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The Red House Mystery

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3.66  ·  Rating details ·  7,946 ratings  ·  1,066 reviews
Amateur detective Anthony Gillingham and Bill, his "Watson", investigate a mysterious shooting and the disappearance of their host during a house party in the English countryside. A clever plot with witty dialogue and intriguing characters.
Audiobook, unabridged edition
Published December 1st 1998 by Audio Book Contractors (first published 1922)
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KeenReader In the English countryside. Not far from London, because the amateur detective travels there from London and arrives in time for lunch. Apart from tha…moreIn the English countryside. Not far from London, because the amateur detective travels there from London and arrives in time for lunch. Apart from that it's not clear. The only place names (that I can remember) are The Red House, Woodham and Stanton. There is a place called Stanton in the Cotswolds, which would possibly fit with the detective's train journey.(less)
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Average rating 3.66  · 
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 ·  7,946 ratings  ·  1,066 reviews


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Beverly
May 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent, locked-room mystery, by the grand pooh bah, A.A. Milne, The Red House Mystery is great fun. I already was in on the secret thanks to spoilers in Eight Perfect Murders which I just finished, but I was intrigued by the description and I'm really glad I read it. The main sleuth and his sidekick style themselves, playfully, as a modern Holmes and Watson, modern, as in the 1920s, when this was written.

Our hero of the piece, Anthony Gillingham, decides to visit a friend of his, Bill Bev
...more
Stephanie
Oct 05, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who thinks Winnie the Pooh was written by a wimp
Shelves: mycuppa
How I love this mystery!

It's terribly, terribly English and Edwardian, a la Agatha Christie's best, and bursting with delicious humor. Goes to show that A.A. Milne wasn't a one-trick pony. Like E.B. White, he could write great stories for adults as well as children.

I don't think the edition pictured includes this wonderful dedication page that appears in mine:

"To John Vine Milne:

My Dear Father,
Like all really nice people, you have a weakness for detective stories, and feel that there are not eno
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Fiona
Mar 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read in preparation for reading Eight Perfect Murders, otherwise published as Rules for Perfect Murders. Antony Gillingham arrives at a country house, The Red House, just as a murder is committed. He is a man who lives by his wits, taking up whatever occupation appeals to him or offers itself to him at any time, and so he becomes an amateur sleuth for the purposes of finding out whodunnit.

It’s a thoroughly enjoyable, locked room murder mystery. It’s full of By Joves! and I say, old chap! and men
...more
Helga
The Red House Mystery is a whodunit with an interesting plot albeit being lengthy, tedious and at times confusing.

At breakfast one day, Mark Ablett, the owner of The Red House, announces the arrival of his black sheep of a brother Robert Ablett from Australia.
Robert arrives but soon his body is found in the same room where Mark was heard threatening him. Mark having been disappeared, everyone thinks the worse.
Has Mark killed his own brother? If so, was it premeditated, an accident or self-defens
...more
Mara
I'd call this more of a locked room mystery than an isolated closed circle, but it definitely has some of the same charms as that kind of story and it certainly is a country house mystery. The thing that worked best for me was the writing itself-- the mystery was only OK, but I think that's probably because it was an early version of this kind of twist. Short & sweet, I'd recommend it to anyone interested in classic mystery or the origins of the genre. Sadly, Pooh was not the culprit ...more
Barbara
I was only vaguely aware of this book when I saw a reference to it as being one of the Eight Perfect Murders earlier this year. Fortunately, by the time I came across it as one of the offerings in Audible's new free library program, I'd forgotten what element of the murder made it so perfect, so that I was left to enjoy The Red House Mystery with no preconceptions.

The word "confection" popped into my head when thinking of how to describe it. Also "silly", but in a good way. Nothing to take very
...more
Carol She's So Novel꧁꧂
Even though I was on a very action packed holiday, I still think the length of time it took me to read this novel shows I wasn't totally engaged by it.

I've read the comments on the Reading the Detectives Group https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/... & I think their suggestion that this was written as a parody was a good one. I was a bit obtuse on this, as I read it "straight." Reading it with my sense of humour switched off, I found it long winded, far too many characters early on & I guessed t
...more
Emma
Mar 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read and thoroughly enjoyed Peter Swanson’s Eight Perfect Murders last week and wanted to read those books referenced. So who knew AA Milne wrote anything outside the hundred acre woods? Not me! Having the memory of a goldfish, I had already forgotten the spoilers revealed by Swanson, so despite the very dated style, I found I had to keep reading because I needed to know how the murder was done. Now I know.
Emily
May 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this book, which is A.A. Milne's only mystery novel. Written in 1922, it reads like a cross between Wodehouse and Christie, which is probably the highest compliment I can give. It's a locked room mystery that features a self-aware amateur sleuth who just happens to arrive at the scene of the crime - the Red House - as he stops in to see a friend. Even though there's really only one suspect, the fun of the book is figuring out what actually happened.

I read this because it's listed
...more
Susan
Jun 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A A Milne wrote a little remembered mystery book before he delved into the 100 Acre Wood and created one of the most beloved classic characters in fiction - Winnie the Pooh. The mystery is set during a country house party, in 1922. Our amateur sleuth arrives to visit a friend, to find someone hammering on the door and a body within. Asked to help, he decides to play Sherlock Holmes, with his friend acting as his Watson. The host has gone missing and his ne'er do well brother, who had just return ...more
Veronique
3.5*

“Like all really nice people, you have a weakness for detective stories, and feel that there are not enough of them. So, after all that you have done for me, the least that I can do for you is to write you one.”

Milne, famous creator of Winnie-the-Pooh, wrote one detective mystery, seemingly as a gesture for his father (as the dedication shows). Imagine my curiosity! And as it happens, I rather enjoyed it, even though it was a little too tongue-in-cheek for my liking.

Much of the ‘action’ con
...more
Kim

AA Milne wrote this novel - his only foray into the murder mystery genre - in 1922, during the period he worked as a columnist for Punch magazine and before the Winnie-the-Pooh books were published. It's a pleasant read, with an attractive amateur sleuth hero and an entertaining if slightly dim sidekick. Much more of a why-and-howdunnit than a whodunnit (the culprit is reasonably obvious early on), the charm of the work is more in the witty prose and the clever allusions to Sherlock Holmes and D
...more
Dawn Michelle
WHAT a delightful book!! I really, really enjoyed this little mystery by A.A. Milne. I had no idea he had written anything besides Winnie-the-Pooh and was excited when this was picked for our book club!

An interesting mystery, dead bodies, intrigue and quirky characters make for a lovely read and keeps you guessing over and over [though I had most of it figured out by the end - that is the problem when you read a ton of mysteries every year; it didn't take away from the pure joy of reading this]
...more
Lyn Elliott
Who knew A.A. Milne wrote a mystery before he began his poetry and stories for children? Clearly a great many people, because his Red House Mystery has been issued in 142 editions.

It’s a delight. Clever, gently satirical, lively and absolutely of its time (1922). So many clues the air is full of red herrings - yes, I’m visualising a red house full of flying red fish.
Coni (coni_reads or skingproject)
I had no idea that the author of Winnie the Pooh also wrote a mystery novel. I really had a lot of fun reading this one. It was a parody of English mysteries and I found it rather amusing.

The main character of Anthony Gillingham is a young man with the means to pick up random jobs here and there, just to see what they are like. He is in between one of his odd jobs, when he stumbles into a murder scene while coming to visit his friend Bill at The Red House. He startles one of the house's resident
...more
Patrick Sherriff
Aug 26, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-and-such
It may be that this story was spoiled for me by Raymond Chandler who in his 1944 essay, The Simple Art of Murder, (my review here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...) ripped The Red House Mystery to shreds. Still, I found that all Chandler's barbs were on target: Milne had written a mystery in which the only interest was to solve the crime as a logic puzzle, after all, the characters were uninteresting and unsympathetic, the whodunnit puzzle element was all that was left. But here, the pro ...more
Debbie Zapata
Jan 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gutenberg
In my ignorance I never knew that Milne had written anything except the Pooh books. So when I found this title as well as some plays at Gutenberg, I was eager to see what his other work was like. I was not disappointed in this locked room mystery: it was fun to read: the amateur detective Antony Gillingham and his friend Bill Beverley were quite clever and the solution all made sense, even if I could not work it out myself. I never seem to be able to in this type of mystery story, even when I am ...more
Jean Menzies
Oct 01, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Such a shame there aren't more of these fantastic mysteries.
Tony
Nov 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The so-called "Golden Age of Detective Fiction" was a largely British phenomenon that took place in the 1920s and 1930s and its masters are among the most well-known names in the mystery genre (Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, etc.). The stories of this time had a number of conventions (which they did not invent, but certainly popularized), and they were so prevalent that several essays were written codifying them. These will be familiar to anyone with a passing familiarity with old ...more
Jane
Oct 13, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Where I got the book: free public domain download on the Kindle.

A rather coy little country-house murder mystery set just after World War I, and yet the war is never mentioned. Which sets the tone: a little bit of escapist fantasy, Winnie-the-Pooh's creator's try at a genre that took off like a rocket in the between-wars period, providing an intellectual puzzle to distract the reader from the fact that their world was up sh*t creek without a paddle.

And a very self-conscious stab at the genre at
...more
Tracey
Long long ago, not so very far away, I read this, completely delighted by the fact that the creator of Winnie-the-Pooh wrote a murder mystery. I loved it then, and so was happy when The Red House Mystery was chosen as a book of the month for the Goodreads English Mysteries Club.

Unfortunately, I didn't love the reread so much.

The writing was fun, with occasional Pooh-ish moments –

"Perhaps it was true that inspectors liked dragging ponds, but the question was, Did Cayleys like having them dr
...more
Hákon Gunnarsson
A.A. Milne is best remembered for his Winnie the Pooh, but he wrote a lot of other things, like this mystery. It didn’t go out of print for years after it initial publication, and in a way I can see why. It is a fun book.

What it is not though, is a suspenseful novel. It is never much of a mystery who comitted the murder, it’s just a question of why he did, and that is resolved satisfactorily at the end.

The tone of the book is light. Milne was working for the humor magazine Punch at the time of
...more
Cynthia
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Who knew that Mr. Pooh wrote murder mysteries? Not me. It was surprisingly good.
Shalini Nemo
Predictable, but fun.
Amy
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Amy by: Wild Card
Shelves: 2018, brit-trip
I've heard this is supposed to be a spoof but I didn't see it. However as a period mystery it was completely charming. It didn't take itself seriously and that made it completely delightful to read.
Hitessh Panchal
Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hitessh by: Amina
Who would imagine, that one who wrote Winnie Pooh books, could write such a splendid mystery.

Frankly , you get the idea of the killer far early , but it is the plot that keeps you scratching your head.

Not to be missed by mystery readers.

I want to so much add some details of the plot in the review, but it would just kill the joy of reading a very good mystery.

Read this as a part of reading for Rules for Perfect Murders by Peter Swanson

So, that's it.
Just read it to enjoy it.
...more
dianneOnRBG RIPmalaiseBreak
Dec 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: milne
"It knew now where it was going, and it said to itself, 'There is no hurry. We shall get there some day.'"
The House at Pooh Corner

What a delightful place to find myself - more writings of A.A.Milne. His brilliant insights from the Hundred-Acre-Wood sustained me through some tough times and finding his Grown Up writing feels a bit like landing in a huge feather bed, a soft place to fall in a dysphoric world.

The humor, the humanity, the gentle poking at the remaining pomposity of All-Hail-Britanni
...more
Leslie
Jan 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Of COURSE A. A. Milne is best known for his Winnie-the-Pooh tales and other books for children, which is why this book was a surprise find for me; fortunately, it was also a true delight.

I am a huge fan of the classic English country house mystery, and this book contains all of the usual elements: a murder, a locked room, a person gone missing, house guests, a gentleman on holiday who happens upon it all and becomes the story's amateur sleuth, and in the midst of all this—dressing for dinner. Th
...more
Charles Edwards-Freshwater
First of all, who would of thought that the author of Winnie the Pooh also had a fun murder mystery inside him?

The Red House Mystery is a perfect example of a diverting little puzzle based around a grisly murder that makes Golden Age crime writing such a joy. It has everything you would expect - a big country house, secret passages, mistaken identities and double crossings - in fact it's very much a textbook mystery that it feels almost familiar, which for the mood I'm in right now, was a comfor
...more
Cheryl
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Witty, entertaining English country house mystery.
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2,767 followers
Alan Alexander Milne (pronounced /ˈmɪln/) was an English author, best known for his books about the teddy bear Winnie-the-Pooh and for various children's poems.

A. A. Milne was born in Kilburn, London, to parents Vince Milne and Sarah Marie Milne (née Heginbotham) and grew up at Henley House School, 6/7 Mortimer Road (now Crescent), Kilburn, a small public school run by his father. One of his teac
...more

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