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4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Wolf To The Slaughter: (A Wexford Case)
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on 25 September 2017
The Kindle version of this book has been very badly abridged, with sudden confusing changes of scene. Also no proof reading appears to have been done. It is full of typos and Inspector Burden's name is frequently spelled in lower case. A most disappointing version of a superb author's book.
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on 21 January 2016
A good entertaining book and certainly keeping the suspense to the last few pages, very much in line with the Wexford series written by Ruth Rendell
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on 26 August 2017
A nice easy read, with some witty bits
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on 16 September 2017
very good story.
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on 27 July 2015
Really enjoyed this book can certainly recommend this to Wexford fans.
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on 29 March 2017
How can anyone not thoroughly enjoy a Ruth Rendell
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 14 December 2003
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. The reader feels they could easily be supplanted into the story, onto the streets of this fictional town, and yet already know its environs intimately.
And then, of course, the story too is near-perfect. It is incredibly dark (unusually so for this period – it’s very prescient of the darkness which would imbue her later works), it is clever, it is affecting, it is psychologically acute, it is realistic (despite the false idea that these kind of traditional procedural novels tend not to be), it is engrossing, as well as being a plethora of other laudable adjectives as well. It shifts and moves and surprises and has excellent pace, carrying the reader through on a breathless ride - secured in by the mesmeric hand-at-your-throat grip of the prose - until a tension-filled conclusion, which leaves more than one character irredeemably altered for life.
Wolf to the Slaughter is simply yet another excellent novel from the woman who is, in my mind, the best novelist in the world today. And that is all there is to it. Its just makes me so angry that her publisher lets several of these early books remain out of print! Shame on them!
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on 10 August 2010
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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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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on 14 February 2014
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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