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Mystery Mile
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Although I love Golden Age mysteries, I have had a rocky relationship with Margery Allingham over the years. Having decided to give her another try and read the Campion series from the very beginning, I enjoyed, “The Crime at Black Dudley,” and decided to continue with “Mystery Mile.”

As with, “The Crime at Black Dudley,” we have another novel featuring sinister gangs and criminal masterminds. Judge Lobbett has found evidence pointing to the identify the criminal mastermind behind the deadly Simister gang. There have been several attempts on his life and now his son, Marlowe, and daughter, Isopel, have persuaded him to leave the States for England. However, it is soon apparent that leaving the country has not put him out of danger and Albert Campion foils an attempt on his life on board the ship, “Elephantine.” This leads Marlowe to track Campion down in London and for Judge Lobbett, and his family, to be spirited away to Mystery Mile and a country house owned by Giles and Biddy Paget.

This is an exciting, and fast moving, story. There are odd visitors, suspicious locals, tragic deaths and daring rescues. We get to meet Campion’s sidekick, Magersfontein Lugg, and there are also some romance, between the two young couples. I have found that reading this series from the beginning, even if I have been told that the early novels are not the best, has given me a good background to the characters. I am enjoying my forays into Allingham’s earlier work and hope to continue the series.
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on 11 October 2017
If this is a good example of Margery Allingham's style ( it is the first I have read) I don't want any more of it. A man holds a secret which we are never told and he does not know himself, and the villains' attempt to kill him before he divulges it all fail. Campion throws a mouse on to an electrocuted stage and thus saves this man, whom he hides in a secluded house,, from which he suddenly disappears. The Police are not to be told of any of this. The are several other non sequiturs. Nor did I like Campion's style of clever-clever English.
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on 14 September 2016
I vaguely remembered the story from the Peter Davidson series from years ago, and I read another authors rave review of Allingham's work. I am also a sucker for detective stories and older novels, so I gave this a whirl.

Given this is effectively the first Campion story and an early Allingham, I was pleasantly surprised and engaged by the book. The writing style may be dated (not that there is anything wrong with that) but the story and characters are well defined and have decent depth.

I picked up several other Campion books from another large legitimate e-book retailer, much more cheaply than sold here. Whilst not Kindle friendly, I am happy to save £3.50 a book and use my phone or tablet. It may pay to shop around.
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on 20 August 2014
An excellent early Campion that lays the groundwork for some of the later stories, particularly his avoidance of future female attachments, particularly in Look to the Lady, this only really gets resolved in Sweet Danger and The Fashion in Shrouds.

This is one of the attractions of Albert Campion, he grows up from a young and careless individual in the early stories to a somewhat older and perhaps darker person after the Second World War in Hide my eyes etc. This book is pretty well essential reading as it has Campion as a fully formed leading character, unlike The Crime at Black Dudley, where he is more of a supporting character, but does introduce Simisters.
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on 1 December 2013
My 2nd Margery Allingham after Crime at Black Dudley, also Ms Allingham's 1st & 2nd in the Albert Campion mysteries.
I enjoyed this book though these early Campion mysteries are pretty lightweight compared to her slightly later output, still very readable though.
In this book we are introduced to Campion's factotum, Lugg, combined servant, assistant, nurse-maid & all-round expert in the ways of the underworld, I'm looking forward to seeing more of him in future books.
The basic premise of this book is that Campion is helping an American judge, Crowdy Lobbett, to hide out from the dangerous Simister gang many of whose members have been sent to jail by Judge Lobbett back in the States. He thinks he has a clue as to the true identity of the shadowy head of the gang & his life is now in jeopardy. Will Campion succeed in keeping the judge safe on a small Suffolk island or will he become another victim of Simister?? You will have fun finding out in this early example of Golden Age crime writing.
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on 5 August 2014
Campion is an odd character, the books, if read out of order as I did, make you want to go back and start at the beginning and fill in the gaps. The social mores and anachronistic dialogue is a bit difficult to take, more so that, say, Dorothy L. Sayers and Campion himself does not come over as a dashing hero, however, I enjoyed the book and look forward to reading others in this series.
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on 2 August 2014
I feel I know the part of East Anglia written about, in spite of never having been there, because of the detailed, atmospheric writing of Allingham. Maybe Campion was portrayed a little over the top with his mannerisms; someone reding this book for the first time may not seek others in the series but for someone who enjoys Campion books it intrigues as good as any of them.
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on 19 January 2017
fast delivery, strorng packaging. a good recording, atmospheric, francis matthews' characterisations were very good. a pity i can't find any more of his available on cds, only cassettes.
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on 26 August 2017
This audio book is an abridged reading of Margery Allingham's crime novel 'Mystery Mile', excellently read by Philip Franks. It has great entertainment value but I found it too drastically abridged to be enjoyed as a crime mystery. Better to read the book if you have the time! For me, as an aural accompaniment to the tiresome chore of doing my annual accounts, it was a lifesaver.
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on 12 August 2009
A really good Campion novel. The plot is well thought out, although the Simister gang seems perhaps a little dated now. The character of Campion becomes more fleshed out as the book goes on, and makes you want to find out more about him. The yokels are a scream, and the escape from the 'burning' building really rather funny. And there are a couple of romances and a very satisfactory villain. What's not to like?
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