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G.K. Chesterton
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The Innocence of Father Brown (Father Brown #1)

3.86  ·  Rating Details ·  9,821 Ratings  ·  560 Reviews
The first compilation of Father Brown short stories, The Innocence of Father Brown, is the best place to start when diving into the world of G.K. Chesterson's classic detective stories. Father Brown is introduced in the famous story "The Blue Cross," and lovers of mystery will become quickly entrenched in his world. Often labeled the intuitive cousin of Arthur Conan Doyle' ...more
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Published August 23rd 2011 by Christian Classics Ethereal Library (first published 1911)
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Zrinka Dragun The TV series is based on this book and character, but it is not the same. I liked the stories better, but you have to read it to discover for…moreThe TV series is based on this book and character, but it is not the same. I liked the stories better, but you have to read it to discover for yourself. (less)
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Werner
Jul 12, 2010 Werner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery fans
Chesterton was a contemporary of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; and though he created his principal fictional sleuth, Father Brown, after Doyle had written the bulk of the Holmes canon, he can also claim a formative role (though not nearly so important as Doyle's) in the shaping of the genre. Father Brown is the first --but not the last!-- in a tradition of men and women of the cloth who solve traditional mysteries, the lineal ancestor of such figures as Father Dowling and Brother Cadfael, and the firs ...more
Trin
Feb 12, 2010 Trin rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Chesterton is perhaps best known for his Father Brown stories, so I was deeply disappointed to find that they represent him at his preachy, intolerant worst. If I’d started here, instead of with the wonderfully weird and delightfully dark The Man Who Was Thursday and The Napoleon of Notting Hill, I would have had no desire to pick up anything by Chesterton again. All of these stories seem to revolve around the irritatingly smug Father Brown proving that some type of non-Christian is wrong wrong ...more
Muhammad Shakhawat Hossain
ইংরেজী সাহিতয পৃথিবীকে অসামানয কিছু গোয়েনদা চরিতর উপহার দিয়েছে। সেই ১৭৫ বছর আগে এডগার অযালান পো’র হাত ধরে এলো পরথম আধুনিক গোয়েনদা চরিতর সি অগাসতে দুপযাঁ (দি মারডারস ইন দযা রু মরগ), যিনি যুকতিবিদযার পরয়োগে একের পর এক সূতর সাজিয়ে রীতিমতো বৈজঞানিক উপায়ে রহসযের সমাধান করেন। এরও পরায় অরধশত বছর পর সযার আরথার কোনান ডয়েল সৃষটি করলেন তাঁর অমর চরিতর শারলক হোমস, যা গোয়েনদা সাহিতযের মানদণড হিসেবে বৈশবিকভাবে আজ মোটামুটি সবীকৃত। আজ অবদি ইংরেজী ভাষায় যত গোয়েনদা সাহিতয রচিত হয়েছে, উললেখযযোগয পরায় পরতিটি গোয়েনদা ...more
Justus
May 13, 2010 Justus rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this reminded me all over again why I hate the Agatha Christie style of whodunnit where people commit bizarrely complicated murders for equally bizarre reasons. Let's take the second story in the collection.

M. Valentin is the Chief of Police and also an atheist. He hears a rumor that an American millionaire is going to donate his fortune to the Church of France. Since he is a rabid atheist he sets out to murder the man before he can amend his will. Let's pass over that central absurdity
...more
Manny
Dec 20, 2008 Manny rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you haven't come across the Father Brown stories (I'm surprised how few reviews there are), then they are worth reading. G.K. Chesterton is much more entertaining than your average Christian apologist, and if only the basic assumption of these books actually were true then I would feel a lot more sympathetic towards the Christian Church.

Chesterton doesn't just want to convince you that Christianity is different from superstition; in his universe, it's the opposite of superstition! The idea in
...more
Kavita
I had watched and loved the 2013 BBC adaptation of the Father Brown stories. Since then, I have wanted to read these books. In the first book of the collection, The Innocence of Father Brown, we are introduced to the dumpy, bigoted, narrow-minded, but ultimately smart priest, who goes around solving mysteries that flummoxes everyone else. We are also introduced to the master thief, Flambeau, who is a reformed criminal, and now helps the good Father in his crime solving.

I loved these stories. The
...more
Jesse Broussard
I have, at this point, gone through the first nine of this collection of twelve stories, and I am now fully convinced that Chesterton was not only a man of a brilliant mind, but of a very singular mind. His paradox is well known, his way of looking at things in an entirely novel light, his self-deprecation, his humor and wit and sheer genius are all legendary, but these stories are a glimpse into the workings of his mind when he decided to amuse himself with a train of thought, and are fascinati ...more
Steven
Somewhere between Sherlock Holmes and television's MONK, Father Brown may be better than both. A bumbling, unimpressive priest who nevertheless uses insights gained in the confessional booth to solve the most intricate criminal mysteries---these stories are a lot of fun. And they have an added appeal because of the way this unusual detective points the criminals to the cross and if they do not repent entirely, he can often secure at least a confession and a return of the stolen loot. And, being ...more
Ron
Oct 18, 2011 Ron rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drama, ebook, gutenberg
Good, but not as good as I hoped/expected. While the Father Brown short stories are in one sense classic detective tales, they focus on the preternatural ability of the diminutive cleric to pull solutions out of (apparently) thin air. Since the reader is not given enough background to even make faulty conjectures, the fun is diminished.

The title character is a winning one, though I found myself substituting Alex Guinness' image (who played the good father in an early movie adaptation) for that i
...more
LG (A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions)
After finishing the first story in this book, I had high hopes that, like Maurice Leblanc's Arsene Lupin, Chesterton's Father Brown would be another wonderful Project Gutenberg find for me. I enjoyed the reveal at the end of the first story, when Father Brown proved himself to be less naive then he appeared and explained the reason behind all the strange things he'd done and the actions he'd taken to protect the sapphire cross he carried. When Valentin, head of the Paris police and “the most fam ...more
Fiona
Oh, Gilbert Keith, I adore you and you are wonderful.

I read this collection of short stories in between deadlines, a story or two at a time first thing in the morning to help myself wake up. As far as I am concerned, a Father Brown short story is a perfect amuse bouche for the mental faculties. I guessed almost all of the answers before the big reveals, and many of them were ludicrously far-fetched, but that doesn't matter. That wasn't why I was reading it.

Father Brown is a fantastic main charac
...more
Peregrino
Feb 01, 2009 Peregrino rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
Cuando compré este libro, recomendado por Juan Mari, he de reconocer que lo hice sin muchas perspectivas de empezarlo en breve. Había intentado leer una biografía de S. Francisco de Asis del mismo autor, sin superar la página 10.

Sin embargo, he de reconocer que me ha encantado. Me parece un libro muy ameno, inteligente, muy bien escrito, donde se mezclan historias muy sencillas con mensajes más de fondo. Parece que el autor fue publicando las distintas historias del sagaz padre Brown y su amigo
...more
Grace Crandall
Nov 16, 2015 Grace Crandall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love, love, love the Father Brown mysteries. I'd heard most of these before, but it was nice to read them all in order, and there were a few new ones as well.
Flambeau is awesome. It was cool to watch how he changed through the various stories (though I do rather like him as a thief and a rogue as well) and Father Brown's rebellious innocence makes for a very refreshing read.
Of course, there is also the fantastic prose that gives every story an odd and slightly overblown sense of belonging in a
...more
Luís C.
The Innocence of Father Brown, published in 1911, brings together the first twelve adventures of this character, a Catholic priest from Essex but at exercise in London, down, always in a cassock, wearing a large umbrella and a disconcerting insight about human wickedness.

After this volume, the following: The Wisdom of Father Brown (1914), The Incredulity of Father Brown (1926), The Secret of Father Brown (1927) and The Scandal of Father Brown (1935).

Contrary to Sherlock Holmes, the methods of Fa
...more
Rose
Ah, Father Brown. I do like him. Even though some of the stories are far-fetched (and that is putting it nicely), I enjoy them. I like Father Brown's perspective and philosophy. There is a lot of humour in the stories, mainly based on very perceptive observations of life, which adds to their enjoyability.
Johnny
I don’t usually like short story anthologies, but I made an exception for The Innocence of Father Brown because of Gilbert Keith Chesterton and his friendship with C.S. Lewis and other scholars/authors of the era. I also like the fact that there is a recurring cast of characters in most of the stories in this collection, so I didn’t feel short-changed when I finished each story. They became more like television episodes of a favorite mystery series. The prose can be a little dense at times, but ...more
Wealhtheow
Jul 30, 2007 Wealhtheow rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: bigots
Shelves: battle-of-wits
Really awful Christian propaganda posing as murder mysteries. I was poised to like Chesterton, based solely on a few of his quotes I’d stumbled upon and Neil Gaiman’s good opinion. It’s true that the mysteries themselves are quite interesting. Unfortunately, Chesterton has a narrowness of view. In the first story of the collection, the clever police chief Valentin is the main character. I quite liked him, and looked forward to more interactions between him (an atheist) and Father Brown (a saintl ...more
Joseph
Aug 16, 2012 Joseph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I quite enjoy Father Brown stories. I began reading them a couple years ago...I wanted to get a hold of The Man Who Was Thursday...because I had found it somewhere. In writing each story, the writer inevitably comes by the personage of Father Brown as almost of a side-note, and each story he is introduced again as if it didn't matter that the entire volume of stories were his stories. G.K Chesterton writes very colorfully, in rainbows and spirals, populating his stories with color, extreme weath ...more
Ritesh Kukrety
Okay, so confession time (see what I did there? Didja? Didja?)

I picked up an abridged version of The Innocence of Father Brown, published by Maple Press, on a whim. Two whims, actually. I liked its cover, which had this cartoonish figure in a brown coat and a light brown hat and a big fecking magnifying glass glued to his eye, and I liked its title and blurb.

Now before any of you go chastising me over my faux-pas, allow me to state that I always judge a book by its cover (and judge it more for
...more
Anushree
Apr 09, 2013 Anushree rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was introduced to Father Brown by my grandfather. I was maybe 13 or so when he wrote to me in a letter, "I know you love Sherlock Holmes. You should try finding out if your library has the Father Brown detective stories by G.K. Chesterton."
I looked, but in vain.
It was years before i got the complete Father Brown stories as a gift from a friend who knew how much i wanted to get acquainted with this little priest who has often been dubbed as the second greatest fictional detective in the world.

T
...more
Jim
Feb 05, 2010 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chesterton
Because the first G.K. Chesterton story I had ever read -- many years ago -- was "The Blue Cross," the story that opens The Innocence of Father Brown, I have been consciously avoiding the Father brown stories and reading just about everything else by GKC that I could lay my hands on. Was it that I didn't like the story? Not at all! It was just that I was saving it for another occasion. Well, that occasion arose this week.

There is a strange disconnect between the characters in the Father Brown my
...more
Evgeny
Sep 24, 2012 Evgeny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Father Brown, being a short Catholic priest is the second most harmless detective after Miss Marple by Agatha Christie. This is a collection of first short stories of his investigations. While some of the situations are slightly artificial, I still like the ingenuity of some of his adversaries (Flambeau, first and foremost). Another thing of note: most of the stories end with revealing of villain's identity without telling about his/her capture. If fact, in a couple of stories the bad guys defin ...more
Anna
"He thought his detective brain as good as the criminal's, which was true. But he fully realised the disadvantage. "The criminal is the creative artist; the detective only the critic," he said with a sour smile, and lifted his coffee cup to his lips slowly, and put it down very quickly. He had put salt in it.”

"Humility is the mother of giants. One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak.”

*Project Gutenberg*
Laura
This is my first reading of Chesterton's series based on Father Brown stories and I really liked it.

Free download is available at Gutenberg Project.
Nina
Jan 29, 2017 Nina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
It's pretty good. Terjemahannya juga lumayan.
Kate
This took me forever on audio and even when I listened to a whole story at once I feel like I wasn't paying enough attention. The only parts that stick out are the parts knocked me entirely out of the story - either broad statements about religion or other markers of the age of the book. Hearing the bits that have been translated into the much more Marple than Brown TV series was interesting.No rating because I didn't pay enough attention.
Aaron
Feb 11, 2011 Aaron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the second of Chesterton's works that I've read. I can only describe it as I might Father Brown - quirky genius. Here printed are 12 short tales of murder and mystery, loosely interwoven.

"The Blue Cross" was one of my favorites. The simple inconspicuous deep cunning of Father Brown was most blatantly exhibited for us here. It was like witnessing a feather render an anvil unto powder. Here we first meet our two most important reoccurring characters - the brilliantly creative criminal Fla
...more
Adam Graham
Mar 21, 2011 Adam Graham rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mikejencostanzo
Oct 31, 2008 Mikejencostanzo rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
An Ode to the Cozy Mystery...

I've always been a big fan of mysteries. I realized how much mysteries have been a part of my life just this morning, as I was thinking about being 33 years old. I was hit by a wave of nostalgia that took me back to my first crush on crime-solvers. I can remember as an early elementary school student, loving the 10-minute "Bloodhound Gang" mystery segment at the end of each episode of the 80's television show "321 Contact." And of course, how could I forget the Encyc
...more
Andrés Diplotti
Alas, Chesterton! Why must you be so frustrating? Such a beautiful prose for such an insubstantial fare! Chesterton's style is so pleasant to read that I want, I really want to like these stories. I'm certainly very fond of passages like this:

There is in the world a very aged rioter and demagogue who breaks into the most refined retreats with the dreadful information that all men are brothers, and wherever this leveller went on his pale horse it was Father Brown's trade to follow.


Or this:

The ves
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • The Red Thumb Mark
  • His Last Bow: Some Reminiscences of Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes, #8)
  • The Three Coffins (Dr. Gideon Fell, #6)
  • The Thinking Machine
  • Trent's Last Case (Philip Trent, #1)
  • Return of the Thin Man
  • The Tiger in the Smoke (Albert Campion Mystery #14)
  • The Old Man in the Corner
  • The Moving Toyshop (Gervase Fen, #3)
  • The Nine Tailors (Lord Peter Wimsey, #11)
  • The Circular Staircase
  • The World of the Short Story: A Twentieth Century Collection
  • Great Detectives: A Century of the Best Mysteries from England and America
  • The Big Bow Mystery
  • The Red House Mystery
  • The Trimmed Lamp and Other Stories of the Four Million
  • The Best of Mystery: 63 Short Stories Chosen by the Master of Suspense
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Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936) was born in London, educated at St. Paul’s, and went to art school at University College London. In 1900, he was asked to contribute a few magazine articles on art criticism, and went on to become one of the most prolific writers of all time. He wrote a hundred books, contributions to 200 more, hundreds of poems, including the epic Ballad of the White Horse, fi ...more
More about G.K. Chesterton...

Other Books in the Series

Father Brown (5 books)
  • The Wisdom of Father Brown (Father Brown, #2)
  • The Incredulity of Father Brown (Father Brown, #3)
  • The Secret of Father Brown (Father Brown, #4)
  • The Scandal of Father Brown (Father Brown, #5)

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“Humility is the mother of giants. One sees great things from the valley; only small things from the peak.” 338 likes
“Where does a wise man hide a leaf? In the forest. But what does he do if there is no forest? He grows a forest to hide it in.” 22 likes
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