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Police at the Funeral (Albert Campion Mystery #4)
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Police at the Funeral (Albert Campion #4)

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  3,198 ratings  ·  75 reviews
The imperious Caroline Faraday runs her house like a Victorian fiefdom, unconcerned with the fact that it is 1931. Furniture and meals are heavy and elaborate, motorcars and morning tea forbidden. The middle-aged children chafe, but stay for money, until one turns up dead, then his sister, and Albert Campion investigates.
Mass Market Paperback, 252 pages
Published by Penguin (first published 1931)
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This is the first book in the series to not have organized crime as a plot element. Like all the other Campion books it is set an old family home with an upper-crust cast (Allingham comes near to breaking the fourth wall when she makes her police officer comment on the improbability of this given how few murders are actually committed in stately homes by rich families). In this case the dramatic personae are unusual primarily for their senescence: a tyrannical octogenarian widow keeps her elderl
My first foray into Margery Allingham's world of Mr. Campion and it was a rather delightful trip. I listened to the audio of this and the narrator was quite enthusiastic and I felt as if I was listening to a full ensemble of actors as he changed his voice for each character.

I would call this a good old fashioned mystery....murders, a mansion, minimal clues and suspects galore among these quirky, oddball characters. Mr. Campion, not a police detective but a rather over the top adventurist is ri
1931, #4 Albert Campion, Adventurer, London and Cambridge; many secrets come to light when a cantankerous member of a socially prominent - but peculiar - Cambridge family goes missing. Both the book and the tv film are highly recommended for those who enjoy Golden Age puzzle plots. four-and-one-half stars.

The autocratic - and personally remarkable - Mrs. Caroline Farraday rules over her odd family with an iron grip - no soft edges for *this* late-Victorian matriarch, thank you very much! Althoug
I’ve never read a Margey Allingham before, but having finally taken the plunge I have to say that I’m hugely impressed. She’s of course one of the Grande Dames of English detective fiction, but she is a much better writer than either Dorothy L. Sayers or Agatha Christie (though it wouldn’t be hard to be a more skilled prose stylist than Dame Agatha). Interestingly she seems to realise there’s something faintly absurd about the notion of an aristocratic detective (according to my good friend Wiki ...more
I love old vintage mysteries – I rarely read modern crime fiction – and if I do its historical or a bit cosy. I adore all those gentlemen sleuths and big houses full of odd crusty characters and convoluted mysteries. But aside from all that which is all pretty great anyway – these old vintage mysteries from that period called the Golden Age of Crime, were proper well written novels, with interesting characters fully explored, they are wonderful period pieces. It is years since I read any Margery ...more
Police at the funeral by Margery Allingham is the 4th book featuring Albert Campion. Campion is asked to look into the disappearance of Andrew Faraday by an old friend. This soon becomes a murder case when Andrew's body is discovered shot and bound and then another member of the family is poisoned. A classic detective story with plenty of clues and red herring, competently solved by Campion leading to a satisfying and surprising conclusion. I enjoyed this book very much and will look for his oth ...more
Brian Clegg
I am a big fan of Allingham's Campion books, particularly the early ones, so I was delighted when Goodreads alerted me to one I'd missed over the years, particularly one set in Cambridge, a city I'm very fond of. But it was a significant disappointment.

Cambridge is wasted as a locale - it could have been set anywhere. But the problem I have with the book is that it has none of the charm of the other early Campions. It's partly because the way the mystery unfolds lacks something - but it's mostly
Well, I fell in love with Albert Campion all over again. I hadn't read any Margery Allingham books for a good long while and pulled out Police at the Funeral as my final entry in the Out With a Bang Read-a-Thon. I got so wrapped up in Campion's world that I stayed up till midnight just so I could finish it ('cuz I had to know what happened) and claim the whole book for the challenge.

In this novel, Campion is called upon by the fiancée of an old friend to investigate the mysterious disappearance
Excellent story. Never would have guessed how it ended and who the culprit actually turned out to be. Well written although the middle section seemed to drag a bit and I was kind of getting bored then it turned really good and I couldn't wait to finish. Some of the old-fashioned ways of speaking were kind of hard for me to follow at times but I seemed to have gotten the gist.
Elizabeth K.
Another in the Albert Campion mystery series -- it's in that comfortable genre place where everything is somewhat predictable but still enjoyable. Unfortunately Allingham has a knack for picking quickie plot points that are insanely dated now -- it's almost uncanny. You'd figure at least some of the time she'd hit upon things that don't jump off the page at you, but no. In this one, Albert goes to investigate a series of murders taking place in Cambridge, all within an old and established family ...more
I like the Albert Campion character, a lot. Unfortunately I didn't like ANY of the other characters in this book and a few of them I actively hated. It's hard to enjoy a book under those circumstances.
A much better story lies beneath the surface of the book I just read. The flaw is that Allingham needed to bring Campion onto the scene--which distracts from a rather chilling and compelling story of the ways in which the "staid" constrictions of Edwardian life could result in an entire generation of profoundly psychologically damaged people. The book is, of course, shot through with classism and racism that makes it difficult to stomach and suffers from not being willing to let the core story s ...more
After reading more than a dozen 'modern' novels, or those written within the last ten years, I needed something different, something classic, something in which people existed in a world far different from our own. (Published in 1931, set in the 1920's, yet the 'manse' in question, Socrates Close, doesn't even have a telephone in it, despite being the home of a very wealthy family. And yes, the police remark on how odd that is.) But the dialogue? Worth reading just for that. After one gets used ...more
Of all the classic detective fiction writers of the so-called Golden Age in Britain (1920s-1930s), Margery Allingham is definitely the best. Unlike the great Raymond Chandler, she doesn't try to "elevate" the genre, she subtly and self-consciously undermines its conventions. Her prose style is somewhat unassuming, but very pleasant and versatile.

"Police at the Funeral" is not quite the mature Allingham, but it is still much more memorable and less dated than the average whodunit by Agatha Christ
Margery Allingham, I love you. This is my favorite Campion book so far. It has a distinct flavour of 1930s Georgette Heyer - her contemporary mysteries that have since become delightfully historical.
Elizabeth Du
Classic British manor house mystery

This early 20th C. mystery set in the English countryside almost entirely within the confines of claustrophobically moody manor house peopled with an antique dysfunctional family will appeal to those who like me appreciate the classics of the genre. I for one love a Ten Little Indians (CHRISTIE of course), lots of folk in interesting old house being killed off one at a time. This was
of that ilk with ingenious twists within the Campion series formula. Not Alling
This had some really, really creepy racial attitudes. Along with the recurrent eccentric household etc.
For some time now I have been intending to re-read the row of green penguin paperback Margery Allingham Albert Campion mysteries high up on our crime fiction bookcase. Getting them down, however, requires a ladder. It's much easier to keep reading ebooks. Last week, however, we retrieved some Agatha Christie volumes for our granddaughter and I took the chance to grab a few Allinghams. The first to hand was Police at the Funeral.

It took a while for me to recall why I liked her books so much when
# 4 in the British mystery series featuring Albert Campion. A friend asks Campion to help deal with a situation developing involving where his fiance is staying in Cambridge. He then becomes involved with an eccentric family dominated and supported by Great Aunt Caroline. He works closely with a Scotland Yard inspector who is called in to help solve the murder of one of the family members.

There are a lot of false leads in this mystery and much of the story revolves around the very colorful famil
After three books, for the first time, Allingham takes Campion out of the thriller genre and into a much more traditional manor house murder mystery. And while she doesn't leave the solution as apparent as, say, Agatha Christie might, most of the major clues are on open display to the reader, and there is every possibility they will be able to guess at the solution before it is revealed. Allingham shows her skill at misdirection to the point where the solution, when it comes, feels almost obviou ...more
This book felt like it was full of potential but never quite got there.

The set-up is great: a Victorian matriarch in her 80s lives with four middle-aged dependents & her young companion, running the household on strict 1870s lines which do nothing to defuse the petty tensions between the younger people. Suddenly one of them vanishes, and while the young companion is trying to find the missing person, disaster strikes -- and then further catastrophes unfold,
This is what might be considered a "cozy" mystery. The main characters, with the exception of detective Albert Campion, are all members of the family. When Uncle Andrew is murdered and Uncle William is suspected, the only person he can think of to accuse in turn is Cousin George. Virtually no outside suspects are presented.

I appreciated the hints of Campion's background given through conversations with Lady Caroline Faraday, the grande dame of the household, and incidentally a friend of Campion'
This has actually been the most enjoyable of the Campion 'mysteries' I've read so far - the quotation marks are because some, like 'The Beckoning Lady' don't really seem to fit that easy genre, but the smaller focus of this novel suits her style better. The action is pretty much all contained to just one area over just a few days, a house and its surroundings, making it feel fairly close to 'The Mousetrap' by Agatha Christie.

The plot itself is fairly clear, with a series of murders and secrets t
On a Margery Allingham list I'm on, someone accidently posted a message that was meant to go to a different Allingham list - one for group reads of the Campion books. This seemed like an excellent idea and I nipped over and joined. They are still early in the series (this is the fourth book) so I jumped in with glee. I've read Police at the Funeral before, but on starting it, I couldn't remember exactly what happened or who "dunnit". In fact, as I kept reading, I still couldn't remember. While m ...more
I was prepared for the low level racism endemic in novels of this time period, but not for the full-on plot details hinging on it...ugh. I found myself rooting for someone meant to be a most unsympathetic character when the denouement revealed the reason for their ill treatment by their family. Other than that, a pretty efficient classic thriller.
A Good Campion mystery full of twists and turns. Campion is called in to help figure out what happened when a relative of a friend disappears. Then another family member is killed. A strange family with strange relationships. Campion has to figure out the killer in a household full of anxiety. Nice plot.
I picked this up at McKay's on a whim; I hadn't read an Allingham in years, and like another review I read, I think I tried her when I was reading Sayer's Peter Wimsey mysteries, and what could stack up to them? Well, I'm glad I gave them another try - her writing is crisp, her characters funny and interesting and well-drawn, and I like her humor (typically British and dry - two of my favorites!) I love the period as well, between the wars in Britain (I'm a freak for the Golden Age British myste ...more
This book taught me some new words:

whizz-boy: pickpocket

tantalus: a liquor cabinet that displays its contents even when it's locked

fruit salts: an antacid

Entertaining and ultra-British mystery first published in 1931. Ridiculous but entertaining plot and characters. There are some fun turns of phrase, too. A terrified woman is described as making a noise like "a small train." I also liked this line: "It's one of those cluttered-up rooms--even the bed wears petticoats."

Unfortunately this book al
Definitely not my favourite volume from this series. The mystery itself is quite well plotted, with a nice surprising solution at the ending. And once again the writing turns out to be wonderfully detailed and enjoyable. But, on the other hand, the unlikeable characters and the gloomy atmosphere Campion encounters in the manor house tend to drag you down. They don't feel as lively and quirky as their counterparts in other books of the same series. The book, ununsually for a Campion Mystery, also ...more
Enjoyed this one a bit more than the earlier books in the Campion series, probably because this one doesn't feature an implausibly huge organized crime syndicate.
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Aka Maxwell March.

Margery Allingham was born in Ealing, London in 1904 to a family of writers. Her father, Herbert John Allingham, was editor of The Christian Globe and The New London Journal, while her mother wrote stories for women's magazines. Margery's aunt, Maud Hughes, also ran a magazine. Margery earned her first fee at the age of eight, for a story printed in her aunt's magazine.

Soon after
More about Margery Allingham...

Other Books in the Series

Albert Campion (1 - 10 of 26 books)
  • The Crime at Black Dudley (Albert Campion Mystery #1)
  • Mystery Mile (Albert Campion Mystery #2)
  • Look to the Lady (Albert Campion Mystery #3)
  • Sweet Danger (Albert Campion Mystery #5)
  • Death of a Ghost (Albert Campion Mystery #6)
  • Flowers for the Judge (Albert Campion Mystery #7)
  • The Case of the Late Pig (Albert Campion Mystery #8)
  • Dancers in Mourning (Albert Campion Mystery #9)
  • The Fashion in Shrouds
  • Traitor's Purse (Albert Campion Mystery #11)
The Tiger in the Smoke (Albert Campion Mystery #14) The Crime at Black Dudley (Albert Campion Mystery #1) Mystery Mile (Albert Campion Mystery #2) Sweet Danger (Albert Campion Mystery #5) The Fashion in Shrouds

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“Mr. Campion felt that among the ordeals by fire and by water there should now be numbered the ordeal by dinner at Socrates Close.” 1 likes
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