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Appleby's End (Sir John Appleby #10)

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  193 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Appleby's End was the name of the station where Detective Inspector John Appleby got off the train from Scotland Yard. But that was not the only coincidence. Everything that happened from then on related back to stories by Ranulph Raven, Victorian novelist—animals were replaced by marble effigies, someone received a tombstone telling him when he would die, and a servant wa ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published February 12th 2001 by House of Stratus (first published 1945)
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Community Reviews

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John Frankham
One of the best John Appleby crime novels from Michael Innes, this one from just after the war: surreal, fantastical happenings in deepest rural England. Cows, dogs and village idiots turned to stone, a servant of the Manor found dead with only his head showing above the snow, a family of impoverished Ravens whose servants and village members seem to resemble them, pigs sold on the never-never, and only Scotland Yard's Appleby to solve and obfuscate. Erudite and intellectual in the telling, in t ...more
I've read a few of Michael Innes' Appleby stories, and I have enjoyed them, but perhaps not as much as they could be enjoyed had I more familiarity with the many literary references that Innes rolls out in the course of the story-telling. This book is not one to listen to (audiobook) at bedtime, as it requires more attention than a drowsy listener/reader would likely give it.

One reviewer mentioned that this story reminded him of Jerome Jerome's "Three Men in a Boat . . ." and I had had the very
Even though it was necessary to read this book with a dictionary nearby, I found the zany characters and situations humorous and entertaining. We will be contrasting and comparing the book with Donna Andrew's Murder with Peacocks. Further comments to follow to follow the discussion in Nov but I must admit I enjoyed the book in spite of the polysyllabic vocabulary. It brought to mind another book--Three Men in a Boat Not to Mention the Dog--and the cleverness of a Jasper Fforde novel.
"Appleby's End was the name of the station where Detective Inspector John Appleby got off the train from Scotland Yard. But that was not the only coincidence. Everything that happened from then on related back to stories by Ranulph Raven, Victorian novelist - animals were replaced by marble effigies, someone received a tombstone telling him when he would die, and a servant was found buried up to his neck in snow, dead. Why did Ranulph Raven's mysterious descendants make such a point of inviting ...more
Can't deny the wit, or the erudition, or the sure hand of the author. But my early excitement and interest based on those qualities dwindled as I read, because this really isn't a book about real people--it's mysterious whimsy about the donnishly quirky. Which is OK, but not as funny as P.G. Wodehouse. Nor as academically wacky as Edmund Crispin. Nor as mysterious as Dorothy Sayers, or any of a hundred other golden age authors. I finished reading it and am glad that I don't have to read it any m ...more
Scotland Yard detective John Appleby is trapped on a slow train, to investigate "strange happenings," when he meets first Everard Raven, the noted encyclopedist, and then the rest of the Raven family, most notably Everard's cousin Judith, a sardonic but lovely young woman. Soon Appleby finds himself puzzling over the relationships among various rustic families. In this case, Appleby must not only figure out what's going on, but also let his colleague come to an erroneous conclusion, the better t ...more
Wow, I didn't think I'd learn so many big words from a mystery book! The verbose writing was sometimes tedious, but I appreciated the combination of well-structured sentences in the mystery genre. The mystery itself wasn't so intriguing, and the solution/resolution wasn't crystal clear. I enjoyed reading this 1940s detective story more for the writing than the puzzle.
Oct 10, 2007 Cindy rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: vintage English mystery fans
Shelves: mysteries
Just finished rereading this one. Inspector Appleby of Scotland Yard is sent to rural England in the middle of winter to investigate some mysterious thefts and practical jokes. On his way he meets the eccentric Raven family and discovers a dead body. One of the funniest in this series, with that dry English humor that you might miss if you read it too quickly.
I wish I had bought this for my Kindle because then I would have had a dictionary handy. I consider myself fairly well read but this was a challenge. I did enjoy the humor throughout the book and the character of the Scotland Yard detective. Read it for my book group in Oxford. Had never heard of this series or the author before.
In a class by itself. Donnish humor. Obscurely criminal behavior. I've read it well over ten times in the last forty years, and only wish I could read it again for the third or fourth time. Contains one of the most unusual courtships in literature.
Linda Chrisman
One of my favorites. Witty, intelligent and a great story. A very elegant writer who can turn a memorable phrase. A Marx Brothers plot written by an Oxford Don.
One of the best Appleby mysteries. I do love romance and mystery mixed together.
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Michael Innes was the pseudonym of John Innes MacKintosh (J.I.M.) Stewart (J.I.M. Stewart).

He was born in Edinburgh, and educated at Edinburgh Academy and Oriel College, Oxford. He was Lecturer in English at the University of Leeds from 1930-1935, and spent the succeeding ten years as Jury Professor of English at the University of Adelaide, South Australia.

He returned to the United Kingdom in 19
More about Michael Innes...
Death at the President's Lodging (Sir John Appleby, #1) Hamlet, Revenge! (Sir John Appleby, #2) Lament For A Maker (Sir John Appleby, #3) The Daffodil Affair  (Sir John Appleby, #8) Appleby On Ararat  (Sir John Appleby, #7)

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