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4.3 out of 5 stars
56
Styx and Stones (Daisy Dalrymple)
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on 14 July 2011
Set in the 1920s Daisy Dalrymple, who is engaged to Scotland Yard Inspector Alec Fletcher, is asked by her brother-in-law to discreetly investigate a series of poisoned pen letters that many of the local villagers including himself have been receiving. She travels to Kent with her soon to be stepdaughter to enjoy the countryside and find out who the writer is. Unfortunately before she can solve the mystery the brother of the local vicar is murdered. There are plenty of suspects. Daisy is a person in whom people easily confide in and the information she gains proves invaluable to the local police and her fiancé in solving the murder.

The novel has a good sense of period and the characters particularly the children are well drawn. It is an easy but good read and Daisy makes a very endearing heroine.
8 people found this helpful
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on 28 February 2012
England, 1920s, and the Honourable Daisy Dalrymple is called to aid her brother-in-law Lord Frobisher, who's suffering from the maliciousness of a 'poison pen' letter writer because of a past fleeting indiscretion just after the Great War. Daisy hotfoots it down to his village, with her fiance Detective Inspector Alec Fletcher of Scotland Yard's daughter Belinda as company for Daisy's nephew, to see what she can do to discover the identity of the poison pen.
It soon becomes apparent that the village is a hotbed of scandal and secrets, some of the little white variety, but no-one is safe from the nasty words of the letter writer. Daisy sets about investigating and soon has a host of suspects as well as victims to puzzle over. Then things take a fatal turn when a prominent figure is found dead in the churchyard and Daisy herself comes under suspicion of his murder. But Alec is soon on hand to help proceedings.

Overall, 'Styx and Stones' is a great read; pacy and lively and with plenty to keep you occupied. However, I have to say that a couple of things made this less than 5* for me: firstly, there were a bit too many suspects (seriously, you would not want to live in this village) and secondly, I did find the fact that the police let Daisy not only 'tag along' to all the official police interviews but also take an active part a bit hard to swallow, and the actual solving of the crime and villain was a little bit rushed, after a great story. But still, overall, worth getting!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 18 March 2014
Carola Dunn writes with lively wit and imagination and her plots are very reminiscent of whodunnits actually written during the period she describes, such as those by Agatha Christie and Marjorie Allingham, the golden era of the cosy aristocratic mystery. because she is having fun and not taking herself too seriously, we have fun, too. Daisy and her love, DS Alec Fletcher, and his vulnerable young daughter, continue to develop their relationship, Warmly sympathetic and shrewd, the aristocratic Daisy becomes the repository of other people's secrets and determinedly runs the gamut of police disapproval and family pressure to carve out the life she wants and help the people she meets. Perhaps not one of Carola Dunn's best, but entertaining, well-paced and literately written.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 9 March 2011
Daisy Dalrymple's brother in law, Lord John Frobisher, asks for help in finding who is sending him poison pen letters. In order to investigate the mystery she goes to stay with him and her sister Violet in the small village in Kent where they live. She soon finds that there are other recipients of the unpleasant letters and almost an equal number of suspects. Then things get more serious when someone is found dead under a stone angel in the churchyard.

This is the first book I've read by Carola Dunn and I shall be looking out for the other books in the Daisy Dalrymple series. The characters are well drawn and the nineteen twenties background is convincing. I liked Daisy and Belinda - her soon to be step-daughter and I also liked Daisy's sister Violet. I didn't see enough of Daisy's fiancé the Scotland Yard detective to decide whether I liked him or not.

This is an enjoyable mystery novel and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys David Roberts' Verity Brown series or Frances Brody's Kate Shackleton stories.
3 people found this helpful
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on 12 May 2011
if you are looking for a well written, good light read then these books are for you. They give really good descriptions of the historical places and time that the books were written in. The Stories revolve around Daisy and her friends and family who come mostly from the gentry, getting mixed up in murder(s) she falls in love with the detective who is meant to be solving the cases, much to the disdain of her mother. Very lighthearted but good reading and well worth the money. I couldn't wait to start each new story.
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on 1 February 2012
This is another Daisy Dalrymple book which got me hooked and managed to read in 2 sittings.

This book reminds me of Agatha Christie's Moving Finger, which was about a poison pen and subsequently murder. The setting are similar in that they are in a village.

This book is very easy to read and holds your attention as there are so many suspects/victims as regard the poison pen. Also you see Alec and Daisy's relationship tested for the first time too

I thought I knew who the murderer was, but was wrong. Won't give it away, but was very well done.

Great book. Would recommend.
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on 5 March 2018
Loved the variety of characters, each of them well-drawn. Could imagine this as a TV play. Lovely rural setting. All very believable. And set in a gentler age.
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on 12 October 2017
I'm really enjoying the Daisy Dalrymple series and this is one of the best so far. There is nice period detail, interesting characters and a not too taxing mystery. A very enjoyable, 'lightweight' read.
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on 23 January 2014
I am reading the DD stories in sequence so have come to know what to expect. Plot similar to others and I am starting to realise that Carola Dunn's research is good but not infallible! e.g. the Dandy and Beano comics would not have been published in 1923!!!!! Nevertheless, the story travels along at a good pace, holding attention and never quite sure if I've got it right. Love it!
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on 6 October 2017
it was good but not quite as good as some of the others
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