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He'd Rather Be Dead (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #8)
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He'd Rather Be Dead

(Chief Inspector Littlejohn #9)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  68 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
The Mayor of the popular resort of Westcombe, Sir Gideon Ware, is no stranger to making enemies.

What was once a quaint little harbour is now miles of level, concrete promenade, and acres of pleasure-beach, embracing every kind of device for human entertainment and sensation. Sir Gideon Ware has put Westcombe on the map through bribes, intimidation and threats.

When Ware d
Kindle Edition
Published by Endeavour Press (first published 1945)
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Ivonne Rovira
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Golden Age Mystery fans
Despite the title, I’m pretty sure that Sir Gideon Ware, mayor of the seaside resort of Westcombe, would rather be very much alive. However, the social-climbing, abrasive Ware is just the sort who makes so many enemies that he’s begging to be murdered. And, of course, he is and at a banquet in front of dozens of witnesses.

Despite the familiar plot, readers will thoroughly enjoy Scotland Yard Superintendent Thomas Littlejohn and his methodical investigation of the case and author George Bellairs’
Aug 29, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Three and a half stars would have been about right for this one. An ingenious story with a good amount of detection, plenty of clues with a few red herrings thrown in.

While it has Bellairs's usual excellent prose and powers of description, it lacked, I felt, the witty characterisations of the main participants which I usually expect from him.

If, like me, you like police procedurals, then Bellairs can be relied upon to give you a good one. He was pretty prolific and I now have over 40 of his book
Nov 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Some nice prose, a few smile-inducing phrases, an intriguing mystery and detectives to whom the reader warms and trusts. The characters are reasonably well-delineated. The dossiers device comes close to cheating, but just passes muster. I take issue, however, with the long diary addendum. It is unnecessary and detracts from the narrative.
Nov 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Frenzied Fun in a Seaside Resort

Sir Gideon Ware is, or rather was, a self-made man, and that usually means trampling on a number of people to achieve his goals. It is at the official banquet to celebrate his appointment as Mayor that Sir Gideon collapses as he is giving his speech, after uttering an extremely apt remark, given the circumstances. The Chief Constable is a competent, experienced officer, at least as far as routine police work goes, and is looking forward to the investigation, but g
Aug 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
“Stagnate! I’d rather be dead!”

These were the words spoken by Sir Gideon Ware as he collapsed at the banquet which celebrated his becoming mayor of the seaside resort of Westcombe. It is no surprise to discover that this was murder by poison, surrounded, as he was, by people who had cause to hate him.

Chief Constable Boumphrey, unwilling to offend local dignitaries who may be implicated, sends for Scotland Yard and Inspector Littlejohn arrives to take charge of the investigation.

Littlejohn, aided
Gail Gassen
Feb 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A very twisted tale

So many suspects it's hard to choose. Even the the local police have secrets! Everyone hated the victim, so how do you find the killer from the lot? Hope you enjoy another Littlejohm mystery, book #8.
Feb 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Fairly interesting, although a bit dreary. Another loony done it. Fortunately the loonies always hide their insanity 'til the end. So fair play.
Mar 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very intrigued by the way this author goes about solving his murders. Fortunately for me, he wrote nearly 50 or so books before he died, so this will keep me going for awhile.
Jan 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy, netgalley-arc
ARC honest review for Endeavour Press via NetGalley.

Classic British crime/mystery from George Bellairs, featuring his main character Chief Inspector Littlejohn.

I found this one didn't have the twists and turns of the other George Bellairs books that I have recently read for Endeavour Press had.

But saying that, it was still a good story.

Please visit my blog @ https://finalchapterreadersgroup.word... like and follow.
Jan 25, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
It took a while to get into the style of writing but I got there eventually.
It's the 1940's and the mayor of Westcombe, Sir Gideon Ware has made many enemies during his stay in the town. Which means once he has been murdered there are a long list of suspects. In comes Chief Inspector Littlejohn from Scotland Yard to process the evidence and determine the murderer.
A NetGalley free book.
Eileen Hall
Feb 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another case for D. I. Littlejohn.
This time a not very well liked Sir Gideon War has been murdered in front of guesta at a dinner.
So there are many suspects.
My favourite story in the series so far.
I was given a digital copy of this book by the publisher Endeavour via Netgalley in return for an honest unbiased review.
Jan 20, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned
ghastly - not readable, thus not all Littlejohn books equal!
Helen Howerton
Mar 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A somewhat drawn out ending takes a star away from this early entry in the Littlejohn series. Be that as it may, Bellairs is a masterful story teller, especially in his characterizations.
wanda paschal
rated it really liked it
Dec 29, 2017
Carolynn R
May 15, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle-unlimited
Sophie Barrett
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Jan 15, 2017
Ellen Black
rated it it was amazing
Mar 01, 2018
Janet Bernard
rated it it was amazing
Aug 25, 2018
Mayor Ware has made many enemies in his life. No one is surprised when he dies in the middle of lunch. Inspector Littlejohn is called in from Scotland Yard to investigate. He has to weed through all the enemies and small town politics and an unhelpful Chief Constable to arrive at the truth.

Well-written. A good read.
rated it it was amazing
Mar 06, 2016
Jason Philpott
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Oct 24, 2016
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AKA Hilary Landon.
George Bellairs is the nom de plume of Harold Blundell, a crime writer and bank manager born in Heywood, near Rochdale, Lancashire, who settled in the Isle of Man on retirement. He wrote more than 50 books, most featuring the series' detective Inspector Littlejohn. He also wrote four novels under the alternative pseudonym Hilary Landon.

Other books in the series

Chief Inspector Littlejohn (1 - 10 of 57 books)
  • Littlejohn on Leave (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #1)
  • Four Unfaithful Servants (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #2)
  • Death of a Busybody
  • Murder Will Speak (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #4)
  • The Murder of a Quack (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #5)
  • The Case of the Seven Whistlers (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #6)
  • Calamity at Harwood (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #7)
  • Death in the Night Watches (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #8)
  • The Case of the Scared Rabbits (Chief Inspector Littlejohn #10)
  • The Crime at Halfpenny Bridge (Thomas Littlejohn #9)