gossington Hall just outside St Mary Mead most of the story is set in a large, fashionable hotel on the coast, eighteen miles away. Miss Marple is the ultimate observer, listening to and watching the people around her and slowly bringing things together - sometimes even allowing the reader to guess the murderer first. Agatha Christie and her contemporaries wrote the theme with rules formulated by Ronald Knox at Collins. Everything that has appeared later are variations, many good others poor imitations, but for good, no-nonsense whodunnits the likes of Christie, Sayers and Marsh cannot be bettered and often told with wit and humour.
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By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 May 2012
Format: Paperback
The body of a young woman is found in Colonel Bantry's library. Mrs Bantry immediately sends for her friend Miss Jane Marple and the Colonel sends for the police. It seems the victim is working temporarily at the Majestic Hotel as a dancer and has inveigled her way into the affections of one of the guests to the extent that Mr Jefferson wants to legally adopt her.

This is of course means there are plenty of people who might have wanted Ruby dead including her fellow workers at the Majestic and Colonel Bantry's neighbours who are starting to mutter about there being `no smoke without fire'. Can Miss Marple discover the murderer even though the police are baffled before the Colonel is completely ostracized by his friends?

This is an intriguing mystery which will definitely keep the reader guessing right up until the end. Of course the solution is obvious when you look back on it but at the time it seems far from clear. This well written mystery shows Miss Marple at her best as she displays her inimitable knowledge of human nature.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having just completed the Hercule Poirot novel 'Peril At End House' I thought I'd proceed on to a Miss Marple one. This time I was not at all familiar with the story which did make it all the more engaging.

The double murder plot is fiendishly clever, no doubt about it, and the handful of red herrings suitably distracting and confounding. I do not for a moment dispute Agatha Christie's sublime ability to concoct a murder mystery. However, as with 'Peril At End House', I found the investigation rather unrelenting. There is plentiful dialogue as suspects and key characters reveal facts and clues and the sleuthing intensifies, but little in the way of descriptive colour or atmosphere. And the characters, including Miss Marple, lack personality and humanity, in my opinion - there's simply no time for it. They're like chess pieces manoeuvred with masterly authority, rapid-fire, toward a decisive end game.

As with ITV's splendid Poirot series, I believe the Miss Marple mysteries are also greatly enhanced by the small screen adaptations, particularly Joan Hickson's performances. The subtlety of human interaction and reaction, the fully-formed backdrop and setting, missing quite often from the novels, manifests, necessarily, on the screen, creating a more rounded, satisfying experience.
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