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Busman's Honeymoon

(Lord Peter Wimsey #11)

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  17,323 ratings  ·  858 reviews
Lord Peter Wimsey and his bride, mystery writer Harriet Vane, start their honeymoon with murder. The former owner of Talboys estate is dead in the cellar with a misspelled "notise" to the milkman, not a spot of blood on his smashed skull, and £600 in his pocket. ...more
Paperback, Harper Torch, 409 pages
Published February 2006 by HarperTorch (first published 1937)
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Sheryl Hill Gaudy Night is not a cliffhanger, but it isn't as meaningful and wonderful unless you read the Harriet Vane/Lord Peter Wimsey books in order.

There is …more
Gaudy Night is not a cliffhanger, but it isn't as meaningful and wonderful unless you read the Harriet Vane/Lord Peter Wimsey books in order.

There is also an underlying story about Peter as a person. His mother and siblings are delightful characters who grow and develop throughout the series. If you are interested in character-development, they should be read in order.

The audiobooks are especially good.(less)

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Average rating 4.27  · 
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May 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
While reading this, the fifth Sayers mystery I've read so far, I was finally able to figure out just why I love her novels more than any other mystery writer I've encountered so far: I love Dorothy Sayers because she does everything wrong, but it all somehow manages to work.

There are some commonly accepted rules for novel-writing, and detective-novel-writing specifically, that authors have to follow in order for anyone to enjoy/buy their books. Dorothy Sayers looks at these rules, scoffs, and go
Jan 05, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic-mystery
This is tedious in the beginning, because it starts with a series of letters between aristocratic ladies who have nothing better to do then trash the coming marriage of Lord Peter and Harriet. I began to think the whole thing was going to be a confusing epistolary novel, but then all that ended and the story began.

The centerpiece is lovely with Peter and Harriet discussing in their minds and between themselves what love and companionship really mean. It is really quite involved and intellectual
Aug 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: xx2018-completed
This novel opens with a series of unkind and gossipy letters, mostly among the aristocratic circles that the Wimsey family is connected to. Among the scribbling gossipers is Lord Peter’s sister-in-law, Lady Helen, the Duchess of Denver. However, neither Lord Peter nor his intended, Harriet Vane care two figs about others’ opinions on their nuptials. After a courtship of almost 6 years, everything finally fell into place for them and they are deliciously happy.

One of the female dons from Harriet’
(Before I talk about the "book", I think it is worth noting that the dramatised audiobook I listened to this morning is NOT the book, and should not really be included as an "edition" of the book. It is a BBC Radio 4 dramatised version that is only 150 minutes long, and reading some other people's reviews I realise that it does NOT include certain aspects of the book at all.
I have set up dramatised versions where they did not exist but as I am not a librarian I do not have the "power" to split t
Having never read Busman's Honeymoon, I'd still somehow managed to pick up the vague idea that: 1) it featured a married Peter and Harriet, and, because of that fact, 2) it wasn't very interesting. Right on the first count, definitely wrong on the second.

It's true that this final Sayers-penned Wimsey mystery is more a meditation on the ups and downs, joys and negotiations of new marriage (Harriet and Peter manage to sneak off for a honeymoon only to discover a corpse in the house), but the myste
Cindy Rollins
This book has a lighter tone than Gaudy Night and it is delightful with its almost constant quoting of various works by various authors, most especially the inspector and Lord Peter. Great fun.
Nov 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After agreeing to marry Lord Peter Wimsey in “Gaudy Night,” this novel sees the couple marrying and embarking on their honeymoon. Having fought both herself, and her feelings, for so long, Harriet allows Peter to buy her a house – Talboys – a farmhouse that she admired as a child, to be a weekend cottage. Delighted to please her, Peter buys the house from the current owner, Noakes, who agrees to stay there until they move in.

However, what with avoiding the press and organising the wedding, Bunte
Kaethe Douglas
I'm not reading these Sayers books in any kind of rational order. Oh, I am in love with this one. I know just enough of Sayers' biography to appreciate why she would have written this. Up until the introduction of the body, it feels more like a Wodehouse, with a bit of Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House thrown in. One doesn't normally say of mysteries that they are sweet, but the author has done a fabulous job of showing two people who are in love but still awkward in their marriage. And Buntn ...more
Dan Myatt
Jan 29, 2021 rated it really liked it
What I love about a Dorothy L Sayers book is that they are wonderfully written and take you on such a lovely journey you forget all about the murder!

As always a great plot and wonderfully written a delightful Honeymoon for Lord Peter and me, the reader.
Nov 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019, 2016
2019 Reread

The Prothalamion continues to be everything I've ever wanted. The Dowager Duchess is a delight.

And I just love Peter and Harriet finding their footing after the major shift in their relationship, particularly juxtaposed with how they both are in Gaudy Night.

I also love how all the minor catastrophes and inconveniences really bring it home to both of them that they're actually married. 'Tis great.

This one just makes me happy.

2019 Reading Challenge - A book that includes a wedding

This i
Mar 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This novel is really much more of a love story than a mystery, as Dorothy L Sayers herself acknowledged. But for readers who followed the story of Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane through the three previous novels which featured both characters, it is a most satisfying love story and a welcome culmination to the years of Peter's patient courtship and Harriet's determined resistance. Tbere's enough of a mystery to make it worthy of being called a mystery novel, but no more than that. Apart from the ...more
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ian Carmichael made a surprisingly good Lord Peter, with none of the 'what-ho' exclamations I was expecting, and I enjoyed seeing Peter and Harriet in their newly-wedded bliss which wouldn't have been complete without a mystery to solve. ...more
Feb 18, 2021 added it
My apologies to friends who have told me that "Busman's Honeymoon" was a good mystery to read. I'm sure it is for some, but I had to stop on page 112. I just couldn't take it anymore. I had just received my first Moderna vax for Covid19 the day before; I was drowsy; and, I was satiated by two bowls of cannellini bean soup, a large helping of tortilla chips and a glass of red wine along with a thick slice of Emmenthaler cheese and two scallions.

I didn't have the stuff in me to swat away any more
Jason Koivu
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wimsey gets married and goes on honeymoon, but can't get away from murder. Too bad for him, but good news for us! ...more
Dec 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lord Peter Wimsey and author Harriet Vane have finally gotten themselves well and truly married. What better way to test their relationship's mettle than to put it through the crucible of solving a murder?

1. This is in many ways Bunter's book and I thank heaven for that fact every day. (I MEAN: Two minutes later, Bunter, prompted by God knows what savage libido, flung a boot from the back bedroom; and on the mere the wailing died away. and the Issue of the Port!!) He's such a present force in P
Feb 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is either a love story with detective interruptions, or the other way round. Either way, one is certain to prefer one part of it over the other, and I definitely prefer the interludes between Lord Peter and his new bride. Not only are they very much in love, they are incredibly honest, communicative, and generous with each other about the adjustment that married life means. They have both found rest from the weary world, in each other.

Here's one of my favorite of their exchanges:

Craig Monson
Jan 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
I somehow managed to miss this Dorothy Sayers mystery when I read all the other Peter Wimseys fifty years ago. It strikes me as even loooonger on characters who are characters than I remember from her other books, offering unusually extended swatches of village rustic, country-bumpkinish dialogue to contrast with quicker, upper-crust wit. (What with this decidedly “pre-globalization” flavor, if Sayers were to return from the dead to write a mystery in the days of Brexit, what sounds would she pu ...more
Ivonne Rovira
Dorothy L. Sayers created a memorable sleuth in the patrician Lord Peter Wimsey, whom she envisioned as a cross between the debonair Fred Astaire and the wooly-headed Bertie Wooster. Like the latter, Lord Peter's frequently rescued by his man, Bunter; unlike either, Lord Peter conceals a perspicacious mind and an overly sentimental heart underneath his frivolous exterior. Nearly a century later, mystery lovers like myself still enjoy Sayers' mystery novels.

That said, Sayers, while enjoyable, doe
Sep 15, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, crime, romance
I can't imagine reading Busman's Honeymoon for the mystery. By this point, the mystery is decidedly secondary to the characters and their relationship -- the pace is slow, and domestic details abound. I think we might learn more about Peter and Bunter than we do in any other book from how they behave in this one -- but much as I love it, I can completely understand why people who don't have any attachment to the characters (whether through not reading the previous books or just not caring for th ...more
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Own and Kindle.

Perhaps my favorite LPW to this point.
Aug 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So now Harriet and Peter are married and off to a honeymoon at Fallboys. It's a money pit ancient abode. Massive with charm. And it's one thing after another, but primarily the chimneys won't draw and it's late fall cold.

That's the setting. And overall I thought it a 3.5 star rounded up for the Peter/Harriet conversations upon future sensibilities/ habits/ assumptions they will be making with / between each other. And the erudite intros and all the high flying intelligencia asides and allusions
Caro Kinkead
Sep 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who loves classic British Mysteries
Shelves: mystery
Oh, frabjous day! At long last, Dorothy L. Sayer's marvelous Lord Peter Wimsey novels have been released in in ebook form. I say this as someone who has at least one copy of all the novels and short story collections in her house (sometimes two because one copy has simply been read to death), but having the books easily and conveniently available wherever I go is a joy.

Sayers called the book "A love story with detective interruptions" and that it is. Lord Peter has finally won Harriet Vane, but
Jan 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I love the way this book opens. In the previous one Harriet and Peter have agreed to marry, and this book covers the first few days of their honeymoon, but of course fans want to read about the engagement and wedding. Unfortunately that's often not all that satisfying to read, especially if it has to be rushed over to get to the main story. So Sayers opens with one chapter of excerpts from letters between friends and not-so-friendly people, and parts of the Dowager's diary for the days leading u ...more
May 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed, favorites
Flawed but fabulous. This is my favorite epistolary anything-ever-written, even beating out Sorcery and Cecelia. I love this opening so much. Helen's letter - the Dean's letter - the Duchess's diary - everything about it is perfect.

The mystery, slightly less so. This is flawed. But it sets up some spectacular scenes between Harriet and Peter, and let's face it: those are the only reasons I reread this book. (I even typed the French sentences into Google Translate.)
"Except to teach me for the fir
Jan 29, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Newlyweds Lord Peter & Harriet spend their honeymoon in their newly purchased country home. The previous owner's corpse turns up in the basement. Bunter doesn't get along with the housekeeper. The cast of local characters produces some interesting characters and a variety of motives. The first hour or so of the audio book was told in an epistolary fashion, but after that, Sayers turned back to her tried and true methods of telling the story. Overall it's an interesting plot, but it drags out a l ...more
Dec 25, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Where I got the book: my bookshelf.

Harriet Vane and Lord Peter Wimsey are married at last, and have purchased an old house in the country where they intend to honeymoon. They arrive to find that the previous owner hasn't put things in order as he promised, and find out (mercifully AFTER the wedding night) that there's a good reason...

This novel was based on a stage play that Sayers wrote with a friend (presumably to capitalize on the popularity of Gaudy Night, the previous Wimsey/Vane book.) Yo
Louise Hartgen
Nov 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
When I have had a really dirty day and want to do no more than curl up with a glass of wine and a whacking good who dunnit, then it has to be Dorothy L Sayers. Ah, Lord Peter Wimsy, you either love him or loathe him! I've always loved him, and I particularly like this book because it is not your average crime novel.

Oh sure, you have a pair of newly-weds, an old house in the country, a cast of eccentric characters from the bumbling vicar to the twittery spinster to the police inspector who likes
Even though I'm giving this five stars, I do rather agree with those of you who didn't like it as well as you expected. It's just that the good parts are SO GOOD. The ending in particular means the book NEEDS five stars.

Overall, though, there was too much time spent on villagers and I didn't like them as well as I often like Sayers's side characters. I just wanted to get back to Peter and Harriet!

But ohhh, the bits we DID get of them were so great. (view spoiler)
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Dorothy Leigh Sayers was a renowned British author, translator, student of classical and modern languages, and Christian humanist.

Dorothy L. Sayers is best known for her mysteries, a series of novels and short stories set between World War I and World War II that feature English aristocrat and amateur sleuth Lord Peter Wimsey. However, Sayers herself considered her translation of Dante's Divina Co

Other books in the series

Lord Peter Wimsey (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Whose Body?  (Lord Peter Wimsey, #1)
  • Clouds of Witness (Lord Peter Wimsey, #2)
  • Unnatural Death (Lord Peter Wimsey, #3)
  • The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club (Lord Peter Wimsey, #4)
  • Strong Poison (Lord Peter Wimsey, #5)
  • The Five Red Herrings (Lord Peter Wimsey, #6)
  • Have His Carcase (Lord Peter Wimsey, #7)
  • Murder Must Advertise  (Lord Peter Wimsey, #8)
  • The Nine Tailors (Lord Peter Wimsey, #9)
  • Gaudy Night (Lord Peter Wimsey, #10)

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