From Doon With Death: A Wexford Case - 50th Anniversary Edition (Wexford, 1)

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From Doon With Death: A Wexford Case - 50th Anniversary Edition (Wexford, 1)

From Doon With Death: A Wexford Case - 50th Anniversary Edition (Wexford, 1)

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From Doon with Death (the origin of the 'Doon' nickname is never explained in the book as far as I noticed) was quite a clever mystery with a radical (for its time) twist in its reveal ending. I presumed Rendell wrote in the vein of the classic/ golden age mystery novel, but ‘No Man’s Nightingale’ didn’t seem to fit into this vein.

Wexford brings a somewhat cold, calm, matter-of-factness to the investigation and that prohibited me from bonding with his character in any way. The ending was good but all the events leading to it never reached a level of suspense where it was hard to put down.

Although a fairly short novel, it is filled with intrigue as Wexford and Burden investigate the murder of a seemingly friendless, quiet wife named Margaret Parsons. I surmise Ruth intentionally conveyed a depressed husband and household but that persisted too long, before the appearance of a clue brought any action at all. How is it possible that a woman who had led such a quiet, respectable, unspectacular life could have met such a death of passion and violence? Why in the world would any one go to the bother of killing and dumping a boring, plain woman like Margaret (Godfrey) Parsons? However, no one would accuse a career as prolific as Rendell's as lazy and there is something very appealing about her work.

Read all Margaret Parsons, a fairly ordinary housewife who, with her water board official husband Ron, has recently moved to Kingsmarkham, is found murdered in a field. Although the identity of the victim's lover "Doon" would not be much of a surprise to the 21st century reader, at the time of its release it was considered ground-breaking and daring, and this novel immediately garnered Rendell international critical attention.Margaret Parsons is the flip side of extraordinary; no enemies, lives in somewhat of a rut, and has no sordid qualities about her whatsoever. Here’s the big thing that came out of my reading this book: The afterword in the edition I read discusses Rendell’s attitude toward the Shocking Content and how it is in line with what was believed to be Right and True at the time the book was written. Although it lacks the polish of later volumes in the series, and Wexford especially hasn't yet assumed final form, it is a very capable first outing.

Also, there is no Hastings or Watson to romanticize the proceedings, and given how much I hate both characters, I'm adding a star just for that. There's an art to writing a police procedural that is also a village mystery, and Rendell is the consummate artist. I am sure that a proof reader could have easily rectified the mistakes and, although I expect to see them in a self published book, it is unacceptable to find so many in a traditionally published ebook.

I have mentioned before that my parents’ love of crime fiction played an important role in my formative years. Also, as a side note, don't forget that this book was written in 1964 and thus attitudes are a bit dated. Parsons led an extremely uneventful life, being a lay preacher, but Inspector Wexford is intrigued when he is looki.

I was about 2/3 through, thinking it was well written, interesting, but not yet sensing it was truly special. Registered office: WSM Services Limited, Connect House, 133-137 Alexandra Road, Wimbledon, LONDON SW19 7JY. Chilling, richly characterized, and ingeniously constructed, this is psychological suspense at its very finest. And so, for a non quaint, psychological mystery that relies on neither sex nor violence, this is a very good read. Religious, old-fashioned, and respectable, her life had been as spotless and ordinary as her home, as unexciting and dependable as her marriage.I feel this just goes to show that all of us have past indiscretions that we have papered over and attempted to forget. From Doon with Death, now in a striking new paperback edition, is her classic debut novel -- and the book that introduced one of the most popular sleuths of the twentieth century. Ruth Rendell introduces here Chief Inspector Wexford, who, along with Inspector Burden, will have to solve the murder of a housewife named Margaret Parsons in the quiet English town of Kingsmarkham.



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