The Franchise Affair Paperback – 6 Aug 2009
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"First-rate mystery, ably plotted and beautifully written" (Los Angeles Times)
"Permanent classics in the detective field ... no superlatives are adequate" (New York Times)
"Josephine Tey has always been absolutely reliable in producing original and mysterious plots with interesting characters and unguessable endings" (The Spectator)
A classic mystery from the Golden Age of detective fiction.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Tey's skill shines through in her reflection of English society, in her passion for the study of faces and ultimately in her force of will which means that the mystery, rather than sub-plots or socially commentary, remains paramount at all times. Yet she doesn't need multiple murders or gratuitous volience or complicated plot swings to keep the reader's interest or to keep the plot moving. Scraps of evidence emerge not by chance but as the result of hard detective work and acute observation. An easy and engaging read, this is the perfect way to spend an enjoyable lazy afternoon.
Robert Blair, a staid solicitor, is drawn into a case involving the odd Sharpe women, mother and daughter, who live alone in their house named The Franchise when they are accused of kidnapping and beating a young teenager. No-one quite believes the story until the girl is brought face-to-face with the Sharpes and reveals details about the house and the room where she was supposedly held that a stranger could not know. But Blair believes the Sharpes are innocent and sets out to prove his case - against all the odds.
Like other `golden age' mystery writers (Dorothy L. Sayer, Ngaio Marsh, Christie) Tey is as interested in her characters as she is in the mystery itself, and the Sharpes, especially, are wonderful creations. Our emotions are manipulated faultlessly as they are moved from being slightly sinister to being amusingly eccentric (old Mrs Sharpe, especially, grew hugely in my affections during this book), and yet there is still always a slight doubt: could their very eccentricity have led to their guilt? Highly recommended.
Not surprisingly then, this brilliant reading of Josephine Tey's classic late forties mystery was right up my street. The action centres around Robert Blair, a quiet country solicitor whose comfortable, complaisant existence is shaken when he is asked to give representation to an elderly woman and her daughter, who are accused of kidnap and abuse. As the notoriety of the case escalates, so do the stakes, and Blair must turn amateur detective to try and prove his clients' innocence.
Tey is one of the greats of British detective fiction, always providing well-rounded characters within a narrative framework of growing tension, laced with droll humour. Praise too for reader Carole Boyd for her terrific, enthusiastic interpretation of the work, which adds greatly to the listener's enjoyment. Some might now regard the likes of "The Franchise Affair" as old fashioned, even quaint, but to me, that's all part of its timeless charm. Eight cds worth of pure pleasure, which sadly come to an end much to quickly. A genuine treat.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
the story itself would have 5* but this edition has spent all the money on the nice cover and very little on the cheap paper and bleeding ink inside. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Margaret R.
Beautifully written mix of detection and love story, and very much of its time, I thoroughly enjoyed this non-violent mystery.Published 2 months ago by MRS A G TRAVIS
It's been a long time since I read a novel in only a couple of sittings. It was not because of the plot. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Aline P'nina Tayar
Marion Sharpe and her mother live in a house called The Franchise - left to them by a distant relative. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Damaskcat
I enjoyed the oldworldliness of this story and the plot was intriguing for much of the book, although perhaps the resolution was a tiny bit flat. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Judith Hodges
Like a train started slowly and built up speed until I couldn't put it down. Nice ending to allow for a sequelPublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer