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HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 18 October 2011
Daisy Dalrymple, magazine writer and daughter of a Viscount, is staying at Occles Hall to research an article about the house for `Town and Country' magazine. She is not a welcome guest to some members of the household, most notably her hostess Lady Valeria - a formidable battle axe who rules the house with a rod of iron for most of the time.

When a casual remark about a dead shrub in the winter garden of the title leads to the discovery of the body of a missing parlour maid Daisy is even less welcome. The local police arrest one of the gardeners but Daisy does not believe in his guilt and contact her friend Detective Chief Inspector Alec Fletcher of Scotland Yard to see if he can intervene in the case.

This is a well written mystery story with Daisy doing some sleuthing of her own in a very plausible manner. There are some well drawn characters and some believable dialogue and the difference in atmosphere in the house when Lady Valeria is present or absent is well done. I liked her mild mannered spouse as he contrives to get what he wants without making a song and dance about it. This is the second book in the series which can be read in any order though if you read them in the order in which they were published it's interesting to see the development of Daisy's relationship with Alec Fletcher. The series commenced with Death at Wentwater Court (Daisy Dalrymple)
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on 15 March 2012
In this second of the Daisy Dalrymple mysteries, Daisy unearths the dead body of a missing parlourmaid in the Winter Garden of the house in which she is staying. When the local police prove useless, she calls in the 'scrumptious' Alec Fletcher from Scotland Yard, and embroils herself in yet another murder.

This is undoubtedly a light romp of a book not to be taken too seriously but, like the others, is fun and charming. The family secrets are fairly clear to us and the solution to the murder is hardly surprising but that's not really, I don't think, the point of the books.

Dunn creates characters who may be well-worn (the matriarch here is, for example, a cross between Lady Catherine de Bourgh and Lady Bracknell) but who we enjoy enormously all the same. The romantic attraction between Daisy and Alec is gentle and amusing rather than full of fire and passion, and Daisy is herself described by Alec as 'cuddlesome'.

So this is undoubtedly cosy and feel-good, perfect switch-off reading after a hard day.
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VINE VOICEon 10 April 2012
The second book in this series is as good a read as book one. Daisy has been invited to write an article about Occles Hall for Town and Country magazine by Sir Reginald Parslow. Most of the family welcome her, she went to School with Reginald's daughter Roberta, but she is unwanted by his wife Lady Valeria, who is afraid she will influence her daughter. No sooner has she arrived when the body of a housemaid is discovered buried in the garden and Daisy calls in the police. The police officer is terrified of the dominant Lady Valeria and quickly arrests the maid's boyfriend Owen, despite no real evidence. Daisy is determined that the truth should be discovered and risks the wrath of Lady Valeria by calling in Scotland Yard in the form of Chief Inspector Alec Fletcher. Once more Daisy and Alec work together to discover the identity of the murderer. A very enjoyable read and I am looking forward to reading book 3.
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on 7 March 2014
I've read all the Daisy Dalrymple books and enjoyed them. I was very much looking forward to listening to them again as I drifted off to sleep. Unfortunately I was very disappointed with the semi-American voice of the reader Bernadette Dunne. Her accent swung between upper class British, Australian cockney and Asian Welsh -all very bizarre! All it needed was BBC pronunciation!
I had to replay the section when she pronounced 'passage' as 'parsage', very distracting and unfortunately means I will not buy anymore with her as the reader!
Love the books, the stories are great and Carola Dunn is a good writer, just a shame about the choice of reader which I assume was chosen to include the American market.
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on 5 January 2016
Love detective stories set in the 1920s and this was a reasonable read. The plot was weak but I liked the character of Daisy and shall probably read some other books in the series. Much prefer the Kate Shackleton mysteries of Frances Brody, however.
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on 19 May 2017
although love these books the story line and actual murder was easy to work out in fact guessed who it was after a few chapters.
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on 29 December 2014
The very first book of the series and I loved it. Planning to read the rest but it will be necessary to read them in the order they were written, as the stories follow on after each other. I really enjoyed the plot and as far as I was concerned, it was a book you couldn't put down until finished. A gentle story with no bad language and most enjoyable characters. A wonderful murder mystery with some romance and humour. A book similar I feel to the stories of Dorothy L Sayers with Lord Peter Wimsey; I loved those too.
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on 13 June 2017
Always enjoy her books. This one was no exception. Still need to read a few mor of her books.
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on 1 December 2015
I order these for my 87 year old sister, who spends most of her time reading. Excellent value and condition. Thankyou
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on 16 October 2016
such excitement reading it again and remembering how Daisy meets Alec and a great story to boot.
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