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The Habit of Widowhood

3.7  ·  Rating Details ·  46 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Ranging from the hilarious to the heart-stopping, concerning characters who slide unwittingly into murder as well as those for whom it is second nature, Barnard's stories are widely admired and this new collection is sure to be hotly anticipated. This work contains 17 mystery stories.
Published October 1st 1996 by Scribner Book Company (first published January 1st 1996)
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Dec 04, 2011 Bev rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery, shortstories
had forgotten (if I ever realized it) that The Habit of Widowhood was a collection of short stories. I put it on the challenge TBR list thinking it was a novel about a woman who has the habit of losing her husbands. She's in there...but as one short story among many.

As Robert Barnard mentions in his introduction, short stories are somewhat of a lost art. There are very few magazines that publish the abbreviated form any more and the trend seems to be toward writing novel trilogies and series rat
Nan Silvernail
Aug 05, 2011 Nan Silvernail rated it really liked it
Named for one of the short stories included, the title and the cover art were a little mis-leading to me. I thought I was in for a collection of murderous widows. Not so. It would better be described as tales of murderous sexual partners, for the intersection of victim and murderer is not found on Lover's Lane in these stories.
Having said that, it's a gory bag of goodies. Some fates deserved and others not.
The author, in his introduction asserts that the short story is a dying art. (I get the jo
Jeff Hobbs
May 22, 2016 Jeff Hobbs marked it as to-read
Read so far:

Cupid's dart --
The habit of widowhood --
Post mortem --
Soldier, from the wars returning --
My son, my son --
The stuff of nightmares --
Balmorality --
Living with Jimmy --
If looks could kill --
Happy Christmas --
Reader, I strangled him --
The gentleman in the lake --
Dog television --
The women at the funeral --
Perfect honeymoon --
Called to judgment --
More final than divorce --
Oct 17, 2009 Janet added it
Shelves: mystery
wicked short stories. Good.
Anne Marie
Aug 19, 2012 Anne Marie rated it it was ok
This book was a bunch of short stories about murder. None stick out in my mind, not too exciting.
Lynn Demsky
Oct 10, 2016 Lynn Demsky rated it it was amazing
Shelves: short-stories
Some of his mystery stories made me chuckle out loud, some made me cry and some terrified me much more than King, Koontz, Patterson and/or Cook ever did! And, yet ---what a truly delightful author!
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Aka Bernard Bastable.

Robert Barnard (born 23 November 1936) is an English crime writer, critic and lecturer.

Born in Essex, Barnard was educated at the Royal Grammar School in Colchester and at Balliol College in Oxford. His first crime novel, A Little Local Murder, was published in 1976. The novel was written while he was a lecturer at University of Tromsø in Norway. He has gone on to write more t
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