Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Help the Poor Struggler (Richard Jury #6)” as Want to Read:
Help the Poor Struggler (Richard Jury #6)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Help the Poor Struggler (Richard Jury #6)

3.99  ·  Rating Details ·  2,990 Ratings  ·  103 Reviews
Around bleak Dartmoor, where the Hound of the Baskervilles once bayed, three children have been brutally murdered.  Now Richard Jury of Scotland Yard joins forces with a hot-tempered local constable named Brian Macalvie to track down the killer.

The trail begins at a desolate pub, Help the Poor Struggler.  It leads straight to the estate of Lady Jessica, a ten-year-old orph
Unknown Binding, 225 pages
Published January 1st 1985 by Little Brown and Company
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Help the Poor Struggler, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Help the Poor Struggler

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jill Hutchinson
An early entry in the Richard Jury series and, although interesting, not quite as good as the later books. Some of the continuing characters that pop up in most of the later novels are not yet introduced, and if they are, we don't learn much about them. Those delightful folks who become a part of the charm of the series are still waiting in the wings.

The plot is centered on the murders of three children which is of course a very distasteful subject but the author thankfully does not dwell on th
Jul 26, 2015 Louise rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
A good gripping mystery, although it wasn't at all clear what the motive was in the cold case murder. Brian Macalvie was introduced. I prefer it when Melrose Plant has a larger role.
Jan 03, 2015 Dorothy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whenever I need a break from more serious reading, there are a few authors that I know I can depend on to entertain me without taxing my poor brain too much. Martha Grimes is one. I have thoroughly enjoyed acquainting myself with her series of Inspector Richard Jury mysteries over the past year. This is only the seventh in the series that now runs to twenty-three books at last count, so it's likely that I have a few more years of fun reading ahead of me - unless I decide to do a Grimes readathon ...more
Eileen Chavez
Almost a four. Really atmospheric and forboding, and I really enjoyed the characters and story. Grimes did a good job of making everyone seem suspicious. When you think you've picked up on something it turns out to be a red herring and the real clues seem so obvious in retrospect. I do wish the endings were slightly less abrupt. This wasn't as bad as a couple others but I do like the resolution to be spelled out a bit more!
Jan 17, 2017 Judy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The effects of a brutal murder that happened years ago are coming to a head and Richard Jury is chasing someone who has murdered three children. Interesting characters in this one.
Joyce Lagow
Apr 20, 2010 Joyce Lagow rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
6th in the Richard Jury series.[return][return]The book opens with a grisly murder committed 20 years previously in a small community, Clerihew Marsh, close to Dartmoor. A 5 year old girl, Teresa Mulvanney witnessed the murder, that of her mother, and had remarkable presence of mind to call for help. But waiting alone with the body and the horror, by the time the police arrived, her mind had retreated into mental darkness. A young medical student, Sam Waterman, was arrested and convicted for the ...more
Oct 29, 2014 Kathie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow! I didn't see that coming. A stunning ending to this mystery. But I'm still Robert really James? Which one killed Rose? How did the first Ashcroft brother die?
Kristi Lamont
Saddest one so far. Liked one of the new main characters enough to hope he appears in the next. Absolutely nothing bad to say about this series, it's truly my cup of tea.
Nov 12, 2016 Sherry rated it really liked it
Bk 6!
Of the series is the best so far. Great weaving of the characters, story and backstory. A twenty year old unsolved murder that falsely sent a young man to prison, echoes as three children are murdered in scattered villages in Devon and Dartmore, and it looks like a ten year old heiress may be the next victim. Well done.
May 17, 2017 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
So kurz und doch recht verwirrend kommt Jury im Nebel daher. Die Charaktere sind wieder auf ihre schrullige Art liebenswürdig und interessant und Plant vermisst augenscheinlich seine Tante.
"6th in the Richard Jury series.[return][return]The book opens with a grisly murder committed 20 years previously in a small community, Clerihew Marsh, close to Dartmoor. A 5 year old girl, Teresa Mulvanney witnessed the murder, that of her mother, and had remarkable presence of mind to call for help. But waiting alone with the body and the horror, by the time the police arrived, her mind had retreated into mental darkness. A young medical student, Sam Waterman, was arrested and convicted for th ...more
Sep 26, 2015 Dyana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book started out kind of "ho hum" for me until about half way through when Melrose Plant showed up to give Superintendent Richard July help on his case. Plant is always good for some wit and insight on Jury's cases.

The book begins twenty years earlier with five year old Teresa Mulvanney witnessing the murder of her mother Rose. By the time Sergeant Brian Macalvie of the Devon-Cornwall constabulary arrives, she is catatonic and ends up in an institution. A young medical student named Sam Wat
#6 Inspector Richard Jury, rural Devonshire, England; cosy police procedural. Children are being brutally murdered in what seems a random progression, and Jury must work with the local authorities of several villages to solve the case(s).

Good characters and a strong plot made this very entertaining, with several themes twisting around each other and doubling back and forth. There’s precious little of Aunt Agatha, thankfully, and only a sort of “Guest Appearance” for Melrose Plant - the novel be
Nov 01, 2008 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008
After the last book in the series, I thought it was getting a bit dull & repetitive, but I really enjoyed this one. The mystery was the main focus of the book, not the random locals in the current small British village that is the backdrop. the brevity of Agatha's scene was also key in the gettign 4 starts from me.

I also liked how the story jumped around from different settings, with out much explanation as to who, in the beginning, but then tied all the story lines together at the end.

Oct 05, 2007 Mark rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-spy
The sixth (?) book in the Richard Jury mysteries. I quite liked this one. The standard "local constable" character is play by the very forceful Brian Macalvie. Several other characters are well depicted. The requisite Mrs Wasserman and Aunt Agatha scenes were mercifully brief. The action and the mystery very smoothly spiral in on the spunky Jessica Ashcroft, child heir to the Ashcroft estate.

Because I'm reading this series in quick succession, the similarities between books has become
May 11, 2016 Debbie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, fiction
Excellent mystery - you know it's someone in the story but when you can't figure out who is the murderer - well that's well done. And we meet Macalvie! It's funny - as noted in my other reviews I have read these more than once but now 'listening' to them back to back is such fun and actually surprising. If you asked me about the other characters I would have said that Carol-Anne comes in very early and that Polly, Macalvie, and Jenny Kennington much later (of course they aren't in every story wh ...more
Jun 30, 2008 Kristen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery fans
Shelves: mystery
This was a great book. Martha Grimes is American, but she writes a great British mystery.

20 years ago, DI Macalvie was unable to clear a young man of murder who he believed to be innocent. The victim's daughter, who witnessed the crime, is confined to a mental institute with little hope of recovery. The convicted man serves 20 years and then is released. Immediately after his release, a string of three child-murders occurs. He of course is suspected. Macalvie, Jury, Wiggins and the rest of the c
May 30, 2016 George rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
#6 in the Scotland Yard Superintendent Richard Jury mystery series. Jury joins forces with a Devonshire hot-tempered divisional commander to track down the brutal killer of three children. The commander sees a connection between these killings and a murder 20 years ago in which he felt the wrong man was sent to prison for it.

A good mystery with added "zest" provided by the commander and a 10 year old girl. The Jury mysteries tend to end with a band without necessarily wrapping up all loose ends
Mar 21, 2016 Lynn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Love these pub names, they really resonate with the plots. In this case, there are several "poor strugglers," including Richard Jury and the women/girl characters.

Poor Alice has had a hard time of it: she's become an orphan and is facing an uncertain life until she is taken in hand by her long-lost uncle. But is he? That's one mystery that's not completely clear, which is why I gave this three stars instead of four. Plus, it's not clear who dun the original murder. Is the point that it will rema
Kamas Kirian
Aug 21, 2014 Kamas Kirian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall I liked it. But it had a different structure than many of her other Jury novels. There is a section of 25 pages in the middle, roughly 12% of the book, that didn't have Jury or Melrose in it all. And, Melrose didn't show up until half way through the book. So far, my least favorite in the series.

The story was good, though the conclusion seemed a little rushed. Macalvie was a great character, and I hope we'll see more of him in the future. Lady Jessica was kind of fun as well. It definite
Thomas Bruso
Mar 02, 2014 Thomas Bruso rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

It is always a great joy reading a Martha Grimes novel. Her sharp, witty dialogue is unique as are the complicated, dazzling plots. Richard Jury, along with Melrose Plant and Brian Macalvie gather at "Help the Poor Struggler" pub to deduce the conundrum of three murdered children.

The atmosphere, foggy and cold, add to the already gripping narrative. And nobody can tell a story better then Grimes. Her flawless character ring true, and Richard Jury is at his literary best in this book.

Dark, gritty
Nov 28, 2010 Deb rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010-books-read
Superintendent Jury is called in to help investigate a series of child murders in the Devon-Cornwall Constabulary. He's not exactly welcomed by the officer in charge of the cases, Chief Superintendent Brian Macalvie. The two detectives determine that the three murders are linked to a nearly 20 year old previous murder witnessed only by a five year old girl who has spent most of the ensuing years in an institution in a catatonic state. Jury meets his match in Lady Jessica Ashcroft, the child heir ...more
Aug 08, 2009 Mazel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: policier
Un coup de couteau dans le dos. L'une après l'autre, les victimes tombent. Toujours des enfants.

Aidés du commissaire Malcavie, l'inspecteur Jury et son fidèle Melrose Plant ne négligent aucune piste.

Mais pourquoi Malcavie s'acharne-t-il à penser qu'il existe un lien entre ces assassinats et celui de Rose Mulvanney, commis vingt ans auparavant ?

Et pourquoi ce pub désolé, posé en bordure de route, en pleine campagne, est-il devenu son quartier général ?

Dans un pays où les secrets de famille on
Aug 13, 2016 Nancy rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Detective mysteries
Recommended to Nancy by: Goodreads
Shelves: grimes-martha
This is book 6 in the series and I'm going to slow down after this one. Book 5 and 6 have fanciful children characters that I found unrealistic. (Wrote this in book 5 review earlier.) Also, in this book Martha Grimes begins the story with a brutal murder and 15 years later 3 murders of children. Then unexpectedly we are onto the story of a spoiled 5-year old who speaks as an adult and has adult motives. At which point Melrose shows up and we are led (slowly) back to the plot.

Oh well, I'm taking
Aug 06, 2008 Anne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I generally like ms. grimes' stuff - lighthearted British murder mysteries populated by amusing characters, a teeny bit of romance, and lots of britishness. but this one was just OK. it was kind of short and undeveloped and I ended the book not really knowing what happened. plus a lot of space was taken up with the comings and goings of a fairly annoying little girl. grimes always has a kid somewhere in her books, but they're usually not as pervasive or annoying as this one. oh well. i'll just m ...more
I've enjoyed all the Richard Jury/Melrose Plant mysteries I've read - until now. I tried hard to like this one, but just gave up after a while. I'm surprised I finished it. There is a great deal of violence against children - a little girl witnesses the bloody murder of her mother, three more children are killed, and a fourth is threatened with death. The "solution" at the end doesn't really provide a sense of closure, and motive for the crimes is totally absurd. I'm going to give Grimes a pass ...more
Three children are brutally. Richard Jury is called in to help the local cop Macalvie. They have very different ways of doing their investigations. They later cross paths with young Jessica when she reports her uncle missing. The uncle turns up soon with a new governess. But Richard Jury still thinks Jessica and her family are still connected to the murders somehow. There's also a complication of an old murder.

Intriguing case with connections to the past. As the truth unfolds, there are many tw
Mar 02, 2016 Cindy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I used to read Martha Grimes, could not wait for the next book. Times must have changed. I did not enjoy this book. It had the promise of a good mystery. Three children are found dead and Scotland Yard has to figure out if it is connected to a murder that happened 20 years ago. There were too many characters, too many plots. I was hoping that it would all connect at the end. The ending felt rushed and did not make sense. I had to read the final two chapters twice and still not sure about the sol ...more
Oct 26, 2007 Doina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: british-mystery
As always, another good one from Martha Grimes. I don't think I have read any of her books and not enjoyed them. In this book Richard Jury is investigating the three grisly deaths of children, and is joining forces not only with Plant, but also with the surly Brian Macalvie. This one had the same witty dialogue and quirky characters, and as always I can never guess who did it. Always a pleasure reading her.
Knowing some classic literature certainly helps when trying to decipher this one. At one point, the surly Macalvie, a driven detective who has a weakness for Bogart-esque mannerisms, asks Richard Jury, "What is this? A quiz?" I was happy to see Melrose Plant back in action, but the winner in this one was the forerunner of Flavia de Luce, the Lady Jessica, a 10-year-old who's got the world--and its most expensive cars--all figured out.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Gone to Her Death (Lloyd & Hill, #3)
  • In the Presence of the Enemy (Inspector Lynley, #8)
  • Water Like a Stone (Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James, #11)
  • Death Notes (Inspector Wexford, #11)
  • Enter a Murderer (Roderick Alleyn, #2)
  • Puppet For A Corpse
Martha Grimes is an American author of detective fiction.

She was born May 2 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to D.W., a city solicitor, and to June, who owned the Mountain Lake Hotel in Western Maryland where Martha and her brother spent much of their childhood. Grimes earned her B.A. and M.A. at the University of Maryland. She has taught at the University of Iowa, Frostburg State University, and Montg
More about Martha Grimes...

Other Books in the Series

Richard Jury (1 - 10 of 23 books)
  • The Man With a Load of Mischief (Richard Jury, #1)
  • The Old Fox Deceiv'd (Richard Jury, #2)
  • The Anodyne Necklace (Richard Jury, #3)
  • The Dirty Duck (Richard Jury, #4)
  • Jerusalem Inn (Richard Jury, #5)
  • The Deer Leap (Richard Jury, #7)
  • I Am the Only Running Footman (Richard Jury, #8)
  • The Five Bells and Bladebone (Richard Jury, #9)
  • The Old Silent (Richard Jury, #10)
  • The Old Contemptibles (Richard Jury, #11)

Share This Book