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English Country House Murders: Classic Crime Fiction of Britain's Upper Crust

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  195 ratings  ·  28 reviews
Nothing could seem more civilized, more orderly and sedate than a weekend at one of Great Britain's country estates. Yet these staid, conservative houses play host to a wider variety of murders than do the mean streets of America's darkest cities.
Hardcover, 348 pages
Published December 1st 1988 by Mysterious Pr
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The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha ChristieThe Hollow by Agatha ChristieThe Body in the Library by Agatha ChristieEnglish Country House Murders by Thomas GodfreyAnd Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
Country House Mystery
4th out of 33 books — 11 voters
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351st out of 482 books — 808 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 535)
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An excellent compilation of 22 shorts featuring the quintessential writers of the genre. If you want a taste of what makes these authors so good at their craft, this is a nice reference book to begin with. Many of these (Ethel White, Christianna Brand and Nicholas Blake) were new to me, but after a sampling of their work, I'll be looking into longer books from them.

Personal favorites include Ethel White's The Unlocked Window (deliciously creepy), Philip MacDonald's The Wood-for-the-Trees (a gre
A fun collection of mysteries of the English Country House variety. I knew many of the authors like Dorothy L Sayers, Ruth Rendell, PD James, etc, but many of the authors I hadn't heard of. Lots of fun.
Another short story collection, but this one features the cream of the crop of mystery writers from the past and present: Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Dorothy Sayers, Margery Allingham, GK Chesterton, Wilkie Collins, Baroness Orczy, Arthur Conan Doyle, Robert Barr, R. Austin Freedman, John Dickinson Carr, Ruth Rendell, PD James, Michael Innes, PG Wodehouse, Nicolas Blake, Christianna Brand, Philip MacDonald, Cyril Hare, Ethel Lina White, Freeman Wills Crofts and James Miles. The stories are dif ...more
This is a collection of some of the best classic English mystery authors (Christie, Doyle, James, Rendell, Carr, Wodehouse, Allingham) doing the typical British Country House murder settings. Very fun. Only one I didnt really enjoy - so a very satisfying collection
Like all collections of short stories, this was uneven, but the items I liked best may be the ones you liked least. Godfrey certainly collects a number of fine mystery writers in this plump volume.
Pretty good mystery short stories with a British country estate setting. I preferred some more than others. Thought it would be a good way to read new authors in this genre.
A very broad and interesting collection of British manor house mysteries, Edited by Thomas Godfry. A must for all lovers of the genre.
Nov 05, 2008 TJ rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: mystery
Good collection of stories. Lots of fun reading the stories, and good intro into authors you may not heard of.
Do enjoy short stories and these are written by some great authors, Doyle, Christie, Sayers, Collins.
Dec 25, 2009 Casey is currently reading it
So far so good. Very enjoyable collection of short stories.
Kathy Sebesta
Every English mystery writer (or writer of English mysteries) of 1989 or earlier is in this book. There are even two Sherlock Holmes stories, one the starts the book by Doyle and another that ends it by James Miles. The styles tend to be legitimately dated, but most of the stories are well constructed and worth reading. It was fun to reconnect with authors like Christie, Marsh, Allingham, etc whom I'd read thru as a kid. Don't go looking for the book, but if it falls into your hands have a good ...more
English Country House Murders, edited by Thomas Godfrey, is a collection of 22 short stories by celebrated mystery, crime and detective fiction authors.

The introduction explains 14 basic rules a mystery must follow to be classified as an authentic English Country House Mystery:

1. Must be written by an authentic English writer.
2. Must include a crime.
3. Multiple crimes may be included, gory or violent details may not.
4. Poison is the preferred murder method, or a blow to the head.
5. The crime m
John Carter
This collection was compiled completely under false pretenses. After defining the country house murder—“You open the cover and suddenly you are transported to a splendid baronial manor …”; “… in the library his wife, Felicity, daughter of Sir Randolph Cross (rumoured to be next in line at the Exchequer), lies dead …”; “Is there another murder in the offing?”—the editor puts in “intimate character studies” and stories with no houses at all or only four characters, two of which have (truly) never ...more
A great collection of many of The Best mystery writers. Most I had read before though a couple of authors were new to me but on my TBR list. Excited to read them.
Some I loved more than others. But each story was well worth my reading time. This book initiated hunts for more reading from some of these authors.
What could be more fun than a weekend at an English country house? Well, a murder free weekend for a start. This is a collection of 22 short stories by leading English mystery writers and the list includes many of my old favorites--Agatha Christie, Wilkie Collins, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and P.D. James--and some new names whose works I look forward to reading.
Suzanne Bordwell
A great book with short stories you can read each night before going to bed.

The Adventure of the Abbey Grange
A Marriage Tragedy
Lord Chizelrigg's Missing Fortune
The Fordwych Castle Mystery
The Blue Scarab
The Doom of the Darnaways
The Shadow on the Glass
The Queen's Square
Death on the Air
The Same to Us
The Hunt Ball
The inacutious Burglar
The Long Shot
Jeeves and the Stolen Venus
Death in the Sun
An Unloced Window
The Wood-for-the-Trees
The Man on the Roof
The Death of Amy Robsart
Fen Hall
A Very Desirable Resi
This anthology includes stories by Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, P.D. James, and other famous English mystery writers in a series of delightful stories that take place in English country houses. I liked all of the stories in the book. I especially liked the one called "Death in the Sun" which has a corpse found nude on the roof of a villa and "The Man on the Roof" where everyone in the house and the village would benefit with the death of the Duke.
This book is to be recommended to all who
Very enjoyable set of mystery stories. I particularly recommend:
1) The Shadow on the Glass (Agatha Christie can do no wrong).
2) Death on the Air (Dame Ngaio Marsh)
3) Jeeves & the Stolen Venus (P.G. Woodhouse)
4) An Unlocked Window (Ethel Lina White) - This story was probably the fastest page turner for me, very much in the style of Wuthering Heights.
This is a good if inconsistent collection of short stories, each presenting a murder in a Victorian/Edwardian English country house. I read it as research for a project I was working on, but I recommend the book if you are interested in such things.

The book is out of print, but widely available.
22 short mysteries by different authors set in the English countryside. Also included was a brief bio about each author. I generally would rather read one really long book than a collection of short stories. This was nice to read some stories by favorite writers and learn about some new ones.
Jo Ellen
I am a sucker for the country houses -- with murders or without. This is a most comprehensive anthology, starting with Sherlock Holmes and ending with PD James (with a post script,a send-up of Sherlock). I liked comparing and contrasting.
A great selection of short stories by classic murder-mystery authors. Loved the intro to each, I just wish he'd put when each story was published! A good reminder that some classic plot lines never change.
Can't say too much about the whole thing, since it was a collection, but there's a lot of very good stories in here, including a hilarious Wodehouse I'd never read before.
A fine sampler of all the Britsh Mystery writers of a certain golden age. Lots of wry humor, irony, description, nefarious deeds, and hidden agendas.
This is the kind of thing I adore. Great British country house mysteries!
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