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Pagan Spring (A Max Tudor Mystery, #3)
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Pagan Spring (Max Tudor #3)

3.69  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,049 Ratings  ·  173 Reviews
Vicar Max Tudor, reveling in his new-found personal happiness with Awena Owen, feels that life at the moment holds no greater challenge than writing his Easter sermon. With Awena away, he looks forward to a dinner that includes newcomers to the village like West End dramatist Thaddeus Bottle and his downtrodden wife Melinda. But when one of the dinner guests is found dead ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 8th 2013 by Minotaur Books
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Dec 26, 2013 Ann rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery
I will start by admitting that I like English village mysteries. Give me a picturesque little village, some eccentric but kind-hearted villagers, a murder fueled by petty local rivalries and hatreds, and I'm as happy as a clam. So when G M Malliet's Max Tudor series started to come out, I bought them right away. But after this, my third attempt at enjoying this series, I will give up. The books have all the trappings that I like, including a romance between a vicar and a New Age Wiccan, a local ...more
Jenn Estepp
3 1/2? I like this series, but I want to like this series more. Or maybe just I like it more in theory than in reality? I don't know. Looking back at my response to the first two, I find that my response to this one sort of echoes my response to those. It's very literate and well-written. It's solid and I think a lot about the world Malliet has created is appealing. The mystery is okay and, even though the pacing sometimes felt uneven, I read through it very quickly.

However, I also find it pret
Nov 17, 2013 Larraine rated it it was amazing
This is the third Max Tudor mystery, and I believe it is Malliet's best yet. Reading this is like reading an Agatha Christie. I love the slight tongue-in-cheek as the characters are introduced. The writing group, Writers' Squared is absolutely spot on. (And that apostrophe is VERY important.) Max is invited to dinner. The love of his life, Awena, New Age free spirit and owner of an herb/crystals/natural cooking business, is away doing a cooking class.

Of course everyone knows that Max and Awena
Ivonne Rovira
Nov 10, 2013 Ivonne Rovira rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In G.M. Malliet’s third novel in the series, handsome and perspicacious Anglican priest Max Tudor investigates the death of Thaddeus Bottle, a bullying has-been character actor murdered in his bed. At the top of the list of suspects are Bottle’s beleaguered trophy wife, Melinda; her lover, local architect Farley Walker; several of Thaddeus Bottle’s previous sexual conquests, and some of the members of the village of Nether Monkslip’s writers’ circle.

As in the two previous novels — the serviceab
Oct 29, 2013 Ronna rated it it was amazing
PAGAN SPRING returns us to the small English village of Nether Monkslip where Max Tutor is an ex MI5 agent turned Anglican priest. His love life with the controversial spiritualist, Awena Owins, continues to blossom. Max also steps into a new possible murder. Thaddeus Bottle has moved back to a hugely renovated mansion in his family's home village. But humble he is not. Everything is about him and his desires. He desire is to be the center of everything, and his recent dinner party brings some u ...more
Kathleen Ernst
Jun 05, 2014 Kathleen Ernst rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
G.M. Malliet has created a marvelous series that pays homage to Agatha Christie, but is also fresh and new. Sometimes funny, always charming, this modern series is set in a small English village with a former spy now serving as vicar--and sometimes sleuth. In a crowded genre, Malliet's voice is original and unique.
Sep 14, 2015 Rob rated it it was amazing
G.M. Malliet is the champion of the contemporary cozy mystery---perfectly balancing Golden Age detective charm with present-day sensibilities. Following the superior 'A Fatal Winter (2013), this recent entry skillfully provides a satisfying resolution and intriguing backstory as to the culprit's motivation for dispatching the loathsome victim, while further developing the burgeoning relationship between the former MI5 operative-turned village Anglican cleric-turned amateur sleuth, and his new-ag ...more
Dec 02, 2015 Damaskcat rated it really liked it
Murder seems to be following Church of England Vicar Max Tudor around. He attends a dinner party in Nether Monkslip and later that night one of the guests is found dead. Who could have been responsible? There are plenty of suspects and DCI Cotton needs Max's help to unravel the mystery.

Max has found happiness in his private life but fears he may have to choose between his vocation and his life if his Bishop fails to understand about Awena's religious beliefs.

This once again is a book which takes
Debbie Maskus
Mar 23, 2015 Debbie Maskus rated it liked it
I am thoroughly enjoying the audiobooks in the Max Tudor series---I do miss the character list at the beginning of each book and the guide to Nether Monkslip. This centers on spring, on rebirth, on love, but also mingles the horror stories of WWII. The characters jump out of the book and enter the reader's world. I adore the descriptions of the various settings and especially the talk of food. The book contains many surprises, which I will not disclose. A horrible, conceited actor dies and Cotto ...more
Sep 18, 2014 Isabel rated it it was ok
Another murder in Nether Monkslip which Father Max Tudor tries to solve.

I got to admit, this one bored me most of the time.
I started with the second book in the series, a Fatal Winter, which I liked very much. So I bought the first one, Wicked Autumn, to be rather disappointed but I argued that the third one, Pagan Spring, would probably be as good as the second one in the series. Nope. It was even less enticing than the first one. The author prattles on and on about things we already know abo
Dec 04, 2013 Nancy rated it liked it
The vicar is the hero and the heartthrob in Pagan Spring (St. Martin's Press, purchased e-book), the third in G.M. Malliet's witty series featuring Max Tudor, a former MI5 agent whose sleuthing skills were tested in Wicked Autumn and A Fatal Winter. Max has had little problem fitting into the village life of postcard-pretty Nether Monkslip, although he's disappointed the ladies by taking up with Alwena Owen, a New Age herbalist. But several newcomers trouble the community's apparent serenity, in ...more
Dec 03, 2013 Lesa rated it really liked it
G.M. Malliet's mysteries always take me back to the old-fashioned traditional mysteries set in small English villages. Pagan Spring, with the cast of characters listed in the front of the book, its slow pace, and the gradual reveal of the mystery through in-depth character studies and conversation, is a perfect homage to those old mysteries.

Max Tudor, the MI5 agent turned Anglican priest, is very happy with life in Nether Monkslip in the southwest of England. He's in love with Awena Owen who own
Feb 25, 2014 Pat rated it it was amazing
I read this book in one afternoon. It is a cozy, English mystery and as it was snowing and cold, it was the perfect book to snuggle up on the couch with. I like the main characters (they have appeared in two other books by this author) and the plot was good. I didn't figure out "who done it" but it all made sense in the end. And the author leaves you with a bit of a cliffhanger! I can't wait for the next one.
Rita	 Marie
Nov 10, 2013 Rita Marie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-mysteries
Another delightful visit to my favorite English village -- Nether Monkslip. Romance between our hero, cleric Max Tudor, and Awena Owen, who prefers a more 'open' approach to spiritual values, is proceeding nicely. But obnoxious Thaddeus Bottle has been murdered and absolutely everyone has a motive. Who wouldn't want to kill this jerk? Much work for Max, but he is up to the challenge.

Other villagers, including the 'Writers Square,' attempt to solve the mystery as well, resulting in much visiting
Heidi Burkhart
Mar 17, 2016 Heidi Burkhart rated it really liked it
I am a big mystery fan and especially enjoy the details that Malliet includes in her books. Her characters feel genuine and the story is always captivating.
Earnie Painter
Nov 28, 2015 Earnie Painter rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Mystery Lovers
I have begun reading the two series by G.M. Malliet: St. Just and Max Tudor, both set in England. It's a little strange that I should pick this book to write a review of, the third book in the second series of hers that I've read. But, the spirit catches you and you fall down. (Wait, that's a different book.)

I love mystery novels. I've read all of the Agatha Christie books I could get my hands on. I have thought about it and I believe that there are three aspects that I love: Characters, plot an
Apr 21, 2015 Tony rated it it was amazing
My Grade = 92% - A-

Sue Grafton's next book will be "X is for..." I wonder what she'll do after "Z."

Janet Evanovich has just finished "Top Secr3et Twenty-one" and has an infinity of numbers to go.

G.M. Malliet's Max Tudor series deals with the seasons, and I've already read Wicked Autumn, Fatal Winter, and A Demon Summer, in addition to this one, so I wonder what will come next, especially as Max finds out (SPOILER ALERT): in the last page of this one that Aweena is pregnant. Since I already read
Mar 17, 2015 Thebrook78 rated it did not like it
As an American with a lifelong crush on British mysteries, I was prepared to love this book. It's got all the elements of a gloriously juicy genre read: a murder mystery set in a small English village, with a cast of interesting eccentrics led by an appealing lay sleuth. In addition, it was recommended by Marilyn Stasio of the New York Times Book Review, whose taste generally overlaps with mine.

This book seemed to me to start very slowly, but as a stalwart mystery-lover I was happy to give the a
Maria Thermann
Oct 17, 2014 Maria Thermann rated it really liked it
This is the first novel of author G M Malliet that I've read and I must say, I vastly enjoyed her writing - until the last chapter, where things fell apart a bit. This is, however, a hugely readable book and ex-MI5 agent-turned-priest Max Tudor, together with the delightfully eccentric inhabitants of the village Nether Monkslip, make for a wonderful cast. No doubt I shall read more of this author's works in the future.

The murder mystery's plot revolves around the murder of a once famous actor, w
Kristen Kurzawski
Jul 01, 2014 Kristen Kurzawski rated it liked it
I have read all of the Max Tudor books, and the mysteries are quite interesting, but as the series has progressed there has been far too much exposition on character development. This installment in the series has particularly excessive with internal monologues by the characters and back story for anyone who enters the series at book three. The spoofs Malliet writes about writes (see Death of a Cozy Writer) are much stronger than the Max Tudor novels. I wish she would return to those books.
Feb 26, 2014 Rebecca rated it really liked it
Thaddeus Bottle, the 70-something recently retired actor who just moved to Nether Monkslip with his 45 year old wife, is a pompous cad. While people are surprised when he's found murdered in his bed, no one is particularly sorry. Still, Inspector Cotton wastes no time calling in the vicar, Max Tudor, a former MI5 agent who has already investigated two local murders. Max agrees to help, though he's a bit preoccupied with his new love, Owena, and what his bishop will say when he finds out Max inte ...more
Feb 10, 2014 Nancy added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Susan Pola Staples
I'm reading the book out of sequence, as the copy is a library one and the second book still hasn't come it. But what my senses tell me, Maxen and Awena became a couple sometime in the second book, A FATAL WINTER.

This book begins in March shortly after the Spring Solstice and Easter is on the horizon. Maxen is struggling with his Sunday sermon, a passage in St. Paul. Awena is teaching a series of classes/lectures on 'cooking and curing with herbs' at the WI Denman College in Oxfordshire..
Sep 02, 2014 Phoebe rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Lisa
Vicar Max Tudor can pack the pews, with his stunning movie-star looks and his exotic background in MI5. But since he's moved to Nether Monkslip there have been several murders, and this third book features the death of a prominent playwright and actor, Thaddeus Bottle. Universally disliked and now mostly irrelevant to the theater world he once ruled, Thaddeus has moved with his bullied wife back to the village, where he can be a big fish in a small pond. Little does he suspect that his past will ...more
Marcia Ferguson
May 28, 2014 Marcia Ferguson rated it it was amazing
I read the autumn and winter books first - you know how it goes ... you're in a bookstore and find a single copy, so you have nothing to compare copyright dates. That being said, I was truly delighted to read Pagan Spring - the first of the Max Tudor series. It was a great joy to be introduced to his townie relationships at their early stages, and to learn more about his friend, former MI5 agent Paul, after the reader is aware of their close friendship. I can never get enough 'Cotton' either, so ...more
Jun 03, 2014 Bev rated it liked it
I love this series, but this latest one didn't work very well, in my opinion. It felt like two half-books that were folded together -- the "pagan spring" near the town, all the familiar characters of Nether Monkslip -- and then rather out of nowhere, the story of betrayal in WWII in occupied France...didn't blend together well enough for me. I hope there are more books, and that the next one is better constructed.
Mar 10, 2016 Delonna rated it really liked it
Let's face it. Cozy mysteries are not literature, but I love them! It is my go-to genre when I don't want to read anything too serious.

This book is the first I've read in this series, but it's actually the third book of the series. I have to say this cozy mystery has more depth and less "fluff", but I didn't realize it until closer to the end of the book.

One theme I want to reveal is that of religion, but it's not preachy. The main character is a MI5 spy agent turned preacher. His past career
May 10, 2015 Kathleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This is another excellent cozy mystery by G.M. Malliet. Do not be mistaken by the "cozy" designation as this book touches, ever so lightly, on the question of evil. Does any level of evil justify murder? Are we all hardwired to kill? Max Tudor is always pondering the nature of evil in the lives of those around him, even as he enjoys the deceptively calm village scenes outside his rectory window. Evil is part of his life, and why he is a MI5 agent turned priest.

Malliet is an excellent writer, who
Jan 26, 2014 Gail rated it really liked it
This is one of my favourite 'cozy mystery' series, featuring former spy turned cleric Max Tudor. When a self-absorbed, aging actor is found dead in his new home in Nether Monkslip, Max deduces that his death is not a natural one; the little English town is once more the scene of a nasty murder. This is the third novel in this series; I am anxious to read the next.
Pat Beard
Jul 16, 2016 Pat Beard rated it it was ok
This should have gotten a better rating because the plot was good and the characters are improving. However, the author has developed, to me anyway, a really bad habit.

My definition of a mystery is a story written to build suspense and lead to the climax when the perpetrator is revealed and how the detective figured out the clues is shown. Now after that occasionally there are additional bits of story needed to wind up a side plot or tuck in a character point. But this book had page after page
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G.M. Malliet writes crime novels for Thomas Dunne/Minotaur Books. The first book in her Max Tudor series is the Agatha-nominated WICKED AUTUMN (September 2011), which received starred reviews from Booklist and Library Journal. Library Journal and the Boston Globe also named it a Best Mystery of 2011: "Sly humor rivals Jane Austen’s."

WICKED AUTUMN also was chosen by Shelf Awareness book review edit
More about G.M. Malliet...

Other Books in the Series

Max Tudor (6 books)
  • Wicked Autumn (Max Tudor, #1)
  • A Fatal Winter (A Max Tudor Mystery, #2)
  • A Demon Summer (Max Tudor #4)
  • The Haunted Season (A Max Tudor Mystery, #5)
  • Devil's Breath (Max Tudor, #6)

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